Epcot Center or Animal Kingdom?Walt Disney World: Need some input on Epcot Center. Or should we be going to Animal Kingdom instead?
From Bobbie VoegeliHeaded to WDW on Feb 2 for 4 days followed by a 4 day WDW cruise for some fun and relaxation! Was reading some of the reviews on Tripadvisor about Epcot Center and some are not favorable. Any input on Epcot? We were thinking Epcot over Animal Kingdom - good idea or bad? Help!
Posted January 18, 2011 at 11:39 PM
Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.
From Samantha McCraeI think it just really depends on what you like.....
Posted January 19, 2011 at 4:27 AM
If I HAD to choose to do one or the other, then i would pick Animal Kingdom - but can't you do both? :)
From Anthony MurphyWho is going?
Posted January 19, 2011 at 9:13 AM
If its mostly adults, I would say EPCOT
If you are there for four days, you might as well just "do it" and go to all four parks each day. You will have plenty of time to relax on the cruise ship and the day you go to AK can also be a relaxing day due to the park usuallly closing early.
Also, if you are staying at a Disney resort, take advantage of Magical Hours that lets you in the park earlier or stay later on certain nights!
From James RaoI would choose EPCOT over any US theme park.
Posted January 19, 2011 at 10:53 AM
From Randall PeekIt really is a matter of personal choice. If you are wanting the more traditional theme park, then AK is the right choice. It has fewer offerings than Epcot, but they fit into the traditional mold better, and has more thrills. It also is much more kid-friendly.
Posted January 19, 2011 at 3:20 PM
Epcot, on the other hand, is essentially a permanent world's fair. The offerings here are geared for an older audience and includes a healthy dose of information in every exhibit. While there are some thrills to be found, the emphasis is much more on enlightening while entertaining. There are definitely more things to do at Epcot, which will almost always take more than a day to see everything.
From Deborah DavisAnimal Kingdom closes earlier than EPCOT. I checked the schedule and 2/2/11 AK stays open until 8 PM, but the other 3 days, it closes at 5 PM. EPCOT stays open until 9 PM each night.
Posted January 20, 2011 at 7:18 AM
I've taken my boys to EPCOT since they were toddlers and they have always loved it. I've never understood why people think it's for older kids, but I guess it depends on the child.
From Terri PierceIt depends on the types of people going. My parents and I love Epcot- however my sister does not. You're going to learn something if you go to Epcot, whether it be cultural diversity, how energy works, that Ellen has crazy dreams, or that Donald Duck loves Sombreros. Its also very big and takes a while to walk around. In the Pavillions, while there is lots to look at and do, is a lot of just walking. And the ride section can be a lot of walking back and forth. However, I LOVE Epcot. The fireworks show at the end of the night is to die for.
Posted January 20, 2011 at 12:41 PM
However, AK is very chill and relaxing. There are thrill rides hidden among lots of relaxing animal treks. AK is also a lot of walking. I enjoy AK quite a bit but have never been able to spend an entire day here. Also, they close early in the day so there are no fireworks or shows to end your night with.
From Bobbie VoegeliThanks so much for everyone's insight and advice. Hadn't thought of AK closing early so that advice was very helpful! I think we can do both - just wanted to know if Epcot was still worth it...
Posted January 20, 2011 at 1:52 PM
From Ray SchroederDon't forget, you can do a Pub Crawl at EPCOT :)
Posted January 25, 2011 at 12:15 PM
From Jeff ElliottWith the exception of Expedition Everest and Dinosaur, Animal Kingdom is about shows and animals. Granted, Animal Kingdom has by far the best show at the resort (despite what the other "voters" said) in the Festival of the Lion King. Animal Kingdom can be done in half of a day.
Posted January 25, 2011 at 1:53 PM
Epcot has many more rides and I would consider it a 3/4 day park. With rides like Soarin', Mission Space, Test Track, and then some of the slower rides like Journey into Imagination, Spaceship Earth, Nemo, Turtle Talk, and Innoventions (Sum of all Fears is a favorite of mine), there is much more to do. And all of that is before you leave Future World and head off onto the World Showcase.
If I only had one day in Orlando, I would go to Islands of Adventure with a park hopper to go over to Universal Studios Florida next door. They have the "big kid" rides.
From TH CreativeI'm going to ignore the sign of the apocalypse that is Rao and I agreeing on something ("I would choose EPCOT over any US theme park").
Posted January 25, 2011 at 9:45 PM
But let's narrow this down to a single question: Do you drink alcohol?
If so then I have three words for you: EPCOT, EPCOT, EPCOT.
Bomb the park early. Hit Soaring first, Mission: Space (perhaps the most underrated attraction in the industry) Sum of All Thrills (fun enough), Test Track and the flashlight tag thing at Communicore. Then break into Turtle Talk, grab a snack at The Land food court, roll through the free Coke joint (try the mouthwash flavor from Turkey) and then blast out to World Showcase.
Moosehead at Canada (while watching Off Kilter) a traditional stout at the Rose & Crown, Grey Goose Slushie in France, good ol' Bud in the American Adventure ('cause I don't like sake), that purple wine my girl likes in Germany and the tequila bar in Mexico.
I can PROMISE you will have a great time. And you have to accept that promise because if you follow my agenda the next morning you will have no recollection of what you did the day before.
From James RaoParaphrasing from the 24th chapter of Matthew: "There shall be wars and rumors of wars, and TH and James in full agreement, and then shall the end come..."
Posted January 25, 2011 at 9:55 PM
Regardless of the fact that I do not prescribe to the part of TH's touring plan that involves drinking all that Schlitz Malt Liquor, his strategy is a sound one indeed. And even without the booze, Epcot is a wonderful park, the finest this country has to offer.
However, if you do go the booze route, do try to stay conscious long enough to enjoy Illuminations at the end of the night.
From Tommy CheathamI wouldn't miss Epcot for anything!
Posted January 26, 2011 at 5:38 AM
As much as they say Epcot isn't for kids, it's the park that I have the most memories of growing up. When someone says "Disney World" I think of Spaceship Earth and Horizons. Apparently my first trip there was right after it opened (I was...one), and we hit all the parks equally when we would take our family trips. Of course, I haven't been since 1996, so I haven't been to AK at all or seen the new stuff at Epcot (and now Horizons is gone).....so I guess I can't TRULY be the judge.
Based on last time I was there, I would rather skip MGM (errr, Hollywood) than Epcot for sure.
Looking forward to our two week honeymoon at Disney in September. We will DEFINITELY see everything that all parks have to offer this time.
From Donna McKayEPCOT every time- Illuminations alone is worth the visit. I sat listening to the soundtrack this very morning en route to work- brought a lump to my throat!
Posted January 26, 2011 at 6:55 AM
This discussion has been archived, and is not accepting additional responses.
Plan your theme park vacation with our readers' travel guides:
Top U.S. Theme Parks
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Other Top International Parks
Readers' Top Themed Rides
Top Roller Coasters
Top Theme Park Shows
Features, News and Advice
2013 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May
2012 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2011 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2010 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2009 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2008 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2007 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2006 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2005 Blog PostsDec.
2004-2005Staff column archive