Today’s travel tip sheet includes news on upcoming holiday events and dining options, new hotel openings and Black Friday deals. For more info:

In this Issue:

  • Theme Parks Begin Decking the Halls in New Ways
  • Turkey Day Dining While on Vacation
  • Black Friday & Cyber Monday Discounts
  • NEW Cultural and Holiday Events
  • Universal Orlando’s Dockside Inn Opening Soon!
  • DYK? Pass the cheese, please!

Orlando Theme Parks Offer New, Reimagined Holiday Celebrations

With visits to Orlando’s open-air theme parks being a part of many annual holiday traditions, this year will be no exception, with a variety of reimagined magical holiday experiences in the works – all with enhanced health and safety measures. All theme park holiday events are included in regular park admission.

  • A reimagined holiday celebration will take place at Walt Disney World Resort, with all four theme parks decked for the season through Dec. 30. New highlights this year include gingerbread men and elves joining Disney characters in cavalcades through the park at Magic Kingdom, Santa Claus making pop-up appearances at each park and an all-new Taste of Epcot International Festival of the Holidays.
  • Universal Orlando Resort unwraps its 2020 Holidays celebration through Jan. 3 as its most beloved holiday traditions and characters come to life in reimagined ways that align with the destination’s enhanced health and safety procedures. Festivities include the all-new “Universal’s Holiday Experience featuring Macy’s Balloons” to get up-close with larger-than-life parade balloons and floats like never before; decorations and musical performances along the streets of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley; and character celebrations from fan-favorites Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch, the Minions and more.
  • SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration transforms the park into a winter wonderland sparkling with holiday cheer and over 3 million beautiful lights through Dec. 31. New this year is an increased focus on safety measures, including the opportunity to meet Santa from a distance; celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa with singing and dancing Sesame Street friends; and enjoy outdoor ice skating (extra fee required).

Thanksgiving Day Dining in Orlando

Orlando is serving a cornucopia of tasty delights to satisfy visitors’ turkey cravings before they head off to theme park celebrations. In addition to enhanced cleaning and safety procedures, face-masks and social-distancing requirements, many eateries also offer open-air seating and easy takeout and delivery options. More info can be found here, and options near the theme parks include:

  • Terralina Crafted Italian at Disney Springs will serve Roast Turkey with Apple-Pancetta Stuffing with gourmet sides on Thanksgiving Day, as well as a special Cranberry Mule cocktail throughout November.
  • Four of Universal Orlando Resort’s official hotels will be serving Thanksgiving dinner with lots of traditional favorites. At Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando, enjoy a Thanksgiving Day Family-Style Feast in The Kitchen, plus a live acoustic guitarist starting at noon.
  • Cafe Tu Tu Tango on International Drive is known for its unique tapas-style dishes and will serve an All-Day Bottomless Brunch from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Deals - Savings up to 50%

For those looking to give the gift of travel (or enjoy a short getaway themselves!), special savings are available for Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Travel Tuesday for Orlando. A few highlights are below; more offers can be found here.

Theme Parks & Attractions

  • Universal Orlando Resort: Get three days free when you purchase two days on select promo tickets, for purchases now through Jan. 6, 2021.
  • SeaWorld Orlando: Now through Nov. 27, guests can take advantage of deals including three months free on annual passes; savings over 60% on tickets; and 40% off the 2021 SeaWorld Fun Card, valid through Dec. 31, 2021.
  • Discovery Cove has announced its biggest sale of the year, with savings of up to 50% off reservations to the stunning all-inclusive day resort, where visitors can connect with dolphins, snorkel among thousands of tropical fish and rays and hand-feed exotic birds. The deal is available Nov. 13-30 for visits from Nov. 13, 2020 - Dec. 31, 2021.
  • Gatorland: From Nov. 26-29, Adult Annual Passes will be $36.99 plus tax, a savings of $8 off the regular adult price; Children's Annual Passes will be $24.99 plus tax, a $5 savings. A Cyber Monday Deal on the Screamin’ Gator Zip Line will be available Nov. 30 - Dec. 2, featuring tickets for just $39.99 plus tax; a savings of more than 40% percent.


  • Grand Bohemian Hotel Orlando: This Cyber Monday, Grand Bohemian Orlando is offering a rate of $159/night for travel from January - March 2021 (booking window: Nov. 30 - Dec. 6).
  • Rosen Shingle Creek, Rosen Centre and Rosen Plaza are offering: “Buy a three-night stay and receive a certificate for a one-night comp stay,” which can be applied for the 4th night or a future stay. Must be booked between Nov. 27-30 for stays between Nov. 27 – April 30, 2021.

Beyond the Parks: New Seasonal Events

  • Fusion Fest: A new Thanksgiving tradition in Central Florida begins this year this FREE, two-day festival Nov. 28-29 showcasing music, dance, food, visual arts, spoken word, games and interactive activities from more than 110 different cultures. Held at Seneff Arts Plaza at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Downtown Orlando, safety measures include temperature checks and mandatory masks. There will be socially distanced seating areas for eating and watching the performances.
  • Orlando Winterfest and Holiday Market at the Orange County Convention Center takes place Dec. 3-6, showcasing a holiday market offering the ultimate gift shopping experience for the entire family. Winterfest will also offer family-friendly activities, festive food and beverage options, live music, and entertainment for all ages. The event will ensure all CDC guidelines are followed for safety. Tickets are available here.

Universal Orlando Resort Openings

Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn and Suites, the newest hotel at Universal Orlando Resort, will open to guests for the first time on Dec. 15 with an impressively low starting rate of $79 per night and the option of two-bedroom suites starting at $120 for families to spread out. Additionally, Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando will resume operations on December 1. Safety and well-being protocols will be in place throughout both hotels, as they are across all of Universal Orlando’s hotels and theme parks.

Hey, Floridians! Did You Know?

La Femme Du Fromage, located in the East End Market near downtown Orlando, was named Best Cheese Shop in Florida according to Taste of Home magazine. They host a “Grilled Cheese Happy Hour” on Fridays from 3 – 6 p.m. and also serve hand crafted, artisanal cheeses from around the world.