Although it’s not even Christmas yet, it’s probably time to start thinking about how you plan to ring in the new year. Whether you’re looking for a fun way to celebrate with the whole family or an adults-only place to dance the night away, there are plenty of ways to end 2017 at Orlando’s best attractions.
Walt Disney World
Celebrate the beginning of a new year at Epcot with an all-day dance party on December 31 featuring DJs spinning fun tunes all throughout the park at locations like the Future World Fountain Stage and the American Garden Stage before a major fireworks finale. The New Year’s Countdown Fireworks starts at 11:40 PM. Guests can also celebrate with a special family-friendly buffet at Epcot’s World Show Place Restaurant that includes classic Disney tunes and fun photo opportunities. There is a special pre-set menu for this event, ranging from soups and salads to seafood mac and cheese and mojo roasted pork, that includes some gluten free and kid-friendly options. Reservations are required for the meal, which costs $72.90 for adults and $44.38 for children or two table service meals from a Disney Dining Plan
At Magic Kingdom guests can join in a boot scootin’ dance party to celebrate the year’s end in Frontierland, starting at 7:00 PM on December 30 and 31. Then, the Fantasy in the Sky fireworks spectacular provides an incredible send off to 2017, lighting up the sky with an amazing display of color and lights starting at 11:50 PM.
The NYE festivities at Hollywood Studios begin with a dance party at Center Stage starting at 7:00 PM before Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! at 9:00 PM. Then after a park-wide countdown to 2018, guests can catch a special showing of Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular and the return of the DJ, who spins non-stop til the party ends at 1:00 AM.
At The Contemporary Resort, there are a variety of fun parties for people of all ages to ring in 2018 at. Guests 18 and older can attend the Disney Countdown to Midnight from 8 PM to 1 AM in the Fantasia Ballroom. Dance the night away along to the music from an interactive band and DJ and watch for special appearances by Mickey and Minnie, then ring in the New Year with private viewing of Magic Kingdom’s fireworks and a flute of champagne.
The most family friendly dining event at The Contemporary is Pixar Party: A New Year’s Celebration. The buffet style experience in Ballroom of Americas features vignettes of various Disney Pixar films such as Andy’s Room from Toy Story and Metropolis from The Incredibles. In addition to appearances by several Pixar friends, families can enjoy boot camp with Sarge, face painting, balloon artists, and a DJ spinning from a Radiator Springs before viewing a fireworks show outside at midnight.
Down in New Orleans: Disney New Year’s Dining Experience takes place inside the Grand Republic ballroom starting at 7 PM. Inspired by Princess and the Frog, the meal is accompanied by a jazz band and a vocalist performing songs from the movie. Guests can ring in 2018 on the patio with champagne and fireworks before the night ends at 12:15 AM.
At Fort Wilderness Lodge, guests can ring in 2018 with a special themed meal at Mickey’s Backyard BBQ. The buffet menu is loaded with a variety of meats including smoked chicken, baked salmon, beef brisket, and tons of other BBQ staples like mac and cheese, baked potatoes and more. There are also vegetarian and kid-friendly options available. Beginning at 8:30 PM, the evening’s schedule of entertainment features live bluegrass music, a DJ, appearances from Mickey, Minnie, Chip and Dale, and a live video feed of the ball drop. Guests can toast to the new year with a complimentary glass of champagne and a special view of the Magic Kingdom’s fireworks display. Tickets to Mickey’s Backyard BBQ are $95 for adults and $75 for kids 3-9 years old.
Guests who are 21 years old or older can attend “Dinner and Dancing Under the Sea” at Flying Fish at Disney’s Boardwalk. Starting at 7 PM with cocktail hour, guests can dance and dine to the sounds of a live three-piece band all night long. After cocktails and hors d’oeurves, guests sit down to a family style dinner of sustainable seafood offerings and accompaniments. Just before midnight, partygoers can head over to the Atlantic Dance Hall to toast the new year with a complimentary champagne toast, party hats and horns, and prime viewing of the Epcot fireworks finale. Doors to the New Year’s Eve Bash at Atlantic Dance Hall open at 9, for an evening full of “rockin’ music, tasty treats, high spirits, and an enchanting dash of Disney Magic”. Reservations are recommended.
At Disney Springs, new dining and entertainment complex The Edison is hosting a New Year’s Eve Grand Opening celebration, starting at 7:30 PM. Guests can explore the venue’s multiple themed areas including the Lab performance space, the Ember Parlour, Telegraph Lounge, The Patent Office, The Tesla Lounge, The Radio Room, and the Waterfront Patio before rining in the new year with a special toast at midnight. The $150 tickets include hors d’oeurves, food stations, and a variety of beers, wines and other spirits from 8 PM til midnight as well as an assortment of coffee, desserts and a midnight toast. Must be 21 or older to attend.
EVE at Universal CityWalk features Orlando’s biggest outdoor dance floor, live music, signature drinks and gourmet cuisine. The EVE ticket also includes entrance to six nightclubs and a midnight champagne toast accompanied by a dazzling fireworks display. Upgrade to a VIP ticket to get access to private VIP areas throughout CityWalk, 2 complimentary drinks, private bars and balcony access, dedicated VIP entrances, and exclusive VIP entrances.
Rock Til The Drop at Hard Rock Live features live musicians play all hits from past decades to now. The family-friendly event offers an assortment of menu offerings, unlimited juice, soda and water, and a champagne toast at midnight. The festivities begin at 8 PM and go all night long til 1 AM.
The Universal Orlando Resort hotels each have their own sets of special events to ring in the new year. At Loews Portofino Bay guests can enjoy a New Year’s Eve Party On the Harbor Piazza, and Cabana Bay is hosting a New Year’s Eve celebration at Bayliner Diner. The Hard Rock Hotel hosts special activities all weekend, starting with a New Year’s Eve buffet at The Kitchen restaurant before the Rock In 2018! New Year’s Eve party in the hotel lobby. Then, guests can start New Year’s Day off right with a breakfast buffet at The Kitchen. Loews Royal Pacific is also offering a variety of events including Jake’s Beer Festival, a New Year’s Eve buffet at Islands Dining Room, and a dessert reception in the Orchid Court Lounge.
Ring in the new year at SeaWorld Orlando with festive entertainment throughout on December 31, including interactive DJ booths, craft beer stations and other delicious food offerings. The evening wraps up with a remarkable fireworks display
Tapa Toro Tapas Bar & Paella Pit has two options available for guests looking to party on New Year’s Eve. Early seating from 5 – 7 PM includes a four course meal, priority seating for the flamenco dinner show, and a champagne toast ringing in the new year at 6 PM, midnight in Spain. Tickets for early seating cost $35 per person, excluding tax, gratuity and alcohol. To ring in the official new year at Tapa Toro, guests can make an evening seating reservation, which includes a five course meal, flamenco dinner show, and a champagne toast at midnight. Open from 9 PM – 2 AM, evening seating costs $75 for adults and $60 for kids under 12, exlcuding tax, gratuity, and alcohol. Find more information here.
Busch Gardens Tampa
Busch Gardens’ New Year’s Eve Celebration is included with park admission. Guests can experience thrill rides after dark and music playing throughout the park before a park-wide countdown to midnight, ending in a fireworks show in Gwazi park. The festivities continue until park close at 1 AM.
LEGOLAND Florida offers a family friendly celebration with Kids’ New Year’s Eve. The exclusive dance party, designed with children in mind, is included in park admission. Guests can participate in park-wide building activities, enjoy special entertainment, and help build a giant LEGO New Year’s themed mosaic. You can also join the hunt for missing clocks throughout Miniland U.S.A. and win a LEGO prize pack when you find them all. The evening ends with a countdown to a giant LEGO brick drop before the grand finale fireworks show, which is the park’s biggest show of the year.
Most of the theme park celebrations are included with your regular park admission, and you can find discount tickets to these attractions on tickets2you.com. Make reservations and get more info for events at Disney’s resorts by calling (407) WDW- DINE.