by Devo CabDisney
Epcot’s World Showcase, which opened in October of 1982, is one of my favorite areas of Walt Disney World. Situated around the Showcase Lagoon, you’ll find eleven gorgeously themed pavilions representing various countries from around the world. It could take a lifetime and an enormous amount of money to actually visit all of these countries. But thanks to Epcot’s World Showcase, you can get a taste of all these countries. Literally. You can visit Norway, Germany, Italy, France, United Kingdom, Mexico, Morocco, China, Japan, Canada, and the host of the World Showcase, The American Adventure.
There is so much to do in the World Showcase. I don’t know about you, but I am fascinated by other cultures, and this is a safe and easy way to explore and learn. You don’t have the language barrier to worry about, and you don’t have to worry about offending someone with something you say or wear. If it’s acceptable in American culture in a family-oriented environment, it’s acceptable here. Aside from the cultural education, the main things you’ll find in the World Showcase is entertainment, shopping, and food. What else is there?
You’ll find some of the best street performers spread throughout the World Showcase. There are musicians, jugglers, dancers, and so much more. You really owe it to yourself to stop and watch any time you catch one performing. It’s so worth it! Also, you’ll find movie and ride attractions. One of my favorites is the Gran Fiesta Tour in the Mexico pavilion. Now, let me just stop right there for minute to say something. The real country of Mexico is hot! However, if you are looking to escape the hot and humid Florida weather, just step inside the Mexico pavilion which is completely indoors. The Mexico pavilion is one of my favorites. It is absolutely gorgeous, and honestly, you can’t beat the air conditioning. Also, don’t forget that you are at Walt Disney World. That means character meet and greets! Be sure to check out the My Disney Experience app and the Epcot maps and itineraries for character times and locations!
If you’re a shopper, you will love the World Showcase. Pearls from Japan, Prada from Italy, Chanel from France, or tea from United Kingdom. You could spend the entire day just shopping around the world. Tip #1 Do not forgot about your package pickup options. Ask your retail clerk Cast Member about your options. You may be able to have your items delivered to a designated location at the front of the park or even shipped to your home. If you’re staying at a Disney Resort hotel, you may be able to have your items delivered to the hotel. This is such a convenient way to avoid carrying around heavy bags all day. On my last trip to Epcot, we were there during my birthday and so of course, I wore my birthday pin all week. I purchased some tea from the United Kingdom pavilion. I mean, if you love tea, you almost have to buy some from the United Kingdom! So I had my tea delivered to the front of the park, which I picked up at the end of the day. When I arrived back at our room, I opened the box to find a “Happy Birthday” note from the Cast Member that processed my purchase. Now, that may seem like nothing to you, but it really caught my attention that someone who I didn’t know took the time to write a note to wish me a happy birthday. And that Cast Member will always be etched into my mind. Sometimes it’s the little things that are special.
If you stick around the World Showcase for very long, you’re going to get hungry. But never fear, food is always near! There are some great table service and quick service restaurants all over the World Showcase. Pick your favorite or be adventurous and pick a cultural cuisine with which you’re not familiar. Many people also enjoy eating or drinking around the world. You’ll find many adult beverages around the Showcase as well as a huge array of snacks to choose from. Tip #2 If you’re on the Disney Dining Plan, the World Showcase is a great place to use those snack credits. Many people will save up their snack credits just so they can use them all in Epcot. Regardless, the snacks are a great way to get a taste of each country without actually purchasing an entire meal. And I would highly recommend checking out France first. Trust me, you’ll want one of everything.
Sometimes, the best thing to do in the World Showcase is to just walk around and do some sightseeing. Tip #3 Don’t hesitate to check out every little nook and cranny. And take your time! There are so many details everywhere. There are courtyards stuck here and there and in the back. You will miss so much if you just stick to the main path around the lagoon. If there is an unblocked path, you should take it! If the door isn’t locked or marked “Cast Members Only” you should open it. This is one of the best places in Walt Disney World to be an explorer. Take pictures, ask questions, and take your time. There’s so much to see and learn. Did I mention to take your time?
At the end of the evening, be sure to catch Illuminations in the World Showcase Lagoon. It’s not to be missed. The World Showcase is especially gorgeous in the evening. There’s just something romantic about walking around the Showcase with all the fire lanterns lit, and is the perfect time to sit and enjoy a tasty treat from your favorite country’s pavilion.