Today I am coming at you with my Top 3 Favorite Things in each of the World Showcase Pavilions at Epcot! Let’s jump right in, follow me on an adventure around the world! By the way, we ALWAYS go left when entering the World Showcase and start with Mexico. I don’t know if anyone out there intentionally enters the World Showcase from Canada… but that just feels unnatural to us! LOL
- San Angel Inn Restaurante – While definitely a little on the pricier side, we love to splurge on this restaurant for our trips. We sat down and enjoyed a very nice honeymoon lunch here, water side, and it was delightful – I will share more about our experience at this restaurant in a separate post!
- Gran Fiesta Tour – Even on the busier days, this relaxing ride has a line that moves pretty quickly. My husband and I love a good boat ride and if you are needing some AC and a place to take a break from walking, totally hop on this cute attraction while visiting the Mexico Pavilion.
- Mariachi Cobre – One of my favorite parts of the World Showcase and it’s pavilions is the music that changes from pavilion to pavilion. Music always sets the scene and I just love getting to hear the Mariachi Cobre band while in the Mexico Pavilion. If you hear them playing on your walk through, take a moment to step to the side and enjoy their performance!
- Stave Church Gallery – We already have an interest in Norse Mythology, so this gallery was a no brainer for us to stop inside. On our first visit we enjoyed reading all of the information and admiring the cool art! Not to mention admiring the outside of this beautiful building is equally as important. It is quite an eye catcher as you enter the Norway Pavilion
- Big Troll in The Fjording – I feel like everytime we visit Epcot on our trips, I need to stop in and take a troll picture! This is a really fun photo spot inside The Fjording shop. It is a great ode and reminder of the once wonderful ride, Maelstrom (which is now Frozen Ever After).
- Waterfall Picture Spot – We had never stopped to take a photo at the waterfall between The Fjording and Frozen Ever After. However, on our last trip someone offered to take our picture while we were admiring it and it turned out really cute! This is another ode to where the Viking boats used to peak out over the pavilion on the Maelstrom ride. I have a vivid memory of that moment from my childhood and always smile when I think about it.
- House of the Whispering Willows – This is an exhibit that shares all about Shanghai Disney. While we have never been to Shanghai Disney yet, I dream about going because their rides are SO GORGEOUS over there. The park appears far more technologically advanced than its American counterparts. I found this exhibit super interesting and great if you want to learn more about this Disney park overseas.
- Reflections of China – This is a relaxing video that takes you through some highlights of China. It is a standing room only situation, however, you can surely rest up prior to the showing in the large waiting area filled with benches. I’d be lying if I said we didn’t love the waiting area just as much as the showing itself. Sometimes while at Disney you just need to lay down on a bench, and that’s okay.
- Temple of Heaven Reproduction Building – This building is absolutely gorgeous and is totally the star of the show in the China Pavilion. I found out later on in my love for all things Disney, that this was a reproduction of a real building in Beijing. I may have missed an informational plaque somewhere along our visits if this information had been presented to me prior. Anyway, I love standing in the middle of this building just staring at the intricate details that adorn the entire inside
- Biergarten Restaurant – My husband disagrees with me about this restaurant’s food, but I really enjoyed our visit here. The layout is (or was when we went if it has changed since everything that’s went down) a buffet style. The seating is also family style where you are seated next to other parties. To me this was a fun way for us to chat with other people who were not from the same place as us. There is also live entertainment during your meal and overall the atmosphere is A+. For those wondering, I don’t eat a lot of meat and I found MORE THAN ENOUGH food at this eatery to make it feel worth it to me, personally.
- Sommerfest Pretzels – Okay, I will be honest, I have yet gotten to enjoy one of these legendary pretzels from the Germany Pavilion. But it is for sure on my Disney Bucket List. We often eat ALOT while in World Showcase, so the stars and my stomach have just not aligned for me to snack on one of these huge pretzels. If you get a chance, or remember to save yourself room, grab one!
- Views of Crescent Lake – We enjoy walking out toward Crescent Lake by the Germany Pavilion. Another memorable location for me because we spent some quality time just relaxing on our honeymoon in this spot. I think it is also a great place for pictures with Crescent Lake and the World Showcase in the background. However, now with those big eye sores in the middle… I can’t say I still recommend the lake as a great backdrop, unless you can block those out! LOL
- Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria – Another location on my Disney Bucket List is eating the raved about pizza from Via Napoli. We have added this to our list of eateries to check out on a future vacation. So, while I can’t comment myself on the quality of the food there, I hear it is very good!
- Neptune Fountain – I really like this fountain! While not much to “look at” I guess I should say, as in, it’s not a HUGE focal point of the pavilion. I do think it is a great looking fountain based off of Neptune, if I am recalling that correctly.
- Bridge Firework View – So in prior trips we have staked out a spot sitting on the bridge in front of the Italy Pavilion to watch the nighttime firework show. I will be honest, now that you have seen my three “key points” of Italy, I should just come out and say this is one of our least favorite pavilions. I feel like currently it is really lacking in things to see or do in regard to highlight points. But that is just our personal opinion.
American Adventure Pavilion
- The American Adventure Show – This animatronic presentation is honestly a good resting spot. While the show is okay once, it’s not a “must do” attraction for us. I will say though, the combination of AC and an alright show is especially nice on a hot day in the theme park. I can see this being on the list of “good places to nap” in Disney World. However, if I recall it right, some scenes are a little loud. LOL
- Regal Eagle Smokehouse – We enjoy BBQ personally, so we checked out Regal Eagle on our last visit. I’d say the food here is good for theme park BBQ and we enjoyed it overall. The restaurant was pretty busy when we went but there was a lot of indoor seating options which was nice. Another great spot to take a load off while also enjoying a sit down meal.
- Outdoor Seating – We took a good little break at the outdoor seating of the American Adventure Pavilion. If you are looking for a picnic table as a resting point to enjoy a snack, some cold water, or just some conversation… this is a good pavilion for that. Surprisingly seating is a highlight for us because not every area in the park has adequate amounts of seating availability.
- Kabuki Cafe – Get the shaved ice no matter what! It is listed on the menu as Kaki Gori. I grabbed one with sweet milk and did not regret it. This is a wonderful treat on a hot day, but does just fine on a cool day too! To me this little booth is located in a great place along the World Showcase. By the time we get to Japan I’m ready for a little something sweet!
- Matsuriza – This drumming show is delightful. You will definitely hear this show taking place even before you enter the Japan Pavilion. The backdrop for this performance is also breathtaking. If you are strolling by, just be sure to take a peek when you hear the drumming, they do a lot of work for this performance, as do all the entertainers.
- Mitsukoshi Department Store – This is our favorite store to detour into. We look at it everytime we go even though so far we haven’t purchased anything. The Bijuttsu-kan Gallery next to the store is an interesting walkthrough as well! It walks you through Japan’s ‘kawaii” culture, which is of course CUTE!
- Gallery of Arts and History – Race Against the Sun – This gallery presents an exhibit about the Sahara base Race Against the Sun. I had never heard about this race and found it interesting to see how demanding it is on its participants. You should pop in if you have some extra time in the Morocco Pavilion.
- Empty Seating Areas in the Market Area – This pavilion has THE BEST seating options in my opinion. There is an inner loop which used to house some shops selling their wares, but now it is basically “abandoned”. There is also a restaurant in the back of this pavilion which was closed on our last visit… I find the theming in this pavilion gorgeous and the atmosphere is just perfect for relaxing and taking a moment to chat with those you came with, maybe even make your remaining plans for the day away from the fast moving rest of the park.
- Market Shops – I really would love to have 3 solid points of interest within this pavilion, but unfortunately many of the highlights have shut down and stayed shut down. The Market in this pavilion is one of the points of interest I am referring to. They used to sell authentic Moroccan wares here, but this service is temporarily unavailable at the time of me writing this article. If this area does return to life, please check out the shops!
- Benches – We spent a lot of time in this area waiting for our Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure virtual line position to be welcomed. Again, France isn’t one of our all time favorite pavilions, just due to personal preference and lack of experience with it. We do want to check out the eateries in this area but just haven’t checked them off quite yet.
- Ratatouille Ride Area but NOT the ride – This ride made us soooooo motion sick. LOL I do not recommend it, even with taking Dramamine I still felt woozy. I had higher hopes for the ride and was let down… but I did LOVE the theming of the area outside of the ride. So for that reason, the area outside made my list. Even if you can’t ride the ride, you should still go back behind to check out the decor!
- Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along – Another bucket list attraction for me. On one of our visits it was unavailable and on the other trips it just wasn’t made a priority. I have heard great things about this attraction though and have seen walkthrough videos of it. I hope to check it out on a future trip, if you have the opportunity you should jump on in for a showing.
United Kingdom Pavilion
- Pianist – There is a pianist that plays in this courtyard and the music sounds lovely. We didn’t spend much time in the United Kingdom Pavilion so we didn’t get to watch the performance up close. As with a few other pavilions, this is a pavilion that is lower tier on our list for a lack of attractions or things to do that interests us.
- Rose and Crown Pub and Dining Room – Adding on to our bucket list eateries is the Rose and Crown. We did have a peek in the pub area and found ourselves wanting to eat in the dining room space on a future trip. So, as I have said many times before, take advantage of this food option if it fits your schedule and preferences!
- Red Phone Booths – A great photo op with a fun history to it. These phone booths used to receive phone calls from outside the park! I never knew this until I came across a random article oneday (wish I remembered who it was) about the red phone booths in the UK pavilion. I never would have guessed that a while back people were able to phone in and talk to whoever would answer. I feel like this is a fun magical touch that would be cool to see return!
- Maple Popcorn – GET IT! Need I say more about flavored Epcot popcorn? Also, if you do scoop up some maple popcorn in the Canada Pavilion, check out what seasonal popcorn buckets are available! Fun popcorn bucket fact, you can ask to receive the popcorn in a box to keep your popcorn bucket clean! I can’t guarantee every booth will do this, but in our past visits we were able to make this request.
- Waterfall – Another beautiful waterfall feature in the park. Just something to make note of as you head towards the Canada Far and Wide show. We feel like this is also a fun photo op if you are looking for those immersive, theme park removed, photo locations!
- Canada Far and Wide in Circle Vision 360 – If you’ve made it from Mexico to Canada you are probably a little worn down. I mean, that is quite a bit of walking in the Florida sun! While this is another standing room only video presentation, it does get you indoors and you get to view the highlights of Canada.