The latest Disney World News

Guests stop to take a photo at Magic Kingdom Park, July 11, 2020, at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on the first day of the theme park’s phased reopening. (Kent Phillips, Photographer)

In this day and age, the news can change quickly. It’s a great idea to keep on top of things so you know exactly what you can expect for your next Disney World trip. Find the latest news and updates below and remember to stay in the know by checking the official website for all your Disney World news and updates!

What’s new at Disney World Orlando?

Update 03/30/22

Rides and Attractions

  • The Hoop-Dee-Doo show is returning June 23rd to the Fort Wilderness Resort. This fantastic dinner stage show has been running at Walt Disney World since 1974. Expect a packed two hour show full of Wild West dancing, singing, and comedy, along with buckets of fried chicken, smoked BBQ pork ribs, salads, and strawberry shortcake.
  • The incredible Festival of Fantasy parade is also back at Magic Kingdom!
  • The Starlight safari tour is returning to the Animal Kingdom lodge as of April 22nd. An hour long, after dark safari where you can make use of night vision goggles to spot the animals, this is an unmissable experience for the animal lovers amongst you.
  • The H20 Glow after hours events are returning to Typhoon Lagoon, with the first tickets released on April 1st. After the water park has closed, you can enjoy three fantastic hours in the glowing pools ager dark, with DJs, food and drink, and plenty of rides to enjoy.

Latest Disney News and Events

  • Face masks are now no longer required on Disney World transport. This means it is completely optional to wear one throughout the Disney parks..
  • The Epcot experience has now closed permanently as of the 14th March.
  • The Spirit of Aloha show at the Polynesian Resort has also permanently closed.
  • Dates for the Epcot food and wine festival have now been announced. It will run between July 14th and November 19th.
  • Traditional character meet and greets are returning as of 18th April. You will once again be able to hug your favorite characters and get your autographs. Not all meet and greets will be available straight away, however, as they anticipate a phased return over spring and early summer.


  • The restaurant Victoria and Alberts is due to reopen this year. This highly-coveted restaurant has been the recipient of the AAA Five Diamond Award® for over two decades. This is a dining experience that should not be missed.

Update 02/23/22

Rides and Attractions

  • The ‘Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade’ has started up in the Magic Kingdom.
  • The Galactic Starcruiser is due to open on the 1st of March, with PR previews commencing soon.
  • The Flower and Garden festival is returning to Epcot on the 2nd of March.
  • The refurbishment of Expedition Everest in Animal Kingdom has been extended until April 30th.

Latest Disney News and Events

  • Anna and Elsa from Frozen have returned to the Royal Summerhus in Norway pavilion for meets and greets.
  • Face masks are no longer required across the parks, and are now optional to use with the exception of the public transport. For unvaccinated guests, it is still recommended to wear masks indoors.
  • Lots of new merchandise is now available, including wearable ears and magic bands, as well as plenty more added to the Vault Collection for the parks’ 50th Anniversary.


  • Menu items for the Garden Graze Stroll at the Flower and Garden festival at Epcot, have now been revealed.

Update 02/03/22

Rides and Attractions

  • As of January 26th, you can use Genie+ to book select character meet and greets, including Olaf, Mickey Mouse in Town Square Theater, and Cinderella and Tiana at Princess Fairytale Hall.
  • Donald Duck, Joy and Vaneloppe are now back in their normal locations to meet the guests.
  • The Festival of Fantasy parade will return to Disney World on March 9th.
  • A brand new cavalcade is due to start on February 11th, called “Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade!” You’ll be able to spot almost 30 Disney and Pixar friends.
  • Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire will debut on the Cinderella Castle Forecourt stage on February 25th, to celebrate the 50th anniversary.
  • Construction continues on the new Moana Journey of Water area, on the old site of Innoventions west.

Latest Disney News and Events

  • It has been announced that Jessie’s Trading Post and Roundup Rodeo Barbeque will be opening this year, in 2022.
  • Toy Story Mania Gift Shop has now been closed for a re-theming.
  • Epcot construction is continuing with the scaffolding around Connections Café and Eatery now removed. You can now also start to see the Xandarian Starship taking shape in the new Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind ride.
  • From April, extended evening hours will include Hollywood Studios for Deluxe Resort guests.
  • The moat at Disney’s Hollywood Studios has been refilled, which means it’s getting closer for the Fantasmic! Show to return.
  • Star Wars Galactic Star cruiser guests will soon get complimentary lightning lane access to Rise of the Resistance ride, as well as Smuggler’s Run.
  • Park Passes look like they are here to stay, as you can now book them all the way until January 2024.
  • Celebrate Soulfully is returning to Walt Disney World – it includes experiences that honour black history month and pay tribute to black heritage and culture through food, music, art and much more.


  • Breakfast Buffet returns to Ale & Compass at Disney’s Yacht Club resort. 

Update 01/20/22

Rides and Attractions

  • In Hollywood Studios, the entrance to the Star Wars Galactic Cruiser, which is due for its grand opening on March 1st, is now visible.
  • Out of the Wild in Animal Kingdom is due to be permanently closed. Vending machines will replace it.
  • The character Kevin, from the movie Up, has now returned and is back to walking around Animal Kingdom. See if you can spot it!

Latest Disney News and Events

  • The Festival of Arts at Epcot is now well underway, with plenty of fun things to see and do, including plenty Festival of Arts merchandise.
  • The “Rainbow Connection” show on Spaceship Earth has begun for the Festival of Arts. Spaceship Earth lights up in rainbow colours and changes throughout the songs that are played through the show.
  • The line-up for performers for the Garden Rocks concert, which occurs during the Flower & Garden Festival in spring at Epcot, has been announced.
  • New merchandise including Hercules and Monsters Inc baseball jerseys have arrived at Magic Kingdom.
  • New merch in time for Valentine’s day will be available for purchase across all the parks.


  • A shaded seating area has been added to the restaurant Woody’s Lunchbox, located in Hollywood Studios. This is a very welcome update as this restaurant is very popular and it is often difficult to get a table here.
  • Figment popcorn buckets break the internet! The little dragon-shaped popcorn treat proved to be super popular, with people queueing for 7 hours to get their hands on one. They were also resold on eBay for some truly staggering prices.
  • The Fling Fish restaurant will reopen on January 27th, located in the Boardwalk area. It is renowned for its stellar table service.
  • The Jiko restaurant reopens February 17th at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort/
  • The Turf Club Bar & Grill is due to reopen on February 3rd at the Saratoga Springs Resort.

Update 01/13/22

Rides and Attractions

  • In Epcot, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure will no longer use virtual queues, as of January 10th.

Latest Disney News and Events

  • Voices of Liberty, a 9-piece acapella group, returned to Disney World to perform in the American Adventure Rotunda in Epcot.
  • Tons of new snacks and other food items have been released across the Disney parks, as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations.
  • The beige strollers will be replaced from January 20th, with beautiful Mickey and Minnie Mouse strollers taking their place.
  • Menus for the upcoming Festival of the Arts at Epcot, have now been released.
  • A new ticket for Walt Disney World, ‘Disney Weekday Magic Ticket,’ has been announced. Available to purchase by Florida residents, this ticket will be available for sale from January 11th, through to April 17th, 2022. Blockout dates are March 14th – 18th.


  • At Disney Springs, the gourmet ice cream parlour Salt and Straw, is due to open in March 2022.

Update 01/05/22

New rides and attractions

  • From March 13th, Disney’s “Enchantment” fireworks show in Magic Kingdom will commence at 9pm, rather than 8pm.
  • There are rumours that the TRON ride, due to open in Magic Kingdom, will not be open until 2023
  • The Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, has returned!
  • A baby white rhino has been born at Animal Kingdom.
  • Select tours are returning across the Disney Parks; Keys to the Kingdom, Caring for Giants, Up Close with Rhinos, Wild Africa Trek and Savor the Savanna.
  • Typhoon Lagoon has reopened from the 2nd Janurary
  • Blizzard beach has closed since the 2nd January for refurbishment, with no exact date for reopening given.

Latest Disney news and events

  • Parking trams are back to help give visitors easy access to the parks.
  • There is now lots of brand new merchandise and snacks now available across the Disney Parks, to celebrate its 50th Anniversary.


  • At Magic Kingdom, you can now spot Beast, from Beauty and the Best, walking through the Be our Guest Restaurant.

Update 11/23/2021

New rides and attractions

  • At Hollywood Studios, Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser is opening on 1st March 2022
  • The new Guardians of the Galaxy; Cosmic Rewind roller coaster ride will open at Epcot in Summer 2022. Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Glen Close and more will return for the attraction. You will queue insided the Galaxarium – a planetarium-style space where you can enjoy the intergalactic wonders that connect Terra and Xander.
  • The much anticipated Tron ride is scheduled to open soon in the Magic Kingdom – date tbc
  • Moana – Journey of Water is due to open in time for Epcot’s 40th anniversary celebrations in 2022

Latest Disney news and events

  • Disney Genie Pass replaces FastPass, offering planning, food ordering, reservations and food recommendations during your visit. Read our blog on the Disney Genie Pass to find out more.
  • Character meet and greets are soon returning to Disney World at Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. Character experiences will be modified for the safety of performers and guests.
  • Social distancing guidelines have now been lifted. You do, however, still need to wear a mask in any indoor location, such as restaurants, inside rides, indoor queues, and public transport.
  • The famous Disney fireworks have returned to Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Hollywood Studios
  • Harmonious is now open at Epcot
  • Enchantment is open at the Magic Kingdom
  • The Festival Of Fantasy will return in 2022
  • A new stage show called “Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire” will be debut in 2022 for the 50th Anniversary. This will replace ‘Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire’ and will feature a new original song, “Where Magic Feels Like Home”. Mickey and friends will be wearing their EARidescent outfits and dancers will have new outfits for the celebrations.
  • A brand new cavalcade will be coming in early 2022 called ‘Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade’. It will join the day time parade and will feature the most characters ever to be seen in a Disney World calvacade. Look out for favorites such as Moana, Miguel from Coco, Clarabelle Cow, Baloo and King Louie, Mulan, Elena, Jose Carioca and Panchito from the Three Caballeros, Stitch and many more. It will be seen multiple times throughout the day at Magic Kingdom. 
  • Disney Broadway performers have been announced for the Festival Of The Arts, which runs at Epcot from Januray 14th – February 21st 2022. Big names including Arielle Jacobs, Adam Jacobs, Kerry Butler, Josh Strickland and Kissy Simmons are scheduled to perform.
  • Fantasmic will return in 2022, featuring new scenes from Aladdin, Moana and Frozen.
  • ‘Finding Nemo: The Big Blue And Beyond’ is a brand new show opening in 2022. It will replace the popular ‘Finding Nemo: The Musical’. The new show will take place in the Finding Dory timeline, and feature brand new tunes as well as fan favorites from the original.
  • New Year’s Eve fireworks will be taking place this season, with a stunning show called ‘Fantasy In The Sky’
  • Heaps of new snacks and merchandise have hit the shops recently, so be sure to browse the shelves and explore the restaurants for all the new offerings.
  • Sales of the lowest tier of annual passes have been paused ahead of the busy holiday season


  • Mobile ordering has arrived at Disney World. You can now order food and drinks from your mobile at selected restaurants, which will be ready for you to collect at the time you select. You build your order using the My Disney Experience app.
  • A new dining venue is coming, called “Connections Cafe and Eatery”.
  • The Space 220 restaurant is opening in Epcot, and the Steakhouse 71 is opening in Contemporary Resort, next to Magic Kingdom.

What to expect when you visit Disney World

Disneyland Resort in California has much news!
Photo courtesy of Disney Parks Blog

What you will need

  • All visitors need a theme park reservation made via the new Disney Park Pass system, along with a valid theme park admission ticket for the same park on the same day.
  • Guests age 2 and up must wear face coverings, to be worn in all public areas, except while dining or swimming.

The resort is also recommending that you have the latest version of the My Disney Experience app on your mobile device. And that you bring a cashless or contactless form of payment.

Updates to the Disney World face mask policy

One of the biggest Disney News World stories is the recent change in the current face mask policy. Visitors can now go mask-free, when in the open air. This will be welcome news for the Disney bloggers and families looking for a timeless photo opp moment in the park! Face coverings will still need to be worn indoors and whilst queuing for rides and on Disney transport. Stay in the know here, with all the latest face mask guidelines.

Mask and face-covering requirements at Walt Disney World Resort*

Face Coverings RequiredFace Coverings Optional
Upon entering and throughout all attractions
All theaters, including theater entrances
All transportation, including transportation entrances
All indoor locations, including restaurants, except when actively eating or drinking while stationary
Outdoor common areas
Pool decks
* Correct as of 6.1.21. Please refer to the Disney World website for current updates.
With increased capacity, Disney World is set to feel more like it used to. Expect more queues though!
Photo courtesy of Disney Parks Blog

Stay with Top Villas when you visit Disney World

For those visiting Disney World Orlando or Disneyland California, enjoy an unforgettable stay with Top Villas. Our vacation homes suit couples, families, and large multigenerational groups. Choose from themed kids’ rooms and game rooms to a whole plethora of luxury amenities! All located within a short drive of the parks, you’re guaranteed a first-class vacation. Our Guest Experience team is also on hand to help enhance your vacation, with an amazing range of Travel Extras.

What’s more, we make payments a breeze. Our new Affirm credit payment option* means you can spread the cost of your villa rental over a 3, 6, or 12 month period. Simply look out for properties with the Affirm banner.

*Subject to meeting Affirm’s credit criteria. T’s & C’s apply.

Stay abreast of the Disney World news with Top Villas!

Choosing our flex homes

Many of our vacation rentals also benefit from our new flex cancellation policy. You’ll be free to cancel within the specified time for any reason, for a full refund. Alternatively, amend your travel dates for free.

To benefit from this extra peace of mind, reserve a vacation home with one of the following badges:

  • Flex 14 – Cancel for a full refund or amend your dates free of charge, up to 14 days before check in.*
  • Flex 30 – Cancel for a full refund or amend dates free of charge, up to 30 days before check in.*

*T’s & C’s apply.

Extra Info