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My family and I always love traveling to the Walt Disney World Resort during the holiday season. We love seeing all the decorations at the parks. We love attending Christmas events at the Magic Kingdom. There is a lot to do around the holiday season.
One of our favorite things to do was the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Trail. I loved seeing all the Christmas trees. I loved how each tree had their own theme. And all of the themes were Disney, of course – either to a movie (like The Princess & The Frog, Mulan, Tangled, Frozen, etc.), a franchise (like the Muppets and Star Wars), or a ride (like Haunted Mansion).
You can see the Christmas tree trail from 2019 here:
I had to skip going to Disney World last year for health and safety reasons, but I was back this year. And I was ready to go to the Christmas tree trail! I even booked a stay at Old Key West, since you can take a convenient boat to Disney Springs.
So what did I think of the 2021 Disney Christmas Tree Trail? Well…let me tell you how it is different in 2021.
Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll 2021
So then I found out the Christmas tree trail is not exactly a trail. It is now renamed the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll. And the Christmas trees are spread throughout Disney Springs.
Which, I have to say, made sense to me at first. Spreading it out in Disney Springs could be great for businesses because it could force people to walk all over Disney Springs. And they still have great Christmas trees, right? The experience should be, or so I thought, just as good as the trail was in the past. And it does make sense that they wouldn’t want a lot of people gathered in one place.
Unfortunately, that was not the case. For starters, I think I underestimated just how much I liked strolling through one place and walking from Christmas tree to Christmas tree. It was fun to take it all in at once. And there were even drinks for sale and snow even fell. I talked about the experience here.
But aside from that, the Christmas trees are honestly just not as impressive. The decorations on the trees are not as elaborate and intricate as before. And they don’t have nearly enough lights. I walked by a few of them more than once before I even realized that they were Christmas trees that were part of the Christmas Tree Stroll.
The trees were not nearly as beautiful as just the main Christmas tree you see when you walk into Disney Springs.
I mean, don’t get me wrong. They are still really beautiful. But they didn’t stand out that much among other beautiful Christmas trees I had seen all during my vacation.
Additionally, it wasn’t always super apparent until you read the descriptions of what the trees were themed to.
Personally, I would have preferred for them to have the same Christmas tree trail that they had before. They could just limit how many people would enter at a time. I would have been willing to make a reservation or even pay a small fee for it. But sadly, no one ever consults me on these decisions.
So having said all this, do I think it is worth it to visit Disney Springs during the holiday season?
Disney Springs Christmas 2021: Is it Worth It?
So do I think it is worth it to make a visit to Disney Springs during your Disney World trip? Even with my disappointment about the Christmas tree stroll, I still think it is absolutely worth it.
First of all, besides the trees, there are still beautiful holiday decorations that will get you in the Christmas spirit.
Disney Springs also has a ton of stores. It’s a great place to go get some Christmas shopping done. I personally recommend the World of Disney store. It is the world’s largest collection of Disney merchandise under one roof. If you have a Disney fan in your family, this is the place to go for Christmas shopping.
And then there are a lot of great Christmas activities going on at Disney Springs. You can get delicious holiday treats at places like Aristocrepes, Amorette’s Patisserie, Everglazed Donuts, Gideon’s Bakehouse, Ghirardelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop, The Ganachery, and Joffrey’s. Holiday beverages are available at D-Luxe Burger, Dockside Margaritas, and The Ganachery.
There are even themed dining experiences. You can get Breakfast with Santa at T-Rex Cafe and Rainforest Cafe. Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar is transformed into Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar.
Also (and this is true any time of the year), there is still a lot of great restaurants you can eat at (like our favorite, T-Rex Cafe). So it can be a nice break from the often very similar restaurants at the Disney theme parks.
There are still snow flurries in the Town Center, too. There’s a DJ playing at Waterside Stage, too.
And in the evening you can spot holiday performers throughout Disney Springs.
Be on the lookout for Santa’s helper singers, snowflake skaters and toy soldier stilt-walkers.
And finally, you can get a photo with Santa with the Once Upon a Toy store as a backdrop!
Disney Springs Hotels
You can get a bus to Disney Springs from any of the Disney hotels. But if you are staying at Disney hotel, there are four hotels in particular that make it easier to get to Disney Springs. And those are the hotels that offer a boat shuttle to Disney Springs. It is a really nice boat ride, too.
These hotels are:
Old Key West & Saratoga Springs are great because you can get them at a good rate if you book them through David’s Vacation Club Rentals. Saratoga Springs is especially good, too, because you can walk to Disney Springs from that hotel.
Speaking of walking to Disney Springs, there is a cluster of Disney Springs hotels that are really convenient to Disney Springs. You can easily walk from these hotels to Disney Springs. And they are usually cheaper than Disney-owned hotels.
These hotels are:
- Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace
- DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Orlando
- Wyndham Lake Buena Vista
- Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista
- Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista
- B Resort & Spa
- Holiday Inn Orlando
Disney World Tickets
If you are planning on visiting Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort, then I know you’d also like to visit the Disney World theme parks. You can find out how to buy discounted tickets for Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom here.