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Wondering what’s new at Disney World?
Well, this fall, the answer is plenty!
There are several new experiences coming to the Walt Disney World Resort. Let’s take a look at what’s coming to the Disney theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios & Animal Kingdom) as well as Disney Springs this fall!
Magic Kingdom this Fall
New Show at Halloween Event
Fans of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will be happy to know that a new Halloween-themed fireworks show will debut this year!
If you haven’t been before, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is a fun seasonal event that is not to be missed. It will be held on select evenings from August 16 – November 1 and requires a separate ticket from normal Magic Kingdom park admission.
This year’s party still will include lots of fan favorite activities & attractions, such as:
- Trick-or-treating throughout the park
- The Hocus Pocus Villains Spelltacular castle stage show
- Mickey’s Boo to You Parade
- Special attraction experiences at Pirates of the Caribbean, Mad Tea Party & Space Mountain
The Boo to You Parade is a personal favorite of mine – you can check out some highlights here:
The brand new fireworks show will certainly be a welcome addition to these returning favorites!
The show will include state-of-the-art projection effects, lighting, lasers, and, of course, fireworks – all to tell the story of how anything can happen on Halloween night. The story stars some very well known characters – Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy – and they’ll be drawn into a mysterious haunted house. (And if you’re bringing kids or you just don’t like to be frightened, no worries – the fireworks show will stay true to the holiday party’s name and will be, well, not so scary.)
Epcot this Fall
New Fireworks Show
IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth has a long tradition at Epcot – in fact, this nighttime show at the World Showcase lagoon has been running for almost 20 years! However, its last show will be on September 30, to make way for new nightly entertainment.
While the permanent replacement has not yet been announced and will not premiere until 2020, a new show, Epcot Forever, will begin a limited run on October 1, 2019.
Epcot Forever will include lighting, lasers, fireworks, and special-effect kites, all to celebrate what Epcot has been and what Epcot will become. (There are currently several projects in development at Epcot – like a new Guardians of the Galaxy-themed roller coaster and a Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure attraction in the France pavilion – so that there will be lots of new experiences by the time Epcot celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2022.)
More Days Than Ever for Food & Wine Festival
The popular Epcot International Food & Wine Festival will be held for a record number of days this year! The festival will run from August 29 through November 23, which makes that 87 fun-filled days. There’s so much to enjoy, such as:
- Culinary demonstrations
- Beverage seminars
- The Eat to the Beat Concert Series
- Specialty merchandise
- Delicious food
As you can see, last year’s festival was amazing:
Disney’s Hollywood Studios this Fall
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
So technically, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the new Star Wars-themed section in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, will open on August 29, a few weeks before fall begins.
Still, this autumn will be a great chance for many to experience Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge for the first time!
The land is themed to Batuu, a far off planet full of scoundrels and adventurers.
The main attraction to enjoy this fall is Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, where guests can control the Millennium Falcon as it hurtles through space on a smuggling mission. (There will be another attraction, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, opening later in 2019.) Guests can also have a drink at Oga’s Cantina or find rare artifacts at Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities, as well as other immersive Star Wars experiences.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom this Fall
More Opportunities for Nighttime Experiences
One of the great things about the fall season at Animal Kingdom is that the sun starts setting earlier and earlier – which means there’s more time to enjoy Animal Kingdom at night!
There are a couple of stunning experiences you won’t want to miss:
- The updated show, Rivers of Light: We Are One! This is the next chapter of the Rivers of Light show on Discovery River. The gorgeous original musical score will be combined with familiar themes, plus some familiar animal characters from Disneynature films and classic Disney animation will make an appearance! This show will premiere at the Discovery River Amphitheater over the summer, and there should be plenty of opportunities to enjoy it this fall.
- While Pandora – The World of Avatar is full of incredible sights at any time of the day, the bioluminescent fauna and flora is extremely impressive at night.
Disney Transportation this Fall
The new gondola system, Disney Skyliner, will be available to guests this fall!
The gondolas add a brand new way to travel between some of the hotels and parks, while providing amazing views and a fun experience!
Disney Skyliner connects Epcot and Hollywood Studios to the following Disney hotels:
- Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
- Disney’s Pop Century Resort
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
- Disney’s Riviera Resort (although this isn’t projected to open until mid-December)
Disney Springs this Fall
New Destination for NBA Fans
Basketball fans will be thrilled to know that they can enjoy the brand new NBA Experience at Disney Springs this fall!
The NBA Experience, which will officially open near the end of summer on August 12, provides guests with 13 interactive elements and hands-on activities. The idea is that you can feel like a basketball superstar – how you might have imagined (or still imagine) while shooting hoops in your driveway at home, except on a much bigger scale!
A ticket to the NBA Experience (which spans an impressive 44,000 square feet!) allows you access to all activities, in the order you choose. You can also repeat activities if you’d like to improve your performance. Some of these activities include:
- A slam dunk challenge (where you can choose between the standard 10-foot hoop to as low as 7 feet) – burst photography makes this a great photo op!
- A 15 second shooting skill test with spots on the court that light up
- A way to see how you measure up with your favorite stars in terms of vertical leap, wingspan, dribbling and shooting
You’ll also have the thrill of feeling as if you’re walking through the players’ tunnel at an NBA or WNBA arena when you enter. Leaderboards will track top scores & performances of guests at the NBA Experience throughout the day. And, of course, you’ll have the opportunity to purchase NBA-themed merchandise.
Fall 2019 is a fantastic time to visit Disney World! There are plenty of new experiences to enjoy and memories to make.
If you’re looking to plan a Disney World trip for this fall, we recommend considering staying at a Disney Vacation Club (DVC) resort on-site. You don’t have to be a DVC member to do so, and you can save a significant amount of money – we go into more detail about saving money through DVC reservations here. We also have a video that walks you through the process of renting DVC points for your Disney World trip.
If you don’t want to go the DVC route, then a great way to stay at a Disney resort hotel (including the hotels that will be on the Disney Skyliner route!) is by booking through Undercover Tourist. We have enjoyed using Undercover Tourist for years – they have some great rates on Disney World hotels.
Whatever hotel you choose, we know you’ll have a wonderful time this fall at Disney World!