Epcot began as Walt Disney’s Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. Opened in 1982, two sections comprise Epcot: Future World and World Showcase. Future World is the home of The Land, The Sea, and Imagination pavilions, and the home of the thrill rides Mission Space and Test Track. World Showcase is reminiscent of the World’s Fair with eleven pavilions showcasing countries from around the world.
Like everything else in Walt Disney World, Epcot is continually growing and changing. Please visit the official Walt Disney World website to verify that your favorite attractions will be available during your visit.
disney world epcot touring tips
Future World opens a couple of hours before World Showcase. Disney World Epcot is the largest of the theme parks and involves a lot of walking. If there is any park where you will want a stroller, this one is it.
tips for epcot rope drop
These are our touring tips if you are in the Epcot when it opens.
And when I say “in Epcot when it opens,” I mean that you have already gone through security, you have your ticket, and you are waiting to enter the park. If you visit Epcot any later than that, these tips won’t work.
If you have a little Elsa or Anna in your party, hopefully you were able to snag a FastPass+ for Frozen Ever After. If not, you will want to head there immediately when the park opens.
Thrill seekers should head straight to Test Track when the park opens and then ride Mission: SPACE.
Everyone else should head to Soarin’ at rope drop.
epcot fastpass+ tips
Epcot has a tiered FastPass+ system, and you will only be allowed to choose one attraction from Tier 1.
- Frozen Ever After
- Test Track
Unless you ride them as soon as the park opens, wait times could be 30+ minutes long until the park closes:
- Mission: SPACE
- Spaceship Earth
- Living With The Land
- Epcot Character Spot
Epcot is comprised of two sections: Future World and World Showcase.
epcot future world
Not only is Spaceship Earth the Disney World Epcot icon, it is the home of an attraction that explores the history of communication. At the end of the ride there are a variety of interactive activities.
Jam along with the JAMMitors as they entertain you with their unusual instruments.
agent p’s world showcase adventure
Pick up a high-tech secret agent device and follow the clues to help Perry the Platypus defeat Dr. Doofenshmirtz. This Phineas and Ferb inspired activity will take you through Epcot. There are seven different missions, so try a few!
Hands-on activities for kids of all ages highlight science and techonology. Innoventions is a great place to take the littles while the older kids are riding thrill rides.
You and your team members will board a virtual rocket ship and take off for Mars. This ride is split into two versions– Orange (the thrill ride) and Green (the tame version)
Ride the Green version if you are not sure about feeling G-forces and are prone to motion sickness. ABSOLUTELY DO NOT RIDE the Orange version if you have any history of heart problems or other health issues. You must be 44″ to ride.
Take a test drive in your simulation car built for six. The fastest ride in Disney World hits a final speed of 60 miles an hour. If your party does not mind being split up, you can hit the Single Rider line for a short wait. The minimum height to ride is 40″.
This is your one-stop place to get autographs from Mickey, Minnie Mouse, and Goofy.
This pavilion houses a large tank where you can view the sea life up close. There are several educational exhibits as well as a Nemo – themed play area.
the seas with nemo & friends ride
Climb onto a “clamobile” and enter the Big Blue World of Nemo and his friends.
turtle talk with crush!
This interactive show is entertaining and will be different each time you visit. Kids sit up front and talk with Crush while parents sit in the bleachers behind them.
the land pavilion
The Land Pavilion is dedicated to environmental awareness.
circle of life
Nice little movie about conservation featuring your favorite Lion King characters. Plan to watch while waiting for your Soarin’ time.
living with the land
Take a boat ride behind the scenes of the Epcot greenhouse and learn more about horticulture.
Take flight over the world in this AWESOME must-do ride. Plan to schedule a FastPass+ for this one since the standby lines are routinely 90 minutes or more. The minimum height is 40″, but if your child is close to this height, you should try to ride anyway.
Stretch your imagination at this pavilion starting with the unique outdoor water fountains that run uphill and jump over your head.
disney & pixar short film festival
Watch three Disney Pixar shorts in 3D with in-theater special effects.
journey into imagination
In our opinion, this attraction has earned the distinction of being the worst ride in all of Disney World. It features Figment, a favorite character among Disney veterans. Ride if you must, but do not say we did not warn you. Just pinch your nose and hold your breath in the Smell Lab.
epcot world showcase
Each of the World Showcase pavilions highlights a different country. The pavilions have a variety of attractions, entertainment, and dining representative of each country. Disney hires college students from each country as Cast Members.
kidcot fun stops
At each pavilion, there is a Kidcot Station manned by a Cast Member who is native to that country. The kids can start in any country and decorate a complimentary cardboard Duffy Bear. At each subsequent Kidcot Fun Stop, a Cast Member will stamp Duffy with an icon from that country.
The Mexico pavilion features an indoor restaurant, shopping area, and the Gran Fiesta Tour featuring Donald Duck and the rest of the Three Caballeros. Across from the building, there are additional dining venues, and you might catch mariachis performing traditional Mexican folk music.
Norway is the home of the Frozen Ever After attraction, meet and greet with Anna & Elsa, and the Princess Storyteller breakfast at Akershus restaurant. Keep an eye out for trolls hidden throughout the pavilion.
Learn about China in the Reflections of China Circle-Vision film. Chinese acrobats entertain guests outside the pavilion.
The pavilion looks like a German village, and nutcrackers and cuckoo clocks fill one of the stores. The miniature train outside the Germany pavilion will delight guests young and old. If you visit during the Food & Wine festival, look for the small cranberry bog. During the Flower & Garden Festival, you might find miniature Disney topiaries there.
The Italy pavilion includes several styles of Italian buildings built around a piazza. Performers such as jugglers appear there throughout the day.
the american adventure
The American Adventure features a counter service restaurant and the animatronic show We The People. The awe-inspiring a cappella group, The Voices of Liberty, performs in the rotunda.
The Japan pavilion features the Bijutsu-kan cultural gallery as well as the Mitsukoshi Department Store filled with Japanese toys such as Hello Kitty and Pokemon. Make sure to catch the outside performance by the Japanese drummers.
The mosaics in the Morocco pavilion are incredible to see. If you are lucky, you will catch a musical performance by the B’net Al Houwariyate ensemble of women.
The France pavilion is the home of the very popular French bakery. The Impressions de France film shows throughout the day, and entertainers such as chair acrobats perform outside.
This picturesque bridge is the perfect backdrop for pictures. It is the exit to the Epco-area resorts and Disney Hollywood Studios.
The very popular counter service restaurant Yorkshire County Fish Shop serves traditional British fish and chips. A Scottish band performs on the outdoor stage during the day, and The British Revolution plays British rock in the afternoons and evenings. Stop in the shops if you are a fan of Doctor Who or British football.
The Canada pavilion has some of the prettiest landscaping in World Showcase. The Circle-Vision film O Canada! takes you on tour through the United State’s neighbor to the north. Le Cellier restaurant is home to some of the finest steaks in Disney World. The Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup is a favorite.
epcot live entertainment and fireworks
This spectacular nightly fireworks show takes place in the middle of the World Showcase Lagoon. The park normally closes after the show so expect a mass exodus of people when it is over.
jeweled dragon acrobats
Acrobats perform several times daily in the China Pavilion.
Listen to the beat of Taiko, a time-honored form of drumming, in the Japan Pavilion.
rose & crown pub musician
voices of liberty
Stop by the Rose & Crown pub and sing along with their resident musicians.
Sergio entertains guests in Italy with his amazing juggling act.
Acrobats perform death-defying stunts in the Freance Pavilion.
Voices of Liberty a capella singers perform in the rotunda of The American Adventure.
epcot characters meet & greets
Disney character appearances change more often than anything else at Disney World. When you enter Epcot, pick up a Times Guide to find out which characters will be appearing that day.
characters that only appear in epcot
- Anna and Elsa – Royal Sommerhaus in Norwary
- Baymax – Future World across from Character Spot
- Donald Duck in Mexican gear – Mexico
- Joy & Sadness – Future World across from Character Spot
- Mulan – China
other character greetings in epcot
- Alice in Wonderland – Great Britain
- Belle – France
- Disney Pals – Legacy Plaza West
- Disney Pals – Character Spot
- Jasmine – Morocco
- Snow White – Germany
Dining at Disney is an attraction itself. Take time to savor a fun, delicious meal or enjoy an iconic Disney snack.
epcot kingdom table service restaurants
Dining is quite popular at Epcot, and you will need a reservation to eat at most table service restaurants.
akershus royal banquet hall
Akerhus in Norway hosts meals with the Disney Princesses Snow White, Cinderella, Belle, Aurora, and Ariel. (Not all princesses may appear at every meal.) Traditional American breakfast is served family-style. Lunch and Dinner include a “Taste of Norway.”
Located in Germany, the Biergarten Restaurant hosts an all-you-can-eat German buffet in a hall decorated to look like a Bavarian village. A polka band entertains guests while they eat. The Biergarten serves lunch and dinner.
chefs de france
A charming French café with seasonal menu items for lunch and dinner. Chefs de France has an extensive selection of imported French wines.
coral reef restaurant
Enjoy seasonal seafood specialties while viewing the fish, sharks, and maybe a scuba diver in the huge saltwater tank that lines one wall of the restaurant. The Coral Reef is open for lunch and dinner in Future World.
the garden grill
Dine for breakfast, lunch, or dinner with Chip and Dale in The Land pavilion. The restaurant rotates during your meal and offers views into the Living With the Land attraction.
la hacienda de san angel
Eat Mexican food on the waterfront at La Hacienda de San Angel serving lunch and dinner outside of the Mexico pavilion.
le cellier steakhouse
Yummy steaks, Canadian cheddar cheese soup, and even poutine. Le Cellier serves one of the best lunches and dinners in Disney World.
Monsieur Paul offers fine dining for dinner in the France pavillion.
nine dragons restaurant
Cantonese, Mongolian, Szechuan, Hunan and Kiangche-style specialties for both lunch and dinner in the China pavillion.
Feast on kabobs while being entertained by purcussioists and belly dancers in Restaurant Marrakesh in the Morrocco pavillion.
rose & crown dining room
Fish & chips, bangers & mash, and other British specialities are on the menu for lunch and dinner at the Rose & Crown in the Great Britain pavillion.
san angel inn restaurante
Dine under the twilight inside the Mexico pavilion. The San Angel Inn serves Mexican cuisine for both lunch and dinner.
spice road table
Mediterranean small plates and specialty entrées are served for lunch and dinner at Spice Road Table in the Morrocco pavillion.
Japanese chefs chop and stir-fry dishes on grills at your table for lunch and dinner in the Japan pavillion.
Traditional Japanese food is served for lunch and dinner at Tokyo Dining in the Japan pavilion.
tutto italia ristorante
Authentic Italian food such as lasagne and handmade pastas are served for lunch and dinner in the Italy pavillion.
via napoli ristorante e pizzeria
Southern Italian faire including pizzas made in a wood-burning oven served for lunch and dinner in Italy.
epcot quick service restaurants
It may be called “quick” service, but to avoid long lines eat earlier or later than the regular meal times.
The Electric Umbrella serves lunch and dinner in Future World. The menu includes burgers, nuggests, and flatbread.
Sushi and Asian cuisine served for lunch and dinner in the Japan pavillion.
la cantina de san angel
Quick Mexican food and margaritas across form the Mexico pavillion. Serves lunch and dinner.
les halles boulangerie-patisserie
Located in the France pavilion, the patisserie serves soups, salads, and sandwiches, but make sure to save room for the huge selection of French pastries.
Liberty Inn serves lunch and dinner in the American Experience pavilion. The Inn serves a wide variety of foods including burgers, nuggets, salads, and even steak and shrimp.
lotus blossom café
Chinese cuisine including rice bowls served for lunch and dinner in the China pavillion.
Our favorite quick-service restaurant in Epcot is Sunshine Seasons. There is a wide variety of food and even the pickiest of eaters should be able to find something they like. It is also one of the few places that serve breakfast.
Located in Morocco, Tangierine café serves Mediterranean, Moroccan Cuisine as well as burgers and nuggets for the kids. Lunch and dinner are served.
yorkshire county fish shop
Fish and chips served for lunch and dinner in Great Britain. There isn’t much more to say except that it is delicious.
epcot snacks & drink spots
Snack stands and alcoholic drinks spots are scattered throughout the park, but here are some of the best ones.
les halles boulangerie-patisserie
Good luck narrowing down your pastry choices at the patisserie in the France pavilion. They are all delicious, so you should stop by more than once. Or take one home to eat for breakfast tomorrow.
festival food booths
It seems like Epcot is always in the middle of a Festival – Festival of the Arts, Flower & Garden Festival, Food & Wine Festival, Festival of the Holidays. The one thing all the festivals have in common is food booths. So stop by a booth and eat a snack, or stop at several and make it a meal.
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