Last updated: 05:00 PM ET, Fri November 25 2016

What Does the Future Hold For Walt Disney World?

Destination & Tourism Erik Yates November 25, 2016

What Does the Future Hold For Walt Disney World?

Photo courtesy of Walt Disney World Resort

This weekend, Destination: D23 gave Disney fans the ultimate look at what their favorite theme park and vacation destination. The convention gave inside looks to the new Avatar themed area coming to Animal Kingdom, as well as Star Wars Land coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The convention also gave guests an inside look at the future of Walt Disney World, including new merchandise, new transportation and the future of some of our favorite rides and vacation destinations. It’s a great, big, beautiful tomorrow, and we simply can’t wait!

MagicBand 2

MagicBands have taken over Walt Disney World, and have made your vacations infinitely easier. With just the tap of your hand, you can open hotel room doors, gain entry to theme parks and even make purchases. The new MagicBand 2 will feature new bands with removable medallions. We've seen the patent forms, and the tech is going to take the wearable bands to the next level. With new keychains and necklaces, as well as other yet to be revealed items, MagicBand 2 could open a new realm of possibilities as it debuts.


Sorcerer Class Transportation

Busses are functional at Walt Disney World. They get you to and from your destination. In the future, new busses will also entertain as they feature an array of lights and sounds. Using MagicBands they will be able to announce things like birthdays and anniversaries. There will also be special features such as “Star Wars,” “Frozen” and much more as new films and movies are released.

Here's a sneak peek at one of the busses:


In the Parks

There were some big announcements made for the future of the parks themselves as well. The biggest and most cheered is the confirmation that Tower of Terror will not go anywhere at Disney's Hollywood Studios. The attraction is currently being revamped at Disney's California Adventure, and will be transformed into Guardians of the Galaxy:Mission Breakout. That left many fans of the classic Disney attraction worried that Tower of Terror would be rebranded in Florida as well. The big resounding answer to that is a definite no.

Epcot, on the other hand, will undergo some massive changes in the future. One of the major changes has already been announced with the debut of the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. The new festival will run from Jan. 13 to Feb. 20 featuring masterpieces from three different areas: art, food and music. The festival will feature a gallery of artwork by renowned Disney artists. There will be a studio with food that looks almost too good to eat, and Broadway talent singing the award-winning music from Disney on Broadway.

The inaugural festival is the first step in a complete overhaul of Epcot that would have the park remain true to the original vision.  Bob Chapek, head of parks and resorts at Disney has told Imagineers to “dream big.” He also says that the new Epcot will be “Disney, timeless, relevant and family friendly.”  So far there are no details on when we could expect to see any work, or what work could be done, but rumors have everything from Guardians of the Galaxy to overhauls on existing attractions, to even replacing current buildings and attractions.