Feelings on Epcot from the 2016 vs 2017 visits are very different. It’s still not our favorite park. Here are some thoughts I wrote up following our two… well, really just one and half days at Epcot in 2016.
First Epcot Day: April 10, 2016
The day started early when my daughter woke up at 6:30AM and slowed me down from getting myself and our park bag ready for the day. We eventually got breakfast and made our way to Epcot arriving around 9:30AM.
We needed a picture in front of Spaceship Earth but there was no one doing Photopass just yet. I took a few pictures of the kids and then a Cast Member from Sanitation was passing by and she took my FAVORITE family picture of the entire trip. It is featured above and is also the blog header photo. It’s still hanging up in my living room too. I just haven’t wanted to replace it with the updated photos. So pretty much just my favorite family picture. Period.
We went straight to the Character Spot to meet Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. As we got to Minnie my daughter stopped and turned her head. She didn’t say a word–not that she said many words at the point anyway. She just stood there. Then we realized she was trying to show Minnie her sparkly Minnie earrings. Minnie was, of course, flattered. She thought they were beautiful.
My husband and son had a FastPass+ coming up to ride Test Track. Off they went. My daughter and I just explored. We found a Photopass photographer to takes some pictures of us. Then she modeled by the Buzz, McQueen, and Mater Topiaries. We were still killing time and visited the playground where my husband and son met up with us. My son could not stop talking about Test Track. He took me on a guided tour of the ride. He was talking probably as fast as the ride carried him. I told him I’d ride with him when we returned to use our Rider Swap pass on Friday. Still, non-stop chatter about it.
We rode the Seas with Nemo. Instead of waiting for our FastPass+ time for Turtle Talk we just went standby. The kids didn’t want to sit away from us so we took a seat on the benches. Seeing Crush talking on the screen was fun for them. They laughed though I know they didn’t understand the jokes.
It was getting towards lunch time, but we needed to see Snow White. My daughter had worn her dress to match. A cute Old Navy tank sewn to a fabric skirt made by my mother-in-law. Simple and comfortable. We got to the line and the Cast Member said the line was cut off. When they say she’s there until 12:30PM it means that she’s leaving at 12:30PM not that you can line up until that. But she’ll be back later we were told.
Hmmm…. well we’re hungry and there’s nothing we’re going to do about meeting Snow White right now. We went on the hunt at some of the food booths set up for the Flower & Garden show and every place was “just putting it on.” I had hungry kids. We had pushed it a little too far. We grabbed some crackers from our park bag and prayed that would be enough until we got back to the hotel. It worked. We grabbed lunch at the food court and then the kids went crazy in the pool.
After a few hours we went back to Epcot. My son wanted to “see what’s inside the big ball.” So we went on Spaceship Earth. It had a 10 minute wait. So why not. Let’s go. While he didn’t understand it he was impressed and had lots of questions. I was impressed! Very, very impressed! Everything I had read online made it seem boring. It was anything but boring.
We tried to find Snow White. No luck. Tried to walk around the countries. The kids were underwhelmed with it. We had a dinner reservation to get to on the Boardwalk anyway.
I admit I used the MyDisneyExperience GPS to get me through International Gateway and to Trattoria al Forno on the Boardwalk. By the time they got their my daughter was asleep. We got a great seat on the patio and let her sleep the entire meal. We knew that we didn’t want head back to Epcot for Illuminations so our meal was very leisurely. About the time we were done we heard fireworks that sounded close. We caught a glimpse what we believed to be Hollywood Studio’s fireworks from outside the pool area of the Boardwalk Hotel.
Since we hadn’t gone back into Epcot we played the bus transfer game (more on transportation another time). The first bus that arrived was to Magic Kingdom. As we waited there for our bus back to Art of Animation went and saw more fireworks. My son LOVES fireworks. Two in one night made his day!
Second Epcot Day: April 15, 2016
Our second day is hard to call a “day.” After two days at Magic Kingdom I just wanted to go back there.
We had another Fastpass+ for Test Track, but still had our Rider Swap pass too. I wasn’t feeling it. My son had to ride again. He was still talking about it from five days ago. So my husband went with my son again for the FastPass+.
Immediately after they walked off the ride it was time to get moving to World Showcase. We HAD to find Snow White. As made our way we saw Belle was meeting. We had time. The kids wanted to see her and the line was short (and not cut off!) so we did that.
We brought the Snow White dress again to make a quick outfit change. It was still about 30 minutes early. So we chatted with a Photopass photographer in Germany to confirm her meeting time. He took a few family shots and then very kindly walked us to where Snow White would be meeting.
It was her first meeting of the day and we were first in line this time. There was no way we were going to miss her again. The temperature was a little warm so relaxing in the shade was nice. About 20 minutes later there she was! My little girl was thrilled! She ran to her! Snow White thought it was fun that they were twins.
We accomplished all we came to do. We weren’t interested in much more. Then there was another PhotoPass photographer in Italy so we took some more pictures. My daughter wanted to change her back to her shirt so we paused for a bathroom break. Tried leaving World Showcase again but why not stop at the Photopass on the bridge too. The photographer was too much fun. She took some really fun and silly pics of the kids. Mainly my son. He was loving every minute of it and the photographer was loving him.
And with that we were done with Epcot for our trip. It was just after 1PM. I whined a little about missing out on a full day at Magic Kingdom– especially while we were back at the hotel packing our suitcases for the next day’s departure. We spent the remainder of the day packing, relaxing, and at the resort’s pools.