Passport to EPCOT
Have you ever wanted to travel to twelve countries in one day? Walt Disney World’s EPCOT has your back. There’s a running joke influenced by Family Guy between my brother and me where we always just choose EPCOT instead of Hawaii. Or any other destination for that matter. While that’s not always the case, as I do enjoy traveling to countries other than a theme park, EPCOT was how my brother and I got a taste of travel when we were young.
Back in the day…
Disney World is where a lot of our family vacations took place. When our little sister was born, we wanted to start incorporating Disney World as a sibling tradition. So far, we’re two years in that tradition and I have a feeling we will be going again soon. That being said, my brother will forever photobomb any picture I try and take of the iconic geodesic sphere also known as Spaceship Earth. It’s tradition.
The first time we took my sister to EPCOT, where she was old enough to not cry from the Florida heat and knock out in her stroller, involved taking pictures with all the Disney Princesses. You see, EPCOT is where you’ll not only find Elsa and Anna in Norway but Snow White in Germany and Belle in France. It’s a unique way to meet characters and you get to travel the world while doing it.
There are a lot of other princesses and characters that have designated meet and greets where all you have to do is stand in a short, reasonable line to greet them and get a picture (except for Anna and Elsa). It was always a game for us to ask a princess a question and see if we could make them break character. I’m not proud of this, but we once almost got Mulan.
EPCOT in a nutshell…
Be prepared to walk. A LOT. If you’re looking to get your steps in, go to EPCOT. I’m serious. Did you think visiting twelve countries in a day by foot was going to be easy? Stay hydrated, take breaks, and pass out in one of the movies they show at one of the countries. France is the only one I can remember where there are seats. They do not encourage this, so learn to sleep with your eyes open.
EPCOT is split into two sections–World Showcase & Future World (East and West). If you’re looking for rides, you’ll find the most popular ones in Future World. If you’re looking for food, alcohol and princesses, head to the World Showcase. Times vary between these two sections of the park so make sure to plan your day around that.
Future World Highlights
Always get a FastPass for Test Track. Trust me, just do it. Make this one of your advanced FastPasses. There will always be a line and you’ll even have a little bit of a wait in your FastPass line. Test Track is worth it, especially if you and your siblings make the ugliest, smallest looking clown car and win all the tests. The new Marvel area will be in this part of the park and we will be back someday when that is open to check it out.
Here’s a breakdown of some of our favorite countries:
Mexico – There’s a water ride inside after you get past the shops. I’d say it’s worth it if you want to cool off, plus the shop inside is pretty nice. There are a few food options here as well as margaritas and churros.
Norway – Ah Norway. What was once an inside joke has become impossible to check off the list. You see, Anna and Elsa live here. The ride is worth it–especially when Elsa sings Let it Go. If you want to meet them you can, just make that the focus of your day…it’s gonna be a while.
Morocco – There’s a whole new world in this section. You can even get a photo with Aladdin and Jasmine. There are great Instagram spots here and the drinks aren’t bad either.
Japan – The shop and sake bar here is great. There’s usually an exhibit of some kind once you make your way around the shop. We usually always eat lunch here.
France – There are little pastries in the restaurant in the back of this area for a little snack. If you want to cool off, head into the main attraction–a movie about France where the opening song is the theme from Beauty and the Beast (you’re going to wonder where it’s from, you’re welcome).
Adulting at EPCOT…
We went to EPCOT to celebrate my brother’s 21st birthday. The first drink he ever bought was in Morocco…at EPCOT. It was such a fun experience and I highly recommend it to anyone who is about to turn 21 and looking for a unique thing to do instead of the typical night out.
There’s a famous adult game played around EPCOT, it’s an unofficial thing of course. You’re not going to find this in any of their maps. EPCOT is one of the few parks in Walt Disney World that serves alcohol at multiple stands and restaurants. The game is called Drink Around the World where you basically get a drink at every country at EPCOT. We once had a Cast Member explain the rules to us, but were at no level to partake with that amount of alcohol.
There are a lot more adulting things you can do at EPCOT besides drink. There are tons of events throughout the year, my favorite? The EPCOT Food & Wine Festival. I see how there’s still alcohol involved…but foooooood.
Farewell IllumiNations …
Shoutout to one of the best firework shows in Disney World. Running since 1999, this show will retire in 2019. It’s my brother’s favorite show and I thought I’d close out with a tribute photo. I said it was his favorite show, I didn’t say he ever brought the appropriate eye gear to watch the flames and the fireworks from this close up…at least the old man behind him got a good view and a nice photo souvenir. I did too.