EPCOT often gets a bad rap and, frankly, we just totally don’t get it!
But despite the big transformation, the park is currently undergoing, AND the TWO new attractions (Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind) headed its way, people still seem to have certain perceptions about EPCOT that are simply not true! So we’re here to bust those lies wide open! We’re putting out our OG EPCOT Center hats and ready to drop some truths on y’all.
So here are the lies that we often hear about EPCOT (and we’re busting them!). OK, allow us to step up on our EPCOT soapbox real quick. Bunch of big EPCOT stans here are ready to plead our case.
It’s boring and there’s nothing to do but eat and drink
So many people think EPCOT is just boring and that the only thing it has to offer is food and booze. “It’s just for adults” sound familiar?? And although there is a LOT of great food and booze at EPCOT, there are plenty of other things to do, too. How can ANYONE walk through World Showcase and think it’s boring? It literally lets you travel around the world IN. A. DAY. And each country has so many learning experiences and cool shops that can keep both adults and kids entertained!
But EPCOT also has the one of the largest aquariums in the world, not to mention a ride that lets you see what cars go through before they’re approved for manufacturing. AND you can travel OUT OF THIS WORLD on Mission: Space or learn all about the history of communication on Spaceship Earth. And Soarin’?! Who doesn’t love the chance to soar over iconic landscapes around the world (plus it has SMELLS and, well, we love us some scented rides!). And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Nothing to do?
Pshaw! There’s plenty to do FOR everyone! And it’s about to get even better with those two new attractions we previously mentioned. Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure joins Frozen Ever After in World Showcase as two notably kid-friendly rides, giving you even more reason to hang out in Walt’s original vision of the future.
There’s nothing there for kids
Um…excuse us? OK, so this goes into the first total MISCONCEPTION above. There is SO MUCH for kids to do at EPCOT. For example, each festival (which, ahem, are basically year-round now) features a fun scavenger hunt that is inexpensive to participate in, and they all end with a great prize! You can check out the Easter one we recently did here. There are also Kidcot stations in every country in World Showcase where kids can go and pick up informative cards AND stickers with information about that country — collect them all and get a cute postcard and baggie to put them all in.
OK, we get we literally just told you pay for a scavenger hunt and go do educational activities in World Showcase. Most kids are rolling their eyes like, “BOR-ING!” But we promise you it’s not. And there’s so much more!
We don’t know any kids that don’t like riding Test Track and Frozen Ever After. And as we previously mentioned, they’ll love the aquarium at The Seas with Nemo and Friends, too (and they’ll adore the cute Nemo ride there). Plus, who can ignore the EPCOT icon, himself, FIGMENT?! Adults may yawn a bit at this ride (especially if they rode it themselves as kids and remember how good it WAS!) but, for kids, this ride is a blast! So don’t rule out EPCOT if you’ve got kids — they’ll LOVE it!
You have to sit down for meals
So we get it — EPCOT has some INCREDIBLE table service restaurants, and many of them consistently make it onto our favorite restaurants at Disney World lists. But here’s the thing — EPCOT also has some great counter service spots. One of our counter service go-to places is in France at Les Halles Boulangerie and Patisserie — the food is ALWAYS great and the prices are reasonable.
We also like Yorkshire County Fish Shop (some of the best fish and chips we’ve found at Disney World), Lotus Blossom Cafe, Sunshine Seasons, and Regal Eagle Smokehouse. All of these are GREAT choices for counter service!
But that’s not all — because EPCOT has a lot of great festivals with outdoor food kitchens where you can sample a variety of amazing foods without ever having to sit down inside a restaurant. Food is portioned a bit smaller and priced reasonably so you can snack and nibble your way around the festival trying a variety of foods. We actually recommend you DON’T make a sit down reservation if you plan to tackle an EPCOT fest for this very reason — you’ll likely be STUFFED long before dinner! And there is almost ALWAYS a festival happening at EPCOT, so be sure to check that out!
Everything is too expensive
We won’t tell you that eating at EPCOT is ALWAYS cheap (you ARE in Disney World where a bottle of water costs about as much as a solid gold chain and your firstborn child 🤣), especially if you’re dining in places like Chefs de France and Le Cellier, but there are a lot of inexpensive options for food, too, including many of the counter service restaurants we’ve already mentioned! For example, at Les Halles, you can get Bisque de Homard (Lobster Bisque in a Bread Bowl) for $5.75, a massive homemade Croissant for $2.90, and the Full Baguette for $3.10. That’s a filling meal for under $12. Granted, that’s a VERY carb-heavy meal LOL.
Most entrees at Lotus Blossom Cafe are under $15. You can grab a sweet treat at Crepes des Chefs de France for around $7 or less. Many of the snacks at Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe are under $5 (hello, School Bread!). There are TONS of cheap eats around EPCOT if you just look for them.
You shouldn’t visit EPCOT when it’s under construction or between festivals
So, at this point, it feels like EPCOT has been under construction since, ohh…1998? (Not true, of course — it has really only been like 2 years. It just FEELS like a LOT longer) Yes, there is a LOT of construction going on at EPCOT, but who says that this makes it a park you DON’T want to go to. Even with the construction going on, there are still plenty of things to do — some of which we’ve already mentioned. World Showcase is open, and you can travel the world. Plus…don’t you want to get a peek at the work being done for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind? YEAH, EPCOT is FINALLY getting a roller coaster! This is EXCITING!
But yes, there’s a lot of construction going on. It’s not forever and parts are finally starting to be revealed (like Creations Shop and Club Cool!) but it IS a slow progression. There IS some good to come of it though — we got the sweet old/new entrance fountain, and can FINALLY walk straight from the Land/Seas Pavilions to the front of the park (this area was previously, inexplicably, a dead end!). As far as going between festivals — good luck with that! There is almost ALWAYS a festival happening at EPCOT now. It’s at the point where there’s usually only one week between festivals these days.
There aren’t any characters
Wait — do people really believe this? Even before the park’s closure, there were a TON of meet and greet spots for characters. Seriously — this was THE park to meet many character you couldn’t otherwise, like Belle in her village clothing or Baymax, Joy, and Sadness. But now, after reopening? Characters are EVERYWHERE, and the interactions here are some of the best at Disney World! You can even have a chat with Mary Poppins and Alice at the U.K. Pavilion and say hello to Elsa and Anna at the Norway Pavilion.
Or you can watch Pooh chasing butterflies (and yes, it IS the sweetest thing ever) near the Imagination Pavilion.
Sometimes Joy pops up over there, too, to greet guests! And even Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, and Goofy turn up near Spaceship Earth occasionally — and this is one of the ONLY places right now you can see Mickey outside of a character cavalcade! There are LOADS of characters here.
The food in The Land Pavilion is fake
The 6-acre pavilion at EPCOT, The Land, is often a part of a huge EPCOT lie. This pavilion features massive greenhouses (some you can see through the Living With The Land ride) full of yummy vegetables and fruits. But some people think all of these plants — all this food — is fake! WHAT?!
And they are WRONG. Not only is this food VERY real — but Disney has innovated agricultural procedures here to grow this food. Did you know they still hold a few Guinness World Records for highest-yielding vegetable plants EVER? So all those tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, beans, cucumbers, and more are SO real that Disney uses this produce for creating yummy dishes at The Garden Grill and Sunshine Seasons, and MORE. Over 30 tons of produce are harvested from The Land every year. Not real? PSSH!
Today’s EPCOT is exactly what Walt Disney envisioned for the park
Sorry guys, but not by a longshot. For some reason, a lot of guests are complaining about the changes happening at EPCOT right now because they think Imagineers are messing with Walt Disney’s initial concept of what he wanted for the park. But even the opening day version of EPCOT wasn’t completely up to snuff with what he’d originally imagined. Not even close, really. Walt originally wanted EPCOT to be its own little city of tomorrow where people actually worked AND lived.
It was an actual CITY. You lived in one part, there was sophisticated transportation to bring you to the center to work. The idea was real people would live in this experimental city (ever wonder why EPCOT stood for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow?!) for a set period of time, work, live, then new folks would swap out. If you’ve been to EPCOT, you’ll notice that its only permanent residents are the wildlife that resides there (ahem…ducks, birds, and squirrels, mostly!). Here’s what happened — after Walt died just after he came up with the pitch for EPCOT, the Disney company decided that a city was a little too ambitious of a project and went for the theme park approach. BUT some of Walt’s original ideas are still there, including dining areas inclusive of different cultures (AKA World Showcase).
Want to see Walt’s ORIGINAL vision for EPCOT? You still can. But not where you think — you’ve gotta hop on the PeopleMover in Magic Kingdom. Here, Walt’s original design of Progress City, what would become EPCOT Center, lives to this day.
The bottom line was Walt was all about innovation and changing to meet the ever-changing needs of our world. Would the EPCOT of today be something he liked? We can’t say for sure. It’s sure not what he set out to create, but we still think it’s pretty special.
It’s the geographic center of Disney World resort
OK, whereo n earth did this one come from?? We’re not sure why people believe that EPCOT sits in the geographical center of Disney World, but this is kind of an old urban legend that turns out not to be true, although it might have been true once. In Future World going towards World Showcase, the original EPCOT logo is embedded in the pavement — it’s five intertwined circles surrounding a globe. Many believe the globe is the center of Disney World.
It IS likely that this may have once been the center of Disney World, but Disney World has expanded a great deal since then, and if you look at Disney World on a Map, it looks like the geographical center is just outside EPCOT now, which, hey, is pretty close!
Nothing ever changes at EPCOT and it’s been the same FOREVER
So of all the lies people tell about EPCOT, this one is a HUGE myth we can EASILY debunk. Although EPCOT never seems to change, it’s like other parks at Disney World — it’s always changing, including recently. Ask a diehard OG EPCOT Center fan (raises hand) and you’ll see what we mean. Horizons? Gone. World of Motion? Gone. Communicore? Gone. The list goes on and on. We’ve seen new attractions added — like Frozen Ever After and Test Track. But right now, the park is undergoing some MASSIVE changes, with two new upcoming attractions and an expanded France Pavilion.
And if you haven’t paid attention, the entrance looks COMPLETELY different now — there’s a new fountain in front of Spaceship Earth, for example. There’s also new lighting in the area! There is SO much construction going on at EPCOT right now with old buildings being torn down and new ones being built. Right now we’re basically watching the ORIGINAL EPCOT, the EPCOT of the 80s, evolve. It’s shedding that 80s colored skin it held on to for a long time and growing into the new version of what the future means. And that’s kind of the point! So yeah, EPCOT is changing even more now than ever!
So don’t believe everything you hear about EPCOT — because some of those things you’re hearing might be lies. Visit the park for yourself — we bet it’s going to exceed many of your expectations.
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What’s the biggest lie you’ve ever heard about EPCOT? Let us know in the comments!