Before our selfish year trip, Disney’s Epcot was definitely our favorite Disney park. Now, it’s a tossup between Epcot and DisneySea in Tokyo for me. I need to visit DisneySea a few times to make that decision considering that we’ve been to Epcot probably dozens of times.
When we visited Orlando recently, we decided to stop by Epcot for old time’s sake. We love Epcot mostly due to the World Showcase, which is a permanent world’s fair containing 11 pavilions each representing a different country. The pavilions are all around a man-made lake that has a perimeter of 1.2 miles.
It’s a nice leisurely walk around the World’s Showcase, especially during the Food & Wine Festival, which is our favorite time of the year to visit Epcot. Aside from the 11 countries with permanent fixtures around the World Showcase, dozens of other countries have booths that sell appetizer sized snacks and booze as well. During Food & Wine, you can taste bulgogi from South Korea, lamb from New Zealand, hawker noodles from Singapore, spanakopita from Greece, etc. It’s a delicious and fun time.
Even when it’s not Food & Wine, we still love Epcot. Drinking around the world involves having a drink at each country. Mr. Selfish and I have never actually drank around the world during one visit at Epcot. This failure is not due to lack of trying but 11 drinks in one day is certainly too much for me. The following is a breakdown of what we love about each pavilion around the World Showcase.
Canada: Martin Short and Steaks
Mr. Selfish and I typically start at Canada. We enjoy the cheesy film about Canada starring Martin Short, as well as the delicious steaks and cheddar cheese soup from Le Cellier (the only restaurant in Canada).
United Kingdom: Beer and Fish & Chips
Mr. Selfish and I almost always have pints at the Rose & Crown in the UK. I must admit that even after our Guinness tour in Dublin, a pint of the Guinness at the Rose & Crown is actually quite good. On the other hand, the fish & chips don’t compare to the ones we had in the UK – although they are still the best you can get in Orlando.
France: Orange Slushy Drinks
Mr. Selfish and I didn’t discover the Grand Marnier, Rum, Grey Goose, and Orange slushy drink in France until right before we left Orlando. If you like orange slushy drinks, this will definitely be your thing. Although the Impressions de France is not the best film in Epcot, we still enjoy France for its ambiance and baked goods.
Morocco: The Architecture and the Market
Having been to Marrakech, we feel that the Morocco pavilion is quite well done. The buildings and tile work are on point, and the market area is reminiscent of the souks (minus the stray cats and intense bargaining). The two restaurants in Morocco are also worth visiting – although I feel that the fast food one is certainly a better bargain.
Japan: Curry, Udon, and Shopping
I always drag Mr. Selfish to the Mitsukoshi department store in Japan. The first time I visited, my family and I picked live pearls and made myself earrings. Although we have never done it again and I wouldn’t recommend it, it’s still fun to shop in the store. Mostly, Mr. Selfish and I just browse and then go eat fast food (typically udon and curry) at the restaurant. The higher end restaurant is also good but it is more expensive than other better Japanese restaurants in Orlando.
America: Sam Adams and Concerts
As you may have guessed, we have never really spent much time at the American pavilion. During Food & Wine, America usually has a big Sam Adams stand, from which we’ll buy cherry wheat or Oktoberfest. Otherwise, the only thing I’ve ever eaten in America was the funnel cake. We do enjoy the outdoor concert venue in America. We’ve rocked to Boyz II Men, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Richard Marx, Taylor Dayne, and Sugar Ray.
Italy: Venice, Rome, and Pizza
The Italian pavilion is quite well-done. You feel like you’re standing before miniature versions of the Doges Palace and the clock tower in Venice. They also have a smaller Trevi Fountain in the back. Although I don’t recommend the regular Italian restaurant, I do recommend the newer pizza restaurant. The ambiance is fun, and the pizzas aren’t too bad either.
Germany: Not Much to Do
The Germany pavilion only has a buffet, so we’ve never actually eaten there. You can enjoy some German beer and munch on a pretzel though. There is also the Karamell-Küche shop in the front for those with a sweet tooth.
China: Don’t Eat Here!
China is beautifully done. We love the replicas of the Temple of Heaven and the Lama Temple, both of which are lovely temples in Beijing. They even have a miniature set of the Terracotta Warriors from Xi’an. However, I wouldn’t recommend eating in China. We found the food to be the absolute worst in Epcot.
Norway: Riding Malestrom
Because Norway has another buffet, Mr. Selfish and I have never eaten there. We do, however, ride Malestrom almost every time we are at Epcot. It is a cheesy water boat ride with trolls. Need I say any more?
Mexico: Margaritas and Donald Duck
Mexico is always fun because you can drink a margarita and then ride Gran Fiesta, the hokey ride starring Donald Duck. Mexico has three restaurants, two high-ends and one fast food stand. I recommend La Hacienda de San Angel, which is the newer higher-end restaurant.
Epcot is the Disney park that is most oriented for adults. Where else can you transverse the globe with a drink in your hand? I would definitely recommend drinking around the world – even if it takes 2 or 3 trips!
Tomorrow, we’ll go over some of the other parts and rides in Epcot.