Looking to stay up to date with news from Disney? Look no further! This blog post is here to recap Disney World News, Disneyland News, Disney Aulani News, and Disney Cruise Line News for Winter and Spring 2022! If you’ve missed any big news that might help you in preparing for your upcoming trip, you’ll find it here.
January 2022 Updates
(WDW) Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure Opens Standby Line
Previously, the only way to get onto the new Remy ride was by getting a place in the virtual queue. Beginning January 10, the standby queue is now open.
(WDW) Grand Floridian Spa Reopening
If you’ve been eagerly awaiting the reopening of the spa at the Grand Floridian, good news! As of January 26th, the spa is officially open for pampering.
(WDW) More Restaurant Reopenings
Flying Fish at Disney’s BoardWalk, The Turf Club Bar and Grill at Saratoga Springs, Jiko – The Cooking Place at Animal Kingdom Lodge, Cape May Café at Beach Club and the Ale & Compass Restaurant at Yacht Club are all officially back in action!
(WDW) Toy Story Land Updates
Two new updates were announced for Toy Story Land. The first looks to be an updated shop at the end of Toy Story Mania! called Jessie’s Trading Post. No official opening date has been announced at this time.
The second is a brand new table service restaurant coming to town – Roundup Rodeo BBQ. Originally announced in 2020 and then put on hold due to the pandemic, Disney has now announced the restaurant will be opening sometime in 2022!
(WDW) Select Character Locations Added to Genie+
Have a character that your little one MUST meet, but want to minimize your wait in line? A few of the character locations have been added to Genie+ as options:
Cinderella and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall at Magic Kingdom Park
Tiana and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall at Magic Kingdom Park
Mickey at Town Square Theater at Magic Kingdom Park
Olaf at Celebrity Spotlight at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
(DCL) Disney Cruise Line Introduces Pixar Day at Sea
Special sailings on the Disney Fantasy in early 2023 will feature Pixar Day at Sea. This one-of-a-king experience is happening on select seven-night voyages from January through March 2023 and will bring to life the beloved characters from “Toy Story”, “Monsters, Inc.”, “The Incredibles”, and “Finding Nemo”. From character encounters, to new interactive character dining, this experience is a can’t miss!
(DCL) Marvel Day at Sea Returns to Disney Cruise Line
If you missed out on the 2022 Marvel Days at Sea, good news! It’s been announced that they’ll be back in 2023 with even more Marvel Super Heroes and Villains. On select five-night Caribbean cruises from January to March.
(WDW) Added Entertainment for the 50th Anniversary at Walt Disney World
A brand new Disney Friends Cavalcade is kicking off on February 11th, and the Festival of Fantasy Parade is returning to Magic Kingdom on March 9th twice a day!
You’ll also be able to catch Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire on stage in front of Cinderella’s Castle beginning February 25th. The best part? It’s been newly enhanced for the 50th anniversary with a new opening, finale, and new original song!
(They’ve also announced a sneak peek that Fantasmic will be opening later this year, but no official date on that return yet.)
February 2022 Updates
(DCL) Disney Wish Inaugural Sailing Delayed
Initially meant to set said in early June, Disney has announced that the maiden voyage has now been post-poned until July 14th due to construction being halted thanks to the omicron variant.
(DL) New Fitness Classes Offered at the Disneyland Resort Hotel
Guests staying at any of the three Disneyland hotels now have the ability to take group fitness classes offered through the Grand Californian hotel. These group classes (of which there are more than a dozen) will be taking place throughout the resorts and parks. From Boot Camp in California Adventure to Aqua Yoga in the Fountain Pool, these are great way to stay in your workout routine while on vacation!
(WDW) NEW Capture Your Moment at Walt Disney World
Previously only available at Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, these new 20-minute private photo sessions are now available at all four parks at Walt Disney World! Your session can feature up to 8 guests, and costs $79, although prints and digital downloads are not included. (If you’ve purchases memory maker for your trip, you’ll have access to the downloads at no additional cost.)
(WDW) Grand Floridian Resort Construction and Refurbishment
Beginning March 1, 2022, guests will notice ongoing construction at the Grand Floridian.
(DCL) A Look at Disney Wish
The Disney Wish is setting sail in summer 2022, and Disney has given us a glimpse of what it looks like inside. From ice cream to candy, the Inside Out Joyful Sweets shop is sure to hook everyone with a sweet tooth. For the Frozen lovers, a picnic with their favorite Frozen Friends can be reserved ahead of time for an additional fee. From the Grand Hall, to Luna (the entertainment hub), to the Hero Zone, at the heart of the voyage, storytelling is embedded into every experience.
Ready to book your first voyage on The Wish? Learn more about how I can help!
(DL) Mickey’s Toontown Construction
Beginning in March, Disneyland’s Toontown will be closed for refurbishment until early 2023. Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin, and Mickey and Minnie’s Houses will still be there at re-opening, but you’ll find that other attractions in Toontown are being reimagined during this time. And, of course, we can’t forget that when the land reopens next year, Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway (already a hit in Disney World) will be the new headline attraction!
(DL) Return Dates Announced for Nighttime Spectaculars
Disneyland is bringing back beloved Nighttime Spectaculars! The Main Street Electrical Parade and the Disneyland Forever fireworks will be returning on April 22nd to Disneyland Park. Also returning on April 22nd will be World of Color over in California Adventures. Fantasmic is set to return to Disneyland on May 28th.
(WDW) Genie+ Attractions Update
From February 25th through August 7th, three attractions will now be part of Genie+: Space Mountain in Magic Kingdom, Frozen Ever After in EPCOT, and Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway in Hollywood Studios.
March 2022 Updates
(WDW) Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Opens Today!
The long-awaited Galactic Starcruiser is officially open for guests! From bridge training, to lightsaber training, to dinner in the Crown of Corellia Dining Room with a performance from galactic superstar Goya, there’s plenty to do and enjoy. Looking to take your own two-night spin on the ship? Let’s chat about how I can help you make that happen!
(WDW) Booking Now Open for New Disney Springs Hotel
The Drury Plaza Hotel (located in the Disney Springs Resort Area), is set to open in October 2022. Guests will enjoy complimentary shuttle service to all four theme parks, as well as a hot breakfast, wi-fi and more. Ready to book this hotel for your next magical escape? Learn more about how I can help!
(WDW) Connections Café and Eatery Opening at EPCOT
Connections Cafe and Eatery will be opening soon in EPCOT, and will include the new home for Starbucks! The current Starbucks location over in the World Showcase will be closing to prepare for it’s new home!
(DCL) A First Look at “The Little Mermaid” Stage Show About Disney Wish
The newest Disney Cruise Line ship is setting sail in July, and we’ve gotten a first look at one of the shows that will be happening on board. “The Little Mermaid”s newest adaptation is a contemporary retelling of the timeless tale, including a new soulful version of “Poor Unfortunate Souls” that you won’t want to miss while you’re onboard!
(WDW) Magic Kingdom Entertainment Updates
Magic Kingdom has had 3 new entertainment spectaculars debut (or re-debut)! First, “Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire” is a show that takes place in front of the castle, and includes music and characters from “Frozen” and “The Princess and the Frog” in addition to our beloved Mickey and the Gang friends.
The “Disney Festival of Fantasy” parade has returned to twice a day routes! Don’t miss if you want to see characters from “The Little Mermaid”, Tangled”, “Peter Pan”, and of course, Maleficent, the fire-breathing dragon!
And last (for now) is the Adventure Friends Calvacade. Taking to the streets multiple times a day, you’ll find nearly 30 of your favorite Disney and Pixar friends!
(WDW) Additional Experiences Added to Genie+
Two new experiences have been added as selections for Genie+. These are:
The Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade over in Magic Kingdom
Seeing the Disney Stars at Red Carpet Dreams over in Hollywood Studios
(WDW) TRON Lightcycle Update
The next phase of ride testing for the TRON Lightcycle is here! The ride vehicles will be slowly moved through the entire ride track, then once the track is completely ready, they’ll begin testing at incremental speeds. If you’ll be in Magic Kingdom anytime soon, keep your eyes peeled for the vehicle trains being launched around the track!
(WDW) Bookings Now Available for Starlight Safari
Interested in an after-dark safari tour at the Animal Kingdom Lodge? Your open-sided safari vehicle will take you around to search the horizon for over 30 species of African wildlife. Bookings are now open for April 22nd and beyond.
(WDW) Disney’s BoardWalk Updates
Disney’s announced new enhancements that will be coming to the BoardWalk in the coming years. The lobby of The BoardWalk Inn itself will be getting a makeover, and a new coffee bar will be added just off the lobby. A new dessert shop – The Cake Bake Shop by Gwendolyn Rogers – will be a table service restaurant and bakery opening in 2023. From savory and dessert menus to afternoon tea service, guests will be able to enjoy a little whimsy on the idyllic BoardWalk. And with this new bakery on the horizon, the current BoardWalk Bakery will be transformed into a sandwich shop for guests to enjoy as they walk the promenade!
(WDW) Saratoga Springs and Vero Beach Resort Refurbishments
If you’re planning a Saratoga Springs or Vero Beach Resort stay in the near future, you’ll want to be aware of the following refurbishment updates:
At Saratoga Springs, the high Rock Springs Pool and On the Rocks Pool Bar will be wrapping up refurbishments soon.
Over at Vero Beach, the lobby will be undergoing refurbishment from mid-April through late May 2022.
(WDW) Disney H2) Glow After Hours Returning
Enjoy Typhoon Lagoon in the evening with an after hours party that includes DJ dance parties, exclusive glow-themed menu items, shorter wait times, and more. Your special event ticket includes popcorn and select ice-cream treats throughout the evening.
Every Saturday night from May 28th to August 27th, this exclusive party takes place from 8:00 – 11:00 pm.
(WDW) A Look at the Wonders of Xandar Pavilion at EPCOT
With the new Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind ride opening in EPCOT, the parks other-world pavilion – the Wonders of Xandar pavilion – is opening as well. Included in the pavilion will be the Treasures of Xandar that will feature merchandise items that pay tribute to planet Xandar and the Guardians of the Galaxy.
(WDW) Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue Return Date
Everyone’s favorite musical dinner show is returning! Showtimes will begin June 23rd, and you can start grabbing your reservations on May 26th.
(WDW and DL) Character Greetings Returning
Once again you’ll be able to get a hug from Mickey Mouse! Starting April 18th, traditional character greetings are returning at Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Aulani Resort, and Disney Cruise Line ships!
April 2022 Updates
(WDW) Guardians of the Galaxy: Comic Reward Official Opening Date
They’ve officially released an opening date for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind. This new coaster will open in EPCOT officially on May 27th!
(WDW) New Animal Kingdom Entertainment
Animal Kingdom entertainment is getting an update. Expect to see shorter, more frequent performances of “Disney Kite Tails” throughout the day. Between those performances, you’ll see Character Flotillas along the Discovery River with friends like Mickey and friends, Timon, Rafiki, and Pocahontas.
The Festival of the Lion King will once again be featuring the acrobatic primates, as well as the show’s iconic birds that will once again be soaring above the stage.
And stay tuned for updates on meeting Mickey and Minnie at Adventurers Outpost again, and the re-opening of Finding Nemo: The Big Blue … and Beyond!
(WDW) Expedition Everest Reopening Date
Animal Kingdom’s Expedition Everest is officially re-opening post refurbishment on April 16th!
(DL) Nighttime Spectaculars are Back!
The Mani Street Electrical Parade, as well as the Disneyland Forever fireworks are returning to Disneyland park! Not only that, but over in California Adventures, you’ll once again be able to enjoy the World of Color show by the pier!
(DL) The First-Ever Disneyland After Dark: Grad Nite Reunion
Disneyland has announced a new after-hours event for the summer: Grad Nite Reunions. Tickets will go on sale April 28th and the reunions will be offered June 23, 28, and 30th. This reunion party includes sightings of Disney characters in their cap and gown, dance parties with music through the decades, retro photo opportunities, cafeteria-inspired food and beverage offerings, and of course, special after-hours access to most park attractions.
(DCL) Disney Cruise Line is Heading Back to Alaska, Europe, the Bahamas and Caribbean
Summer 2023 sailings for the Disney Cruise Line are here! Enjoy the Disney Dream for it’s inaugural season in Europe, the Disney Wonder for sailings to Alaska, or the Magic, Fantasy, and Wish in the Caribbean. Bookings open to all guests on May 9th for Summer 2023.
(DL) Paradise Pier Hotel Re-Imagining
The current Paradise Pier Hotel in Disneyland will be getting a total theme overhaul. What is now themed as a celebration of California Beachfront Boardwalks, will soon weave Pixar into a contemporary setting. Fitting, to go right along with the rethemed Paradise Pier to Pixar Pier in 2018.
A new perk for hotel guests will be an additional entrance into California Adventure. Guests staying at the Grand Californian already have their own entrance, and those at Paradise Pier will soon!
(DCL) New Experiences for Halloween on the High Seas
Offered on select sailings in September and October, Halloween on the High Seas includes characters in costume (be on the lookout for a fun Sanderson Sisters trio!), Mickey’s Mouse-querade Party, villainous takeovers in adult-exclusive venues, Halloween-themed movies on Funnel Vision, and more!
(DL) Disneyland 2022 Halloween Updates
Oogie Boogie Bash will officially return this fall! Not only that, but Mickey and Minnie will be debuting new costumes in Disneyland Park for the Halloween Season with a homemade flair.
(WDW) Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party to Return
In addition to Disneyland’s Halloween Party returning, Disney World is also bringing back Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party! This after hours event will take place on select nights from August 12th through October 31st. To celebrate the 50th anniversary, party guests will receive a special 50th anniversary trick-or-treating bag, as well as a Halloween-themed 50th Anniversary celebration commemorative print. Tickets go on sale May 18th.
May 2022 Updates
(WDW) New May the 4th Photo Ops and Experiences
Celebrate May the 4th with fun new photo opportunities and experiences. From a holopuck that reveals the details of your next bounty, to Boba Fett’s ship overhead, there are 4 new photo opps that add a little magic to your pictures.
Additional Star Wars experiences include Hyperspace Mountain returning to Tomorrowland until July 4th, Captain Phasma and Stormtroopers returning to patrol Tomorrowland, new food items at Galactic Grill in Tomorrowland, and throughout Galaxy’s Edge, and so much more!
(WDW) Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind Opening News
It’s already been announced that Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will open on May 27th in EPCOT, but there’s been more information released about the opening. In particular, about how the coaster fits into Genie+. Guests can ride Cosmic Rewind through the standby queue, or they can purchase an individual Lightning Lane for the ride.
(WDW) Magic Band + Launching This Summer
Magic Band+ will be launching this summer, with all of the functionality of current Magic Bands and then some. You’ll be able to use the Magic Band+ to interact with the 50th anniversary sculptures, and track which ones you’ve found through the Play Disney Parks app.
You’ll also be able to use the new bands to join the Star Wars: Batuu Bounty Hunters experience. With this, you’ll use your band to find virtual bounties hidden throughout Black Spire Outpost.
During nighttime spectaculars, the MagicBand+ will light up and complement the magic in the skies.
The new MagicBand+ will launch this summer.
(WDW) EPCOT Transformation Updates
New artist concept renderings were released that showcase the new World Celebration neighborhood coming to EPCOT. This new neighborhood will be past Spaceship Earth as you walk into the park. The new neighborhood is meant to help make the international festivals become a more integral part of the EPCOT experience. This hub will include several different gardens that will change along with the festivals throughout the year.
(Aulani) Aunty’s Beach House to Reopen
Aunty’s Beach House at Aulani will be reopening on May 25th. This kids club will also be offering evening activities for the entire family for the first time ever.
(DL) Fantasmic Set to Return
The long-awaited return of Fantasmic! at Disneyland celebrates 30 years and has been announced to return on May 28th.
(WDW) Harmony Barber Shop Reopening
Only July 31st, you’ll once again be able to experience the world’s most magical haircut at the Harmony Barber Shop on Main Street at Walt Disney World. You can book one of the limited reservations in the My Disney Experience app beginning June 28th. This reopening is the final Main Street locale to reopen it’s doors.
(WDW) Genie + Updates
Beginning June 8th, guests of Walt Disney World Resort will only be able to grab Genie+ through the My Disney Experience on the day of their visit. Previously, you could add Genie+ onto your entire trip when you purchased your tickets, but now you’ll have to go into the app each day.
(DCL) Pre-Arrival Nursery Booking Returns for Cruise Line
Beginning May 24th, guests will once again be able to make online reservations for the “it’s a small world” nursery aboard Disney Cruise Line sailings departing in October and beyond. Reservations are available between 75 and 130 days before sailing, depending on your Castaway Club status.
(Aulani) 2023 Bookings Open
If you’re looking to book a 2023 trip to Disney’s Aulani Resort, packages can now be booked.
(WDW) Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue Returning
The beloved Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue dinner show is returning this summer, and guests can once again make reservations for showtimes beginning June 23rd.
And there you have it! Some of the biggest updates from Disney from January to May 2022. This was quite a list, so I think I’ll start breaking this up into quarterly posts so there’s not quite so much to read through in one list. Be on the lookout for the next one in September 2022! In the meantime, be sure to check out the Sample Walt Disney World Vacation Packages blog post and the Sample Packages for a Disneyland Vacation blog post to help you get started planning your next magical escape!