The Disney Parks, both American and foreign, are seeing more expansions and changes than they have in nearly two decades. Almost every resort is seeing a major expansion over the next five years, many of which are multifaceted. With all of these projects and expansions, things get a little hard to keep track of. Many people want to book vacations, so knowing when these projects finish up is a useful tool. That’s why we have this blog post!
I’m going to go through each Disney Resort and give an estimated (or announced) opening date for each major project. Some of the smaller projects will be left off but feel free to ask questions about anything that you don’t see in the post (or anything you do see in the post!) There is also a chance that I will have left something off this list so drop me a comment if I have.
2020 definitely changed the influx of projects going on in the Disney Parks world. With massive deficits that were unforeseen, it’s hard to know what projects will be moving forward and which ones will be scrapped. Nearly everything will be delayed from their original timeline, especially domestically. In other words, many of these additions are fluid and do not take my word on the timeline (or even the project happening) as final.
Each project will include a brief description of what is going on. I’m going to stay away from rumors for the most part, sticking to what Disney actually has announced. I will try to keep the post updated every year, adding whatever is announced along the way. We’ll go resort by resort, starting in Disneyland.
San Fransokyo (DCA) – Now Open!
A reimagining of Pacific Wharf in California Adventure is now complete, with it transforming to San Fransokyo from Big Hero 6. The new area includes restaurants and a Baymax meet & greet. We’ve tried items from all of the new menus and have been very impressed!
Tiana’s Palace Restaurant (DL) – Now Open!
Along with Splash Mountain closing and a Princess and the Frog attraction taking its place (see below), Tiana’s Palace Restaurant took the place of the French Market. We dined here on the restaurant’s opening day and were very impressed!
Avengers Ride (DCA) – 2025 or beyond
After announcing an Avengers E-ticket ride in 2019 as a third phase of Avengers Campus, the attraction was possibly canceled during COVID. Now, at the 2022 D23 Expo, Disney has re-announced an Avengers ride that will have to do with the multiverse. There’s no timeline on it and it is expected to be built behind the Quinjet building. At Destination D23 in 2023, there was a small update stating that the attraction will include practical sets.
Tiana’s Bayou Adventure – 2024?
Splash Mountain’s replacement is coming to both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. So far all we have is an opening year and no closing date for Splash Mountain. Here are a few details that have been announced so far!
Walt Disney World
Tomorrowland Refresh (MK) – Now through 2023?
Tomorrowland is slowly going through a refresh in terms of aesthetic and attraction refurbishments. The land is receiving a paint job and has done several refreshes. This is mostly done but I’m keeping it on here in hopes that someday something will be done with the Stitch building.
Epcot Nighttime Spectacular Luminous – December 5th
In concurrence with Disney’s 100th anniversary, Epcot will be debuting a new nighttime show called Luminous. This announcement comes less than a year after Harmonious debuted. More details should surface in the coming months. In the meantime, Epcot Forever will run until Luminous debuts on December 5th.
Epcot Transformation – December 2023
Epcot is looking different and there are a few less walls than a year ago. We’ve already seen Cosmic Rewind and several shops along the central spine open up. To be frank, a number of things in this expansion were canceled but I’m hopeful that work will continue over time. World Celebration, the central spine of Epcot, is scheduled to be done in December.
Moana Journey of Water (Epcot) – Now open!
This walkthrough attraction appears to be mostly a water maze themed to the Moana attraction. Disney has announced that this will finally open later in October. Passholder and DVC previews will happen before that.
Mary Poppins Attraction (Epcot) – Postponed
A new Mary Poppins attraction will be coming to the UK Pavilion in the coming years. Cherry Tree Lane and an attraction inside the Banks’ house will be added to the pavilion. It turns out that this likely canceled attraction would have been a teacup style ride.
Country Bear Jamboree Changes (Magic Kingdom) – 2024
Country Bear Jamboree is going through a change, replacing the classic songs from the original attraction with Disney songs. The redone show will feature the typical Country Bears.
Tiana’s Bayou Adventure (Magic Kingdom) – 2024
Splash Mountain’s replacement is coming to both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. So far all we have is an opening year and no closing date for Splash Mountain. Here’s a few details that have been announced so far!
Zootopia Film Replacing It’s Tough To Be A Bug (Animal Kingdom) – 2024(?)
Zootopia is coming to Animal Kingdom but in an unexpected way! A new short film about Zootopia’s biomes will replace the Bug’s Life based short film that has been under the Tree of Life. There hasn’t been a date announced but I would think this would come sometime soon.
Test Track reimagined (Epcot) – 2025(?)
At Destination D23 in 2023, Disney announced that renovation of Test Track is coming in the future. This will include references to, and inspiration from, World of Motion. I’m not sure when this will open but wouldn’t expect it for a few years.
Potential Projects in Magic Kingdom & Animal Kingdom – 2026 & Beyond
I usually don’t include projects that haven’t been officially confirmed yet but Imagineers and Josh D’Amaro have mentioned both of these multiple times. They have teased expansion beyond Big Thunder Mountain Railroad in Magic Kingdom and replacing Dinoland with Tropic Americas in Animal Kingdom.
Tokyo Disney Resort
DisneySea Fantasy expansion – June 6th, 2024
DisneySea is opening a fantasy port in the back of DisneySea that will be the biggest expansion in park history. The new port will feature Frozen, Tangled and Peter Pan and will add four new attractions plus restaurants and a lavish hotel.
Tomorrowland Renovation (Tokyo Disneyland) – 2024-2027
Starting in 2024, Tokyo Disneyland’s Space Mountain will be renovated to include a new story and facade. Along with it, there will be a courtyard leading into the redone attraction. All of this will take place a ways down the road, starting in 2024 with the project scheduled to end in 2027.
Hong Kong Disneyland
Arendelle: World of Frozen – November 20th, 2023
Hong Kong Disneyland will recreate the world of Arendelle with an ice palace and two new attractions, a roller coaster and boat ride. There will also be restaurants in this new expansion. The land will open in November of 2023!
Marvel attraction – 2024?
Another Marvel attraction is slated to be opened in 2024, finishing off Hong Kong Disneyland’s expansion plans. More details will come and there’s a chance that this could be canceled or significantly delayed.
Zootopia Themed Land- December 20th, 2023
Disney has announced Shanghai Disneyland’s first major expansion (not counting Toy Story Land which was already under construction when the park opened) in a Zootopia themed expansion. The land’s construction has come along quickly and it will open before the end of the year.
Star Wars and Frozen in WDS – 2024 and beyond
The Studios Park is getting an expansion and makeover but it will take some time. Frozen and Star Wars Land are coming with Frozen likely to be done in 2023 or 2024 and Star Wars in 2025 or beyond. There’s a chance that Star Wars isn’t a part of this plan anymore.
Those are all of the major announcements Disney has come out with for the next five (or so) years. Much like my life, Disney’s five-year plans hardly ever sticks to schedule so don’t take this as gospel, although we will try to update periodically and after big announcements. Again, if I’ve missed something please let me know in the comments and if you have questions about a certain item on the list then let me know!
Which of these projects are you most excited for? Let us know in the comments! Planning a Disney trip? Check out our Travel Guides to help you along the way! Thank you for reading Wandering in Disney. Please subscribe to the blog and like our social media pages, all of which you can do on the right side of the page. Have a wonderful day!