Review of "EPCOT"
Thanks to everyone for the Es, always appreciated even if I haven't had the chance to thank you. Also write under the same name elsewhere.
EPCOT (Experimental Proto-type Community of Tomorrow) at Walt Disney World Florida is split into two areas. Future World is first as you enter the park and then World Showcase.
Future WorldEntrance to EPCOT is dominated by the shiny orb that is the Spaceship Earth. It stands 51metres high and can be seen from most of the park. The ride that is housed inside has been completely re-invented since its original opening and was relaunched last year. Passengers travel in a time capsule that takes them along a journey discovering the progress of communication and technology. This is now an interactive experience and you get to design yourself into predictions of the future which is quite fun.
Future World houses several interactive exhibits that allow use of technology to make music, photographs and to send enhanced e-mails to friends and family. It is worth taking a note of friends e-mail addresses with you and they will be able to see what a fantastic time you are having. The area also contains some fantastic rides.EPCOT is the home to what was until recently the largest single tank aquarium in the world. There are lots of fish to observe and there are also educational exhibits for everyone to enjoy. After watching the fish then its time to visit Turtle Talk with Crush, this is a brilliant interactive experience involving the character from Finding Nemo. Children ask the animated film questions and they are answered by the character on screen. My children have both thoroughly enjoyed this and were delighted to be chosen to ask Crush a question. This area also houses a pleasant little ride through the” sea with Nemo and friends” where you get to have a much needed sit down.
Soarin’ is EPCOTs newest attraction and this ride lifts you 40ft in the air before giving you a birds-eye view of California. You feel like you are flying as the film moves and you are bombarded with the aromas of the places you visit. In the same building you will find the boat to take you through the greenhouses to see experimental work to increase crop production and there is also a film about conserving the planet, presented by the characters from the Lion king this is not as dry as it sounds.Test Track is probably the most well known of EPCOTs rides. You are strapped into a car that does a lap of various test road conditions such as extreme heat and cold and you are then thrown out to 97km/h around an outside track. This ride is exhilarating and also great fun as there are several near-misses along the way that have you screaming. I have ridden this about 20 times and I still jump at the potential collision. The cars seat 6 people so there is usually a single rider queue that moves quite quickly. The Fast Passes for this ride often run out very early in the day so if you want to ride it is worth getting there early, unfortunately this ride has the worst reliability of any ride in WDW and regularly breaks down, it is still worth doing though!
Mission Space is housed in the most amazing looking building with an image of Mars outside. As you enter you take an Orange ticket for the extreme ride and a green ticket for the less extreme version. You enter capsules in teams of four and you are then held by a shoulder harness and the screens move towards you. You are then sent on a mission to Mars and you are all given buttons to press depending on the job you have been assigned. The ride works by centrifugal force making you struggle to reach in front. The sensation is fantastic and really makes you feel that you could be in a rocket. This ride was by far my favourite until we ended up being stuck in it for about 10 minutes before it would start. The claustrophobic conditions caused me to have my first ever panic attack as I couldn’t get out (or even see out) and I have not been able to get back on it since. My family still like to ride it though and I just sit in the sunshine and wait for them instead.There are also some very child-friendly attractions such as Honey, I Shrunk the Audience which was a 3D film has recently closed and was replaced by a very old Michael Jackson film (Captain EO) which is only temporary. Journey Into Imagination will take you through a carriage ride of brightly coloured room settings and talks about senses and imagination and you will alight with an annoying little song in your head that stays there for weeks! Ellens Energy Adventure takes nearly an hour so plan when to fit this into your day, this is great for late afternoon when your feet are very tired and a good long sit down is required. You are taken on a trip through history to discover all about energy, this is a pleasant experience and educational as well.
EPCOT is very different in appearance to the other parks. It looks very “concrete” and has lots of flower-beds and fountains. Some of the fountains are musical and are very impressive and there are also several that “jump” which children really enjoy. There are some very “Disney” characteristics though. In the main plaza you will find Pin-trading and an enormous Disney shop but this does sell many items that you will not see elsewhere in Disney. There is a character “meet and greet” area inside. Several years ago there used to be a bus which toured around with the characters which was great and I find the room a little clinical but it does mean that little ones can always find a character for their autograph books.Overall Future World has some great entertainment but is a large area and you will find yourselves criss-crossing the main area to get the most from your visit. There are time-boards around telling you the wait times at each attraction so it is wise to use these to save yourselves some walking. Once you have completed Future World you then get to go to the World Showcase.
This area is arranged around the World showcase lagoon and there are recreations of different countries. Each area has themed shops, restaurants, exhibits and sometimes rides or shows that relate to that area. It is an attractive place to walk around and also an educational experience for children and adults alike. Starting in a clockwise direction you will begin with:Mexico- An Inca inspired temple is home to a recreated night market, the atmosphere is brilliant and this is also where children can collect their mask. This mask is free and the children decorate it then in each country they visit they will be given a plastic ornament to hang off it. This gives them a great souvenir and for once at Disney it is something for nothing! There is a water ride in here that takes you on a musical journey through Mexico.
Norway- timber, Viking style structures welcome you to Norway which hosts a Viking Longboat ride. Once off the longboat you may want to make your way quickly to the exit doors or there is a 20minute film on Norway which is probably the most boring thing at EPCOT.China- decorative buildings abound here and there is often a Chinese acrobat display too. There is a 360 degree presentation of the Wall of china which is quite impressive even if it makes you a little dizzy!
Germany and Italy show recreations of town buildings and there is a pretend gondola harbour.USA- there is often a marching band here and a film show on the history of America. Opposite the USA is a concert area where well-known artists often play so check your map for details as you will need to arrive early if these appeal to you. There is a theatre show here as well which gives you a very rosey coloured account of the history of America!
Japan- peaceful gardens and buildings and a small recreation of the Terracotta soldiers.Morocco- another indoor market with lots of craft products to buy. It is worth exploring the other buildings to see the beautiful mosaic tiles.
France- a recreation of a Parisian street with the Eiffel Tower in the background. A beautiful patisserie can be found here too.United Kingdom- a chocolate box recreation of the UK with thatched timber buildings and a concert stand in the park. We have seen a great Beatles tribute act here whilst eating Fish and Chips.
Canada- native carvings and wooden buildings give the impression of a wilderness country.All area have various food options and some of the best dining in Disney is to be found at EPCOT but there are also plenty of fast food options if your budget is smaller. Exploring the small streets in each area is very absorbing and it can take several hours to make your way around them all. A lot of walking is involved as the lagoon is extremely large.
The firework show at EPCOT is shown every night at 9 p.m. . . . It is called Illuminations, Reflections of Earth and should not be missed. People start staking out the best vantage points at least an hour before it starts. We have found good viewing spots all around the lagoon and also by the bridge before you enter the World showcase. The only advice I would give is to look out for where the islands are in the lagoon and make sure they are not blocking your view. The globe appears near the UK part of the lagoon so try to be opposite that to get the best impression. The show consists of lasers, a huge LED globe and lots of fireworks. The lights are dimmed about 15 minutes before it starts and the atmosphere is electric.Once it finishes the park is closed so be prepared for a slow exit but you will be so exhausted you will not have the energy to run anyway!
Product Information : EPCOT
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Listed on Ciao since: 04/03/2006