Wild Ride!

So EPCOT and Animal Kingdom are actually my two least favorite parks, which is why I saved them for the end of this month. Let’s start with Epcot because it’s still better than Animal Kingdom.

So EPCOT is essentially made up of what I see as two parts: Future World and World Showcase. Future World has The Land and The Sea, where you can engage in Turtle Talk with Crush and go to a massive Aquarium or SOAR over California orange groves; it also has a bunch of science-based attractions like Mission: SPACE, Universe of Energy and Spaceship Earth! Spaceship Earth is the ride that’s inside the big EPCOT ball! Did you know that EPCOT stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow?

IMG_3006So that’s kind of cool, but not my favorite in the park. I really enjoy World Showcase, a huge circle of 11 different countries and their cultures! Every cast member that works in these countries/pavilions are straight from that land! I met a wonderful girl named Yi on a trip to Walmart and learned she works at the China Pavilion! The 11 countries in World Showcase are Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, the American Adventure, Japan, Morocco, France, the United Kingdom and Canada. While I absolutely love all the culture and how unique each country is, there’s not much to do except shop and eat. A few countries have (or had… RIP Maelstrom) rides, but my priority at World Showcase has always been to eat. The Flower and Garden Festival is happening at Epcot now as well, so I’m enjoying the new outdoor kitchens and pretty butterflies everywhere!

So Animal Kingdom…

It’s actually a really under-rated park! While there aren’t a lot of rides (Kilimanjaro Safari, Expedition Everest, DINOSAUR and Kali River Rapids about sum it up), it’s still a really cool park with lots to do! I would recommend getting fast passes for the rides throughout the day so you can stay and enjoy other things the parks have to offer without rushing from ride to ride! The Bug’s Life 3-D show in the Tree of Life is really cool, and you should definitely hang out around the Tree to see how many animals you can count (I’ve heard there’s upwards of 250 carved into the trunk!). There are habitats scattered around the park (I love looking at the porcupine on my way to work) and lots of meet-and-greets of characters you can’t see anywhere else! Pocahontas is always hanging out by the trails, Baloo and King Louie love Upcountry Landing, and Mickey and Minnie are always excited to meet fellow adventurers in between their treks of the hills of Mongolia and deserts of Africa!

Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures of myself in Animal Kingdom because the only times I’ve been there, I’ve been working until park close (which is a lot earlier than the other parks, so make sure you do Animal Kingdom in the morning!). But Animal Kingdom is a hidden gem with a huge new expansion coming in a few summers – fans of James Cameron’s Avatar should get excited! And Animal Kingdom’s pathways and floor are color coded, so you know what land you’re in!

EPCOT and Animal Kingdom are amazing, as are all Disney Parks. You will enjoy all the time you spend in Disney World, regardless of the park!

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