Thrifty Thursday: Pleasantly Surprised at Epcot

The Land pavilion inside Future World at Epcot is a busy place. At any given time, there is a great deal of activity inside The Land which houses The Garden Grill Restaurant, Sunshine Seasons Food Court, the Circle of Life attraction, character meet n greets, and the wildly popular attraction, Soarin’. In the back, right corner of the first floor of the pavilion, there is a lesser-known, but very impressive, attraction called Living with the Land. Lines are usually of acceptable length and due to the high capacity of this attraction, they usually move quickly.

I am not a studious person, but more of a fun-loving one. I would not forego a fun ride for an intellectual tour. For years, my family and I avoided Living with the Land because we didn’t want to miss out on fun rides in order to watch an agricultural film about growing plants. Several years ago, we went ahead and tried it. We were so pleasantly surprised at how interesting and enjoyable this ride was. It was a very nice surprise that has become a must-do on every trip now. If you have avoided this ride for the same reason, I hope you will give it a try during your next visit.

Living with the Land is a slow-moving boat voyage through living laboratories where scientists have teamed up with agencies such as NASA in order to develop many interesting methods and new technologies for growing healthy food in the most efficient and environmentally friendly way possible. On the 14-minute boat ride, you are introduced to several amazing greenhouses, as well as a fish farm. Some of the methods displayed during the ride are hydroponics, aeroponics and aquaculture. Especially interesting to me are the amounts they are able to grow in small spaces, methods that do not require soil, and ways in which to grow food in outer space.

The greenhouses are filled with different plants, vegetables and fruits, many of which include Mickey-shaped versions. There are tropical plants such as bananas, papayas and pineapples. Desert greenhouses boast huge pumpkins and melons. There is also an aeroponics greenhouse which displays plants hanging with their roots in the air accepting a fine mist of water and nutrients sprayed directly onto them. The aquaculture exhibit (fish farm) contains shrimp, catfish and alligators.

The scientists involved in this effort are extremely talented and innovative. Epcot visitors who want to learn more about these growing methods can take the “Behind the Seeds” tour which is a paid tour that is offered daily. The tour takes a more in-depth look at the methods covered during the Living with the Land ride.

Living with the Land was an unexpected surprise at Epcot. Give it a try; I bet you will be pleasantly surprised too! Best of all, it is FREE with your Epcot ticket!

Brenda is a native Texan born and raised on the Gulf Coast. She visited Disney World twice as a teenager and always dreamed of growing her family Disney. She took her first-timer husband and their three children to Disney World in 2000 and they now spend every Thanksgiving there. Brenda writes with a comedic twist on various Disney topics. She will be sharing tips she has learned during her travels and also hopes to enlighten people on little-known freebies that Disney has to offer. She wishes she could have met Walt Disney and considers herself to be a student of Walt. In parallel to his dream it is her wish that everyone would take at least one trip to Disney World in order to share in its magic with their families.

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2 Responses to Thrifty Thursday: Pleasantly Surprised at Epcot

  1. Kelly says:

    I am going to have to agree Brenda. We avoided this at all costs in fear we would learn something…hahaha. A few years back while much of the family went on Soarin’ my 8 month old(at the time) and I needed something to do. We went on it and I was very impressed. We also make it a part of our Disney trip. :0)

    Great post!!

    • Nancy says:

      To your point Kelly, I think most people tend to avoid it until “there is nothing else to do”…. I am convinced that the only reason a lot of people do this ride is because they don’t want to leave the Land pavilion while waiting for their Soarin’ fastpass return time. ;) But honestly, we love it (well DH and I do at least) and anyone that enjoys gardening, or the sciences will find it pretty interesting!

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