Are you one of those people who thinks you should skip Epcot when you have kids? DON’T! Epcot is incredibly kid-friendly (and adult friendly!) with so much to do and see that your little one’s will have a blast all day long.
I may have mentioned this before (like, a hundred times) but I hated Epcot as a kid.
- Magic Kingdom (duh, Princesses)
- Hollywood Studios (the Beauty and the Beast show was literally LIFE)
- …..and waaaayyyy down on the list?
Animal Kingdom didn’t open until 1998 so that park was never on my radar.
Epcot was one of those parks that my parents loved but I was bored to death. They used to have these mime’s in bubbles in France that my mom always wanted to go see and we had to sit there for what seemed like hours watching the “show”.
I was much more interested in meeting the Princesses and anything that took away from that was of no interest to 10 year old me.
And let me just say, I’m a delight in all those family photos from Epcot. For real. My tongue was sticking out or I had the most bored look on my face in all of them. I made my parents proud.
Now that I’m older I can appreciate Epcot in a different way. This probably has to do with all the food and drinks I can have but there’s other cool stuff too! And if we’re being honest, the park has definitely changed since 1997. There’s more stuff to do for younger and older kids PLUS there’s something for the parents too.
10 REASONS TO NOT SKIP EPCOT WHEN YOU HAVE KIDS
Meet and Greets
I honestly don’t remember if they had characters (specifically the Princesses) in their countries when I was a kid, but they do now! So if your kids are dying to see Aurora or Belle and weren’t able to catch them at the Magic Kingdom you can find them at Epcot. You can also meet Baymax and Joy & Sadness! It’ll be a simple way to keep the kids busy while you sip on your drink or eat yummy food.
Another favorite of ours is Spaceship Earth. It’s located inside the ‘giant ball’ that you see just inside the park entrance and is another slow and educational ride. This attraction takes you through the history of human communication and at the end you are able to choose your own future (which usually ends up pretty hilarious!).
While this ride may not be the first one you think of when you think of attractions for kids, it really is fun to go up inside the ball! That part is such a thrill for young kids!
The Sea with Nemo and Friends and Frozen Ever After are two of our favorite rides to go on at Epcot. Though Frozen is really hard to get Fastpasses for.
Now that they’re adding more character experiences to the parks it’s become a place for younger kids to enjoy too, where I never felt like it was before. There’s also Turtle Talk with Crush at the end of the Nemo ride which is really cute and fun for kids!
Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure
This one is probably best for older kids (and does require a smartphone) to play but you can also include the whole family. It’s a great way to see all the countries around the world and test out your spy skills to try to stop Dr. Doofenshmirtz from wreaking havoc! You can sign up for your mission here and then play with 9 people once you get to the park!
In each World Showcase Pavilion kids have the opportunity to meet an international Cast Member and decorate their own Duffy Bear Puppet (at no extra cost to you). Each kidcot station has a table and chairs with markers so that kids can decorate their Duffy any way they want. The Cast Member will also write the child’s name in their language or draw a fun symbol from their country on the back of the bear. They’ll also put the country’s stamp on the handle of the Duffy Bear Puppet (no need to buy a passport for that!).
Play in the Fountains
There are two fountains near the Futureworld Walkways (one in Futureworld West and one in Futureworld East) that children and adults can use to cool off on a hot day. The fountains outside of the Imagination Pavilion aren’t ground level but you can still stand under the jumping water and cool off with that!
Gran Fiesta Tour with the Three Caballeros
We love this ride! It’s located inside the Mexican Pavilion and it is the perfect place to catch Donald and his friends. You board a boat and travel past the Mayan Ruins and volcano to find Jose and Panchito looking for Donald. Donald gets in to a ton of mischief around Mexico as his friends look for him, and it’s always hilarious.
Advanced Training Lab
This area is attached to Mission Space and is a great spot for letting little kids run around in the AC while their parents sit off to the side to cool off. The play structure there is the perfect place for kids to explore and push buttons, and is even more awesome if your little one is obsessed with space!
Color Our World
We actually walked through this attraction on our last visit but we ended up not getting the chance to explore. The Inovations Pavilion in Futureworld you’ll find Colortopia, a group of exhibits that are all about color. I’ve heard the thing to do is Color Our World, where a Cast Member will give everyone in your group a paintbrush so you can paint a blank mural. Depending on what color you paint (say a truck) it’ll become different things. Painting it red makes it a firetruck, yellow a school bus, and etc. You have limited time to paint but you can email the mural to yourself once you’re done!
Living with the Land
I never thought I’d say this about an “educational” ride, but this is one of my favorites at Epcot. It’s something we do every single time we go! This ride is located in The Land Pavilion and takes you through Epcot’s greenhouses, showing you how fruits and vegetables are grown. There are also a lot of fun hidden Mickey’s throughout the greenhouse, so be on the lookout for those!
The boat ride is very similar to It’s A Small World, slow and gentle and is the perfect ride to get on so that you can get out of the hot Florida sun for a while.
Each Festival at Epcot throughout the year has special events, shows, and attractions to take part of. Find a guide map at the entrance to the park to see what is new and if there’s anything your kids will enjoy. At the Festival of the Arts this year they had a whole section of the sidewalk over by Ellen’s Energy Adventure reserved for kids to draw with chalk!
I really hope that your toddler grows up loving Epcot for all these reasons and more. I’d hate to think that their experience at the park would be similar to mine growing up, so try really make sure to do a lot of the kid-centered activities each time you go.
If you’re planning a trip with young kids, I’ve got a few more ideas to make the park days easy and stress-free!