While it would be great if you had multiple days to spend exploring each park at Walt Disney World we understand this often isn’t the reality. This guide is meant to help those who are planning a short trip and only have a day to spend at Epcot. So here is our suggestion on how to accomplish Epcot in just one day.
Epcot often gets a rap for only being suitable for adults, but come on this is Disney after all! While Epcot does have a lot of fantastic offerings for adults, people often overlook the kid’s adventures like Agent P and Frozen Ever After ride. Our touring plan for Epcot that we have below assumes that you are willing/able to ride all the attractions at Epcot. If you have young kids under 8 and don’t want to do child swap you may want to consider swapping out a big ride for Agent P’s adventure.
We want to make sure we also prepare you for a heavy walking day. Epcot is not exactly full of awesome shortcuts and you will, unfortunately, have to do some crisscrossing on your journey. You want to make sure you get a full night’s sleep before your day at Epcot as well as wear a good pair of walking shoes.
Suggested Fastpass reservations to prepare yourself is Frozen Ever After, Test Track, and Mission Space. Once you have used all those three Fastpasses don’t forget to check back and see if you can score an Illuminations Fastpass for that evening.
Arrive at Epcot Early
At a minimum, aim to arrive at Epcot for park open time listed. Ideally, you would arrive 30 minutes early to be at the front of the pack. Epcot will often let guests come into the park before it opens but you will be stopped just before Spaceship Earth.
Epcot in the Morning
As soon as Epcot opens up you will want to head straight for Soarin’. Most people are going to be heading over to Frozen Ever After. If you got your Fastpass ahead of time you shouldn’t have to worry about this. If you didn’t get a Frozen Fastpass you will want to adjust your plans and head straight to this.
Once you finish Soarin’ don’t forget to go for a spin on Living with the Land, one of my favorites. It’s a slow-moving boat ride that takes you through the backstage greenhouses at Epcot. The food they grow there is actually served in some of the restaurants at Epcot!
Next, it’s time to head to the other side of Epcot and travel to Space. If you are brave head to for the Orange line at Mission Space, if you are a chicken like me then ride the gentle experience that Green offers.
After Mission Space, it’s a perfect time to use your Fastpass for Test Track if you were able to schedule it for late morning. If not then the next best thing is to wait in the single rider line for Test Track. It normally runs way faster than the regular line but the bad news is your party will be separated and odds are you won’t even be seated in the same car.
Afternoon at Epcot
We recommend stopping in for lunch at Sunshine Season inside of the Land. They have multiple bays of different options one of which should work for everyone in your family.
Once you finish lunch head over to the seas building next door to get an up-close look at sea life. Inside the Seas Pavillion, you can take an adventure to find Nemo. Once off your vehicle, you can explore the different exhibits within including Manatees, Dolphins and Clownfish! I highly recommend having a chat with Crush at Turtle Talk with Crush.
Before you head back to the countries for an evening of fun, make sure you stop in the Imagination Pavillion next to the Land. Here you can Journey into the Imagination with Figment and also you can take a break and cool off at Disney and Pixar’s Short Film Festival. Now it’s time to enjoy all the countries represented at Epcot.
Evening at Epcot
First, let’s talk food, we recommend trying out one of Epcot’s many sit down dining options. In order to do so, I highly recommend getting a reservation 180 days in advance or as soon as you can. Our favorites at Epcot are Via Napoli, Teppan Edo, Le Cellier.
In order to take it easy on your feet pick to either start at Mexico and work your way around or start in Canada and go the other way around. I would base your decision on the time you got your Frozen Fastpass for. Make sure you travel on the boat ride in Mexico and stop in and watch the movies in China, France, and Canada. Many countries offer performers, who should not be missed. I love Sergio in France, the Voices of Liberty in America and The British Revolution in the United Kingdom (show times are posted in your times guide). If you have kids with you, I recommend stopping at each countries KidCot Spot to enjoy a cultural exchange and take a short break. These spots are well marked in each country.
Concluding your Day at Epcot
If you haven’t seen the Illuminations firework show at Epcot before you will want to stay until Epcot closes to see it. The show happens every night as long as the weather permits. For more information on where to sit for the show, you can read our Best Epcot Firework Viewing Locations guide.
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!
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