“it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland: 7 Tips for Your First Voyage

by | Dec 8, 2021 | Disneyland, Disneyland Parks, DLR News

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After recent flooding caused a delay in its seasonal opening, “it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland is now welcoming guests on joyful voyages once again. Here are seven tips for your first time experiencing Disneyland’s “it’s a small world” Holiday.

It’s time to celebrate and finally set sail on “The Merriest Cruise Around the World.” Originally slated to reopen on November 11, 2021, with its seasonal holiday overlay, “it’s a small world” at Disneyland had one big problem: One day before its debut, the ride fa-la-la-la flooded!

This beloved attraction’s machinery and mechanics were affected by the flooding, which extended its closure. Finally on December 6th, a holiday miracle occurred—“it’s a small world” opened again thanks to the hard work of dedicated Cast Members.

That’s right: Disneyland Park guests can finally enjoy the “it’s a small world” Holiday overlay again.

About “it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland

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Don’t miss “it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland. Photo by Brian Shih

The “it’s a small world” Holiday is my favorite of the holiday overlays because of the mixture of cultural classics and new technology making each year better than the last. And now we can add “it flooded … bad” to the list of “it’s a small world” Holiday facts we remember each winter season.

Disneyland’s “it’s a small world” Holiday is a must-see attraction for park guests each year, and every year, it gets better and better. Below, we’ve built a comprehensive guide to “it’s a small world” Holiday for first-time visitors.

Your Guide to Disneyland’s “it’s a small world” Holiday

Is this your first time at Disneyland for the holidays? Add the “small world” Holiday overlay to your list. Here’s what you need to know.

When Is the “it’s a small world” Holiday Overlay?

The special holiday overlay for Disneyland’s “it’s a small world” runs all day from Dec. 6, 2021, through Jan. 9, 2022. It had been slated to open in November, but the weather had other plans.

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Yes, the “small world” Holiday overlay is open in the daytime as well. Photo by Tina Chiu

How Long Is the Wait?

Wait times for “it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland can fluctuate. 

Tip 1: An easy way to beat the line is to use Genie+, which finally launched at Disneyland on Dec. 8.

What Does the “small world” Holiday Overlay Include?

Each year, Disneyland transforms the classic “it’s a small world” attraction with whimsical décor, holiday tunes, and a lit-up façade. In total, 10 scenes showcase unique cultural holiday traditions.

Tip 2: Listen closely for “Jingle Shells by the South Sea mermaids; it’s a crowd pleaser.

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Those lights 😍 Photo by Brian Shih

The Fantasyland plaza takes on a wondrous glow with 50,000 lights covering the façade of the attraction and an additional 350,000 mini lights spread over the hedges, trees, and shops surrounding “it’s a small world.”  

Tip 3: If you don’t have time to ride “it’s a small world,” head to the area outside to take in the beautiful lights.

Disney has added new immersive scents on the ride to heighten guests’ experience as they set sail around the world. You’ll smell fragrances of cherry blossom, cinnamon, and coconut, as well as the traditional scents from previous years of pine and peppermint

Tip 4: Remember to rely on more than just sight during the ride. The special holiday overlay uses music and smells to get you in the holiday spirit.

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So many holiday scents inside! Photo by Brian Shih

Do you want to build a snowman? How about a 14-foot snowman perched on top of a 10-foot-wide snowflake?

Tip 5: Look out for this amazing snowman inside the grand finale room of “it’s a small world” Holiday. The snowman is made of sparkling crystals and lights.

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The snowman is a show-stopper. Photo by Tina Chiu

Finally, there’s a sign that says “Happy Holidays,” sending you on your way with the spirit of this festive time of year. 

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Happy Holidays! Photo by Tina Chiu

“it’s a small world” Holiday: What Else You Need to Know

Here are two more tips that first-time visitors might appreciate:

Tip 6: Every day at dusk, gather near “it’s a small world” to see the holiday light show with 3D projections. Throughout the night projections will be cast onto the attraction.

Tip 7: You can view the Christmas Fantasy Parade from the sidewalks of “it’s a small world.” If you’re able to snag a seat, you’re in for a real treat at this location. The grand holiday façade is a great photo backdrop. It is also one of the brightest locations to film or photograph this parade. Catch Christmas Fantasy at 3:00 and 5:30 PM.

Not sure if you’re going? You can just get more information about a potential Disney vacation.

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Written by Kathleen Lee

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Kat Lee is a frequent window shopper and candy connoisseur on Main Street, U.S.A. You can catch her Disneybounding in Fantasyland while sharing stories and making memories as a media reporter for DLR Magazine. Check out her Instagram to see where she’s headed next or what the latest park trend is.
Kathleen Lee

Written by Kathleen Lee

Kat Lee is a frequent window shopper and candy connoisseur on Main Street, U.S.A. You can catch her Disneybounding in Fantasyland while sharing stories and making memories as a media reporter for DLR Magazine. Check out her Instagram to see where she’s headed next or what the latest park trend is.
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