Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on these links and make a qualifying purchase, I will receive a small commission from those purchases.
It’s always an exciting time to plan a visit to the most magical place on Earth! But, 2022 is looking like an extra magical year at the Walt Disney World Resort! Today, we are sharing 22 reasons why you should plan to visit Disney World in 2022!
1. The World’s Most Magical Celebration
The World’s Most Magical Celebration, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Walt Disney World Resort, began October 1, 2021 and will continue for 18 months so you can enjoy this celebration throughout all of 2022!
Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse are hosting “The World’s Most Magical Celebration,” while decked out in sparkling new EARidescent fashions. Donald Duck and Daisy Duck, Goofy and Pluto, and Chip ‘n’ Dale are also sporting their own custom-made EARidescent looks. You can see them when they travel through Magic Kingdom Park several times daily in the new “Mickey’s Celebration Cavalcade.”
These eight friends are even featured in special golden character sculptures at Magic Kingdom Park. There are 50 characters total in this series of sculptures that are displayed across all four theme parks.
“The World’s Most Magical Celebration” features icons at each of the four parks transforming into Beacons of Magic at night, exclusive merchandise, new food and beverage offerings and even an update look for the iconic Cinderella Castle.
2. Typhoon Lagoon is Now Open
Surf’s up! Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park is open once again for guests to experience their favorite thrilling water attractions and tropical family fun. You can build your own tropical flavor DOLE Whip combinations at Snack Shack, body surf in America’s largest outdoor wave pool, plunge down Humunga Kowabunga, relax in Castaway Creek, and take a journey with friends and family down Miss Adventure Falls.
Whether it’s the topsy-turvy architecture, storm-strewn treasures scattered around the park, or the stranded ship, Missy Tilly’s, perched upon the summit of Mount Mayday, each detail immerses guests into the magical legend of Typhoon Lagoon every time they visit the park.
3. New Nighttime Spectaculars at Magic Kingdom and EPCOT
“Disney Enchantment,” the new nighttime spectacular at Magic Kingdom Park, will take you on a journey filled with adventure, wonder and empowerment. Inspiring everyone to believe in magic, “Disney Enchantment” features music, enhanced lighting, stunning fireworks and, for the first time, immersive projection effects that extend from Cinderella Castle down Main Street, U.S.A.
“Harmonious,” at EPCOT, is one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney park. This new show brings the globe together at World Showcase Lagoon in a celebration of Disney music that inspires people worldwide. It’s a grand, powerful tribute to the stories and songs that unite us, embracing new technical magic that incorporates pyrotechnics, choreographed moving fountains, lighting and media in new ways. “Harmonious” will invite you to travel the globe through new interpretations of classic Disney songs as you’ve never heard them before, reimagined in more than a dozen languages by a diverse group of 240 artists from around the world.
4. Character Meet and Greets Are BACK!
You can once again have individualized time with some of your favorite Disney characters, by getting to visit with them in a themed location and snap a photo or two. You will find the Disney Princesses at Princess Fairytale Hall in Magic Kingdom Park, Minnie Mouse at Red Carpet Dreams and the stars of Disney Junior in Animation Courtyard at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. And, when you stop in to see Mickey Mouse backstage at Town Square Theater on Main Street, U.S.A., he’ll be sporting his all-new EARidescent look designed just for the Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary Celebration!
5. Select Behind the Scenes Tours Returning February 6, 2022
For those of you with a love of animals, adventure and the outdoors – and those seeking to discover how Walt Disney’s vision, innovation and creativity brought Magic Kingdom Park to life – things are about to get a lot more exciting with the return of some fan-favorite tours from the Enchanting Extras Collection!
Guests who want to get even closer to the magic of nature and Disney now can book one of the following tours returning beginning Feb. 6, 2022:
- Disney’s Keys to the Kingdom
- Caring for Giants
- Wild Africa Trek
- Up Close with Rhinos
- Savor the Savanna
6. Disney Genie Service
Available for all guests right in the My Disney Experience app, the new complimentary Disney Genie service offers new features that let you create your best Disney day. These features include a personalized itinerary creator that effortlessly and smartly maps out an entire day inspired by the things you love – helping you make the most of your park time so you can have more fun.
Disney Genie puts guests at the center of the experience by prioritizing ways to:
- Reduce time in lines while keeping in mind your top picks
- Pace your day with experiences you’ll enjoy – and haven’t already done yet
- Build around your existing plans like dining reservations and Park Hopper preferences
7. Taste of EPCOT International Festival of the Arts
This annual festival, running January 14 through February 21, 2022, invites you to explore an expansive collection of visual, performance and culinary arts throughout the park. The DISNEY ON BROADWAY Concert Series is also returning for this year’s festival, where you can see some of your favorite entertainers perform Disney songs live at America Gardens Theatre in World Showcase.
During the festival, art lovers of all ages can enjoy inspirational experiences, such as:
- Culinary delights from Food Studios around World Showcase
- The Wonderful Walk of Colorful Cuisine – a fun food stroll featuring five delicious sweet and savory treats
- Chalk artists turning walkways into stunning landscapes and portraits
- Photo ops where you can step into famous artwork
- A paint-by-number mural
- Figment’s Brush with the Masters scavenger hunt
- Performance and visual artists
- Special festival merchandise
8. Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser to Welcome Guests Beginning March 1, 2022
The inaugural voyage of Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser at Walt Disney World Resort will depart March, 1, 2022! General bookings for this immersive adventure in a galaxy far, far away are now available.
Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is a first-of-its-kind vacation experience that goes beyond anything Disney has created before. You’ll become the hero of your own Star Wars story during this two-night adventure, traveling the galaxy in style aboard the Halcyon starcruiser and eventually making your way to the Outer Rim for a planetside excursion to Batuu. You choose how to make your way in the galaxy – maybe as a member of the Resistance, or by learning the ancient ways of the Jedi lightsaber. Maybe you prefer loyalty to the First Order or the excitement of living life like a smuggler? The decisions are up to you.
9. EPCOT International Flower and Garden Festival
The 2022 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival springs to life March 2 and runs through July 4, offering 125 days to enjoy fresh cuisine, colorful gardens, playful topiaries and vibrant entertainment.
Gardeners will marvel at thousands of blooms forming colorful, living panoramas all around EPCOT, and the entire family can experience the Health Full Trail presented by AdventHealth along the Imagination walkway to learn tips for staying well.
Fresh flavors are on the menu at the festival’s 18 Outdoor Kitchens as well as other food and beverage locations around EPCOT, offering a fresh selection of springtime fruits, vegetables, desserts and more.
The popular Garden Rocks Concert Series is planned to return, featuring favorite tunes at the America Gardens Theatre.
You’ll also find blooming keepsakes including vibrant apparel, drinkware, accessories and more with new merchandise collections launching just in time for the event.
10. Disney’s All Star Sports Resort Reopens March 31, 2022
Put them in, coach! Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort will welcome Guests back beginning March 31, 2022. The whole family can get in the game at this Walt Disney World Resort hotel that salutes the world of competitive sports, including baseball, basketball, football, surfing and tennis. Go the distance and don’t be afraid to celebrate your inner fan amid sporty décor starring some of your favorite Disney characters.
11. Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond to Premiere at Animal Kingdom
A reimagined version of “Finding Nemo: The Musical”, based on the same beloved characters, will debut at Theater in the Wild in 2022.
The musical retelling of this underwater tale of family, friendship and kindness will feature new story material, as well as fan favorite songs such as “In the Big Blue World” and “Go with the Flow.” This new show is set in the timeline of the movie “Finding Dory.” When you take a seat in the theater, you’ll find yourself at the Marine Life Institute.
12. Festival of Fantasy Parade Returns to Magic Kingdom
This year will welcome the return of the Disney “Festival of Fantasy” Parade at Magic Kingdom Park. This vibrant and joyous celebration of Fantasyland brings to the streets of Magic Kingdom Park dozens of beloved Disney characters and stories, from the Disney Princess Garden to a carnival of color presided over by none other than Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse.
13. Adventure Friends Cavalcade
2022 will also introduce a new character cavalcade, the Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade, with an exciting lineup of characters all embarking on a great journey through the park. The Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade will feature the most characters of any cavalcade to date, including Nick and Judy from “Zootopia,” Baloo and King Louie from “The Jungle Book,” José Carioca and Panchito from “The Three Caballeros,” Miguel from “Coco,” plus Merida, Moana, The Incredibles, and so many more!
14. Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire
Live entertainment is returning to the Cinderella Castle Forecourt Stage with a show newly enhanced for the 50th Anniversary celebration. “Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire” will incorporate favorite scenes from the previous version of the show – with sequences inspired by “Frozen,” “Tangled,” and “The Princess and the Frog” – plus a new opening and a new finale with Mickey Mouse and all his friends in their sparkling, EARidescent fashions. The show will also include an all-new, original song entitled “Where the Magic Feels Like Home.”
15. MagicBand+ to Debut
MagicBand+ will retain popular features of the original MagicBand and add functionality that unlocks new moments of magic for you. After you enter a theme park, MagicBand+ will come alive at various times with color-changing lights, haptic vibrations and gesture recognition. The wearable will allow you to engage with favorite Disney moments in new ways, including:
- Play like a bounty hunter in a galaxy far, far away and find virtual bounties throughout Black Spire Outpost in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
- Interact with the “Disney Fab 50 Character Collection,” the golden sculptures spread throughout the Walt Disney World theme parks.
- Experience nighttime spectaculars in a new way as you see your band light up and complement the magic in the skies, including the new “Harmonious” at EPCOT and “Disney Enchantment” at Magic Kingdom Park.
16. Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind to Open at EPCOT This Summer
Cue up your mixtape and prepare for something awesome … because it’s about to be save the galaxy time! Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will open at EPCOT this summer. This thrilling new family-friendly coaster matches the “grandosity” and fun of the blockbuster “Guardians of the Galaxy” films in what will be one of the longest fully enclosed coasters in the world.
17. 40th Anniversary of EPCOT
EPCOT will celebrate its 40th anniversary on October 1, 2022! The park has been undergoing an historic transformation and we hope to see more new openings here in 2022, like Journey of Water, inspired by “Moana” where guests will have the opportunity to meet and play with magical, living water. You can also enjoy new dining options like Space 220 and the Creperie while awaiting the opening of a new quick service dining option, Connections Cafe, near the new Creations shop.
18. Fantasmic! Will Return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios
“Fantasmic!” will be returning to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 2022. When this incredible spectacular reopens, it will incorporate an all-new sequence featuring more than 50 live performers, massive sets, stunts, stunning special effects, dazzling pyrotechnics, rousing music and more!
19. Disney KiteTails at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park
This new show happens several times daily at the Discovery River Theater, near DinoLand U.S.A. As you make your way into the space, you’ll be joined by a team of performers bringing with them a colorful collection of oversized props and kites adorned with Disney animal friends from “The Little Mermaid,” “a bug’s life” and “Finding Nemo.” Original arrangements of favorite Disney tunes fill the air, and the excitement builds toward the launch of an impressive show of kites over the lagoon.
Watercraft zoom into view, pulling with them dynamic kite trains and enormous, three-dimensional kites depicting familiar characters from “The Lion King” or “The Jungle Book.” From one performance to another, you may see Baloo the bear dancing in the sky or Zazu the red-billed hornbill chasing after Simba. These remarkable kites, some as large as 30 feet in length, are inflated by moving through the air, allowing characters like King Louie or Timon and Pumbaa to soar like never before!
20. Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at EPCOT is Now Open
You can see everyone’s favorite “Little Chef” when you ride Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, the newest attraction at EPCOT! In this delicious new attraction, you’ll feel like you’ve shrunk to the size of Chef Remy as you scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant on a wild adventure for the whole family (no height requirement!).
21. Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular is Back at Hollywood Studios
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular has recently restarted daily shows at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This live show, featuring Indy and Marion, allows you to watch as the daring duo dodges deadly traps, battles bad guys, leaps from tall buildings and makes thrilling escapes straight out of Raiders of the Lost Ark. The edge-of-your-seat suspense ends with a dynamite finale!
Along the way, you’ll also get an inside look at how stunts are done in movies with demonstrations that reveal how to safely throw and take punches, fall from tall buildings, and even wield whips in the midst of complex action sequences.
22. Celebrate Animation with Cirque du Soleil’s New Show, Drawn to Life
Drawn to Life presented by Cirque du Soleil and Disney, is a new show inside the iconic white theatre at Disney Springs. Drawn to Life is the first theatrical collaboration between three creative icons: Cirque du Soleil, Walt Disney Animation Studios and Walt Disney Imagineering.
Drawn to Life celebrates Disney’s extraordinary legacy in the art of animation, from the earliest pencil sketches to the feature films of today. The classic characters and moments from Disney Animation are reinterpreted through Cirque du Soleil’s innovative design, acrobatic performances, dazzling choreography and creative costuming alongside an original score inspired by timeless Disney music.