What’s New at Walt Disney World in 2021? Everything to Know!

What’s New at Walt Disney World in 2021? Everything to Know!

Wondering What’s New at Walt Disney World in 2021? It’s is all about new rides, restaurants, shows and the 50th Anniversary celebrations. Here’s everything you can plan to see at Disney in 2021 and everything you need to know to make sure your vacation is amazing! We’re sharing some Disney COVID-related things in this post as well, so you can go prepared! Get ready for the most magical year ever. 

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Everything New at Walt Disney World for 2021

If 2020 is any indicator, 2021 is gonna be one heck of a year! With the COVID Pandemic at Walt Disney World not only affecting vacations but also every single aspect of the experience in the parks, we’ll all have to deal with being more flexible! 

Walt Disney World Calendar of Events 2021

Check out the lineup of everything happening at Walt Disney World in 2021, not only the new stuff! From returning festivals to events, special days, and more. We’re keeping track of everything on our 2021 Walt Disney World Calendar with tentative and confirmed dates of everything happening!

Walt Disney World Marathon 2021 | January 6-10, 2021 Now VIRTUAL

 The runDisney Walt Disney World Marathon returns in 2021 is Virtual, and is already SOLD OUT. This weekend-long event takes over the parks and allows runners to add a little Disney to the race. But this year, many of these runners will just be doing their marathons from home. We wouldn’t be surprised if some Marathon vacations were already booked for folks, so we still may see crowds this week.

HarmoniUs Fireworks and Digital Show | Epcot

If this new Epcot show, replacing Epcot Forever, doesn’t arrive at the end of 2020, it will arrive in 2021. This new show celebrates the music of all lands and combines scenes and sounds that connect cultures. Check out the video in our Changes Coming to Epcot post for a glimpse at the music in this new show. 

Walt Disney World Changes coming for the 50th Anniversary in 2021. Disney changes in Disney Parks

New Rides at Walt Disney World in 2021

One of the biggest things coming for the 50th Anniversary of the Walt Disney World is new rides! And if you haven’t been to Walt Disney World in the last few years you haven’t seen everything that has arrived so far! For a complete list of everything that has changed in the parks; new rides, restaurateurs, shows and canceled attractions, check out our Changes for the Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary post. 

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure | EPCOT

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure in Epcot is opening October 1, 2021. Along with the courtyard in EPCOT France and the new creperie restaurant, Le Creperie! 

New Rides at Walt Disney World RESCHEDULED FOR 2022

Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind Roller Coaster  | EPCOT

Originally slated for Spring of 2021 this project has now officially been moved back to 2022. In Cosmic Rewind you can experience a 360 ride starting with a backward launch into “space.” Tasked to save the universe, we are super excited to see this ride in action, as it’s supposed to be the first of its kind!

TRON Lightcycle Run Roller Coaster | Magic Kingdom

This amazing lightcycle coaster was originally to complete by Summer 2021 ahead of the 50th Anniversary. While construction was still going strong in 2020, January 2021 saw the construction walls sealed up indicating a longer wait than previously perceived. It is now scheduled to complete sometime in 2022. 

Woody's BBQ Restaurant

New Restaurants Coming to Walt Disney World in 2021 (or 2022)

In addition to the Le Creperie de France, we’re hoping to see the Roundup Rodeo BBQ come to fruition in Hollywood Studios. Originally slated for a 2020 opening and under construction in January, we’re not sure this one will take priority over other higher-profile projects to complete sooner. 

Victoria and Albert’s Bistro | Grand Floridian Resort

Previously a table service restaurant at Grand Floridian, Citricos is being re-themed to Victoria and Albert’s Bistro. Given that this is a mild decor and menu change this should be ready in 2021. This new restaurant is part of a larger theme overhaul at the Grand Floridian. The first change happened with the new Enchanted Rose Beauty and the Beast inspired Lounge. And if the lounge is any indication of the kinds of changes we’re going to be seeing, we cannot wait!!! 

Woody’s Roundup Rodeo BBQ | Hollywood Studios

This new table service restaurant is slated to arrive in Toy Story Land as a family-friendly and budget-friendly dining experience, originally by the end of 2020. But we’re not holding our breath! Woody’s Roundup Rodeo BBQ Restaurant will offer the loveliness of air-conditioned dining in Toy Story Land and a great way to take a break with the kids. Meet and Greets with Woody and Jessie are probably on the table with this one. 

Space 220 | Epcot Future World

This space-themed restaurant with views of the universe has been pushed back since April 2019 regarding an opening date. With the Patina staff who oversee this restaurant on extended furlough and dealing with layoffs, we don’t really know if this will open in 2021! So it may have a 2022 opening to align with EPCOT’s 40th Anniversary instead. Stay tuned. 

 Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary Logo Disney 2021

Walt Disney World Anniversary Plans 2021 | October 1, 2021

The World’s Most Magical Celebration officially starts October 1st and runs for 18 months until March 2023. You can expect new shows, commemorative merchandise, special snacks, and the completion of the 50 magical “enhancements” by the 50th. Even a new logo was made especially for The World’s Most Magical Celebration. Take a look at everything coming to Walt Disney World in time for the 50th Anniversary.

Flower and Garden Festival Epcot

EPCOT Festivals in 2021

Just like every other year, we have EPCOT annual festivals to look forward to! With new merchandise, new foods, and new experiences. Check out everything to know about these festivals below and get ready for an interesting and New 2021 season at EPCOT. Check out all the dates for the EPCOT Festivals in Walt Disney World Events Calendar for 2021. 

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New Disney Snacks for 2021

We go crazy for Disney Snacks. And are sharing a running list of New Snacks at Walt Disney World for 2021 as they arrive. So what kinds of snacks can we expect to arrive in the parks? Well, just like Disney Dooney and Bourke Bags, Disney Snacks usually follow a character or color theme and a focus on Disney Films celebrating an anniversary. Here are our predictions for the kinds of snacks we’ll see in 2021.

  • Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary
  • 60th Anniversary of 101 Dalmatians
  • 55th Anniversary of Winnie the Pooh
  • 70th Anniversary of Alice in Wonderland
  • 25th Anniversary of Hunchback of Notre Dame

And if we’re digging deep, 2021 is also celebrating 15 years is Cars, Pirates of the Caribbean and High School Musical! So many great things to celebrate we’re sure to see special treats to commemorate them. 

Walt Disney World Polynesian Resort Refurbishments

New at Disney Resorts in 2021

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort Moana Refurbishments

Take note that Disney’s Polynesian Resort will not be reopening until Summer 2021 due to extensive refurbishments and some re-theming to Moana. According to the Orlando Sentinel, a spokeswoman from Disney World indicated that the Polynesian theme is making  “a move to a Pacific Ocean-inspired color palette as well as details, patterns, and textures from Disney’s ‘Moana.’”

Walt Disney World Swan Reserve- Opening SUMMER 2021

The newest hotel to land at Walt Disney World can be seen from the Disney Boardwalk! This upscale boutique hotel sits right between The Swan Hotel and The Dolphin Hotel. Albeit on the other side of the road, it’s still within walking distance to the boardwalk, EPCOT, and Hollywood Studios. This hotel combines rooms and suites to accommodate families of 6-10 people. This is a Mariott Bonvoy Autograph Collection Hotel. Read more about the Swan Reserve Hotel. 

Disney Face Mask Rules

How the COVID Pandemic Will Affect Walt Disney World in 2021?

Walt Disney World has already made significant changes to health and safety across the parks and resorts to adjust to the pandemic. Read more about the Health and Safety Protocols and the Walt Disney World COVID 19 Plans

Walt Disney World 2021 Planning Changes due to COVID

There are many changes that affect planning a Walt Disney Vacation in 2020 and 2021. We’ll be sure to get those out of the way now, so you can have an idea of what your 2021 Disney vacation may look like. In a nutshell here’s everything that is different about planning a Disney Vacation in 2021.

Guests will no longer be able to reserve fast passes and will no longer receive free MagicBands as part of their Disney resort stay. Dining Plans are not available and the previous 180-day advanced reservation window is now 60 days before arrival. Park Reservations are REQUIRED through the Disney Park Pass Reservation system which will be in place until September 26, 2021. And guests are currently limited to one park per day. Park Hopper tickets are also temporarily unavailable but may be included as an option later. Read more about all the Changes at Walt Disney World due to the Pandemic including Disney Face Mask Rules.

What’s Changed at Walt Disney World for 2021?

MagicBands are No Longer Free.  MagicBands are now 5 dollars to purchase in the My Disney Experience App, and still available at gift shops across the parks and on shopDisney.com but know that these are phasing out. 

Park Hopper Tickets have Returned.  But with Park Pass Reservations still in play, there are limitations on how you can use this ticket, which allows you to park hop only after 2 pm every day. 

Park Capacity is increasing.  The current park capacity as of March 2021 is at 35% of what the parks can hold. With Florida pandemic cases still on the rise and the virus still spreading across the country, be aware of the growing crowds if you choose to visit Walt Disney World in 2021. 

Extra Magic Hours are Cancelled in 2021. But Early Park Entry for Disney Resort Guests returns later this year allowing guests who stay on Disney property access to the parks 30 minutes before opening. 

Disney’s Magical Express is Retiring at the end of 2021. Running out the current Mears contract, Walt Disney World will begin to depend on the Brightline high-speed train system, alongside other modes of transportation like shuttles, Uber, and Lyft to accommodate guests flying into Orlando International Airport. Learn more about what is replacing Disney’s Magical Express.

Walt Disney World in 2021

We’ll be sharing Disney plans as they arrive. Here’s hoping you are as excited as we are about all the amazing things coming to Walt Disney World in 2021.

Walt Disney World Plans for 2021 include new rides, restaurants and more. With the 50th Anniversary starting at the end of 2021, there will be even more to do! #disney2021 #disney50thanniversary #disneyvacation #polkadotpixies


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