I want to thank Disney for hosting my family and me at the Walt Disney World® Resort where we spent a magical time filled with pixie dust.
We love visiting Epcot® and making wonderful family memories any time of the year. But depending on the season there are fantastic events and festivals that you can enjoy and that give you the opportunity to experience the park in a whole new way.
Epcot® International Flower & Garden Festival
Every spring, fun blooms at Epcot® as the park bursts with spring colors. With more than 100 magnificent topiaries featuring some of Disney’s favorite characters, farm-to-table food offerings and special events and entertainment the Epcot® International Flower & Garden Festival is one of our family’s favorite events. My kids are always in awe of the creative topiary displays. Magical to see in the daylight, the topiaries and gardens take on a whole new life as the gardens and living sculptures are illuminated during the night. Besides the topiaries there is also a wide array of themed gardens. There are butterfly gardens where you can observe countless species of beautiful butterflies as they flutter around bright colored flowers; a garden with a collection of Bonsai trees in the Japan Pavilion, to floating mini gardens and an exhibit with prehistoric plants at Future World.
The Outdoor Kitchens at the Epcot® International Flower & Garden Festival are a great way to introduce kids to healthy and delicious fresh foods. We always make a stop at the Jardin de Fiestas at the Mexico Pavilion, where you can enjoy favorite Mexican dishes like chiles rellenos and tres leches with cajeta. There are also many opportunities for kids and adults to learn about horticulture. At Nature Works Everywhere kids can learn how to create gardens for their schools that will filter water, improve the soil and provide wildlife habitats planting the seed for kids to get excited about gardening. You can also book special guided tours during the festival including the Gardens of the World tour where Walt Disney World® Resort horticulture experts share their inspiration for creating the beautiful gardens and topiaries and share with you some of their gardening tips and tricks.
Epcot® International Food & Wine Festival
The Epcot® International Food & Wine Festival takes place every fall; this year from August 31st through November 13th you can enjoy amazing food and wine while you dance to the tunes of fantastic live music performances. This year also marks Epcot®’s 35th Anniversary, so guests will find 35 international marketplace kiosks to celebration the occassion; the most kiosks the festival has ever had! You can explore the flavors of different countries and cultures by trying out tapas-sized portions of regional dishes as well as recommended wine and beer pairings. I love that you also have the opportunity to hone in your cooking skills by attending culinary demonstrations and seminars where you can get great tips and tricks from the pros, from creating recipes and mixology events to learning about wines and cheeses. Even if you don’t go to Epcot® during the festival, there are many special dining events at select Walt Disney World® Resort hotels that you can attend.
The Epcot® International Food & Wine Festival can be a great event to savor with kids. You can kick off your day by enjoying some of the great rides at Epcot® as the festival really starts to gear up during the afternoon and that way your children will be more willing to check out the Marketplace offerings with you. Children can take part in Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak Scavenger Hunt around World Showcase where they can help the cute little mouse from the Disney movie find all the ingredients for his signature dish Ratatouille. This is a great way for kids to have fun while parents explore the food and drink offerings. Kids can also get a Marketplace Passport and get stamps from all the Marketplace booths as they try out some of the many kid friendly and delicious dishes. Though many of the events and demonstrations are geared for adults, kids can also attend and if you have a child who are interested in cooking they’re sure to love it. Most of the seminars and demonstrations also have a table where kids can paint and be entertained. My daughter is a huge fan of ABC’s The CHEW, it’s her favorite show, and we are hoping they make a visit to the festival this year to film their show as they have in prior years.
Epcot® International Festival of the Arts
We are super excited about the all new Epcot® International Festival of the Arts which debuted this January. This festival brings together beautiful art, delicious food and amazing music. There were special themed food kiosks offering delicious and artistic dishes as well as the opportunity to delight your eyes with magical art creations. You also had the chance to participate in art workshops and witness the remarkable talent behind Disney magic through curated art exhibits and living art presentations. For music, the festival featured performances by current and former Disney Broadway stars, jazz ensembles and local choirs and marching bands. We can’t wait to go next year and experience it ourselves!
If you are planning on attending any of these amazing festivals at Epcot® make sure to plan and book in advance so you don’t miss any of the experiences and events you’re interested in.