EPCOT with a Toddler
We just returned from our second **Magical** trip (** is my electronic version of pixie dust:)) to Disney World with our 2 year old! We have often heard that Epcot isn’t a great park for a 2 year old, or that it is only a “half” day park with a tot in tow! While Epcot doesn’t offer quite the same level of experiences as Magic Kingdom for a 2 year old, it is still a fantastic FULL day park to be enjoyed with a toddler! Our daughter loves EPCOT! Here are our top things to enjoy in EPCOT:
1.) Character Experiences: EPCOT, in our opinion, has some of the best character meets! At the character spot in EPCOT you can meet Minnie, Mickey & the crew! You can also reserve a fast pass for this attraction so you do not have to wait for long with a little one. We waited all of 5 minutes, and were able to meet some of her favorite characters in one sweep! You can meet Anna & Elsa in Norway, Jasmine & Aladdin in Morocco, Mulan in China, Donald Duck in Mexico, Snow White in Germany, Princess Aurora & Belle in France, and Mary Poppins & Alice in The United Kingdom. We have found the lines are often shorter in EPCOT, and the characters are able to spend more time with the little ones!
There is also the fabulous princess dining experience at Akershus Royal Banquet Ball in Norway where you get to meet Belle upon entering, and then get visited table side by other princess who rotate in appearance. We loved this dining experience, and got to meet Aurora, Snow White, Cinderella, and Ariel in addition to Belle! We actually prefer this character dining experience to Cinderell’s Royal Table. Plus you are right next door to ride Frozen Ever After upon finishing dining. Having done both Akershus & Royal Table with a 2 year old, I will be reviewing and comparing both during my blog post next week so be sure to check back in! 🙂
2.) Kidcot & EPCOT Passport: This is a fantastic free program for little ones! In every country in The World Showcase there is a Kidcot area where your little one can get their EPCOT passport stamped. The cast members will write your child’s name in their native language as well as draw special surprises on their countries page for your little one! Our daughter loved finding the Kidcot area in each country, and kept asking “What country are we going to next?” It was so cute! Also, at each station there are activities. In Japan they were demonstrating how to make origami animals. In Norway they were coloring Olaf pictures with markers. They also will give your child a “Duffy the Bear” and they can color and decorate the bear along the way. The passport comes with a pin, and stickers. While we ate lunch, our daughter had fun finding each page the stickers went on!
3.) Visit During the Flower & Garden Festival: If you are able, I highly recommend visiting EPCOT during The Flower and Garden Festival which runs from February 28th thru May 28th. During this time EPCOT is stunningly beautiful. There are topiary displays, a butterfly garden, and interactive playgrounds. There is a special playground that is set up on the grass lawn adjacent to the walk way from The Land area to the World Showcase area. This was a fantastic area. Our daughter played, and we lounged under the covered umbrellas with our Dole Whips and Floats! (Which you must try if visiting Disney World by the way – pineapple flavored frozen soft serve ice cream or if you make it a float with pineapple juice!) The butterfly garden was also a hit! And at each country our daughter loved finding the topiary displays of her favorite characters. Also during this time, there are special food stall vendors that sell small plates which makes eating around the world so fun and cost efficient!
4.) The toy train: Besides Germany in EPCOT is the toy train display. This is a favorite of toddlers! It is a huge toy train that runs thru tracks of villages, displays, etc. It is fun to watch, and follow alongside!
5.) Splash Pads: If visiting during warmer months, pack a swimsuit and a change of clothes for little ones. On the main path from Future World to World Showcase there is an oval splash pad that is a hit for small ones!
6.) Innoventions: Visit Colortopia inside the Innoventions pavillon. This is so fun, and often overlooked! You dip your digital paintbrush in different colors, and then paint screens located around the room. When painting with each color different images appear! Kids can have free reign as it is all digital, and they can reach the screens independently!
7.) Sea Base: This is where The Seas with Nemo & Friends ride is located which is a great ride for little ones, but we particularly enjoy the aquariums located inside the sea base pavilion. This offers a great break from the sun, and is interactive and a big hit with little ones!
Enjoy EPCOT! Sending Pixie Dust your way 🙂 *****************