EPCOT (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow) is a theme park in Disney World that focuses on human innovation and the global community. While very educational, it offers some pretty incredible rides and attractions. Use this EPCOT guide to better understand the history & all the features that make this Disney World park a favorite!
History of EPCOT
Opening in 1982, EPCOT is Disney World’s second theme park and twice the size of Magic Kingdom.
When it was conceptualized by Walt Disney in the ’60s, it was going to be an experimental planned community with a focus on technology. Unfortunately, after the passing of Walt, the concept was abandoned.
After witnessing the popularity of Magic Kingdom, Disney Imagineers decided to add a second park.
The front of the park consisted of themed pavilions based on science and technology and the rear was a collection of expositions based on various countries around the world.
Over the years, EPCOT has evolved into what it is today~ an innovative theme park that makes learning fun!
Guide to EPCOT
The first thing that you need to understand about EPCOT is divided into 4 different sections or neighborhoods: World Celebration, World Discovery, World Nature and World Showcase.
As you enter the park, the focus is on building a global community. These are the rides & attractions found in this neighborhood:
Spaceship Earth takes you on a journey through the evolution of society’s greatest achievements.
Journey into the Imagination with Figment is a ride through a sensory lab where Figment shows up and creates mischief.
Pixar Short Film Festival is where you can find a small theater where you can enjoy watching many Pixar short films. Mickey Mouse makes a surprise appearance at the end!
This part of EPCOT centers around science & technology. These are the rides & attractions found in this neighborhood:
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is the newest ride at EPCOT and the first roller coaster in the park.
Test Track gives you a chance to develop your car and then race it against others to see how well it stacks up!
Mission Space allows you to feel what it’s like to travel in space as you travel on a space mission!
Guests can explore all the wonders of nature from above and below.
The Seas with Nemo & Friends is a ride where you will go on an adventure with Nemo inside a clamshell. When you finish, you can spend time exploring the Coral Reef.
Turtle Talk with Crush is where guests can interact with Crush from Finding Nemo and learn all about life in the big, blue world.
Soarin’ Around the World takes you on a high-flying journey to different parts of the world where all your senses will be in overdrive!
Journey of Water is a trail that allows guests to discover water’s playful personality.
EPCOT’s World Showcase
There are 11 countries in the World Showcase and each one has it’s own attractions:
Mexico Pavilion (see more)
Gran Fiesta tour. Go on a search for Donald Duck with 2 of the 2 Caballeros, Panchito (the Mexican charro rooster) and José Carioca (the Brazilian parrot).
“Remember Me!” – La Celebración del Día de Muertos exhibit. Learn about the Day of the Dead holiday and see scenes from Pixar’s Coco.
Frozen Ever After. This is one of the most popular rides in Epcot. Take a journey to Arendale to visit Elsa and see some of her friends along the way!
Royal Sommerhus. If you want to meet Anna & Elsa, this is where you will find them.
Reflections of China takes you on a 14-minute journey to see parts of China you might not otherwise see.
Jeweled Dragons Acrobatics is a wonderful show that showcases talented acrobat artists from China.
The Pavilion doesn’t feature any attractions or rides but does have great places to eat and unique shops selling delicious caramel treats, Christmas ornaments, and Beer Steins.
The pavilion doesn’t feature any rides or attractions but you may see Sergio, the mime & juggler perform if you are there at the right time. There are also some great restaurants and stores that sell glass, jewelry, and Venetian-style masks.
Colonial theater Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain walk you through American history using 35 animatronic figures from history.
You may also enjoy listening to the singing of the Voices of Liberty inside the pavilion. They put on 15-minute performances throughout the day.
There are no rides & attractions in Japan Pavilion, but they have some unique shops and great places to eat including Tepan Edo which is a Hibachi Style restaurant.
There are no rides & attractions in the pavilion, but you should take your time to walk around. There is plenty to see!
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure takes guests into the world of “Ratatouille,” where they will shrink to the size of Chef Remy and scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant.
Beauty & the Beast Singalong Visit a French cinema for a 15-minute film featuring songs from the animated classic, Beauty and the Beast.
Impressions de France. Watch an 18-minute video that transports you to some of the most famous landmarks in France.
While there are no rides, attractions, or restaurants, there are some places to grab a pint or some fish & chips. There are also plenty of great shops including a Tea Store, a Toy Store, and a Store specializing in Soccer gear.
Canada Far & Wide. Explore Canada in a newly-updated edition of the classic Epcot Circle-Vision 360 presentation
More about EPCOT
The front of EPCOT is open as soon as you enter the park, but World Showcase doesn’t open until 11 am.
While most people choose to walk around to get to all of the countries in World Showcase, there also is a boat option that will take you across World Showcase Lagoon.
The launch is found at World Showcase Plaza and can take you to Morocco or Germany.
These boats begin to launch at 11 am and run until 7:15 p.m.
How to Get to EPCOT (Transportation Options)
EPCOT is the only park that you can get to by just about every type of Disney transportation possible. Here are all the ways you can get there:
- Car: You can drive straight to the EPCOT parking lot and either tram or walk to the entrance. This parking lot is HUGE and you will want to make sure that you read our Disney World parking tips so that you don’t forget where you parked your car.
- If you are staying at a Disney World Resort that is on the Monorail, you can take the monorail to the Transportation Center and then take another monorail straight to EPCOT.
- If you are park hopping between Magic Kingdom & EPCOT, you can also monorail from Magic Kingdom to the Transportation Center and then onto EPCOT.
- Guests who are staying at a Boardwalk resort, can either boat into EPCOT or walk.
- Those staying at Pop Century, Art of Animation, Caribbean Beach, and Riviera Resort have the option to take the Disney Skyliner to Epcot.
- All Disney Resort Guests can get transportation to EPCOT through the Disney Bus Line.