If you are heading to Florida for an Orlando vacation this holiday season, make the most of your trip by visiting the Disney theme parks. Christmas arrives early each year in Disney World; if you visit the theme parks and resorts for Thanksgiving, you’ll notice the Christmas decorations spring up practically overnight. Disney Imagineers are hard at work by the end of November, staging elaborate holiday decorations in the resorts and the theme parks. No matter which Orlando hotel you choose, or which theme park you visit first, you’ll find plenty to do to celebrate the Christmas season when you visit Disney World.

Disney World Christmas Highlights:

Mickey’s  Very Merry Christmas Party: The premier Christmas event at Disney World, Mickey’s Christmas party is a premium ticket event thrown on select nights during November and December. Guests can explore and enjoy the Magic Kingdom theme park without the holiday crowds; the event also includes a special Christmas parade, party treats and even snow on Main Street USA. This event requires a separate ticket for admission and reservations are strongly recommended, particularly for the days leading up to the holiday.

Resort Decorations: Each of the Disney resorts offers themed decorations in the lobby and grounds. The Christmas decorations spring up almost overnight, and are designed to match and enhance the hotel’s decor. Look for primitive  woodsy decor featuring whimsical bears and other wildlife at the Wilderness Lodge, while the more formal Grand Floridian sports a life-sized gingerbread house and plenty of Victorian inspired Christmas finery. Consider making dining reservations at a few of the deluxe resorts–you’ll be able to enjoy different Christmas scenery each evening.

The Osbourne Family Spectacle of Lights: Disney’s Hollywood Studios is home to one of the most spectacular displays of Christmas lights you’ll find anywhere. An entire portion of the park is given a sparkling makeover, and the evening lighting (complete with the occasional snowflake), is a breathtaking event. The Spectacle of Lights is free with your park admission, simply drop by in the evening and enjoy the show.