One of the popular destinations of Disney World vacations is the Epcot theme park. This theme park features a variety of fun and educational activities for visitors to do. This is a theme park which Walt Disney was especially looking forward to as it blended technology with global culture. The theme park is divided into two halves with the front half dedicated to technology and the rear dedicated to world cultures. Epcot is a good theme park to include in your Disney World vacations.
When you first walk into the theme park, you can see the giant Spaceship Earth attraction. This attraction, which resembles a gigantic golf ball, is considered to be the main icon of the park. This ride generally has a low wait time as it continuously loads visitors. Spaceship Earth takes visitors on a trip through the development of communication from the beginning of civilization to the present. Spaceship Earth is a wonderful part of your Disney World vacations as it is considered to be the trademark of the Epcot theme park.
Epcot is divided up into pavilions. There are pavilions on both the technological side and the global side of the theme park. The technological portion of the theme park contains the Land pavilion, the Seas pavilion, the Mission Space pavilion, the Test Track pavilion, the Wonders of Life pavilion and the Imagination pavilion. Each pavilion contains at least one kind of attraction, but many contain more than one. If you are looking for fun things to do during your Disney World vacations, check out the various pavilions on the technological side of Epcot.
The Land Pavilion contains the newest and most popular attraction at Epcot. Soarin' Over California is a simulator that takes visitors on a flight over the state of California. This ride which is also located at California Adventures in Disneyland, is very popular due to its feeling of reality. As you go through the attraction, you will see the various aspects of California while there are other effects being put on. While you fly over orange groves, you will be able to smell the oranges. If you fly over the ocean, you can smell the salt breeze. Soarin' Over California is one of the most popular attractions at Epcot and should be included in your Disney World vacations. This is not the only thing you can do at the Land, however. There is a wonderful food court and table service restaurant where you can eat organic and homegrown fruits and vegetables. If you want to see where these vegetables and fruits are grown, you can take a boat ride through the indoor farmland. If you find the growing techniques interesting, you can take a walk through tour for a small extra fee. This is an excellent way to learn about how farmers are incorporating new and innovative growing techniques in their planting and harvesting. The Land also hosts an environmental show featuring Timon and Pumbaa. This cartoon educates visitors on how they can get involved with conservation efforts. With the variety of activities at the Land Pavilion, it's no wonder why many people automatically include it in their Disney World vacations.
The Living Seas Pavilion is located next to the Land Pavilion. This pavilion has been recently renovated and now features a fun, new Finding Nemo ride that takes visitors through the Nemo story while also sending them through a large aquarium. The Finding Nemo ride integrates the animated feature with an educational trip through the aquarium. You can also spend time in the Living Seas Pavilion looking at the aquarium at your leisure. There are several benches and observation areas where you can look at the wide variety of water wildlife that is included in this aquarium. Also included inside the Living Seas Pavilion is the popular Turtle Talk show with Crush from the Finding Nemo animated feature. This is an interactive show where the popular turtle will answer any questions that the audience may have. While you are waiting in line for Turtle Talk, you may be able to watch the diving demonstration that takes place in the lobby. This demonstration features a diver who illustrates how deep sea diving gear works. There are also several interactive learning stations all throughout the pavilion that can teach visitors about the various aspects of the water and the life it contains. The Living Seas Pavilion is a fun way to incorporate a trip to an aquarium into your Disney World vacations.
The Wonders of Life Pavilion is a pavilion that is currently undergoing a time of change. Because of the renovations and upgrades that Disney is trying to make to this pavilion, it may not be open during all your Disney World vacations. If you are able to visit is during your stay, however, you can learn about your body and how to live a healthy lifestyle. They have health food stands stationed throughout the pavilion. There are also various shows that educate as well as entertain about the fundamentals of staying healthy. If you would rather go on a ride, you can go on Body Wars which is a simulator ride that takes you on a high speed voyage through your body. While it sounds like a strange ride, it is actually quite fun if you enjoy simulator rides. Scattered throughout the Wonders of Life Pavilion are various exercise machines and tests where you can see how fit and healthy you are. The Wonders of Life Pavilion is an excellent way to learn about your body and how to care for it during your Disney World vacations.
The Imagination Pavilion contains one of the well-loved characters exclusive to the Epcot theme park. If you can incorporate the Journey into Imagination in your various Disney World vacations, you can see the character of Figment as he leads you on your journey. Figment is very popular and you can see him all throughout the Imagination Pavilion. At the close of the Journey into Imagination attraction, you can get involved with several hands-on activities.
For those who want to incorporate thrill rides into their Disney World vacations, you have a couple options. The Mission Space Pavilion hosts the newest thrill ride at Epcot. This is a ride which simulates your travels from the Earth to Mars. You and the people sitting next to you can control the various aspects of your spaceship as you fly to and land on Mars. This ride is a centrifuge which means it spins very quickly to create the feeling of G-Forces on your body. It is highly recommended that if you have any health problems or do not like the feeling of a heavy weight on your body that you ride the non-spinning simulator version. This laid back version still lets you control your spaceship but does not put any G-Forces on your body. This is a fun and exciting new thrill ride that you can do during your Disney World vacations.
The other main thrill ride at the Epcot theme park is the Test Track Pavilion. This is a high speed trip through a variety of vehicle tests. This ride illustrates some of the various tests that each new vehicle has to go through before it hits the sales markets. The ride ends with a high speed acceleration test that actually takes you around the outside of the Test Track Pavilion. While you are waiting in line for the attraction, you can see various vehicular tests being performed on actual cars. These cars are all around the queue line. It is good to know that the queue line for this attraction is very noisy. If you want to bypass the stand-by line for Test Track which can often get quite long, it's good to know that you have a couple options. This is a FastPass ride which means that you can insert your park ticket into the FastPass machine and get a ticket that will let you bypass this line. You can come back to the attraction during the time specified on the front of the ticket and get in the FastPass line which takes priority over the stand-by line. If would rather ride the ride as soon as possible and not wait for the FastPass ticket to become valid, you can ride the single-rider line. Because the Test Track cars seat three across, there are often empty seats. The single ride line allows these empty seats to be filled. If you do choose to use the single rider line, your party will be separated. This is an excellent way, however, to ride the attraction very quickly. At the end of the ride you can see the latest upcoming cars and SUVs that are on display in the lobby. The Test Track Pavilion is a fun attraction to include into your Disney World vacations.
Once you explore the technology side of the Epcot theme park, you can journey back to the World Showcase. The World Showcase is a group of pavilions that surround a lagoon. A different country hosts each pavilion and you can easily get a taste of each country during your Disney World vacations. These pavilions offer a variety of restaurants, stores and attractions that are themed after that respective country.
The Mexico Pavilion is shaped like a Mayan pyramid. You can shop in an outdoor shopping market and get counter service Mexican food outside the pyramid. Inside the pyramid, however, you can learn about Mexican culture. The lobby of the pavilion is a display of cultural art. Through the lobby, is a replica of an outdoor market. You can purchase a variety of goods here at the Mexican pavilion from silver to blankets. The ride, El Tiempo, is a boat ride that is similar to It’s a Small World in the Magic Kingdom. This boat ride takes visitors through the history of Mexico. There are also interactive learning stations all throughout the pavilion where you can learn more about Mexico and its culture. If you want to enjoy a nice table service meal, there is a Mexican restaurant located on the edges of the boat ride. You can watch the boats sail by as you eat. The Mexican Pavilion is a wonderful way to get a small taste of Mexico during your Disney World vacations.
The Germany Pavilion has an extensive shopping center as well. This pavilion, which is set up like a quaint German town, has several stores where you can purchase souvenirs such as beer steins, clocks and other traditional German merchandise. There is a wonderful toy store located at the Germany Pavilion as well. If you are at the pavilion at the start of a new hour, you can see the large cuckoo clock give its presentation. Many people come to the Germany pavilion specifically to see this. You can also make a stop at Oktoberfest which is an all-you-can-eat buffet that also has a live musical show during the meal. If you would rather get a quick taste of Germany, you can grab a bratwurst and a beer at the counter service restaurants located throughout the pavilion. Occasionally Snow White and her seven dwarves will hold meet and greets outside of the Germany Pavilion as well.
The China Pavilion is a stunning temple complex. The interior of the temple is as beautiful as the outside. You can watch a 360-degree Circlevision movie inside this temple. There is also a cultural and historical display inside the temple as well. For those that wish to do some shopping, there is an extensive shopping center both inside and outside of the temple. You can also enjoy a wonderful sit down meal or a counter service meal depending on your time constraints. When you go to the China Pavilion, take note of the show times. There are multiple shows held in the gardens outside of the temple each day. These shows always draw huge crowds and are fascinating to watch.
The Japan Pavilion features another temple complex. The shopping at the Japan Pavilion is wonderful. You can purchase all kinds of Japanese goods from tea to kimonos to samurai swords. Above the stores are several table service restaurants you can choose from. The heart of the temple complex holds several different displays highlighting certain aspects of Japanese history. You can also watch the koi swim in a variety of ponds and also listen to the drummers at certain times of the day.
The Norway Pavilion has a lot to offer guests. You can dine in a traditional Norwegian restaurant. This restaurant is also a Disney Princess character meal so it is very popular. You can also ride Maelstrom, which is a boat ride through various aspects of Norwegian history and culture. If you would rather watch a movie, the Norway Pavilion has that as well. There is a traditional Norwegian church that you can walk through which has various displays inside of it. You can also pick up a Norwegian souvenir at one of the many shops at the Norway Pavilion. With so many things to do, it’s no wonder why the Norway Pavilion is so popular with visitors.
The Italy Pavilion focuses on shopping and food. You can pick up a designer bag or fragrance at one of the many stores at the Italy Pavilion. You can also dine at a traditional Italian restaurant. You can also pick up Italian coffee and desserts at various places around the pavilion. If you walk to the edge of the lagoon, you can see gondolas floating by the dock. The Italy Pavilion is quite beautiful and a fun place for visitors to go during their Disney World vacations.
Your Disney World vacations are not complete without a trip to the United Kingdom Pavilion. The United Kingdom’s pavilion is set up like an English town. It has a central pub where you can get a pint to drink or a bite to eat. You can also wander in and out of the stores that feature a variety of goods from the United Kingdom. For those that enjoy a cup of tea every now and then, there is a wonderful teashop located at the UK Pavilion. Behind the stores there is a traditional English garden that you can stroll through or take a rest in. There is also a stage at the end of the road where British bands will come and play hits from the Beatles and various other British musical acts.
The Canada Pavilion features a large, castle-like building. Inside this building is a 360-degree Circlevision movie about the country. You can shop in the various stores at the pavilion, including a Roots store. For those who want to dine at the Canada Pavilion, there is a very popular steak house called Le Cellier. If you want to see a good show, Off Kilter performs in between the United Kingdom’s pavilion and the Canadian pavilion. This band fuses together traditional Scottish and English music with a rock and roll twist. This band always manages to draw a crowd. If you enjoy their music, you can pick up their CDs at the Canada Pavilion. Off Kilter is often the favorite part of people’s Disney World vacations.
The United States Pavilion features a Colonial theme. You can watch a stage show which chronicles the major highlights of American history. While you are waiting for the show to start seating, you can stroll around the lobby of the building and look at the various artifacts and replicas they have on display. There is also an amazing acapella group that performs while you’re waiting. If you pick up a show schedule you can see when the fife and drum band will be strolling through the pavilion. This is always an excellent show and children can often become complimentary members of the band.
The Morocco Pavilion is a very interesting pavilion and can be a fun addition to your Disney World vacations. You can stroll through replicas of Moroccan building as well as take a tour through a museum that is on the property. If you want to try Moroccan food there is a counter service place as well as a table service place complete with belly dancers. If you walk toward the back of the pavilion you can find yourself pleasantly lost in the maze of streets. Each street has a couple different stores located on it and you can find some excellent souvenirs. There is also a place where you can get henna applied and where you can listen to authentic Moroccan music.
Finally, the last pavilion is the France Pavilion. This pavilion is set up like Paris and has a variety of stores, bakeries and restaurants for you to choose from. You can get a glass of wine or enjoy a crepe. The sit down restaurants are excellent as well and feature a variety of delicious French dishes. The movie that is shown at the French pavilion is excellent. It features some of the great French classical composers and takes visitors on a visit through France. The France Pavilion is an excellent way to incorporate some of the French culture into your Disney World vacations.
The night is closed by a spectacular fireworks display over the World Showcase lagoon. This display combines lasers, water and fireworks to put on an interesting show with a compelling story line. You can watch this show from anywhere around the World Showcase. As you watch the show, you can see the various pavilions participating with different kinds of lighting. The Illuminations display is a wonderful way to end your day at Epcot.
There are several options of things to do during your Disney World vacations. Epcot holds many varied attractions from the technological to the global. While the park does strive to educate its visitors, it does so in a way that is not boring or overbearing. You can easily fuse both fun and education into your Disney World vacations when you visit Epcot.
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