Epcot with kids

Discussion in 'Disney for Families' started by seanfaulk, May 23, 2018.

  1. seanfaulk

    seanfaulk Sean Faulk - Dreams Travel Agent - DIS team member

    Mar 7, 2018
    This might have come up by now, but what type of things do y’all like to do with your kids at Epcot? Epcot is my favorite park because I love to drink and I love travel and space but, every time I’ve ever been with a kid, they don’t enjoy Epcot compared to the other parks.

    Now that I am a Dreams Agent, I would love to know some things you guys do with children at Epcot to recommend to people.
    marcyleecorgan and Jadeey like this.
  2. ENJDisneyFan

    ENJDisneyFan DIS Veteran

    Mar 4, 2016
    My boys are 11 and 8 and they absolutely LOVE Epcot. Probably their favorite activity is the Kid Cot stations and getting either a passport or the Duffy bear stamped. They like walking through all the shops and spending their souvenir money on unique items. They also love the street entertainment in some of the countries. And of course...the food! Now my kids are probably more on the adventurous side in terms of trying new foods, but they have so much fun trying different items from the food booths during F&W. When we aren't there during a festival, Garden Grill and Biergarten are two of their favorite restaurants on property. On our last trip we left our last park day open to revisit whichever park they wanted...they chose Epcot :)
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  4. Klayfish

    Klayfish DIS Veteran

    May 19, 2016
    I think that will depend entirely on the children, and the best suggestion I could offer if you're a travel agent is to ask your client about their kids (and the parents).

    My kids are now 14, 10, 10. They enjoy FutureWorld, but the World Showcase has always been a total snooze fest to them. It just wasn't for them. They liked the rides. Even the gift shops in WS are 90% ignored by them, there's very little that they have interest in. They'd much prefer to be in MouseGears or the World of Coke or the pin trader station. Their food tastes are not very adventurous, except for DD10, so the food tasting in the different countries isn't appealing to them either.. They're starting to have a little more interest in things in the WS, but it's still only very mild interest at best (in the past, we used to have to drag them back there, now at least they're willing participants). They never had interest in things like Kid Cot stations or Agent P, so we never did much of that either.

    But as I said, ask the parents too. Some of our kids disinterest in WS also comes from our own feelings on it. Certainly, we have significantly more interest than our kids do. But even when DW and I have a date night alone in Epcot, we don't spend much time in WS. DW likes some of the street performers, and so do I. But as for going into each building and really walking around exploring, not so much. Again, not saying we totally ignore it, but it's only mildly interesting to us at best. Neither of us drink alcohol, we simply don't understand the attraction to it, so that is a total turn off to us (in fact we prefer to stay out of WS later at night). So as a whole, if you ask me to rate WS on a 1-10 scale, it would get maybe a 4 from us. Not tragically horrible, but really not something we go out of our way for. And that's purely based on our personal tastes.

    Don't get me wrong, I know my post sounds a lot more negative about the WS than I mean it to be. We do enjoy it, but only to a degree which is probably less than some others. So for a family with young kids, I'd definitely ask if the things it has to offer are the style the kids and parents like.
  5. TravelingTotMom

    TravelingTotMom M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-M-M-Y!

    Mar 30, 2015
    I have a 4 year old, and Epcot is by far his favorite park (and has been since he was 2).

    His top two reasons? The miniature trains in Germany and the little sodas at Club Cool.

    In terms of rides, he likes Spaceship Earth, Living with the Land, the Seas with Nemo and the Gran Fiesta Tour. Meeting characters at the Character Spot (both the traditional and Baymax) is also high on the list.

    In the World Showcase, in addition to the trains in Germany, he loves stopping at all the KidCot stations, pin trading and running through the hedge maze in the UK (which is in wonderful proximity to the beer cart outside of the Rose & Crown). Also, if we time it right, many times he will nap in his stroller later in the afternoon while we get to explore the WS. And during festivals, there are always different scavenger hunt maps that can be purchased for a few dollars, where you get a prize after completing.

    I think what gets most overlooked about Epcot for parents of younger children is that it is probably the best park for their kids to get energy out (vs. spending most of the time standing in line, like in MK, or stuck in a stroller).

    Some examples:
    -The interactive games at the end of Spaceship Earth*
    -Indoor playground at end of Mission Space*
    -Aquariums (including Bruce's Sub Shack) at the Seas with Nemo*
    -Car showcase at Test Track (my son loves sitting in all the cars, and there are interactive photo areas)*
    -ImageWorks interactive area - including the musical floor - at end of Journey into Imagination*, plus the jumping fountains right outside
    -Playing the drums at the Outpost in the WS
    -Watching the miniature trains in Germany
    -Exploring the gardens in China and Canada
    -The hedge maze in the UK
    -Seasonal playgrounds during the Flower and Garden Festival
    *These can be accessed through the exit/gift shop without going on the ride

    There's also some really great kid-friendly dining options including the Garden Grill and Akershaus for characters; Biergarten where kids can dance when the band plays; and Coral Reef to see the fish.
  6. KenHutch

    KenHutch DIS Veteran

    Jul 7, 2005
    Well I have girls and for the 17 year old shopping, shopping and more shopping. For the 8 year old its Frozen Ever After followed by a trip to WS Japan where she informs me that have some very rare Pokémon plushies which will shortly be in her room. We spend 2 days every trip in Epcot and one of them is dedicated to the girls and shopping. Its their life and religion.
    marcyleecorgan likes this.
  7. TiggerTrigger

    TiggerTrigger a.k.a. HouCuseChickie

    Jul 16, 2010
    My kids love Epcot and have since their first visit (ages 2 and 4 on that first trip). I firmly believe a lot of this is rooted in how the adult presents Epcot to the child. I know too many parents go into it with that "they're probably not going to like it" attitude which ends up coloring their kids' opinions and ultimately steering them towards a more negative experience.

    My kids are and have always been very ride focused, so I made sure I got then on every possible ride based attraction they could ride (which increased as they grew). While I don't love the current incarnation of Imagination and think the interactive stuff after isn't as good as it was when I was a kid, my children don't know anything else and have always had a blast playing in that area. Beyond that, it's really anything that can capture their attention...which is going to vary a bit. I remember them being too shy to sit up front in Turtle Talk with Crush on their first visit, but they were mesmerized by the whole thing. They've also always loved exploring the countries in the WS and checking out neat hats or toys. Interactive experiences like Colortopia in Innoventions was fun for my kids on our most recent trip, but I saw many little ones also enjoying it. I think there are also a lot of dining options in Epcot that can be fun for kids. Sure, there are character meals and Coral Reef is an obvious choice, but the entertainment at Biergarten is a big fave of our kids and I know others have said the belly dancers at Marrakesh have also been hits for their families as well. Oh, and if it's a warm weather trip, the jumping water is still fun for us after all of these years.
  8. sponica

    sponica DIS Veteran

    Oct 16, 2017
    I like epcot for it's wide pathways...it's soooo much easier to navigate a stroller (compared to the heck-scape that is fantasyland). Now that I have a stroller, I remember why I only would go to Fantasyland at night....

    For the short set, there seems like a lot to do with almost no line (Nemo and friends, living with the land, turtle talk with crush, gran fiesta, etc). My kid's still not quite 2 so she really doesn't have a say in what she does or where she goes....

    Because the pathways are so wide, I have less of an issue letting her walk on her own as it didn't seem as crowded as Magic Kingdom, where she basically had to either stay in her stroller or be held because it was too crowded to let her walk.

    I feel like characters are easier to meet in Epcot as well, so I'd rather go there for characters than anywhere else. We caught Snow White just before she finished meeting people for the day and Daisy Duck at the entrance.

    On a 4 day trip, we spent 2 evenings in the World Showcase and one morning in Future World + Norway. We LIKE Epcot (especially WS).
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  9. MamaBelle4

    MamaBelle4 DIS Veteran

    Feb 29, 2016
    My kids all love Epcot. It is DD9's favorite. We just stroll around the WS and stop when we something we want to stop for. Each year, she's spent her souvenir money in China.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  10. NickC

    NickC Mouseketeer

    Mar 15, 2018
    My kids (now 8 and 10) love Club Cool.
    My youngest still likes the KidCot stations.
    They both enjoy the passports, and they both enjoy the pressed penny machines.
    There are some cool shops.
    The band at Biergarten is fun. We went years ago and the kids danced the whole time.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  11. SaintsManiac

    SaintsManiac DIS Veteran

    Dec 9, 2014
    My daughter has loved Epcot from age 5 to now (almost 8). Figment is her favorite ride. She loves to get a Duffy on a stick and visit the Kidcot stations. Soarin and Garden Grill are 2 of her must dos now, also. She thinks Spaceship Earth is a hoot.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  12. DisneyFansInNYC

    DisneyFansInNYC DIS Veteran

    May 28, 2012
    Our kids love EPCOT from when they were little. They love Agent P - plus Figment, Crush, etc. We also love Living with the Land.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  13. Maggie at the Fort

    Maggie at the Fort Mouseketeer

    Jul 7, 2008
    My kids (7, 4 and 1 last trip) have always enjoyed Epcot. Maybe because we enjoy it so much. There is less to do. But that means I slow down and don't rush is so much.

    They love the obvious things like the soda samples and the kidcot stations. They also enjoy all the live entertainment and characters through out the countries. I think illuminations is much less stressful with kids than some fireworks shows. You can camp out by the fence and not be too crowded.

    We also make world showcase more fun by learning about the countries before we go. We pick a country a week. Do crafts, look at maps, color flags, cook food and watch Disney movies set in that country. The kids are excited to "visit" the countries after all the build up.
    sapphirerose915 and PollyannaMom like this.
  14. ilgirl51

    ilgirl51 Earning My Ears

    May 8, 2018
    When we visited my DD was 5. She loved seeing the princesses at the Meet & Greets at Epcot, and she enjoyed eating at the Coral Reef. She also liked Living with the Land, which we hadn't planned on doing until it poured down rain all day the day we were at Epcot. She loved it! And of course she liked the Seas with Nemo ride.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  15. RefillableMug

    RefillableMug Earning My Ears

    Jun 17, 2017
    Definitely Figment and The Seas with Nemo & Friends. Also the Kidcot Fun Stops in the World Showcase. Grand Fiesta Tour and Frozen Ever After are big hits with the little ones. There are several options for meeting characters there too.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  16. scrapquitler

    scrapquitler DIS Veteran

    Aug 15, 2007
    My kids loved the Kid Cot stations when they were younger.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  17. PollyannaMom

    PollyannaMom I was a click-clack champ!!

    May 16, 2006
    We first took my DS to Epcot when he was 5, and he loved it! Favorites over the "little" years have been:
    Kidcot stations
    the fountains
    Garden Grill restaurant
    Turtle Talk with Crush
    Coke store/world sodas
  18. MudQueen22

    MudQueen22 DIS Veteran

    Mar 14, 2014
    I agree that there aren't as many things for small children at Epcot.
    We go there to splurge on our dining experiences. Akershus is a good pick, and we all like Garden Grill.

    I agree that the character interaction is better at Epcot. My daughter enjoyed meeting Snow White in Germany in particular.

    My little ones liked Figment, and they both enjoyed the living with the land ride.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  19. bluedolphin32

    bluedolphin32 Earning My Ears

    Sep 19, 2017
    What I remember liking at Epcot when I was a kid was getting my Epcot Passport signed at all the countries I could, Spaceship Earth, and some now-defunct rides (Body Wars and Cranium Command, along with the awesome interactive displays nearby).

    We just took my kids for their first trip at ages 9, 7, and 4. The older two loved Test Track and it remained one of their top 3 favorites of the whole trip. They liked Living with the Land, enjoyed The Seas with Nemo, and the Frozen ride. They thought Soarin' was just ok. Honestly there was more than enough for us to enjoy ourselves for most of the day there outside the World Showcase. I wish we'd spent more time meeting characters there. They have some unique meet and greets there, and it would've rounded out the day perfectly.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  20. Bob Dolewhip

    Bob Dolewhip DIS Veteran

    Sep 17, 2016
    My kids love Epcot!
    I see all the posters above me gave great specific suggestions so I will just say that they think of Epcot as a mini world tour and then exploring earth and space. Totally into it.
    Also there are lots of characters in Epcot. It’s the only place I think, where you can meet Mulan:)
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  21. TwinkleKS

    TwinkleKS DIS Veteran

    Feb 18, 2013
    My kids love Epcot too. I think we never gave them a choice not to love it lol.

    Henna tattoos in Morocco is a must for them now. They used to always want to get their faces painted and it drove me nuts. One kid always rubbed it off ... the other two would last all day and throw a fit at bath time because we had to wash it off ... then they would want another one the next day. Now we let them all get a henna tattoo. It lasts for days (even weeks if you aren't swimming, etc. a lot). Plus it is something even older kids and adults like.
    PollyannaMom likes this.

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