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Thread: Need Epcot Help

  1. #1

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    Arrow Need Epcot Help

    A few weeks ago I asked what one park I should visit for a one day visit. I really appreciated the answers I got and hope I can get some more help from the experts here.

    I will be in Orlando from the 26th 30th and will be visiting the parks for two days during that time. So here are my plans and questions:

    I will spend one full day at Epcot either Friday or Saturday. My first question is there any real difference in crowds for these two days? Everybody who I have talked to says there is no real difference since WDW pulls mostly out-of-towners as opposed to DL where the weekends are much more busy thanks to the locals with the cheapo passes (I am one of those lol). If there is a real difference between the crowds on these two days I will of course want to go the less busy day.

    What should I not miss? I want to see all the things people usually miss that I would have no idea about as a first time adult visitor. I would like to try out the Biergarten Restaurant, is it any good? Should I skip this? Where would you suggest I eat? I see the International Food and Wine Festival will also be going on and it looks like they serve snacks for a few bucks? I can eat a good amount of food, and I will be there all day so a full meal and some snacks will not be a problem for me. What should my plan of attack be? What rides should I do first?

    On Sunday I will be parkhopping between the MagicalKingdom and the MagicalKingdom. I do not think I will have the time to see all the ins-and-outs of the parks since I will be with my work supervisor (this is a work trip) and he is a frequent WDW visitor and his goal will be to ride as many rides as possible. BUT I still want to know some of the cool things to check out. One of the things we were trying to figure out was where to eat. We will be going to Animal Kingdom when it opens and will head over to MK at an unknown time. So where would be a good place for us to eat in either park?

    Thanks in advance for the help!

  2. #2

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    I'm thinking you meant that you would be hopping between the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. You might want to clarify that.

    Pick up a copy of the Unoffical Guide to the WDW and that has plans to hit the major attractions fairly quickly and that should help for the big stuff.

    As for the out of the way attractions? You have a great opportunity in the food and wine festival. The main complaint I'm hearing is that the food portions are pretty small for what you are paying. Still, look at the menus prior to leaving and get an idea of what you would like to try. I love the World Showcase and that's where I like to mill and find those details. Even just talking to the staff in those locales is fun and facinating.

    There are a ton of 'hands-on' items in "Innoventions" (much better than the DL version). Yeah, it's still a basic trade show, but we've found, after the crowds get too big--these air conditioned buildings offer a reprieve. Go in, play some games, learn about stuff, go across to the other side and do it again. And basically, you've earned your ticket price to EPCOT. Journey into Imagination also has a 'playground' of sorts at it's exit. That's those out of the way places that most tend to run past to get into the next line.

    Check out "Club Cool" sponsored by Coke. I've never encountered a line there. IF everything is working, that is.

    As for crowds? You're right, because of the size of the park--it's sometimes hard to predict. You'll find the size of the crowds is pretty much steady throughout the year. I've felt that it doesn't flux like it does at DL. So, accept it and you'll be fine.

    I hope this helps.

    Take pics and report back!

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  3. #3

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    The whole 'local vs out-of-towner' doesn't apply as much in Epcot during the F&W Fest! The weekends are more crowded (as are evenings) because locals will come to the festival. I'm not sure if Friday's are MUCH better than Saturdays, though.

    Check out allearsnet.com for the full list of food sold at the various booths to really get your mouth watering! If you can handle the attraction, even though it's far from a thing a first-time-visitor would miss, I would highly recommend Mission:Space. Expedition Everest in AK is another one. In AK, particularly if you're there before the gates open, look for Wes Palm outside the gates after the bag check.

    See if you can talk your supervisor into Mickey's Philharmagic in the MK - Best 3-D+ Disney's done (and there's rumors about it replacing Muppets, so you could impress all your DL friends if it does!)

    Regarding eating in AK or MK - Flame Tree BBQ or Tusker house are probably the two most 'not normal park eating' there. There are no Table Service locations in AK. In MK, I like Columbia Harbour House for a change of pace (if you don't like your entree salad drowned, ask for the dressing on the side), or Pecos Bills for a great topping bar for a burger.

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    Most of the rides at EPCOT are in the Future World section (the front part of the park when you enter) so once you are done with the rides you can move on to World Showcase. Also, if memory serves me, World Showcase opens up an hour later than Future World.

    I would suggest hitting Mission:Space and Test Track (in that order) once the park opens. Being a DL pro, you could probably skip Soarin. Even though hitting Spaceship Earth at the beginning is tempting, skip it. Most folks head straight for that at park opening since it's the first ride, so the lines tend to be long. Save it for the end of the day or late afternoon when it's a walk-on.

    Then move on to World Showcase. This is the part of the park that takes the longest to enjoy. Even more so since you're going during the Food & Wine fest. I tend to agree that you do not get a lot of food for what you pay for at the various booths around the showcase, but look at it this way, it's a great opportunity to sample authentic food from countries you may not ever get the chance to visit. When we went last year we had a blast daring each other to try escargot (and I even liked it, much to my suprise).

    As for the restaurants... I've been to the Beirgarten and did not enjoy it as much as I thought I would. My personal favorite in EPCOT is Le Cellier (Canada). It's a steakhouse with great food and great atmosphere (try the cheddar cheese soup). My other picks would be Restaurant Marrakesh (Morocco) and Teppanyaki (Japan). I've heard (but never tried) that the fish & chips at the Rose & Crown pub (UK) are wonderful as well.

    With all the booths at the Food & Wine fest, you may just be too stuffed by the time dinner rolls around.
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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Roo719 View Post
    I'm thinking you meant that you would be hopping between the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. You might want to clarify that.
    On Fri or Sat I will be at Epcot all day and Sunday I am either going to upgrade to a hopper or just get another ticket so we can hop between MK and AK. I hope a full day at Epcot will be enough.

    Drince88 you bring up a good point about the food and wine fest may draw locals on the wekends - but if I do go on Sat I hope they just eat and drink and skip the rides

    I just thought of this - since I will be on my own is ther any single rider lines I can take advantage of in Epcot?

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    Quote Originally Posted by SoCalDude View Post

    I just thought of this - since I will be on my own is ther any single rider lines I can take advantage of in Epcot?
    Test Track has a single rider line.

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    If they're playing, definitely check out Off Kilter. They're a great celtic rock band that plays at the Canada pavillion in World Showcase.

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    A Disneylander's guide to Epcot Future World:

    Future World is more or less the "face" of Epcot and is/was eerily reminiscant of Walt-era "let's teach you something" Tomorrowland, although with bigger budgets and slightly less creative dreams.

    Obviously, you should hit Spaceship Earth, but do it around lunchtime because it's busy in the mornings. A bit dry for some, a bit too insincere for others, it's presentation is utterly Walt-like and should be witnessed regardless.

    Skip Ellen's Energy Adventure, as it's high point is riding through a bigger Grand Canyon diorama.

    Mission: Space is a mission to mars on steroids. If you're concerned about the health risks (and there's a possibility you should be), then go with the green line for a ride that's akin to Star Tours. If you go in the orange line, you'll get hit with the ride's G-force effects. G-Forces on M:S are identical to the Gs felt during the banked turns in DL's Space Mountain, however, on MS they are constant and don't let up for quite a while.

    Test Track has a single rider line. Make use of it.

    The No-Longer-Living Seas is opening up a Nemo ride that should give you a glimpse of DL's upcoming sub ride. If it's running, DO IT and make everyone jealous.

    The Land has a number of attractions but Living With The Land is the only one you should bother with. A taste of classic Epcot and appropriate for a food festival.

    Imagination! Oy!

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    Quote Originally Posted by SoCalDude View Post
    A few weeks ago I asked what one park I should visit for a one day visit. I really appreciated the answers I got and hope I can get some more help from the experts here.

    I will be in Orlando from the 26th 30th and will be visiting the parks for two days during that time. So here are my plans and questions:

    I will spend one full day at Epcot either Friday or Saturday. My first question is there any real difference in crowds for these two days? Everybody who I have talked to says there is no real difference since WDW pulls mostly out-of-towners as opposed to DL where the weekends are much more busy thanks to the locals with the cheapo passes (I am one of those lol). If there is a real difference between the crowds on these two days I will of course want to go the less busy day.

    What should I not miss? I want to see all the things people usually miss that I would have no idea about as a first time adult visitor. I would like to try out the Biergarten Restaurant, is it any good? Should I skip this? Where would you suggest I eat? I see the International Food and Wine Festival will also be going on and it looks like they serve snacks for a few bucks? I can eat a good amount of food, and I will be there all day so a full meal and some snacks will not be a problem for me. What should my plan of attack be? What rides should I do first?

    On Sunday I will be parkhopping between the MagicalKingdom and the MagicalKingdom. I do not think I will have the time to see all the ins-and-outs of the parks since I will be with my work supervisor (this is a work trip) and he is a frequent WDW visitor and his goal will be to ride as many rides as possible. BUT I still want to know some of the cool things to check out. One of the things we were trying to figure out was where to eat. We will be going to Animal Kingdom when it opens and will head over to MK at an unknown time. So where would be a good place for us to eat in either park?

    Thanks in advance for the help!

    It all depends on what you like as to what you should not miss. For me, for one day, I would skip Future World and head for the World Showcase.

    As for the Biergarten Restaurant, I have friends who like it, but it is not my taste. For a meal and show I prefer the Morocca and reataurant Marakesh for a show.

    If you like rides,

    Test Track and Mission Space are pretty intense. Spaceship Earth is like nothing else in Disney, I like it, but it is not a thrill ride. (Side note, I remember hearing someone asking a CM about the Roller Coaster inside Space Ship Earth [not a coaster, a slow moving omnimover type ride] Funny stuff)

    Other Future world attractions worth a look are the Universe of Energy and Living With The Land and Journey into Imagianation.

    If you only have one day, I suggest you get a good book and read up on all that is there. It will help you make desisions.

    IHTH

    CU@DL

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    I agree that the Biergarten would not be my first choice. You're also going to have a hard time getting into the more popular restaurants, which have been booking reservations for the past 6 months. I'd call 407 WDW-DINE and find out which restaurant you can still get into. Possibly Alfredo's in Italy or Marrakesh in Morocco, which don't always book solid. Don't even think of trying to walk up and get a seat. Many will be totally booked, and even if you can get a walkup you'd be looking at up to a 2 hour wait.

    You can eat a fine meal at the Food & Wine Festival. It's not entirely accurate to call what they serve snacks. At the Canada pavilion you can get a nice small piece of Vancouver smoked salmon on a bed of arugula with sweet corn. Really tasty, and maybe 5 or 6 bites. Then move on to Ireland and get a small cup of their tasty beef stew. By the time you're halfway around the World Showcase you'll be stuffed - trust me!

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    If a restaurant you want is booked with reservations, I would try to go there for lunch right when it opens. We did this with Le Cellier and got in with no wait last August. I've always liked the Biergarten when I've gone there. The atmosphere is good and the entertainment is fun. If you have trouble getting reservations, I'd hit there for lunch when the restaurant opens, and then either get the snacks for dinner, or go over to the Beach Club or Boardwalk to Cape May Cafe, Big River Grille, Beaches & Cream or something like that.

    At EPCOT, I'd go to Test Track and Mission: Space first, then head over to the Land and get fastpasses for Soarin', ride Living with the Land, then go to the Seas and see if Nemo is running and do that and Turtle Talk if you can. The other things I would not miss there would be Spaceship Earth (but later in the day when the lines go down), Maelstrom, the American Adventure and Impresions de France, which is my favorite film at EPCOT. If time permits, I'd also do Journey into Imagination with Figment and Ellen's Energy Adventure.

    In Animal Kingdom, you should hit Everest when it opens, and I'd make sure to ride Dinosaur, Kilimanjaro Safaris, and Primeval Whirl. See the Festival of the Lion King show. The Maharajah Jungle Trek and Pangani Forest Trail are both good too. If you do lunch there, Tusker House is good and I've heard good things about Flame Tree BBQ. You should also consider Boma for breakfast at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. They open at 7:30. At the Magic Kingdom, I'd recommend most of the rides, but I'd make sure to see Mickey's PhilHarmagic, the original Country Bear Jamboree, Carousel of Progress, Tomorrowland Transit Authority (aka Peoplemover), and see the Spectromagic parade. There are more attractions that use Fastpass there than at Disneyland so take advantage of that. As far as dinner goes in the Magic Kingdom, Tony's Town Square is good, I've heard good things about Liberty Tree Tavern. I'd avoid Cinderella's for dinner, the food I had there was awful. You can also head to a nearby hotel for dinner at Ohana or Chef Mickey's.

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    For what it's worth, IMHO Das Biergarten does do a reasonabe version of what
    you find in Munich (and yes, I've been in Munich during Oktoberfest).

    So if you like German food, then you'll probably enjoy it.

    Other restaurants worth trying IMHO are: Cellier (already mentioned), Cafe and Bistro
    (France), Alfredo, and Marrakesh (also mentioned). Rose *does* have pretty
    good Fish & Chips! San Angel lnn has a very nice (romantic) ambience...

    Basically, you can't really go too wrong w/ the Restaurants in the Showcase.
    I don't really like Nine Dragons but living in the Bay area, we're super spoiled
    re: Chinese food. Similarly for Japanese food.

    Does Askenhaus serve Norwegian food? I see that it's a Character Dining place.
    I liked that place! (only got to eat there once...)

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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    EPCOT: I can't suggest much more than everyone else has already. The advice given for attractions is about what I would have told you. Living with the Land, Spaceship Eartha dn Test Track are some of my favorite attractions at WDW. For food, I would go with Rose & Crown or the Cafe in France. Both have great food. There is a walk up window for Fish & Chips & Beer in England as well.

    Animal Kingdom: Plan your attractions well so you don't have to criss cross the park as much. You could easily put on a mile an hour at that park. I would definitely eat at Flame Tree. Sit by the water looking out at Everest. Save some bread for the fish & turtles. They are a fun little part of AK.

    Magic Kingdom: Look at the attractions list before you go, figure out which attractions you want to experience that we don't have at DL. Skip Space Mountain if you can help it, it is the Matterhorn dark ride. Don't worry about the abomination that is Stitch's Great Escape - total waste of time. Take some time to lok at the murals in Cinderella Castle. Don't miss the Jungle Cruise! It is not the same as ours.

    Most of all, enjoy your trip!
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    Re: Need Epcot Help

    Like you I am a Disneyland local, I just went to Florida this August. It sounds like your supervisor will be kind of running the show, but a few things that a Disneyland person might enjoy...

    Suggest Mickey's Philharmagic in Fantasyland; their Splash Mountain is better at telling the story; Space Mountain, because it's so fabulously retro, as if you went back in time 20 years; Carousel of Progress, because we just don't get stuff like that in DL anymore. Eat a burger in Tomorrowland and see Sonny Eclipse. Possibly the Stitch ride also. I was crazy about the Peoplemover but that is only if you are a geek about it like me -- it's the first thing I went on.

    If there is any way you can do it, their Tower of Terror blows ours away. But that is at the Studios.

    I say anything at Animal Kingdom is marvelous. You'll probably do the Safari early in the morning, which would be smart.

    Dinner at Jiko, Animal Kingdom Lodge was excellent.

    For food, you are going to be pressed for time so it may be a matter of what is close, which your supervisor will know. In general their cheaper food was better than DL's so just enjoy whatever you get. I did not like their Village Haus food however.

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    Thumbs up Re: Need Epcot Help

    Wow - lots and lots of replies filled with good advice. Thanks! This is already a bunch of help that I was in need of.

    Ok, first up is the food lol. Looking at the posts I think I am going to ditch the idea of going to Biergarten for lunch. I have heard shaky things about it so I rather play it safe! So with that - I am a pure sucker for two things - prime rib and fish & chips. So with that I am looking at either Le Cellier Steakhouse or Rose & Crown. What can you tell me about the prime rib and the fish & chips at these two places? I like them both about the same, but prime rib would be more of a treat for me. Maybe a few snacks at the food & wine fest and a beer at Sommerfest

    As for the rides and attractions at Epcot I want to take in everything, even the ellen ride that everybody bashes lol. I am really excited about the Nemo ride and getting the peek at what DL is in for! From the posts already it seems like it is fun. And it is looking like Friday will be the day for the Epcot visit.

    And for the MK/AK day - ya my supervisor will be running the show that day (some things never change!). But I trust him as he has been to the parks every year for as long as I have known him. My only concern with that is things are going to be rushed and I will miss something. My main goals are doing the things I can not do at DL or are very different at DL. I can not even begin to tell you how excited I am knowing I will be ON the Peoplemover..... I get goosebumps just thinking about it (and no, I am not kidding!!)

    I appreciate all the tips so far - and am hungry for more!

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