Epcot isn’t full of crazy coasters and it’s geodesic sphere isn’t as iconic as Cinderella’s Castle, but it has many great attractions that make it a park that should not be missed. The park, all about human achievement (especially technology) and international culture, makes it refreshingly different than your run of the mill theme park. Your visit to Epcot begins as you are efficiently escorted to your parking spot by attendants on Segways. If that isn’t a glimpse into a world full of technological innovation, I don’t know what is.
5. Sum of All Thrills (build your own roller coaster)
Inside the Innoventions East building you can try your hand at engineering by designing your own roller coaster. Add all the loops and barrel roles you can stomach and then get in the simulator to experience your creation. Jay and Jesse tried this out and I’m surprised they could stand once they were done! I guess when you ask two men, one a mathematician and the other an engineer, to complete a task like this what else could you expect!
4. Mission Space
This mission to Mars simulator ride is a fun look into life as an astronaut. Choose your role (navigator, pilot, commander or engineer), buckle up and prepare for take off. This ride can be intense if you pick the Orange Training Module. In fact, just looking at it made me nervous. As I was freaking out a little bit before we boarded, Jay tapped me on the shoulder. I turned around and saw a very young child in line; he was excited (and not scared at all). I panicked a little bit more quietly.
3. Visit the World
Epcot gives you the chance to experience a variety of cultures without having to get on a plane. The World Showcase area consists of 11 pavilions, representing different countries from around the world: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, United States, Japan, Morocco, France, UK, and Canada. If you read my post Top 10 Reasons to Visit Disney World, you will recall that Jay did his best to test the authenticity of the experience, by asking staff members in different areas culturally sensitive questions. Since we are Canadian he decided to ask a woman at the Canadian pavilion “if someone called me a hoser is that good or bad?” She did know what we were talking about and responded in typical Canadian fashion. Point to Epcot.
See California from a completely different angle with Soarin’. Take a ride on this 4D adventure in a 180 degree IMAX projection dome, which makes it look and feel like you are hang-gliding over the Golden State. Jay particularly liked this ride, who thought the sensations were very realistic. He spent almost as much time watching the machinery as the film as he was fascinated at how realistic it felt despite the subtle movements of the mechanics.
1. Illuminations: Reflections of Earth
Illuminations is one of the best fireworks displays I’ve ever seen. It features fireworks, lasers, fire, water fountains, images beamed on to huge sheets of water, and a rotating globe. Arrive at World Showcase Lagoon at least 30 minutes early to get a good spot, but expect to stand once it begins to get a good view. You wont be disappointed with this fireworks show. Even Jay loved it and he’s not a huge fireworks fan.
If you are lucky you might also catch one of Epcot’s festivals!
-The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival (March- May)
-The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (September-November)
-Holidays Around the World (December)