Are You Ready for the Festival of the Holidays?

The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays returns November 18 and runs through December 30, 2018.

Even though we just welcomed autumn on our calendars this week, some details about Epcot’s popular Festival of the Holidays have been released. Most of the early details focus on one of the best parts of any holiday celebration — the food!

Epcot International Festival of the Holidays Holiday Kitchens

This festival is a celebration of the holiday traditions of the 11 nations represented by the pavilions around Epcot’s World Showcase. A big part of those festivities centers around food. You’ll be able to sample seasonal food and beverage specialties at the expanded Holiday Kitchens.

Holiday Kitchen

There’s an all-new menu at the Feast of the Three Kings marketplace that features sofrito-marinated beef with sweet plantains and olives, queso fresco-stuffed arepa topped with shrimp, crushed avocado aji and tomato sauce, as well as arepas topped with melted queso fresco!

2017 Epcot Festival of the Holidays

Other new food items to be on the lookout for this year include:

  • Black Forest roulade with cherry whipped cream at the Bavaria Holiday Kitchen (Germany)
  • Hand-carved smoked ham with green beans and sweet potato casserole at American Holiday Table (The American Adventure)
  • Three variations of croissant doughnuts at the Taste Track marketplace – a carry-over from this year’s Epcot Food and Wine Festival located near Test Track

And there’s something for the cookie-lover in all of us — get a free cookie! Track your purchases of five select holiday cookies in your Festival Passport by collecting a unique stamp for each one. Then, stop by Holiday Sweets and Treats to receive a special complimentary “completer” cookie… and a glass of milk!

There will also be a brand-new marketplace this year. No details have been announced, as soon as they are we will be sure to let you know!

Epcot International Festival of the Holidays Merchandise

No Festival is complete without some merchandise and souvenirs. Be on the lookout for a new Festival of the Holidays t-shirt and hoodie featuring Chip & Dale in their holiday attire.

2018 Epcot Festival of the Holidays MerchandiseOn chilly holiday evenings warm up under the new Festival of the Holidays throw. Merchandise will be available inside Mouse Gear and throughout World Showcase.

Epcot International Festival of the Holidays: Candlelight Processional, Illuminations and More

In addition to the Candlelight Processional, several other festival favorites return for this year’s Festival of the Holidays. Chip & Dale’s Christmas Tree Spree Scavenger Hunt  will have you looking for the chipmunks with their ornaments in each World Showcase pavilion. When you purchase a map and stickers for the hunt and find all the ornaments, return your completed map for a holiday surprise courtesy of Chip & Dale.

2017 Chip 'n' Dale Christmas Tree Spree

Be sure to stay until the end of the night and watch IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth. The nighttime spectacular takes place on World Showcase Lagoon and features a special holiday-themed finale that lights the up the sky. This will be the final holiday season for IllumiNations, as it is currently scheduled to conclude at the end of summer 2019.

For more information about Epcot International Festival of the Holidays or all of the other holiday events at Walt Disney World during this season watch our calendar for updated information and links.

Are you traveling to Disney World this holiday season? What’s your favorite Disney tradition? Let us know in the comments!

Debra Martin Koma wrote about food, travel and lifestyle issues for a number of local and national publications before she fell in love with Walt Disney World on her first visit — when she was 34! She's returned to her Laughing Place more times than she can count in the ensuing years, and enthusiastically shares her passion with readers of AllEars.Net and AllEars®. Deb also co-authored (along with Deb Wills) PassPorter's Open Mouse for Walt Disney World and the Disney Cruise Line, a travel guide designed for all travelers to Walt Disney World who may require special attention, from special diets to mobility issues.

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