Disney parks are constantly changing their refurbishment schedules, making it difficult for guests to keep up with the operating times and latest news regarding their favorite attractions, resorts, shops, and restaurants. Here are a few big, upcoming changes that are either confirmed by their respective parks or at the least very strongly rumored for the very near future.
Right now, the peak tourist season is in full swing, with Walt Disney World preparing for the biggest crowds of the year, who will heading to the parks in droves during the period between Christmas and New Year's Day. Because this part of the year is so busy, there are no major refurbishments happening right now around the resort. However, mere days after the holiday crowds go home, a whole new crop of closings will kick off at Walt Disney World, and they'll be getting started only a few days into the new year:
1. The Liberty Square Riverboat (Magic Kingdom)
Dates: January 3, 2017 to January 13, 2017
The Liberty Square Riverboat will be going down for its annual refurbishment shortly after the new year gets underway for a very short refurbishment period that will last just under two weeks. Because of the brevity of this refurbishment, we are assuming that this is simply a regular maintenance period for this working riverboat, and no substantial changes will be made to this attraction.
Interestingly, this refurbishment will not only require this attraction to be closed for several days, but it will also result in the temporary suspension of the brand new Tiana's Riverboat Ice Cream Social & Viewing Party upcharge event, which is still scheduled to be offered in early 2017. However, when this attraction reopens on January 14, this new upcharge event option (assuming it is still offered) will return to the Magic Kingdom as well.
2. Kali River Rapids (Disney's Animal Kingdom)
Dates: January 3, 2017 to January 29, 2017
January 3rd will also mark the beginning of a short refurbishment at Disney's Animal Kingdom as well. Just as it does every year, Kali River Rapids will be closing for several weeks again during the coldest weeks of the winter (at least in Florida) while the attraction is drained, the paint is touched up, and the vehicles are cleaned. Because of the routine nature of this refurbishment, we're not expecting any major alterations to the ride experience, and since this attraction will be closed during cooler weather, there probably won't be that much of a rush to reopen this attraction during this cold season (in the past it has lingered several days past its scheduled reopening date if the weather is cold).