Open at 11am every morning, the World Showcase takes guests around the globe to different countries, and lets them experience the culture and food.
Mexico has the giant marketplace and ride "Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros" inside its pyramid. Inside the small shops, you will also find La Princessa de Cristal, where you can find an in-house glass artisan who makes crowns, roses, slippers, and so much more.
Norway was the next stop in the Showcase, and has the ride "The Maelstrom", where guests board a 16-passenger, dragon-headed boat to explore the country. In addition to the ride, you should also check out the Stave Church Gallery (since only 30 remain in existence in Norway), and the shops for a look at Norway's history and uniqueness. Plus, stop by the Norway Tourism Desk and get a free guided tour of the pavillion and a crash course of the culture. It also has the Akershus Royal Banquet Hall restaurant where you can dine with Disney princesses for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Reservations is highly recommended for this restaurant. Also, if you look above the doorway and near the roof, you will see a faint circle drawn into the stone -- it's a hidden mickey!
Passing through the gates to China, guests are immediately welcomed into the serenity of this ancient land. The gardens and ponds are beautiful, and offer great photo opportunities. Inside the temple, you can see the "Reflections of China", a Circle-Vision 360 degree movie about the country in the air conditioned. Guests can also take pictures with Mulan at select times too.
Once stepping into Germany's square, guests feel like they are in a fairy-tale place. The memorable St. George, patron saint of soldiers, is seen in the middle. Try to make it here around noon and hear the glockenspiel chime a specifically made melody for the pavillion, and meet Snow White near the Wether's caramel shop. Be sure to make it to Sussigkeiten, a confectionary shop, if you want a treat. If you're hungry, make reservations for Biergarten where you can eat all you want and be apart of the show too.
Results 1-10of 10 Reviews
by Amber Autumn
August 7, 2011
From journal Having A Magical Time in Orlando
COUNTRY CLUB HILLS, Illinois
September 2, 2007
From journal Vacation in Orlando
LODI, New Jersey
November 11, 2005
It’s the best time for adults to relax and wind down after a long day in the sun. The World Showcase is almost empty at this hour, as most families and children have left for the evening. Have a late dinner in one of the many great restaurants in World Showcase. There are so many options for so many themes. If you'd like to drink and be in a party-type atmosphere, there’s Germany's Biergarten or United Kingdom’s Rose & Crown pub. For quieter, peaceful dinners, there’s Norway’s Royal Akershus Banquet Hall or Canada’s Le Cellier. Japan’s restaurants are very good but always seem more crowded and have a longer wait. Besides the eating and drinking, it’s just lovely to walk the streets and really look into the amazing detail Disney puts into its parks.
From journal End of the Summer in Walt Disney World
October 11, 2005
After lunch, I felt better and we decided to at least try to make it to America. We just walked past the countries in between, although the character bus was out so I stopped to take some pictures of Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Pluto. We finally made it to America for the American Adventure – what a great show!! Plus, with air- conditioning and chairs, what’s not to like?!
After the show, however, we were DONE with Epcot! We made our way back to England to exit through the World Showcase (stopping at the World Traveler shop for a magnet and postcards).
From journal Newbie Trip to Walt Disney World
May 23, 2005
Mexico: The interior of the pyramid is beautiful, and there are great gifts inside, but some I don't know if I would travel with (fragile).
Norway: The Maelstrom ride should be longer! It’s a great ride and I do recommend it. I do find it funny how it lets out into a Norwegian gift shop (just like Disney, as every ride lets out into a gift shop). Take a picture with the giant troll!
China: The area is slightly small, but they do have some very beautiful jewelry, tea sets, and a "street market." Try to catch the Chinese acrobats!
Germany: Oh dear, Lord, eat their fudge - you must do this - and the chocolate covered pretzels. Try the beer just to try it, but if you are a girlie girl like me and don't care for beer, ask for the lightest one, but if it tastes obscenely bitter, don't blame me.
Japan: They have great gift shops and even sell bonsai! There is beautiful scenery as well.
Morocco: I got a henna tattoo! However, it smells very strange (the pavilion, that is).
Italy: I love it. They have beautiful gifts, from Venetian masks to Italian wine, and the restaurant is lovely.
France: I noticed that the employees are slightly snotty, but I found this pavilion to be the most beautiful. Don't forget to catch the Living Statue!
England: Jolly ol' England – it’s so lovely with its Tudor-style architecture. You can find Winnie the Pooh here! Grab some fish-and-chips!
P.S. I think they definitely hire the most gorgeous people from each country to entice you into buying every useless gift possible.
From journal Spring Break in Orlando
Manchester, United Kingdom
May 20, 2005
World Showcase is made up of 12 host countries that consist of rides, attractions, restaurants, and shops, with the countries on offer including France, Morocco, the USA, Canada, the UK, Germany, Norway, Japan, Italy, and China, amongst others. Each pavilion, as they are known, offers a wide range of goods from their host countries.
Here are my top five places to shop at EPCOT:
1. The Japanese department store stocks a range of fantastic gifts, from kimonos to postcards, and you can even buy your own pearl as you watch the skilled staff extract it from its shell. The selection of high quality men’s and women’s clothing is also good, as is the selection of up-to-the-minute children’s toys
2. The French perfumery and art gallery are spectacular, although prices are much higher than you find in other parts of the US, but they do offer some nice samples.
3. The Germany shops start with a great wine cellar (only those 21 or over only are able to purchase and try the free samples) that offers a good selection of famous German wines, such as Blue Nun and Riesling, although I’m not sure how many people drink these anymore! Also, check out the Goebel pottery, with genuine artists, as well as the great range of glass ware and the Christmas shops selling great German snacks and Christmas decorations (try the German cake Stollen for a real treat!)
4. Norway offers some great snacks and treats, including genuine Daim bars, as well as warm winter clothing with a great selection of Helly Hansen and brightly coloured woolly jumpers (not like your granny knits, though!)
5. Finally, check out the Chinese marketplace with cheap and almost tacky souvenirs, but it’s worth a browse and a haggle, although haggling on prices doesn’t get you very far at Disney World!!
Points to note:
Shopping at EPCOT is not cheap, as the price of goods is quite a bit higher than you would usually pay in the country of origin. However, with the favourable exchange for Brits at the moment, this does help us somewhat. Disney World will happily arrange for worldwide shipping for you, as well as free shipping to you Disney hotel. It’s also a great experience, as you get to see some of the best souvenirs and products of countries and talk to the native staff who are knowledgeable and keen to engage you in the history and culture of their historic lands.
From journal Walt Disney World in Florida
August 12, 2003
From journal : Imagination, fantasy, magic - Walt Disney Worl
Elmhurst, New York
August 5, 2003
From journal A Week at Vistana Resort Orlando
November 21, 2002
From journal Christmas With The Mouse
Forest Park, Georgia
October 7, 2001
From journal Walt Disney World EPCOT