Why Orlando May Be the Happiest Place on Earth at Christmastime

Why Orlando May Be the Happiest Place on Earth at Christmastime

Why Orlando May Be the Happiest Place on Earth at Christmastime

Posted by Hedi Schreiber on

Disneyworld is one of the most popular Christmas destinations. People come from all over the world to see the park lit up with holiday cheer.

During the holiday season, Orlando gets ready for the hordes of people visiting the city by providing plenty of festive activities that occur within the park and outside of it. Here are some of the things you can enjoy during your Christmas vacation.

Theme Park Fun

Disneyworld may be the most famous theme park in Orlando, but it’s not the only one. Here are some other parks in the city that will be celebrating big at Christmastime.

Walt Disney World: Disneyworld is all lit up at Christmas time. In addition to the fairy-tale like decorations, you can also enjoy Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, a Frozen Wish Castle Show, the Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, a Totally Tomorrowland Christmas and Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Show.

Disney Springs: Disney Springs is an outdoor shopping, dining and entertainment complex located at Walt Disney World Resort. During Christmas you can visit to enjoy Santa’s Winter Watercade, a Disney Christmas stroll, a holiday scavenger hunt, Toy Solider Stiltwalkers and Snowflake Skaters. They also send snow flurries into the center every evening.

Holidays at Universal Orlando Resort: During Christmas, this theme park and entertainment resort complex offers activities like the Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular, the Macy’s Holiday Parade and Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Sea World Orlando: While visiting Orlando, be sure to check out their Sea World location. It will be lit up with 3 million lights and festive food will be served. Families will also have the opportunity for a chat and photo opp with Santa in the Wild Arctic.

Colorful Christmas at Crayola Experience Orlando: The Crayola Experience offers 26 hands on attractions. Guests can wrap their own crayons, watch how crayons are made in a live theater show, create unique melted wax souvenirs and have fun in a two-story playground. At holiday time, seasonal activities are added including a Santa adventure, story time, caroling and more.

Legoland: This Lego themed adventure park always promises a great time. At Christmas time, the grounds are all lit up. There are themed shows, holiday Lego characters and fireworks shows for guests to enjoy.


While amusement parks may take up a good portion of your trip, there are also plenty of parades in town for the holidays. Here are some you won’t want to miss.

Avalon Aglow: This free community event includes a parade, a bounce park, train rides, pictures with Santa and a firework show.

Mount Dora Christmas Parade and Lighted Boat Parade: Located 45 miles outside of Orlando, Mount Dora celebrates Christmas with a parade featuring lots of holiday floats including one with Santa himself. Then head over to the Boat Parade on Lake Dora where boat owners decorate their boats with holiday lights and sail along the marina.

St. Cloud Annual Christmas Parade: St. Cloud is just 25 minutes outside of Orlando. Take the drive to check out a parade with the theme of “Peace, Hope and Love”. Over 100 community organizers get together to make this a wondrous event.

Winter Park Ye Olde Hometown Christmas Parade: Travel 20 minutes out of Orlando to take in a Winter Park parade that features over 100 bands and floats and Santa Claus himself.

Apopka Christmas Parade: Every year the Foliage Sertoma Club of Apopka presents this parade with a message of “Health, Hope & Unity”. Just a half hour outside of Orlando, it’s well worth the trip.

Kissimmee Festival of Lights Parade: Take a drive just about 40 minutes outside of Orlando to take in this parade which features dancing, music and thousands of lights.

Other Holiday Events

Here are some other holiday events you can enjoy while visiting.

Festival of Trees: The Festival of Trees takes place at the Orlando Museum of Art. Guests can browse through to enjoy the decorated trees, wreaths, décor and gingerbread houses. Live performances are available at select dates and times.

Dazzling Nights at Leu Gardens: Leu Gardens is a botanical oasis located just minutes from downtown Orlando. At Christmastime it transforms into a winter wonderland with lights, music and interactive elements.

Orlando Winterfest and Holiday Market: Taking place at the Orange County Convention Center, the Winterfest is a great place to eat and shop. There is also a tree lighting and children will have an opportunity to meet Santa.

Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shops: This sporting goods store offers holiday fun for its customers with a visit from Santa and take-home crafts and activity kits.

Christmas at Gaylord Palms: Gaylord Palms is a luxury Kissimmee hotel. During Christmas they offer several activities including a Cirque Dreams Unwrapped Show, a Feast with the Grinch, an I Love Christmas Movies pop-up experience, a Snow Factory, a light show, a scavenger hunt and an ICE! Walk Through Attraction.

Night of a Million Lights: Give Kids the World Village is a nonprofit Kissimmee resort for children with critical illnesses and their families. It turns into a wonderland at Christmastime with over 3 million lights, a 150 lighted tunnel that leads to decorated family villas, a gingerbread arch and holiday themed displays. There is also a visit from Santa where hot chocolate and ice cream will be served, and children will have unlimited access to rides and attractions.

Apopka Tree Lighting: Stop by Apopka to check out the annual tree lighting. Then browse through the Apopka Farmers Market and Holiday Market.

Orlando is a great place to visit during the holiday season. Which of these attractions will you be checking out when you visit? 

Read more of A Christmas Blog or Shop Now at Schmidt Christmas Market

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