Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Attractions You Are Missing at Epcot


It's just so hard to see everything at Walt Disney World in the short amount of time our trips last for.  (And I think if we all did try to see everything on every trip, we would CERTAINLY be exhausted afterwards!)  So, today, I thought I would take a look at Epcot and discuss some of the great attractions you are probably missing at Epcot, for one reason or another.

This is a continuation on a series I started a few months, back, so go back and read what you're missing at the Magic Kingdom, if you haven't already done it!  :)

Epcot, is probably one of the easiest parks to skip things in.  The park is just chock full of different activities,  however, most of them are not rides, so many people skip them.  This is especially true for first time visitors, which of course, is a mistake.  There is a lot of entertainment inside this park, heck, you could probably do an entire day without stepping foot on a single ride, and still have things leftover to do!  Each pavilion has a ton of little nuggets within it's doors.  Therefore, it will be next to impossible to name each and every attractions you are missing at Epcot, so make sure to let me know which ones are your favorites at the end.

Because of the multitude of things to do here, so my suggestions will be a little more vague with this post.

First, let's discuss the post-show areas for all the different attractions.  So often, we find ourselves going through the preshows, which many of us love,  getting on the attractions, which we all love, and then getting off and going...ok...what is next?  What we've just done is completely missed out on the fact that what's next is right in front of our faces.  I know...I'm just as guilty as you are.  Epcot has the delight of having a ton of post show activities that we all just pass by, but technically should be just as much part of the experience as the ride itself.  Get of Mission Space?  There's the Advanced Training Lab.  Found Nemo?  You have a whole aquarium of fish to still see!  Imagined with Figment?  Try your hand at the interactive play area in ImageWorks.  You'll still be experiencing the pavilion and trust me, you'll be entertained!

Another area that I think people commonly pass by without going in, (except maybe to steal some free air conditioning...) is Innoventions.  I'll fully admit, the area used to be a bit of a dud in years past.  The exhibits were mostly dated and simply  lacked appeal.  However, over the past 5 years or so, these two buildings have turned into somewhat of a sleeper hit.  It has a ton of games to play together as a family, like Where's The Fire? and The Great Piggy Bank Adventure, Habit Heroes, and arguably the most popular, Sum of All Thrills. (Make sure to do this one as early as possible.  It's really popular and lines get long!)  So now, it's  a great place to spend a few hours in the afternoon, having fun, and yes, still soaking up some beloved air conditioning.

I was originally not going to include any rides in this list, proving that you can have fun in this park without getting on an attraction, however, I think that there is one that a lot of people who are not Disney Fanatics often miss.  That would be Living With the Land.  Found in The Land Pavilion, this attraction, is a lazy boat ride, taking you through different biomes, ending in a greenhouse area.  Did I put you to sleep just talking about it?  It's not really as boring as it seems.  It's very neat to see the different and unique ways that Disney grows food, which is then used in quite a few of the restaurants at Epcot.  It's an original Epcot attraction, so those who love the park get a kick out of it, since it hasn't changed a whole lot since the park first opened.  However, it will still be able to be enjoyed by a first timer as well.  If you like the ride, make sure not to miss the relatively inexpensive Behind the Seeds Tour, which takes you into the greenhouses and teaches you more about what Disney is doing with this section of the park.

I think a lot of people miss aspects in all the different countries in World Showcase too.  Sure, people will usually hit up the attractions, like Gran Fiesta Tour and Mealstrom, but they will often pass up the movies in some of the other countries.  People may decide to shop a bit in each country or meet the characters, whom I will admit, are abundant back here.  And of course, the most popular aspect of World Showcase is the eating (and of course drinking) around the World.  However, there are a couple of things I think people do end up missing.

The first one is the entertainment.  There is a TON of live entertainment that takes place in this park, but if you stroll around World Showcase in the early evening, you've pretty much missed it all.  The entertainment takes place, for the most part, in the afternoon.  Sure, there will be a few performances that take place throughout the evening, but most, will have already been performed.  From Mariachi Cobre in Mexico to Off Kilter in Canada, each country has it's own unique experience, some actually include multiple experiences, and you would be remiss if you missed out on the festivities. 

The American Gardens Theater is another thing I think people miss out on.  The amphitheater found in from of The American Adventure Pavilion is most popular during the Holidays with the Candlelight Processional, but did you know that it hosts other events throughout the year?  The Sounds Like Summer Concert Series, with sound-alike acts, the Flower Power Concert Series in the Spring, brings in artists from the 60s and 70s, and the Eat to the Beat Concert Series in the Fall brings along performers anywhere from the 80s to the 2000s.  I've noticed this theater emptier a lot of times when the acts are onstage and it really shouldn't be.  The acts are typically great performers (usually...) and you can see that they are having a blast on stage.  If you pass by, make sure to stop, and go in and grab a seat.  It is a ton of fun. here's the part where I said I knew I was probably missing something.  What is your favorite attraction that most people miss on their WDW vacations?  Let me know in the comments or on Facebook

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Mandi Noel said...

Epcot is by far my favorite park! Sometimes when I go, I skip a lot of the rides and just stroll around, taking in all the sites, shows, and random things that, like you said, many people seem to miss. It usually makes for a great and relaxing day!

One of my favorites would have to be Living with the Land, which my sister makes fun of me for, but I love it. I also usually spend at least 30 minutes looking at the manatees after exiting Nemo. They are my favorite animal, so I can't help but stay and watch. The dolphin show/demos are cute, too. I really enjoy going into the stave chapel in Norway, and I always force everyone with me to watch the Impressions of France film. I've been to France (the real one haha) several times and I absolutely love it, so this film is always a must for me. When we were there in May, IBM had an installation in Innoventions, so my husband and I went, and it was really incredibly interesting. Oh, and I like to visit the Art of Disney store just to the right of Spaceship Earth. They often carry some different pieces than the stores in Downtown Disney and the Magic Kingdom, so I enjoy taking a look in there as well.

Unknown said...

Wow!!! You mention some great ones! Matter of fact, I just went into the Stave Church for like the first time ever in May! There is just a ton to see in Epcot!