Donâ€™t let Central Floridaâ€™s balmy breezes fool you, the holidays are right around the corner, and thereâ€™s plenty of fun to be had this season in the Orlando area. Hereâ€™s our take on the best holiday events in and around Orlando this year.
Get Merry with the Mouse
Itâ€™s already a very special year at Walt Disney World as the resort celebrates its 50th anniversary, so what better time to extend the celebration after hours? The Disney Very Merriest After Hours event is a separately ticketed event that happens beginning at 9 pm at the Magic Kingdom from November 8th through December 21st (on select nights) and features fireworks, a themed parade, tasty holiday treats, shorter ride wait times, and more.
Rendezvous with Rudolph
Head over to SeaWorldâ€™s Christmas Celebration and discover a sparkling wonderland filled with lights, entertainment, and holiday cheer. Check out Winter Wonderland on Ice and meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and friends. This holiday event is included with regular park admission and runs from November 13th through January 2nd on select nights.
Be Dazzled by a Million Lights
Immerse yourself in a one-of-a-kind holiday light spectacular at Night of a Million Lights at Give Kids the World Village in Kissimmee, Fl. Running November 12th through January 2nd, visitors are invited to take a holiday stroll through a dazzling wonderland filled with millions of colorful lights featuring a sparkling tree trail, storybook village, and holiday marketplace. Ticket prices vary by night and proceeds go to Give Kids the World, an 89-acre non-profit resort that provides cost-free vacations to critically ill children and their families.
Take in a Traditional Ballet
Enjoy a sophisticated evening of traditional ballet at the Orlando Balletâ€™s annual performance of The Nutcracker. Be whisked away to an enchanted world featuring the Mouse King, Mother Ginger, and the Sugar Plum Fairy. VIP packages including signed performance memorabilia and access to watch the ballet Company practice are available for purchase. The show runs December 3rd through 5th and 16th through 19th. For younger fans, a condensed, one-hour version of the show runs on December 4th and 18th.
See Santa at the Mall at Millenia
No holiday season is complete without a quick chat with the big man himself. The Santa photo experience at the Mall at Millenia is the perfect way to schedule time with St. Nick while fitting in some holiday shopping at your choice of more than 130 boutiques, restaurants, shops, and cafÃ©s.
When it comes time to book your Central Florida holiday vacation, amazing lodging options abound. The Crowne Plaza Lake Buena Vista and the Fairfield Inn Orlando Lake Buena Vista are both located close to Walt Disney World, and Aloft Orlando International Drive, Comfort Inn International, Element Orlando International Drive, and Best Western International Drive are each conveniently positioned near International Drive. Other area options include Staybridge Suites Orlando Royale Parc, Fairfield Inn Orlando Airport, and Wyndham Orlando Resort & Conference Center/Celebration.