April 2023 at Disney World: Crowd Calendar & Info
Our guide to April 2023 at Walt Disney World offers a free crowd calendar, weeks to visit & avoid, weather, ride refurbishments, and tips for navigating the chaos of Easter and Spring Break. Plus, info for Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios.
If you’re considering a spring visit, April crowds fluctuate depending upon whether Easter occurs in April. Unfortunately for those visiting Walt Disney World in April, Easter falls within this month every year until 2024, meaning that there will be a noticeable spike in crowds during April for the foreseeable future.
Easter falls on April 9, 2023. You can expect the days before and week after that to be among the busiest times of the year at Walt Disney World. Additionally, Spring Break crowds will descend upon Walt Disney World throughout April 2023. If you’re able to get past that, the parks have long hours with a reasonable slate of entertainment, and some of the best weather of the year…
The plus side of Easter in April is that you get it as a special event, with a few offerings for the holiday. There’s an Easter Bunny (and Mrs. Bunny) meet and greet in Magic Kingdom, plus an Azalea Trail Maids pre-parade before Festival of Fantasy. While their costumes are pretty, this is fairly insignificant. There are also church services at Disney’s Contemporary Resort on Easter Sunday.
Here’s what else you can expect during April at Walt Disney World, organized by category…
April Weather at Disney World
Outside of the first week, April is exceptional when it comes to weather. Lows at the beginning of the month are in the low-60s and creep up into the mid-60s by the end of the month. High temperatures range from 80 to 85 degrees. Take a look at the “comfortable” band on this page–those are the kind of averages we like to see!
Obviously, anomalies are possible in both the “too cool” and “too hot” directions, but largely, April is one of the more comfortable months weather-wise in Orlando. April is more predictable than March and May, both of which are more likely to have unseasonable cold snaps (in the case of March) or early humidity (in the case of May). While all 3 months are great for weather, April is the “safest.”
April Special Events at Disney World
If you’re visiting on Easter or the weeks immediately before it, it’s also worth noting that there are special festivities for the holiday. Take a look at our Guide to Easter at Walt Disney World for more on the beautifully-decorated eggs, seasonal foods, Magic Kingdom meet & greet, pre-parade, and everything else you can expect from Easter in the parks and hotels.
Much more significant than that is the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, which continues in April and brings a vibrant atmosphere to Epcot, but there’s not much else. The words “vibrant atmosphere” don’t exactly get the kids hyped up like “trick or treating” or “THIS IS NOT A DRILL. SANTA WILL BE THERE.” The annual event will run for the entire month of April, likely continuing until early July.
Aside from Easter week, park hours are pretty average in April. It’s worth noting that park hours are a decent proxy for projected attendance levels, so the later a particular park is open, the higher Disney expects the crowds to be. Plan accordingly. For more tips on what times of year might be good for visiting, check out our Walt Disney World Crowd Calendars post for the best and worst months of the year.
April Refurbishments & New Rides
In terms of other attractions that will be closed during April 2023, check the Walt Disney World Refurbishment Schedule. Walt Disney World announces most major refurbishment projects at least a few months in advance, but more could still be added for Spring 2023 as we draw nearer those dates. However, April tends not to have much down as it’s a busy month.
The construction project that will have the most noticeable impact on the guest experience is the massive reimagining at the front of Epcot. This is starting to look better, but the front of the park is still a sea of construction walls with a giant dirt pit in the middle–and that’ll still be the case in April 2023.
On the plus side, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, Space 220 Restaurant, Creations Shop, Club Cool, Connections Cafe, and Harmonious all have now debuted.
When looking forward to April 2023 at EPCOT, a couple of things that are uncertain right now. First is whether Cosmic Rewind will still be using a virtual queue. We highly doubt it, but if so, read this. Second, whether Harmonious will still exist. At this point, our expectation is that it will end around this time, and be temporarily replaced by EPCOT Forever while work is done in World Showcase Lagoon to prepare for the next nighttime spectacular, debuting in late 2023.
Then there’s the next big addition to Walt Disney World: TRON Lightcycle Run. Walt Disney World has already revealed that this will debut in Spring 2023, and it’ll almost certainly debut before Easter. Our expectation at this point is that the ride will open in March.
Beyond that, there are several attractions that have not yet opened and likely won’t until Summer 2023 or later. These include the Play Pavilion and Moana’s Journey of Water at Epcot, both of which are likely to open in the second half of the year. Other smaller scale additions are likely later in 2023.
April 2023 Crowd Calendar for Disney World
We’ll start this free crowd calendar section with the same preface as other months—skip ahead a few paragraphs if you’ve already read it. We don’t have a color-coded crowd calendar here because we don’t put much reliance on them anymore. You shouldn’t, either. If we just had a visual crowd calendar graphic here, many of you would only look at that and not read the accompanying explanation that covers what you might actually expect. That’d be doing you a disservice.
While they can be useful tools, crowd calendars are one small piece of a much larger puzzle. We no longer choose our own Disney travel dates based exclusively upon crowd calendars and we’d likewise discourage you from doing so. Crowd calendars are increasingly unreliable because of the way Disney manipulates attendance patterns, staffing, closures, and ride capacity.
Walt Disney World doesn’t release official attendance numbers, so crowd calendars utilize info like school schedules, airport traffic statistics, hotel pricing & occupancy, and other indicators as proxies for crowds. For years, this approach worked and made crowd calendars reliable. Walt Disney World attendance followed an identifiable pattern that tracked with the aforementioned proxies.
More recently, wait times don’t always reflect actual crowds because Disney has become adept and more sophisticated at manipulating both attendance and crowd flow. Think of this as the difference between the actual temperature and the “feels like” temperature, but with crowds. We can still actual crowd and attendance patterns, but not wait times. The latter are what most of you likely care about (the “feels like” crowds), but it’s more difficult to accurately forecast wait times via WDW crowd calendars.
While April is not the Spring Break month for most colleges and schools with static Spring Break schedules, many schools in the United States schedule their Spring Breaks around Easter. This means that the couple of weeks around Easter (particularly the week before) will be two of the busiest of the year.
In other words, there will be peak season (10/10) crowds at Walt Disney World from April 1 to 9, 2023. It’s not really much better before that due to Spring Break, which typically occurs in late March 2023. Fortunately, both Osceola and Orange County, Florida are scheduled to have their Spring Breaks March 10-17, 2023. Those districts have the biggest impact on Walt Disney World attendance, so crowds should moderate a bit in late March.
The week after Easter will still likely be busy, as many school districts–particularly those in the Northeast and Midwest–have their Spring Breaks that week. We’ve spot-checked several of the largest school districts, and this is the case with several of them. April 13-16, 2023 is also the runDisney Springtime Surprise Weekend, so that’ll be busy.
As such, April 10-16, 2023 will likely be almost as busy as the previous week. Expect 9/10 or 10/10 crowds that week, too.
The good news is that week is the last hurrah for Spring Break, and the second half of April should be significantly less busy than the first half. This turning point will occur on April 17, 2023 and continue until the end of the month, as crowds steadily decline heading into May 2023.
Not nearly as many colleges or schools have Spring Break at the end of the month, but there are a couple of cheer and dance competitions that bump up crowds a bit. That’s really about it, though. There are no major red flags starting April 17, 2023.
All things considered, the first half of April 2023 will be one of the most crowded stretches of the year at Walt Disney World. The second half will be closer to average. If you must visit in April, go as late in the month as possible.
April Pricing & Discounts
In terms of promotions, don’t expect much. It’s way too early for the Free Disney Dining Plan promo (the holy grail of Walt Disney World discounts) offered in the fall, and slightly too early for the scaled back Free Summer Meal Plan promo. Instead, you’re typically looking at the tried and true room-only discount offer for all of the month outside of the Easter holiday window.
In terms of pricing, April is again normal outside of the Easter holiday weeks. For 1-day park tickets, most of April is “regular” season; for hotels, pricing is also at the “Regular Season” rate. You might be able to do better scoring deals off-site, because April is a fairly competitive month for Orlando tourism.
Overall, unless you have no other alternatives, April is pretty much a non-starter every year between now and until 2024 because of Easter. This holiday makes the weeks around it incredibly expensive and crowded. Consequently, April is one of our least favorite months of the year at Walt Disney World, “rivaling” only the hot and humid summer months. (Even then, the summer months are less crowded.)
However, if you don’t care about crowds for some reason (you’re rope dropping every day and using a strong Walt Disney World Park Itinerary), April is actually somewhat appealing. The weather is great, refurbishments are rare, and Epcot is looking great with Flower & Garden Festival. Of course, “if you don’t care about crowds” is a pretty huge asterisk. It seems like the months that have the biggest draw always have asterisks next to them. “Yeah, Christmas is beautiful…oh but watch out for the horny Pop Warner teens and the potential for needing a parka.” Same deal for April (minus the horny teens and parka).
Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!
Do you agree or disagree with our thoughts on April? Do you think it’s average, exceptional, or somewhere in between? Enjoy visiting for Easter? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!
Having a mom and daughter day on the 28th of April it’s a Thursday just a quick trip we leave an hour and 30min away. Do you think it would be a crowded day?
Does anyone know when Disney might update their Extended Evening Theme Park Hours Schedule (indicating what days the parks will offer extended evening hours)?
Currently the schedule is only updated until June 8th.
Tom, Regarding Guardians of the Galaxy; Cosmic Rewind, how do you find out if they are doing previews? We are going to be at WDW the first week of May and it would be great they were doing previews that week. Do they announce it or do you simply have to go by the ride and check it out? Thanks!
North Carolina’s spring break is April 15 through April 22 as well.
Not all of NC. Mecklenburg county is April 11-18
Long time lurker, first time commenter – this site is really great Tom!
Do you have an opinion of whether it’s better to go to Disney World in early June after Orange county schools are out for summer or mid Aug right after they are back in session? It’ll be a super quick trip (4 days) with young kids. Will the weather be so much worse in Aug to make the maybe lower crowds worthwhile? Thanks!
Is there anything special memories or moments for birthday kids
At the hotels you can get birthday badge, still free. Sometimes cast members note it and do something special.
Hi, I just realized there is a run Disney springtime event the weekend I booked going to Disney. Considering to push it a couple of days to avoid crowds. Is Sunday April 3 (last day of run Disney event) expected to be crowded? I see the marathon that day takes place at Hollywood studios. What if I go Sunday, April 3 through Tuesday, April 5th and try to avoid HS that Sunday? Will definitely get the genie plus too. Just trying to assess whether that would resolve the crowd issue or if I should just reschedule the trip entirely. Thanks!
I hope when you update April (as you recently did for March), that you at least address the first week of April in your calendar writeup. It’s not mentioned at all. It’s probably too late for someone to choose to travel on that basis, but it would help someone already going during that week to manage their expectations.
Thanks for all the information! Has there been official communication from WDW on the Azalea Trail Maids participating in the pre-parade for Easter this year?
My daughter and I are tagging along on one of my husband’s work trips and will be in the area from April 3 to 6. We’ve never been to Animal Kingdom and are wondering if it’s worth it to spend just a day there. It’s a fast trip but we’d love to visit that specific park. Any advice is appreciated. (She is 16 so not worried about long days)
Hi Susan, Yes, Animal Kingdom is amazing! The banshee/Avatar ride is probably the best ride at Disney in my opinion. The park is gorgeous, they have some great food booths, and there are tons to see and do. Don’t skip it!
Thank you for the information!
Our trip is planned for April 2nd through April 9th 2022. With Easter falling on the 17th do you think the 1st week of April may have lower crowds? Or at least be manageable?
We are going Easter 2022. Arriving Saturday April 16. Knowing Sunday is the 10/10 level crowds, which specific park(s) you recommend for that day as the better option(s)?
The Azalea Trail Maids will not be in attendance of the Easter activities. We were told there would be no parades.
You mentioned the cheer competitions at the end of April, will that still happen this year?
The Varisty Summit D1 cheer competition is still on. It is from April 30th- May 2nd. Some families may come earlier or stay later. In early May the D2 Summit is from May 13-15 and Worlds Competition is from May 8-10. There will be a lot of cheerleaders at Disney Word during this time.
I am going april 2022 19th thru 27th how is this time frame?
we noticed on the website that the hours for the week after easter 2021 look much shorter – magic kingdom for example looks like it closes at 1900? animal kingdom at 1700? are these real hours, or will the hours change close to the date?
Do you expect the last week in April 2021 to be real busy? I know your answer not written in blood! When is Jersey week??
I’m curious about this as well. Any updates?
We are too! We’ll be in orlando from the day before easter until that tuesday. I would think week days would be less crowded than Saturday and Sunday.
We are going Easter Sunday and then the week after that. Because of the restrictions it won’t be bad for crowds rights?
I thought They were putting a reservation to limit how many people would be allowed in the park because of COVID. So it should be less crowded? Dose anyone know if it will less crowded?
Love your blog and consult it first before all others. Agree with your comment – “We don’t have a color-coded crowd calendar here because we don’t put much reliance on them anymore. You shouldn’t, either.” We unfortunately only get to Disney once a year. In the past I diligently studied and compared ALL the available color coded charts out there … and as time went on, they were less and less spot-on accurate. As for travelling in April – those of us relying on munchkin school off periods don’t have much of a choice. Summer is also crowded and much more hot. I’ll take crowded and cooler. 🙂 Thanks for all you do. It’s much appreciated. I hope you continue to do so.
Does the Easter Bunny (and Mrs. Bunny) meet and greet in Magic Kingdom start 4/1?
We might be going to Disney World March 31st to April 3rd, do you think the Easter Eggs will be up at the Grand Floridian then?
We’re looking at going to Orlando from Easter and a week after that. Thinking of spending two days at Disney World the week after Easter, would it be better to go on Thursday-Friday or Saturday-Sunday?