Disney shares major updates to Disney Parks around the world at Destination D23 2021

During today’s Destination D23 presentation of “Connections: A Look to the Future of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products,” hosted by Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro, some exciting news was shared for what’s to come at Disney Parks around the world!

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Check out all the updates and reveals below:

Disneyland Paris

The 30th anniversary celebration at Disneyland Paris will begin on March 6, 2022, and will include new shows, entertainment, and décor along Main Street, U.S.A., and new costumes for Mickey Mouse and friends.

A new, limited-time show will debut at the Castle Hub as part of the celebration, and Disneyland Paris will bring back classic shows and parades, including “Disney Stars of Parade” and “Disney Illuminations.”

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In addition, Avengers Campus has set an opening season of summer 2022 at Walt Disney Studios Park as part of Disneyland Paris’ 30th anniversary celebration.

Hong Kong Disneyland

In Hong Kong, Imagineers are hard at work creating a new “Frozen”-themed area to life that includes two new thrill attractions. During the presentation, D’Amaro shared a look at the area’s current progress.

Tokyo Disney Resort

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A new themed port titled Fantasy Springs is coming to Tokyo DisneySea, and during the panel, guests were able to see aerial footage of the construction. Fantasy Springs will be the park’s eighth and largest port when it opens in 2023.

Shanghai Disney Resort

Shanghai Disney Resort is currently celebrating its 5th anniversary during its “Year of Magical Surprises,” and work is progressing on a new “Zootopia”-themed land. D’Amaro shared footage of new audio-animatronics in the works for the land’s main attraction, including Yax the yak.

Disney Cruise Line

the little mermaid

When the Disney Wish sets sail for the first time next summer, travelers will be among the first to see the premiere of two new stage shows in the ship’s Walt Disney Theatre, including “Disney The Little Mermaid,” an original Broadway-style reimagining of the Walt Disney Animation Studios classic with a “modern and innovative take on a young woman learning the power of her voice.” The show will feature special effects, innovative theatrical design, artistic choreography, and a reimagined script and score.

The other show, “Disney Seas the Adventure,” will follow Goofy as he discovers his own inner captain with the help of Captain Minnie and an all-star cast of Disney and Pixar characters.

Disneyland Resort

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Imagineers are working to bring new magic to the Disneyland Hotel with elements inspired by characters and stories from Walt Disney Animation Studios’ classic films. There will be a newly-designed pool and recreation area, along with a variety of room types.

downtown disney district

As previously announced, Mickey’s Toontown at Disneyland park will be reimagined with new experiences for families to enjoy, along with open, grassy spaces to relax in. This new take on the classic land will open in 2023.

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At Disneyland Resort, the next evolution of the Downtown Disney District is being planned, with work starting in January 2022. The multi-year project will reimagine the shopping and dining district with an “even broader” collection of shopping, dining, and entertainment experiences. More details on this update is coming in 2022.

magicband+ and hey disney

It was also revealed during the Destination D23 presentation that the next-generation MagicBand+ wearable technology and “Hey, Disney!” voice assistant, recently announced for Walt Disney World Resort, will be coming to Disneyland Resort in 2022. This will be the first time that MagicBand+ will be available at Disneyland Resort. Details on features of MagicBand+ will be shared in the coming months. The “Hey, Disney!” voice assistant will work alongside Alexa on Amazon Echo devices and will begin to roll out to guest rooms across the hotels at Disneyland Resort.

In a surprise announcement, D’Amaro revealed that “World of Color” and “Fantasmic!” will return to the Disneyland Resort next year. “Fantasmic!” will also return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios next year with some new enhancements.

The Society of Explorers and Adventurers

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Fans of S.E.A. will be able to read the first book in a brand-new middle grade adventure series, titled “Shinji Takahashi and the Mark of the Coatl,” written by international best-selling author Julie Kagawa, when it’s released in April 2022.

The series will continue on to explore the Society of Explorers and Adventurers lore behind Disney Parks, characters, attractions, and interconnected stories and more across Disney Parks, resorts and cruise ships.


As part of the transformation of Epcot, a new statue of Walt Disney will be added to the park near Spaceship Earth called “Dreamers Point.” Attendees to the panel were able to see a sculpture of the new statue in progress.

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D’Amaro also shared the name of a new quick-service restaurant for Epcot, Connections Café and Eatery, which will be located in the World Celebration neighborhood of the park.

guardians of the galaxy

In addition, the news was shared that Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will open to guests in summer 2022 at Epcot. Debuting in the newly-renamed World Discovery neighborhood, this family-thrill coaster will take guests on an intergalactic chase through time and space, and will feature the first reverse launch on a Disney coaster and will be one of the longest fully-enclosed coasters in the world.

Special Announcement From “Guardians of the Galaxy” Actress Glenn Close | Walt Disney World Resort

Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will also feature Academy Award-nominated actress Glenn Close reprising her role as Nova Prime, the Xandarian leader and commander of the Nova Corps.

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser

During this morning’s Destination D23 presentation, guests were able to see new footage from inside the Halcyon ship and got a special sneak peek of lightsaber training aboard Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser.

New Look at Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser and Disney’s Advanced Lightsaber Tech

It was also shared that Walt Disney World Resort will welcome Make-A-Wish children and their families as some of the very first guests to experience this intergalactic voyage.

Magic Kingdom

During the presentation, D’Amaro shared a construction update on the highly-anticipated Tron Lightcycle / Run attraction coming to Magic Kingdom. No updated opening window was shared.

Walt Disney Imagineering

Disney Imagineers are working to bring characters of all sizes to life at the Disney Parks, and one way they’re doing that is through “Project EXO,” a full-body exoskeleton system. The project is still in early concept development, but D’Amaro and the team shared an in-person look at what this project looks like.

Returning Disney offerings

And, to close out the show, D’Amaro shared a long list of all the returning offerings and experiences that guests can once again enjoy at the Disney Parks.

Returning Disney Offerings Celebration at Destination D23 in Orlando

What did you think of this morning’s announcements from Destination D23? Are you excited for what’s to come at the Disney Parks? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.


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One Comment

  1. It would have been nice to SEE what Project Exo is going to be! I liked the way Mr. D’Amaro was shown playing on the Bridge! It tells me that he should replace Bob “Paycheck.”