The NYC Traveler:
5 Reasons to Visit Epcot at Disney World
Not too long ago, Epcot was the educational but slightly boring park in Disney World family, appealing to tech geeks. That all changed in the late 1990's when attractions and festivals were introduced to bring in the crowds (and dollars).
EPCOT means Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. Walt Disney himself came up with the idea of building a residential community. After his death, it was decided to create a second theme park instead. The two sections of the part don't seem to match (futuristic, environmental and technology combined with the World's Fair theme), but Disney makes it work. Today's Epcot is not your parents' Epcot that opened in 1982.
So, to start, here are 5 reasons to visit Epcot:
1. What's with the golf ball? It's the spherical ride/exhibition, Spaceship Earth, an informative yet entertaining ride through humankind's history of communication from pre-historic days to an salute to the young pioneers of Silicon Valley. After the ride, you get to play with technology yourself.
2. You'll be under the sea in a huge aquarium after riding Finding Nemo. The Living Seas will introduce you to sea life complete with fish, eels, coral reefs and the real-life inspirations for Nemo, Dory, Crush and the rest of the cast. You can also enter the aquarium area through the gift shop.
3. Take a trip around the world in a few hours in the World Showcase, a replica of the World's Fair. Each pavilion represents a country's culture with exhibits, entertainment, rides, food and drinks along with authentic personnel on short-term contracts. For a milisecond, you will feel like you have stepped into a foreign land. If you have been there, you will appreciate the effort Disney does to bring you overseas. Where's the continent of Africa and representations of sub-Asia? You'll have to pay for a park-hopper ticket and go over to Animal Kingdom.
4. Get up and go: take trip by hang-gliding on Soarin Around the World (in The Land); save the planet in Relaunched! Mission: SPACE; try out a prototype car on Test Track; see a kitchen from a mouse's point of view on Remy's Ratatouille Adventure; and more.
5. Check out the very popular annual festivals: The International Flower and Garden Show, International Food and Wine Festival and International Festival of the Holidays (formerly the Holidays Around the World) and the International Festival of the Arts. Eat, drink and be merry with fine dining samplings, authentic cultural entertainment, special events and merchandise throughout both Future World and the World Showcase. Extra countries are often added to create a virtual cornucopia for the senses. You will need more than one day to experience it all. Ready to Book?
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