Disney with Little Ones: EPCOT or Not?

14559942_10102369409706024_6358262247775587500_oA trip to Disney World would not be complete for our family without visiting each of the 4 theme parks. However, time is a luxury and sometimes we may have to make a decision about which park to skip. I often hear that EPCOT is for adults, that kids are bored there, or that there’s nothing for families with young children to do. This just isn’t true – while we don’t typically spend more than one day there, we do enjoy a full day of activities and entertainment. 

Here are our top three reasons to visit EPCOT: 

1. We LOVE The Seas with Nemo and Friends. The ride is super cute, the line goes pretty quick, and it’s a fun experience, but we also love Turtle Talk with Crush – the interactive experience during which audience members get to ask questions and joke around with Crush & friends. The Nemo-themed attractions are fantastic, but even more, we are impressed and amazing by the 5.7 million gallon world-class aquarium. Guests will marvel at over 6,000 sea creatures and enjoy watching dives, feedings, and experiments. We could spend hours there…if there weren’t so much else to do!

2. Soarin’ Around the World – we haven’t had a chance to visit since the recent refurbishment, but we loved the original attraction. Kiddos just have to be 40″ tall (my kids were about 4 years old when they were tall enough to ride). This attraction is a flight simulator. The Walt Disney World website says it best: No mountain is too high. No landscape is too far. Whether you’re soaring above man-made marvels like the majestic Great Wall of China, cruising over natural sights like Iguazu Falls in South America or swooping past sailboats on Australia’s spectacular Sydney Harbour, this is your chance to experience the joy of hang gliding as you never have before.

3. The World Showcase & KIDCOT. As you travel around the world (showcase), your children can collect stamps from each country’s KIDCOT station. Kids can color a picture, get a stamp (think passport-type activity), learn how to say “hello” in many languages, and not to mention learn about and see a small glimpse of many different cultures. Along the way, there are many unique and fun character greetings that you cannot find anywhere else around the Walt Disney World Resort. 

One helpful tip I mustn’t forget to share – get there early! The World Showcase doesn’t open until 11 am. Spend the first couple of hours of your day checking out the front of the park before it gets crowded and then make your way back to the World Showcase in time for lunch. Circle back around and go to my favorite quick service dining spot – Sunshine Seasons in the Land building – one of the few places you can get your own free refills on soft drinks!

EPCOT has so much more to offer little ones than what I shared here – what are some other favorites for your family?

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Candice was raised in east Tennessee. While in college, her best friend dragged her to a Walt Disney World College Program recruiting session at the University of Tennessee and the rest is Disney history. In the Fall of 1999, Candice became a quick service food hostess for Sunset Ranch Market and Fantasmic at Disney-MGM Studios – or what is now known as Disney’s Hollywood Studios. While soaking up her time as a cast member, she met Ryan, a neighbor and a fellow college programmer who worked as a custodial host at Epcot. Four years later, Candice moved to the Midwest and married that boy from across the hall. They now live in Greenwood, Indiana with their two little boys. The Disney-loving foursome took their first family trip to The Happiest Place on Earth in 2013 and Candice is eagerly planning their return. Candice also works full-time at a community mental health center and enjoys taking photographs and blogging at Mommy in the Midwest.

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