Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom Celebrates a Socially Distanced Christmas 2020

Magic Kingdom Christmas 2020 featured

The pandemic has put many people’s traditional holiday plans on pause this year, but the season is still merry and bright at Walt Disney World, where the Magic Kingdom officially kicked off its socially distanced Christmas 2020 celebration on November 6th.

Magic Kingdom Christmas 2020 Main Street USA decorations
Enjoy the sights and sounds of the season with our guide to enjoying a socially distanced Christmas 2020 at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. (Photos/videos by Seth Kubersky)

Even though Thanksgiving hasn’t arrived yet, we’ve already had the opportunity to enjoy the Magic Kingdom’s new Christmas 2020 offerings, and we’ve brought back this report as an early holiday gift to you!

Magic Kingdom Christmas 2020 Main Street USA Holiday Decorations

Much like during the recent Halloween season, this year’s Christmas decorations at the Magic Kingdom are almost entirely confined to Main Street USA. Lampposts have been hung with their traditional wreaths, and the traditional tree towers above Town Square, making a perfect backdrop for holiday photos.

2020 Christmas Character Cavalcades

Since reopening the parks, Walt Disney World has replaced traditional meet-and-greets and parades with unscheduled, impromptu character cavalcades that proceed around the park every 15-20 minutes. That continues with the Magic Kingdom’s 2020 Christmas Character Cavalcades, which include appearances from Mickey and pals, princesses, and (of course) Santa Claus himself!

Also keep an eye out for the Main Street Philharmonic marching band, accompanied by a corps of classic Toy Soldiers.

Even the recent heavy rains from Hurricane Eta didn’t dampen the Magic Kingdom’s holiday spirit, even if it required some modifications to the normal entertainment, as you can see in this video featuring the rainy-day version of the 2020 Christmas Character Cavalcades:

We were especially happy to see one act in particular on this season’s entertainment schedule. The Dapper Dans, who had been on hiatus since the shutdown, have returned to delivering their holiday harmonies on a daily basis. You can spot the Dans singing aboard the Main Street Trolley in the mornings. If you miss them, look for them in the afternoons on the upper level of the train station.

Magic Kingdom 2020 Christmas Treats

It isn’t Christmas at Walt Disney World without seasonal snacks and sweets, so you’ll find limited-time offerings on the menus around the park.

Halloween and Christmas collide in the Main Street Confectionary, which was briefly selling themed crisped rice treats and marshallow wands for both holidays.

We’re not sure what exactly Santa Mickey has to do with spicy chicken, but this sandwich at Cosmic Ray’s in Tomorrowland has quite a kick. I’d compare it to a Wendy’s spicy chicken sandwich, only with crunchy slaw instead of lettuce, and a higher price tag.

Christmas 2020 Merchandise

Of course, you can’t celebrate the holidays without gifts to put under the tree, and the Magic Kingdom’s Emporium is packed with new seasonal merchandise.

It’s Yuletide year-round at the Ye Olde Christmas Shop in Liberty Square, but this is the only season when you’ll have to stand in a queue just to shop for Disney ornaments inside.

This year’s selection of ornaments includes mouse ear hats themed to various theme park attractions, along with another series of ride-themed decorations that reveal their interior when turned around.

“What Child is this
Who laid to rest
On Mando’s lap is sleeping?”

If you happen to be a member of the Tribe, here is the limited selection of Hanukkah offerings from which you may choose.

Jingle Cruise

Last but not least, the only attraction at the Magic Kingdom to receive a holiday overlay this year is Adventureland’s Jungle Cruise, which has once again been temporarily transformed into the Jingle Cruise.

The boathouse queue has been filled with wacky decorations befitting the Skippers’ seasonal celebrations. There’s lots to see—including some amusing letters to Santa—which is a good thing because you’re likely to wait a half-hour or more for your ride with FastPass+ still unavailable.

Once on board, the captain’s usual script has been stuffed with a giant stocking full of silly seasonal jokes. The puns are still groaners, but it’s great getting to hear some new gags after a few thousands trips around the rivers of the world.

Take a ride on the 2020 Jingle Cruise without worrying about mosquitoes or mistletoe with this POV video of the full attraction:

For all there is to see and do at Walt Disney World, check out The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World, or to plan your family’s trip to Orlando, check out The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World with Kids 2020. If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and sign up for our newsletter here. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

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