What’s Opening at Walt Disney World in 2023?

Are you planning a trip to Walt Disney World in 2023? If so, you should be aware of the new attractions, shows and experiences that are scheduled to open at Walt Disney World throughout the year.

Note: Disney has said all of the projects below are scheduled to open or debut in 2023. But, things change and delays can happen.

TRON Lightcycle Run testing at the Magic Kingdom.
TRON Lightcycle Run testing as construction finishes.

TRON Lightcycle Run – Magic Kingdom

TRON Lightcycle Run has been testing for the past several months. The coaster is scheduled to open in Spring 2023 and will take guests on a high-speed trip into the grid. The ride’s iconic canopy will bring a ton of light and color to Tomorrowland.

Once open, TRON Lightcycle Run will change how guests plan for a trip to the Magic Kingdom. The coaster is guaranteed to be a huge draw, and will become the must-do attraction for many guests at the park. TRON Lightcycle Run has a relatively low capacity (it’s a short ride) and will likely sell out Individual Lighting Lane passes in the blink of an eye.

TRON Lightcycle Run will open almost six years after it was originally announced. Entire theme parks were built in less time!

Aerial concept art of the Journey of Water attraction.

Journey of Water – EPCOT

Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana is a walk-through attraction opening in EPCOT in late 2023. The attraction will showcase the water cycle with characters from Moana serving as the overarching theme.

Journey of Water is one of those attractions we’ll all have to experience before we can really wrap our heads around what it is. We know there’s a ton of landscaping and moving water, but it remains to be seen how all the parts tie together.

The “late 2023” timeline is a bit puzzling considering how construction has sped along in recent months. We’ll have to wait a bit longer to see how the Journey of Water fits into the reimagined EPCOT.

CommuniCore Hall & Plaza concept art.

CommuniCore Hall & Plaza – EPCOT

Staying in EPCOT, the CommuniCore Hall & Plaza buildings spine are also supposed to open in late 2023. These two spaces, which will sit on the site of the old Innoventions West, will be used during EPCOT’s many festivals. They’ll host exhibition spaces, a stage, and more.

Disney hasn’t said much about the CommuniCore Hall & Plaza over the past several months. New details and new concept art should be released in early 2023.

Concept art for Roundup Rodeo BBQ.
Concept art for Roundup Rodeo BBQ.

Roundup Rodeo BBQ – Disney’s Hollywood Studios

This is another project that has dragged and dragged. Roundup Rodeo BBQ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios should finally open in Spring 2023. Disney originally announced the new restaurant for Toy Story Land all the way back in 2019.

The interior of Roundup Rodeo BBQ looks like it will be very similar to the queue space found in Toy Story Mania. Character dining is not expected to be apart of the Roundup Rodeo BBQ experience. Criticisms aside, it’ll be nice to have an indoor dining option in Toy Story Land.

‘Harmonious’ at EPCOT

‘Harmonious’ Replacement – EPCOT

Good riddance, Harmonious. We weren’t the biggest fans of EPCOT’s most recent nighttime spectacular. The technology housed in the barges is extremely impressive, but we felt the show lacked direction and caused a daytime eyesore in World Showcase Lagoon that couldn’t be forgiven.

We don’t know when Disney will roll out the next permanent fireworks spectacular at EPCOT. However, they have said it will be sometime in 2023. EPCOT Forever will likely return to serve as a bridge show (again) between Harmonious and whatever is next.

‘Happily Ever After’ at the Magic Kingdom.

‘Happily Ever After’ – Magic Kingdom

The beloved fireworks show Happily Ever After is returning to the Magic Kingdom! Well, sort of. An updated version of Happily Ever After is coming back, but guests will have to wait until 2023 to see how similar the show is to the one that ran for roughly four years.

Hopefully Disney will bring back the Happily Ever After guests already love, and incorporate some new effects (Main Street USA projections). Realistically, we’d expect some scenes to be changed or removed in favor of the latest films (Encanto). We’re just excited to hear that amazing theme once more.

Disney 100th Celebration

Disney will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2023. Officially, Disney turns 100 on October 16, 2023. Disney has already announced several fun additions at Disneyland in honor of the 100th (Runaway Railway opens, new World of Color show, etc) that begin in January 2023. Disney will likely spin some of the news about Walt Disney World above as celebrations for the 100th, but we’re expecting a bit more.

To say the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World was underwhelming is putting things lightly. Disney reportedly heard the negative feedback about the 50th, and should (hopefully) address that with more for the 100th.

Keep visiting NotesFromNeverland.com for the latest Disney news and information.

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David is a Disney travel expert who created Notes from Neverland in 2018 after visiting Disney theme parks countless times. Previously, David spent way too much time writing about sports, and was featured in Sports Illustrated, MSN, Yahoo!, and in many other publications. Learn more or contact us.

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