Disney is constantly adding new things at the Walt Disney World Resort every year. It can be hard to keep up with the latest openings and what to expect on your next trip to the Walt Disney World Resort. Trust me it has almost become a second full-time job with all the new Disney announcements lately. Since the average family visits every three years, we have included 2018 as well as 2019 items on our list of what is new at Disney World in 2019.
If you already know you want to visit in 2019 keep checking back, as we are constantly updating this list as Disney World makes announcements on new opening dates and new additions to the resort! Or join our private Facebook group and get your Disney vacation planning questions answered today! Also, subscribe to our YouTube channel to get notifications when we upload new Disney World content.
Star Wars Galaxy Edge (Late Fall 2019)
The most anticipated event of 2019 at Disney World is the opening of Star Wars Land at Hollywood Studios. Here in Florida Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge is set to open to travelers August 29th. Two attractions are coming with the brand new area. One ride puts you at the controls of the Millennium Falcon, and the other you will be in a battle of the First Order and the Resistance. For more details read Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge.
Mickey & Minnie’s Surprise Celebration (Jan 2019)
The Magic Kingdom with be getting an all-new “Move It! Shake It! MousekeDance It! Street Party.” Several times daily, this colorful procession will parade up Main Street, U.S.A. toward Cinderella Castle. And don’t be afraid to join in the energetic dance party.
Singing hosts will keep things hopping with modern remixes of favorite “Mickey Mouse Club” melodies and more. Joining Mickey and Minnie in all the fun will be a bevy of beloved Disney characters, including Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, Pluto, Max, Chip ’n Dale, and others.
Hakuna Matata Time Dance Party (Jan. 2019)
Each day to September 30th, you will feel the love during the Hakuna Matata Time Dance Party. This is a raucous celebration where young adventurers will let their inner animals roam free on the dance floor. Timon and Rafiki will engage everyone in entertaining dances and games inspired by “The Lion King,” as wildly talented musicians provide the perfect soundtrack in a World Beat style.
Also, you can picture yourself in scenes from the film via new three-dimensional photo opportunities at the park. These backdrops will allow you to re-create iconic “Lion King” moments ideal for sharing on social media platforms.
Pixar Place Reimagined (Jan. 2019)
Beginning January 18th, Pixar Place will transform into a Municiberg city block from Pixar’s Incredibles films. Guests will meet super suit designer Edna Mode and see some of her greatest creations. They will look for clues to the whereabouts of the youngest Incredible, the mischievous and multi-powered Jack-Jack. And at the end of the block, guests will celebrate the heroic deeds of Mr. Incredible, Mrs. Incredible, and Frozone, who will make appearances throughout the day during a party featuring lively music, dancing, interactive games and lots more Super fun.
Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy (March 2019)
Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy will speed into Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This new show experience will welcome guests to the world of Pixar’s Cars films, bringing them face to face with racing legend Lightning McQueen. As the next generation of rookie racers, guests will learn from Lightning’s years of experience on the track. This will be the untold story of Lightning McQueen … as told by Lightning McQueen!
The transportation system will connect Disney’s Art of Animation, Pop Century and Caribbean Beach resorts, and other locations with Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the International Gateway at Epcot. And many of the gondolas with Disney Skyliner will feature favorite Disney characters. For more details on the Disney Skyliner read our in-depth article here.
Epcot Forever (October 2019)
There will be a limited-time experience Epcot fans will love, called “Epcot Forever,” which will debut in fall 2019 and will feature classic Epcot tunes. “Epcot Forever” will begin with a spark of imagination that swells into an epic spectacle of fireworks, music, lighting, lasers, and special effects kites.
France “Beauty and the Beast” Sing-Along
In addition to “Impressions de France,” a brand new “Beauty and the Beast” sing-along with open in the France pavilion at Epcot. The show was created by Don Hahn, producer of the animated and live-action “Beauty and the Beast” films. Plus we also heard the Canada pavilion is in the process of updating the existing O Canada! 360-degree show!
Toy Story Land (June 30, 2018)
This is the most highly anticipated addition to Disney World in 2018. In Toy Story Land, explore the world of Andy’s backyard with your favorite Toy Story characters, including Woody and Buzz. There are two new themed attractions in Toy Story Land. Slinky Dog Dash is a family coaster attraction, entirely outdoors so you can see what you are in for – FUN! Alien Swirling Saucers twirls and spins you around as you try to become the chosen one for the claw. You will now enter Toy Story Midway Mania from Toy Story Land. Also, don’t miss the new quick service food location, Woody’s Lunchbox.
Pandora the World of Avatar
The new World of Avatar is home to two new attractions. First, is the family friendly Na’vi River Journey, a river ride through a bioluminescent rainforest. And second, the Avatar Flight of Passage excursion will offer the jaw-dropping experience of riding on a Banshee over the world of Pandora. This new land opened on May 27, 2017.
See our reviews:
- What to Expect @ Pandora The World of Avatar
- What to Expect @ Flight of Passage
- Accomplish Everything in Pandora
- Satu’li Canteen Dining review
Pandora Utility Suit (April 22, 2018)
Pandora Conservation Initiative, or PCI, pilot walking around in his Utility Suit in Pandora, The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. This interactive character has lots of fun talking with guests on Pandora.
UP! A Great Bird Adventure (April 2018)
Beginning just in time for the 20th anniversary of Disney’s Animal Kingdom, this new show will offer guests the chance to see Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his friend Dug as they discover species of birds from around the world. Their newest adventure will be found at the Caravan Theater in Anandapur village, former home of Flights of Wonder. There will be “UP” close encounters each day with amazing winged creatures!
New Food Locations at Disney World
Takumi-Tei (Summer 2019)
There is a new Signature table-service restaurant coming to the World Showcase at Epcot! A new addition to the Japan pavilion will provide a signature dining experience inspired by the natural beauty of Japan. The design of this new dining experience celebrates the relationship between Japanese craftsmanship and the natural world. The food is inspired by the wonderful collaboration between nature and Takumi, the artisan. The upscale dinner menu will highlight wagyu beef in a sublime setting. If you are ready for a splurge Takumi-Tei will offer a multi-course tasting menu featuring traditional tea service. Signature cocktails and premium sake will be available along with a wine and craft beer menu.
City Works Eatery & Pour House
If you are a huge fan of craft beer and classic American food, the new City Works Eatery & Pour House is perfect for you! The new restaurant will open on the West Side next summer. The restaurant and bar will offer plenty of high-def TVs including a 165-inch screen, perfect for viewing your favorite live sporting events.
Like the seven existing locations across the country, the Disney Springs space will offer 80 beers on tap including rare, limited supply, special tappings from local breweries and others from around the world. If barley and hops aren’t for you, a curated selection of popular wines will be available as well, ready to pair with bar bites, shareables, burgers, and more.
Roundup Rodeo BBQ
There’s a brand-new table-service restaurant coming to Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Using three cardboard boxes cut and taped together, Andy has created a new rodeo arena using some of his favorite toys, games, and playsets. And while some pieces are definitely western-themed, what makes this rodeo special is the broad assortment of toys that have been brought together to create a fun, colorful mashup-atmosphere that only a child could create.
Storybook Dining at Artist Point
Storybook Dining at Artist Point you will venture into an Enchanted Forest-like setting inspired by Walt Disney’s “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” There, you’ll enjoy a delicious meal of fantastic fare with visits from Snow White, Dopey and Grumpy. Delightful music and activities will help bring the classic fairytale to life, and you’ll even have an opportunity for an encounter with The Queen.
This immersive character dinner takes place amidst the rustic elegance and exceptional dining that Artist Point is known for. You’ll enjoy a uniquely themed prix fixe menu, including shared starters, a choice of individual plated entrees and ‘sweet spells’ to finish the meal. Read our review of Storybook Dining at Artist Point.
After a multi-year renovation, Caribbean Beach has opened Sebastian’s Bistro. This restaurant is a Caribbean-inspired table-service restaurant featuring warm island hospitality and waterfront views. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a tropical beachfront home offering tantalizing Latin and Caribbean flavors. Highlights include a skirt steak “chimichurri,” sautéed shrimp and tamales, a crispy avocado-and-bacon burger and much more. For a full review read Sebastian’s Bistro Dinner Review.
4R Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck
This food truck is a new edition to Disney Springs. You can find it right next to the World of Disney Store. The must-have here is the giant Taco Cone pictured on the left. For our full review read 4 Rivers Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck Review.
Edison – Disney Springs
The Edison opened early January 2018, the Edison features exceptional classic American food, artisanal craft cocktails, and unparalleled live entertainment. It is an Industrial Gothic themed restaurant. While there enjoy the multiple themed areas, such as the Lab performance space, The Ember Parlour, Telegraph Lounge, The Patent Office, The Tesla Lounge, The Radio Room, and the Waterfront Patio. This location is similar to its sister in Los Angles.
The Edison is open Sunday-Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m. and Thursday-Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. Guests at The Edison must be 21 years or older starting at 10 p.m. Thursday-Saturday nights. There is a cover charge of $15 per guest beginning at 10 p.m. Additionally, The Edison has an enforced dress code Thursday-Saturday evenings beginning at 10 p.m. (men must wear slacks, jeans or dress shorts. No ball caps, sleeveless shirts or flip-flops are permitted. Jackets are optional).
Maria & Enzo’s, PizzaPonte, Enzo’s Hideaway Tunnel Bar
Three modern Italian restaurants will be arriving at Disney Springs. These restaurants, all new concepts created by the Patina Restaurant Group, each feature unique menus, and authentic Italian food in a beautiful and expansive dining complex. The complex will be located adjacent to The Edison.
The first concept, called Maria & Enzo’s, is a trattoria set in the town’s abandoned 1930’s airline terminal which has now been transformed into an open and airy restaurant. Featuring gorgeous views of Lake Buena Vista and incredible 50-foot ceilings, the interior dining room is adorned with artifacts that reflect air travel of the time such as maps and historic flight paths. Inspired by Sicily, the menu has a delightful range of family friendly dishes.
The second concept is Enzo’s Hideaway a speakeasy-inspired by Roman aperitivo bars. Located in the storied rum-runner tunnels that adjoin Maria & Enzo’s and steeped in Florida’s true history of rum-running. Enzo’s Hideaway will pour Prohibition-era cocktails at its Tunnel Bar and serve a casual menu of hearty Roman Dishes.
Finally, Pizza Ponte rounds out the group with a fast-casual restaurant serving pizza, pastries, Italian sandwiches and espresso. With the perfect blend of savory and sweet, Pizza Ponte is the ideal place quick bite. On the savory side, the menu features Sicilian-style pizza served by the slice, signature stuffed pizza bread sandwiches, and roast pork. To satisfy your sweet tooth, pastry specialties include Italian donuts and Tiramisu.
Wine Bar George (May 2018)
This new addition to Disney Springs is from Orlando master sommelier George Miliotes. Inside the restaurant is reminiscent of a winemaker’s estate warmed by oak wood and cozy lighting. Small plates dominate the food menu but it will be the wines with a starring role: more than 100 selections both by the bottle and the glass in a range of varietals and vintages.
Terralina Crafted Italian
The restaurant, Terralina Crafted Italian is taking over the former location of Portabello in Disney Springs. The restaurant is inspired by the Lake District of Italy and is modeled after an Italian home with an open kitchen. If you want to see our full review you can read Terralina Crafted Italian Dinner Review.
Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill (December 2018)
Disney Springs has another Wolfgang Puck location opening in Town Center. Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill will modernize the traditional “bar and grill” concept in a setting inspired by traditional farmhouses with a touch of elegance. For our full review read Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill.
Jaleo (March 2019)
Jaleo, a concept by world-renowned Chef José Andrés’ ThinkFoodGroup, will open on the West Side, bringing the spirit and flavors of Spain, with an extensive menu of tapas that reflect the rich regional diversity of traditional and contemporary Spanish cuisine. The Disney Springs location will be the first Florida location for Jaleo, which has five locations in the United States and Mexico City. Read our full Jaleo review here.
New Hotels at Disney
Disney’s Coronado Springs and Caribbean Beach Resorts (July 2019)
The expansion at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort will include a new 15-story tower that will add 500 rooms, featuring suites and concierge-level services. Furthermore, the resort will also refurbish its current resort rooms and transform its landscape. Floating gardens and an island oasis connect the resort through a series of bridges.
Beyond 2019 New Attractions at Disney World
We don’t have the exact opening dates for these items but we do know that they will open in time for Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary in 2021!
Star Wars Inspired Resort
“It’s unlike anything that exists today.” Bob said. “From the second you arrive, you will become a part of a Star Wars story! You’ll immediately become a citizen of the galaxy and experience all that entails, including dressing up in the proper attire. Once you leave Earth, you will discover a starship alive with characters, stories, and adventures that unfold all around you. It is 100% immersive, and the story will touch every single minute of your day, and it will culminate in a unique journey for every person who visits.”
Coming over from Shanghai Disneyland Tron Coaster will be added to the Magic Kingdom! This coaster will sit next to Space Mountain in a brand new area.
New Space Restaurant at Epcot
Adjacent to Mission: SPACE will be a new table-service restaurant. Guests travel high above the Earth into space, for great meals with a great view.
Guardians of the Galaxy
Epcot’s brand new E-ticket attraction will be based on the rockin’ and action-packed world of “Guardians of the Galaxy.” I expect a unique experience her since Disney claims this is the next step in how guests can encounter characters at Disney World.
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
A Disney Pixar’s Ratatouille inspired attraction will also be added to the France Pavilion in World Showcase. The attraction will expand the pavilion. The attraction will be similar to the 4-D attraction Ratatouille: The Adventure that opened in Paris in 2014. Guests will be able to shrink to Remy’s size and scurry to safety in a dazzling chase. You come across a kitchen with the sights, sounds, and smells of Gusteau’s legendary restaurant.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
An all new dark ride is replacing the former Great Movie Ride at Hollywood Studios.
In conclusion, now that you have read what is coming to Disney make sure you put together a list of all your new must-dos for your next trip. You can organize it all in our FREE Disney vacation planner! Next, make sure you order your FREE Disney Vacation Planning Video, then come back for news, trip planning, and great insights into building your perfect trip!
If you want some more information on planning your 2019 trip to Disney World, we have a couple of book recommendations. Be sure to give a look at both The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World and The Easy Guide to your WDW Trip. If you are trying to figure out when to vacation to Disney in 2019 read The Best Dates to Visit Walt Disney World.
If you are looking for a FREE packing list for your trip? Check out the FREE: The Ultimate Disney Packing List! Or head over to our list of Items to Buy Online Before Your Next Disney Trip to save some money on your next Disney vacation.
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!