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Are you planning on visiting Disneyland in December? Great! I’ve got all the information you need to make it a wonderful vacation! December is a special time to visit the Disneyland Resort. The Holiday season celebrations are in full swing, the weather is usually nice and cool and the holiday magic is everywhere! It’s a great way to celebrate the holidays. Visiting Disneyland in December is pretty special! There’s something about strolling down Main Street U.S.A. while listening to the holiday music or checking out the gorgeous Christmas trees that just make it feel extra magical.
In this post, I’ll talk about everything you need to know about visiting Disneyland in December. I’ve got information on the best days to visit, weather, special events, what to pack, and information on Christmas at Disneyland. I’ve even got a Disneyland crowd calendar! I’m also sharing information on where to get a great deal on discounted park tickets and hotels! Make sure you check out my full guide to Disneyland during the Holidays for lots of important information to help you with your visit to Disneyland in December.
Disneyland Holiday Mini Course
If you need a crash course on Disneyland during the holidays, I’ve got a mini course going on for my Instagram subscribers! I’m covering everything you need to know about visiting Disneyland during the holidays. We’re talking about holiday entertainment, dining packages, how early you need to arrive for the parade, where to stand for the best views of the shows, meeting Santa, holiday foods, general tips, strategies, and more! I’d love to have you join us! The course is self-led and all on Instagram. It’s only available to my subscribers. My Instagram subscription is $4.99 per month and you can cancel anytime. Come join us! Find more information here.
Discount Disney Park Tickets And Hotels
Please be aware, that Disney theme parks all require park tickets and theme park reservations. Make sure you have both! Please don’t pay full price for your Disney tickets or hotel. My partners at Get Away Today have the very best deals on tickets and hotels. Their customer service is top-notch and they even have layaway plans. You can find them here or call 1-855-GET-AWAY. Make sure you tell them Melissa from Mix In Some Magic sent you for the best deal! If you book a package with park tickets and a hotel room you can use my code MSM10 to save an extra $10. That’s more churro money, friends!
I have a bunch of hotel reviews that might be helpful for you if you’re still trying to decide where you’d like to stay.
Disneyland in December has lots to offer! The holidays are popular and draw a lot of guests to the parks! The holiday festivities begin November 11th and run through January 8th.
Crowd levels at Disneyland in early December are usually lower and pick-up as we close in on the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. The best time to visit if you’re looking for the lowest crowds is the middle of the week and early in the month. Heavy crowds are always expected during the week in between Christmas and New Year’s Day. This week is the most crowded time to visit Disneyland park out of the entire year! Christmas break is a very popular time to visit Disneyland.
If you happen to visit during the holiday season when there are large crowds, don’t be discouraged. You can still have a great time at the parks! Check out my post all about dealing with holiday crowds at Disneyland in December here. Check it out! It will really help you be prepared.
Make sure you plan ahead by making dining reservations ahead of time. You can make them 60 days in advance.
To get a jump on the crowds, I recommend rope dropping. This means you’ll arrive at the parks 60-90 minutes before they open. Sounds crazy, right? I know. But, it’s really going to make all the difference in your day! You can find out more information about rope dropping at Disneyland here.
To really save time at Disneyland in December when it’s crowded, consider adding Genie Plus to your visit. Especially if you’re visiting during a crowded time of the month. Genie Plus is the new system that has taken the place of the old Fastpass/max pass system. Genie plus does cost extra, but it allows you to skip the standby line and enter select attractions through the lightning lane. This can save you so much time! Especially when you’re visiting at a busy time of year. I’ve got lots of information about using Genie Plus at Disneyland here. I’ve also got full touring plans that utilize Genie Plus if you’d like a step-by-step plan for your day. Check them out here.
Disneyland in December usually has very mild weather, which is another good reason to visit this month! The average high at Disneyland in December is 70°F (21.1°C) with an average low of 48°F (8.8°C). There’s usually very little rain. Daytime temperatures will likely be perfect, but it can get chilly in the mornings and evenings.
I suggest bringing a jacket and long pants. You don’t want to get stuck buying expensive Disney sweatshirts if you didn’t plan on it! An extra jacket, hat, and gloves might also be a good idea. Keep an eye on the weather as your trip gets closer to make sure you’re prepared.
I have a full guide about what to wear to Disneyland in December. You can find it here.
Here’s a list of events that are happening at Disneyland in December. So much to see and do! Both parks will have festive lights, holiday decorations, and music. You’ll also be able to see your favorite characters in their holiday finest! Several rides have holiday overlays that really add to the magic of the holiday celebrations. There will also be an incredible assortment of holiday foods. Let’s break down the other offerings by park.
Disney Festival of Holidays: Pay tribute to multicultural and diverse music, cuisine, and traditions.
Disney Viva Navidad!: Delight in a celebration of holiday traditions from Mexico and Brazil, brought to life by cultural performers.
Santa’s Holiday Visit at Redwood Creek Challenge Trail: Get ready for a jolly old time when you see Santa and his band of merry elves! Find a full post about where to find Santa here.
Ride Overlays: Two rides in Carsland transform for the holidays! Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree becomes Mater’s Jingle Jamboree. Luigi’s Rollikin’ Roadsters becomes Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl.
Buena Vista Street Holiday Tree Lighting: Witness the wonder as the magnificent tree is illuminated.
A Christmas Fantasy Parade: Watch Disney characters join Santa for the merriest musical procession in town!
“it’s a small world” Holiday: Set off on a merry version of the park classic as children sing tidings of joy.
“Believe… In Holiday Magic” Fireworks: Don’t miss dazzling fireworks, stirring music, and even a sprinkling of snow!
Wintertime enchantment at Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle: Behold a shimmering spectacle as the castle is transformed each evening.
Visit Santa Claus in Critter Country: Join Santa for a picture right by Splash Mountain. If you stop by after dark, you just might catch a snowfall too! Find a full post on where to find Santa here.
“it’s a small world” Holiday Lighting: Witness the magic when the whimsical facade lights up in a dazzling display.
Haunted Mansion Holiday: Christmas and Halloween collide at this holiday favorite hosted by Jack Skellington from The Nightmare before Christmas.
Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve
If you’re visiting Disneyland in December for Christmas Day(or Christmas Eve) or New Year’s Eve(or New Year’s Day) you need to be prepared for large crowds and long wait times. Don’t stress though! You can still have an amazing time. I’ve got a post just for you about dealing with holiday crowds. Check it out here.
What To Expect
Because Disneyland in December is so popular, all the attractions should be up and running. The most popular attraction in December is the Haunted Mansion Holiday which has a Nightmare Before Christmas Holiday overlay. I talk all about it on an episode of my podcast. Because this attraction is so popular, it will have long lines, especially as the day goes on. I suggest getting there early in the day for shorter wait times.
On days when crowds are higher, Disneyland will have longer park hours. Use these to your advantage! Get there early for the lowest crowds. Take a break midday if things get too busy and come back in the evening for more Holiday fun.
“it’s a small world’ will also have a holiday overlay for the Christmas season. It’s pretty magical! Make sure you take the time to ride on it and check out the facade at night when it’s all lit up.
Having a basic plan will help you navigate your day and help you avoid waiting in long lines. I have a Disneyland touring plan that I update each month with a free printable that might be helpful for you. You can find it here. Or check out my touring plans with Genie Plus here.
What To Pack
Be prepared for colder weather at night when visiting Disneyland in December. Pack accordingly. You should also be prepared for a heat wave! You just never know what you’re going to get at Disneyland in November. Pack layers so that you are prepared for anything. I have information on my favorite shoes to wear to the park that might be helpful.
You can find my full list of what I bring in my park bag here. You don’t want to be unprepared! I also buy lots of things on Amazon beforehand so I can save time and money. Disney will sell you anything you need, but it will cost more. You can find my Amazon list here
Disneyland Planning Help
I’ve got bunches of information on planning a Disneyland trip that will be so helpful for you! Start with my complete guide to visiting Disneyland. It’s a step-by-step guide for planning your vacation that will be helpful. Check out my top 10 Disneyland tips and my guide to when to visit Disneyland to help you pick the best time for your vacation! I’ve also got a post on rope dropping at Disneyland that’s very helpful.
Make sure you check out my downloadable touring plans if you’d like a step-by-step guide to the parks!
I have a planning phone call that’s super popular! In this phone call, I can answer all of your Disneyland vacation questions and give you lots of tips and info tailored just to you and your group!
I know you’re going to have such a good time on your vacation to Disneyland in December! Spending the most magical time of the year at the happiest place on earth is incredible! Don’t forget to check out my full guide to the Holidays at Disneyland for even more helpful info.
Make sure to check out my podcast for lots of Disney planning information! You can find it on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts. Just search for “Mix In Some Magic” Follow me on Instagram for more Disney tips and lots of Disney tips and fun!