by Disney Magic Diva
If you follow Disney blogs (and we KNOW you follow at least this amazing one!) you’ve probably heard of various “crawls” around Walt Disney World Resort. Monorail Dinner Crawls, Epcot Drinking Around the World, Cookie Strolls – you name it. But maybe you haven’t heard of what I like to call the Gingerbread Crawl – visiting each of the famous gingerbread displays created by the talented and creative pastry chefs at Walt Disney World Resort.
I’ve written about resort hopping to see the gingerbread displays in the past, and even once when we failed at our attempt to see the holiday sweetness. Thankfully, this year we didn’t fail, and I’m happy to share our experience with the Gingerbread Crawl 2019.
If you haven’t had the chance to visit Walt Disney World Resort during the holidays, you may not even know about the gingerbread displays. If that’s the case, you’re in for a delightful surprise! Several of the deluxe resorts (and the American Pavilion at Epcot!) have stunning gingerbread displays during the holiday season. These are truly amazing creations sure to put you in a festive spirit and definitely worthy of a stop.
Diva Tip: With the exception of display at Epcot, all of the gingerbread displays can be visited without a park ticket. It’s a great way to spend a non-park day! And while you certainly can visit all the resorts in a single day (whether by car or using Disney transportation), you may want to visit in conjunction with a park (Monorail resorts during a Magic Kingdom day, for example.)
The most exciting news about the 2019 Gingerbread Crawl is the NEW display! Head to Disney’s Wilderness Lodge (which I would highly recommend visiting anyway during the holidays – the décor is the epitome of a Hallmark Christmas card) to see the new display. While it is the smallest of all the various resort displays, it is exciting to have a new resort included.
Situated right next to the babbling brook and enormous fireplace, Wilderness Lodge’s gingerbread display features Humphrey, the adorable unofficial bear mascot of Wilderness Lodge, stringing Christmas Lights on the cabin. Don’t forget to search for the hidden Mickeys!
Our next stop this year was Disney’s Contemporary Resort. It’s an easy boat ride from Wilderness Lodge to the Contemporary, so this made sense from a logistical standpoint.
Diva Tip: Be careful to board the correct boat! Wilderness Lodge has boat transportation to several destinations, so read the signs carefully and take the one to Contemporary (which is different than the boat to Magic Kingdom!)
When you arrive at the Contemporary, head to the 4th floor (where Chef Mickey’s is located). At the opposite end of the building from Chef Mickey’s, you’ll find the Contemporary’s gingerbread display. This is it’s 10 year! The display is typically a castle, and this year it is Cinderella’s castle. There’s also a sweet shop, so you can purchase a yummy treat to take home.
Diva Tip: The gingerbread recipe used to build the displays differs a little from resort to resort. Consider purchasing a shingle at each shop and have a taste test of your own to decide which is your favorite!
Be sure to take a moment to see Cinderella’s glass slipper! It’s a great chance to see it up close!
From the Contemporary, you can jump on the monorail and head to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Here you’ll find the largest display, the grandest of them all! You’ll want to take your time admiring this life-size gingerbread house. The detail is unbelievable! Tobogganers actually sliding downhill. A gingerbread house within a gingerbread house. Lights in the windows. Princesses. And, of course, hidden Mickeys. You could look for hours and keep finding new detail!
The shop here is popular, so expect to wait in line to purchase your goodies. But it is a wait well worth it. (I highly recommend the chocolate caramel pecan fudge!)
Over at the BoardWalk you’ll find more gingerbread displays. Disney’s Beach Club Resort never ceases to amaze me with its gingerbread carousel. It seems like it would be challenging enough to build an enormous gingerbread display, but to make it rotate – well that’s just Disney Magic for you!
Each year Beach Club’s carousel has a different theme, and this year it’s Peter Pan. The Tinkerbell inspired horse was my absolute favorite! Wendy, Peter and Mr. Smee round out the horses on the carousel, but of course, Captain Hook has to make an appearance!
We were also excited to see Disney’s BoardWalk Inn’s display this year. When we’ve visited in the past, it’s always been a little earlier in the holiday season, and this display wasn’t up yet. To see a replica of the BoardWalk done in gingerbread was such a delight! Again – take time to examine all the details! The tiny balconies of BoardWalk Inn. A gingerbread Trattoria al Forno! The sports-themed Christmas tree at the gingerbread ESPN Club. And, of course, Mickey and Minnie taking care of all the holiday baking at BoardWalk Bakery. Just adorable!
As a bonus stop, while you’re on the BoardWalk take a moment to pop in Disney’s Yacht Club Resort to see the Christmas Village. You will be enchanted by this charming, old-time, traditional Christmas Village display. Every scene depicts families getting ready for the holidays – and the guy pushing his snowblower is my absolute favorite! A subtle and realistic reminder that even during the excitement of the season, everyday life goes on.
As long as you’re this close, you can stroll over the International Gateway and make your way to The American Adventure. Inside, while you wait for the next performance of Voices of Liberty (because you should definitely hear them!) you can admire the gingerbread display of the Capitol Building, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, and Jefferson Memorial. It’s a miniaturized version of the National Mall! The lighting isn’t the best, but you can certainly see all the wonderful detail when you’re there in person.
And while you’re visiting Disney Springs, take time to walk over to Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa. Here you’ll find 5 separate gingerbread houses, all connected by a wafer walkway. How cute is that?
Diva Tip: If you’re worried about being too tempted by all the delectable delights at each gingerbread house, consider collecting the trading pins available at each resort. They feature hinged windows that open and let you peek inside.
So are you feeling festive yet? Ready to plan your visit to Walt Disney World to see the Gingerbread Crawl? Let Patricia at All for Dreams Travel help you plan! Happy Holidays!
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