Monday 9 October 2023

USA Day 8: EPCOT, Walt Disney World

We're headed to EPCOT, which stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, in Walt Disney World (WDW)! As mentioned in my previous post, I'll be using WDW terminologies in this post and if you need help understanding them, please consult experts on Google or YouTube! πŸ˜„ 

As we had done the day before, we logged onto our Disney World app just before 7am to book the virtual queue for the Guardians of the Galaxy ride (it does not have a physical queue). Thankfully, we secured our virtual queue (Group 20)! πŸ₯³

We left at 7.45am and took the complimentary shuttle bus to EPCOTAccording to many experts, paying for Genie+ was not necessary as EPCOT had significantly less guests than Magic Kingdom. Hence, we intended to monitor the Disney World app to plan our day.

We arrived at 8.20am and joined the queue to enter the park. The park officially opened at 9am but we had the privilege of 30-minute early park entry as Disney hotel guests. A cast member scanned our park and hotel key cards before allowing us in. Spaceship Earth is often the very first thing you'd see at EPCOT as it's the central feature (like the castles of all the Disneylands).

We wanted to take advantage of our early access to ride Remy's Ratatouille Adventure, which was known to have long wait times. It was a long walk from the entrance to the attraction located at the opposite end of the park! We realised on arrival that it was unfortunately not in operation yet! 😡

As we were contemplating our next steps, our virtual queue group was called and we had to ride it within 1 hour otherwise it would be forfeited! Hence, we made the very long walk back to where we came from to ride Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind.

The waiting areas and pre-ride show were amazing! The state-of-the-art effects made us feel like we had just walked onto the set of a Guardians movie! Super cool!

It was a dark thrill ride like Space Mountain, but the individual cars actually spin as you go up and down! It really felt like we were flying through space! It was definitely more thrilling than Space Mountain!

Although I loved the Marvel rides at Hong Kong Disneyland, they pale in comparison to Cosmic Rewind! You'd really need to ride it for yourself to understand what I mean! 🀩

World Nature

We walked over to World Nature to ride The Seas with Nemo & Friends as the app showed a relatively shorter wait time.

It was a similar concept as Under the Sea The Journey of the Little Mermaid but simpler. The ride featured images of Nemo and friends being projected onto the background of a real aquarium. You'd arrive at the viewing gallery of these aquariums at the end of the ride.

We quickly joined the next session for Turtle Talk with Crush as it was about to start (great timing)! Audience members get to interact with Crush by asking him questions and answering his! 

I love this! So much that I watched a lot of Turtle Talk videos posted by various guests on Instagram, just to see how he reacts in each session! Some are really hilarious! πŸ˜†


As you know, EPCOT also featured the World Showcase of 11 country pavilions. Our first stop was Mexico.

There was a boat ride here but we didn't ride it as I had mistakenly thought that it was a performance instead! Oh well πŸ˜…


We skipped Norway and headed straight to China as we were hungry and looking for Asian food.

The architecture was quite close to the real thing! It's pretty impressive!

We happened to be at the Pagoda where Mulan was meeting with guests so we joined the queue. We were the only adults without kids in the queue but who cares?! πŸ˜„

One more to add to my 'collection' of photos with princesses! 🀭

We had lunch at Lotus Blossom Cafe when it finally opened.

Food was ok but I enjoyed it because it reminded me of home (albeit with some American influence πŸ˜…).


We headed to the Royal Sommerhus to meet Anna & Elsa as the queue was relatively short.

The cast member at the entrance was probably not accustomed to adults wanting to take pictures with characters and thought it necessary to inform us that "this is the queue to take pictures with Anna and Elsa!" We nodded πŸ˜„

Once again we were the only adults with no kids in the queue. Even the kids looked at us quizzically at one point. I felt no embarrassment whatsoever though! I had so much fun taking photos of the beautiful queuing area! Love the attention to detail! 😍

Elsa gave us a brief look of surprise but did not break character when she interacted with us. I gave her the most excited smile! Maybe too excited... πŸ€­πŸ˜…

This brought my 'collection' to a total of 9 Disney Princesses! I've previously met Ariel, Cinderella and Rapunzel, Aurora and Snow White and Moana! πŸ˜„

Too bad my girls, who were big Frozen fans, could not experience this with me! I'll try to bring them to the newly opened Arendelle in Hong Kong Disneyland next time.

There were smaller booths featuring food from countries not in the main 11 countries, like India and Kenya, as EPCOT was also celebrating the International Food & Wine Festival.

It's the only time that alcohol is allowed in Disney parks! Hubby would have enjoyed this; he loves food and wine! πŸ˜„


The 'Twin' tried a frozen rosΓ© and enjoyed it while the band played.

I love the architecture and mainland featuring beautiful trains! I hope to visit Germany (and Norway too!) one day but until then, this is good for now 😬


I recognised Venice immediately as I had visited it for my honeymoon. The replica reminded me of Shen Zhen's Window of the World as well.

Restaurants and shops here were crowded so we decided to continue exploring.

The American Adventure

Seems only right to have a pavillion featuring the host country πŸ˜„ 


As we were nearing Japan, I realised that Remy's Ratatouille Adventure had started operations and the wait time was 40 minutes! We walked over quickly and joined the queue.

However, the queue was slow-moving due to multiple delays. To make matters worse, our feet ached from all the walking since morning! Standing in line was super grueling! After waiting for 70 minutes, it was finally our turn to ride!

The ride was good for its age but its technology has long been superseded by other newer rides. It was still a classic worth riding 😊

By now, our feet were super sore from covering the entire EPCOT by foot and standing in line. EPCOT was also way bigger than expected due to a large body of water in the middle of the park, known as World Showcase Lagoon, that could not be crossed as there were no boats in operation that day. In addition, there weren't trains to transport people like in Magic Kingdom.

To rest our feet, we boarded the Disney Skyliner to see Disney World from the skies. It's complimentary! 😊

Midday was the best time to ride the Skyliner as there were no crowds. The peak periods were during park opening and closing as many guests use the Skyliner to travel to the parks and back to their hotels.

United Kingdom

We arrived back in EPCOT and bought a drink at the UK pavillion.

We found a good spot to have our packed salads for tea break. When my feet finally felt good enough to walk again (I know, I felt like an 80-year-old grandma!), we walked to Journey Into Imagination with Figment as the wait time was relatively short.

We had no idea who Figment was at the time and I later found out that he was the mascot for EPCOT! We went into the ride with zero expectations and actually enjoyed it! 😊

We saw that Soarin' Over California had a short wait time and headed over to join the queue. 

Unfortunately, the ride malfunctioned, which led to delays and a longer wait time than expected. We decided to sit on the floor and continue waiting since we needed somewhere to rest our feet. Thankfully we didn't have to wait too long before we were on the ride! The ride was basically theatre seats that lifted you close to an omnitheatre-like screen and swung you left and right to create the illusion of flight. It was an unique experience that I've never had before! πŸ˜„

As it was getting late, we finally joined the queue for Frozen Ever After, even though the wait time was 65 minutes! It was one of our must-rides that we couldn't miss!

Standing in line was very painful for our poor, aching feet as there were few opportunities for us to sit. We had to endure until it was finally our turn to ride! Hooray!

I love the effects! It was a great ride! It should be similar to the ride in Hong Kong Disneyland (from the videos I've seen), so hopefully my girls would get a chance to ride this if we ever visit Hong Kong again 😁

We initially planned to walk to Japan for dinner but seeing as it was located diagonally across from where we were, we were too tired to make the long walk! Besides, we've both visited the actual Japan many times! πŸ˜…

We decided instead to get noodles from one of the food carts for dinner. We also found a good spot to have our dinner and prepare for the fireworks that would be starting in an hour. I found it interesting that the fireworks would start at 9pm even though the park's official closing time was also 9pm! Looks like WDW was not strict about their opening or closing hours! πŸ˜…

At 9pm sharp, we watched the EPCOT Forever fireworks! πŸŽ†

As the fireworks were displayed above World Showcase Lagoon, everyone had an unobstructed view! It was great!

At the end of the fireworks, while everyone was streaming out of the park, we headed to the Disney Shops to buy some souvenirs before we left!

I should have taken more pictures of the brightly lit Spaceship Earth! Super beautiful!

There was a queue to board our bus but thankfully it wasn't long.

We arrived back in our room before midnight! It was another fruitful day! πŸ˜„


P.S: Want more Disney? Here's the full list of my experiences at Disney parks around the world:

Continue to >> USA Day 9: Aventura Hotel & Universal Orlando Resort
<< Back to USA Day 7: Magic Kingdom, Disney World


Visit MADPSYCHMUM TRAVELS for the rest of my posts on Lexington & Orlando, United States of America as well as other travel itineraries

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