Another day another guide to a Disney Park!
This week I’m focusing on Epcot, the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. I’ve always loved Epcot because it’s such a cool concept, when you walk in you are in Future World and then you can travel the world through 11 different pavilions. Here is the link to some Epcot music if you really want to get in the spirit!
What to Ride
- Test Track: I’m still unsure if the new Test Track is as good as the old one but this is still a ride you cannot miss. While the old preshow is gone you can enjoy it here. The new Test Track is sponsored by Chevrolet and looks like something out of Tron. One of the coolest things about the new version is that you get to design your own car! My tip for Test Track is to take the single rider line, you have to miss some of the interactive elements but it can save you so much time! The cars fit 6 people so all the families of 4/5need single riders to fill seats. Of all the single rider lines at Disney I find this one the most efficient, my family of 3 has gone on the single rider line and 2 of us have even ended up in the same car. One last fun fact about Test Track, the outside turns are banked at 50 degrees while Daytona’s Speedway is only 31!
- Soarin’: I actually can’t speak too much to this ride. While I adored the old Soarin’ it has since been updated to be Soarin’ Around the World. If the new ride is anything like the California version I can’t wait to see it! Here’s a fun fact about the old Soarin’: the year before it opened in Florida our Disney World vacation was changed to a Disneyland vacation due to a hurricane (after lots of hard work from my Dad) and so I got to ride it just before it opened in EPCOT and it has been one of my family’s favorites ever since.
- Living with the Land: this is a nice boat ride through the Epcot greenhouses where you can see Mickey shaped pumpkins earning their ears! While this isn’t a thrill ride it’s a nice way to break up your day!
- Journey Into Imagination: My Dad would probably kill me if he saw I put this on my list and didn’t include Mission: SPACE but the theme song is so catchy! And who doesn’t love Figment!
- Gran Fiesta Tour: A boat ride that follows the three Caballeros in a journey around Mexico. While it’s very similar to It’s A Small World you have to go see it and find out what happens to Donald. It’s located inside the Mexico Pavilion which is a breathtaking indoor Mexican market!
- Frozen Ever After: I can’t even write a review on this since I have not been on it since it was Maelstrom! While I’m excited to see the new ride I don’t think it will ever compare to the original!
Where to Eat
When my family goes to Epcot we actually don’t usually plan to sit down and eat lunch. We’ve gotten breakfast at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall, I definitely recommend eating there it’s a great place to get all you can eat food and meet princesses! We’ve also eaten lunch at both the Nine Dragons restaurant and the Lotus Blossom quick service restaurant.
One thing I’ve done in the past is my own personal under 21 take on a beer in every country, where I got a dessert in every country. I didn’t quite get through all 11 and about halfway through I transitioned to getting a piece of chocolate in every country instead. My favorite place to grab a dessert is definitely the French bakery! If you’re looking for somewhere to sit after getting your pastry head into L’esprit de la Provence, the gift shop is amazing and has tables off to the side!
- Club Cool: While I’m not a soda drinker I recommend stopping in to try the Beverly!
- Pin Central: If you are big into pin trading you have stop by! They have all the collectable pins you could ever need!
- A lot of people end up entering Epcot through Future World and then find themselves short on time when it comes time to enjoy the countries. If you want a foolproof way of making sure you don’t get distracted by all that Future World has to offer come in through the International Gateway. If you find yourself at any of the Epcot area hotels (Yacht Club, Beach Club, Boardwalk Inn, or the Swan and Dolphin) you are a short walk/boat ride away from this hidden entrance!
- Jumping Fountains in Future World: try putting your arms out and letting the water go in between… can you make it go through just your hands?
My Top 4 Pavilions:
This is such a hard one but I have narrowed it down to Norway, France, Canada, and Morocco! I’m not too sure how Norway will hold up now that they have replaced the viking display and Maelstrom ride to become Frozen tributes but I’ll keep you updated on those. France has to make the list as I took five years of French in junior high and high school and it is so fun to see all the things I had learned about. One year my parents wouldn’t buy me a cream puff unless I ordered it in French! Canada has beautiful flowers and the best video, in my humble opinion. It stars Martin Short and has to be one of the funniest things in Epcot. The attention to detail goes down to having some buildings look like they are in French Canada and some take on more on an English Canada style. Last but not least is Morocco! The attention to detail in this one is astounding as well! Rumor has it that the king of Morocco actually sent his own designers to help create this area. Another fun fact about Morocco is that it is the only country that does not light up during IllumiNations because the tower is a prayer tower and doing so would violate Muslim beliefs. For more fun facts head over to Disney Fanatic.
Mum’s Top 4: Japan, Canada, Norway, and Mexico.
Dad’s Top 4: Japan, Canada, China, and Norway. He gives an honorable mention to Mexico even though it is dark.
- The English gardens: tucked away behind the stores and the Winnie the Pooh meet and greet is a nice place to relax and possibly catch the Beatles tribute band, the British Invasion.
- The Japanese gift shop: a fun place to crack open an oyster for a pearl. It’s also a great place to grab crazy snacks to try. One of my favorite memories in that store is picking out crazy flavored snacks to bring home to my cousin Nick.
- The Terracotta Army: inside one of the buildings in China is a replica of the Terracotta Army and it’s so cool to look at!
- Street Performers: from the Chinese acrobats to the balancing act in France the street performers are always entertaining.
Have a magical day!