Every Amazing Disney Parks Announcement from This Week!

By Sarah Sterling

We’re only one full week into 2023 and there is already so much to look forward to at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort this year! The Disney Parks news has been non-stop the last few days—from attraction openings and new food locations, to lots of updates for Passholders and Magic Key holders.

“These changes are centered on creating a better experience for our guests and building a future where we are constantly introducing new stories and experiences across the globe,” Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro recently said.

Don’t worry: We’ve compiled everything you need to know in one convenient place. Here are all the announcements, updates, and news on what’s coming soon to Disneyland and Walt Disney World!

Walt Disney World Resort:

Promotional graphic for TRON LightCycle / Run at Walt Disney World. It features four guests on lightcycle bikes, two orange and two blue, racing along the futuristic Grid from the TRON franchise. On the left side of the image is the Walt Disney World logo in bright blue. Underneath is the TRON logo in white and the attraction’s opening date, 04.04.2023.

TRON Lightcycle / Run Opens April 4 at Magic Kingdom Park
The highly anticipated TRON Lightcycle / Run will open at Magic Kingdom Park on April 4, 2023.

The story of TRON Lightcycle / Run picks up after TRON: Legacy, and finds Kevin’s son, Sam Flynn, opening a second gateway into a digital realm called the Grid. The first of the portals he created is found at Shanghai Disneyland with the original TRON Lightcycle Power Run. Magic Kingdom Cast Members will be the first to enter the Grid during special previews before the attraction officially opens—but there will be additional preview opportunities for guests too, including Annual Passholders and eligible Disney Vacation Club Members.

A finale shot from Happily Ever After at Magic Kingdom Park. Cinderella Castle is illuminated with bright projection-mapped images of Disney characters, including Mulan, Tarzan, Cinderella, Aladdin, Woody, Merida, and more. Fireworks illuminate the sky behind the castle.

Happily Ever After Returns to Magic Kingdom Park
Meanwhile, fan-favorite nighttime spectacular Happily Ever After returns to the Magic Kingdom on April 3, featuring all-new projections down Main Street, U.S.A. Plus, Disney Enchantment will be offered through April 2. We can’t wait to reach out and find our happily ever after again this Spring!

Guests stand against the railing at the World Showcase Lagoon at EPCOT. They stare out over the water with excited looks and smiles as they watch the show. Fireworks light up the sky above them.

EPCOT Forever Returns to EPCOT’s World Showcase Lagoon
An all-new nighttime spectacular is planned to debut at EPCOT later this year—but in the meantime, guests can enjoy EPCOT Forever as an interim show over the skies of World Showcase Lagoon starting April 3. A limited-time spectacle of lasers, lighting, special effects, and fireworks, EPCOT Forever returns with a collection of songs that offer both a trip down memory lane and a look toward the future. Harmonious will have its final performance on April 2.

Complimentary Self-parking When Staying at a Disney Resort hotel
Beginning this evening—yes, tonight, Tuesday, January 10—overnight self-parking will once again be offered complimentary to guests staying at Disney Resort hotels at Walt Disney World!

Relaxed Park Reservation Requirements
Beginning in the next few months, Walt Disney World Annual Passholders will be able to visit the theme parks after 2 p.m. without needing a park reservation, except on Saturdays and Sundays at Magic Kingdom Park. Pass block-out dates will continue to apply like they do today.

A collage of three images of guests at Walt Disney World using the Disney PhotoPass Lenses. The first image is a woman with a computer generated image of Grogu on her back. In the middle is a young man with Cinderella Castle behind him, but it has been transformed into the pink 25th anniversary “cake castle”. Finally, a woman with long brown hair takes a photo with a fake chef’s hat on her head. Inside the hat you can see an image of Remy from Ratatouille pulling on her hair.

Disney Genie+ Attraction Photo Downloads & Passholder Disney PhotoPass Lenses
Also beginning in the next few months, guests purchasing Disney Genie+ service will receive digital downloads of their Disney PhotoPass attraction photos taken in the park on the day of their purchase at no additional charge. Walt Disney World Resort Passholders will receive access to Disney PhotoPass lenses and one complimentary Cinderella Castle Mural of Memories experience (age restrictions apply). Visit Cinderella Castle Mural of Memories and Disney PhotoPass Lenses for details, restrictions, and other information.

Disneyland Resort:

A rendering of Disneyland’s Sleeping Beauty Castle decorated for the Disney100 celebration. There are iridescent banners hanging from each turret and a large banner over the gateway reading “Disney 100”. Two fountains flank the drawbridge and the banners are being held up by Flora, Fauna, and Merrywether from Sleeping Beauty.

Switch Between Parks Even Earlier with Park Hopper Tickets
Beginning February 4, 2023, guests who enter a Disneyland Resort theme park with a Magic Key pass or a Park Hopper ticket may begin crossing over between the parks two hours earlier—starting at 11 a.m. PT! This means even more magic and more fun for your day as you enjoy the best of what both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park have to offer.

Even More Opportunities to Visit with $104 Park Ticket
We’re happy to share that the Disneyland Resort reservation calendar will offer nearly two months’ worth of $104 park ticket dates throughout 2023—which means additional opportunities to enjoy our lowest one-day, one-park ticket price while creating moments destined to become memories. And with so many exciting new offerings, from the two new nighttime spectaculars—Wondrous Journeys at Disneyland and World of Color – One at Disney California Adventure—to Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway, all opening January 27, plus returning favorite festivals, there’s so much to see and do coming up for guests to enjoy!

Complimentary Disney PhotoPass Digital Attraction Photos
Throughout the Disney100 celebration at the Disneyland Resort, Disney PhotoPass digital photo downloads will be complimentary for all ticketed park guests on the Disneyland app starting February 4. This includes any PhotoPass digital photo captured on any Disney PhotoPass available attraction during a park visit.

More Opportunities to Join the Magic Key program
Disneyland Resort will make select Magic Key passes available for new sales from time to time throughout 2023 as pass inventory becomes available. Continue to check Disneyland.com/MagicKey for pass on sale dates and availability.

Disneyland Resort Downtown Disney District: 

A sandwich, drink, and pile of chips from Earl of Sandwich. A large chicken sandwich with avocado, bacon, and lettuce sits next to a to-go cup featuring the Earl of Sandwich logo.

Downtown Disney District Welcomes Back Earl of Sandwich
Earl of Sandwich will return to the Downtown Disney District this February! Earl of Sandwich and table service options at Earl of Sandwich Tavern will both be temporarily located at the La Brea Bakery location. Keep your eyes peeled for Earl of Sandwich opening in the coming weeks.

Porto’s Bakery
Porto’s Bakery will be bringing their famous California-Cuban cuisine (we’re partial to their cheese rolls and potato balls) to the Downtown Disney District! Plans are underway to design and construct an all-new Porto’s location near the Esplanade on the footprint of the La Brea Bakery location. Look out for more details on these exciting plans coming soon.

Concept art of the upcoming Din Tai Fung restaurant coming to Downtown Disney. It features a round bar at the center of the restaurant under a beautiful, beaded centerpiece hanging from the ceiling. Individual tables and booth surround the bar and the entire restaurant is bathed in gold lighting.

Din Tai Fung
... And to end this Downtown Disney District update on one more delicious note, check out this exciting look at concept art for the Din Tai Fung restaurant, which will open on the west side of the district in the future. With so many delicious dining options coming to Downtown Disney, we don’t know which one we want to visit first!

Let’s not forget we also have Lunar New Year and the Food & Wine Festival to enjoy this Spring at Disney California Adventure, plus the opening of the reimagined Mickey’s Toontown and return of the Magic Happens parade at Disneyland Park! No matter which coast you frequent, there is endless magic to experience at Disney Parks this year. What tasty treat, nighttime spectacular, or Passholder perk are you looking forward to? Let us know on social media and keep an eye on D23.com for more updates on these projects at Disney Parks.