Flower and Garden Festival- Recommended?


DIS Veteran
Mar 4, 2010
For our upcoming trip, our first full day will be the final day of the Flower and Garden festival (May 17th). DH, DS(9), DD(6) and I will be spending the morning at MK, then taking a mid day break to swim at our resort. Im torn on how to spend the evening. We really enjoyed Food and Wine festival so are leaning towards heading over to Epcot but would love some advice if you have attended in the past. Right now I have dinner at Be Our Guest booked for 5:30pm and if we are going to be in EP instead I'd like to cancel the ADR soon to give someone else a shot at being able to go.

My kids love both MK and EP, and have plenty of time scheduled in both parks this trip so no worries there.
Staying at BLT so would walk to MK or monorail to EP
BOG- Have been for lunch, have lunch scheduled this trip as well, never been to dinner there- it looks good, but it isnt on our must do list so would be ok canceling
Flowers- We like them- are the topiaries lit in the evening?
Food Stands- Love! but it seems to be a much smaller selection than Food and wine obviously- we would try to eat dinner snacking around the stands and filling in with cs if need be

Will it be crazy crowded on the last day for the festival?

Tell me about the playgrounds- are they fun for kids? Are they completely crowded which would make it hard to play?

Thank you!
I LOVE F&G, and can't imagine seeing Epcot without it, but...I'd also not give up a BoG ADR for anything. It's my favorite restaurant in WDW. Then again, Epcot is my favorite park, so...:)

Disney added food kiosks to F&G in the last few years, and we really enjoyed them, so if you don't care that much about BoG, it's probably worth it to hit F&G. Not sure if all of the topiaries are lit up, but the ones in the front are.

The playgrounds are no different during F&G than any other time. They are fun, though, and shouldn't be too crowded in May.

Epcot is a great park because, even when crowded, it absorbs the crowd beautifully. So crowded at Epcot is nothing like crowded at AK, HS, or MK. That said, May is typically not that crowded, unless it's Spring Break week.

This year is the first in 10 that we will be at Epcot when it's not F&G, so it will certainly be an adjustment!
I am wondering the same thing, my DH, DD (5) and I will also be staying at BLT from May 17-May 24th and plan on spending the first day between MK and EP mainly because of Flower and Garden. I think we have decided to start our day at EP and end it at MK only because Im not sure when our room will be ready so I wanted to be closer to the resort in the afternoon rather than farther away.
How fun! See you there :) We are checking in the night before, then on 17th having early breakfast at Chef Mickey then walking to MK. Break at resort for while then ?????

Playgrounds- I thought there were a few special playgrounds they put up around world showcase for flower and garden?

I think I would go check out F&G festival if you don't care about canceling BOG. Epcot never looks better than F&G festival. There are special playgrounds set up for F&G festival at least there were 2 years ago.
Our first full day will also be the 17th of May! Although we plan on spending most of the day at EPCOT since I don't know if I will get to come back during the Flower and Garden festival again (husband is a CPA and tax season is super busy). Maybe you could switch up your plans a bit and head to EPCOT in the morning and enjoy some of the festival and then take a swim break and still be able to keep your BOG reservation. Or you could forgo the afternoon break after Magic Kingdom and head to EPCOT. You could slowly meander and sample the kiosks for lunch, play in the playgrounds and the little water fountains that squirt up from the ground, and then still be able to make the BOG reservation. I have read that the topiaries are lit up, but never having been myself I am not positive.

I am personally hoping that with that weekend being the first Star Wars Weekend, maybe the last day of the Flower and Garden will be less crowded!!!
In my experience F&G doesn't attract the huge crowds that F&W does. I'd recommend that you head to the F&G playground early, though. While the topiaries are lit at night, they are only a small portion of the displays, and you can't see the gardens at all well after dark. And the playground closes at dusk. Not sure if the butterfly house closes earlier either. The kids usually love that spot. As for the food and drink kiosks, they aren't as numerous as F&W, but you can check them out online and see if there is enough of interest for your family.

Here is my opinion based on me and my family. Only you know your family.

I have never been to F&G but after seeing recent pictures, I am planning my next trip around it. We also always try to visit MK for our first day. But given your circumstances, I would head to EPCOT in the morning and get in as much of the F&G as I can. I've been to BOG for lunch and dinner and really like both. So I would probably keep the ADR and head to MK straight from EPCOT. But we rarely do mid-day breaks and especially not on our first day - too excited to break.
Love F&G, am going myself May 10-15 and plan on spending at least 1 full day and most nights there. If BOG is not big deal for you, I'd cancel it since that is the last day of the festival. I actually have an ADR for BOG for breakfast one morning and am considering cancelling it just because getting there before park opens is a bit of a logistic nightmare for me (split stay and my ADR happens to be the morning I switch resorts) and I'm thinking there will just be too much food for one person.
F&G is beautiful. We visited yesterday. Theee were a few very good items. The displays are worth seeing but the playgrounds are just ok. They may be too small for your kids especially the 9yo.
I've really grown to love F&G. Initially, I didn't think it would be a big draw, but we have APs and stop by WDW when visiting my parents in Florida. Three out of the past four years, we've incorporated F&G into our spring break plans!

As for BOG, we've been there for lunch three times and dinner once. We far prefer it for dinner. Funny thing is that the first time we went for lunch, we thought it was pretty good. The second and third time, the newness of it started to wear off. I'd choose F&G stands over BOG in a minute, particularly because you've already been to BOG for lunch and the F&G stands are seasonal.

Our youngest son (age 8) LOVES the F&G Monsters Inc playground and was thrilled to hear that it's back again this year. (As in, started jumping up and down when I told him!) This is the highlight of the festival for him - I wish it was open all year. Last year, that particular playground remained lit and open in the evening! Can't remember the source, but I read somewhere that it's open at night again. It was great for some post-dinner energy burning! It's a little busy, but still very pleasant and so much fun for him.

While I'm not into gardening, I really do enjoy the flowers - especially at this time of year when it's so cold and yucky at home!

Edited to add reference to the source regarding playgrounds - this is from the Disney Parks Blog post by Jamie Langdon from February 6 . . . One of things my kids love the most about the festival is the presence of the creatively themed play gardens with state-of-the-art climbing equipment and hands-on activities. This year, there are two play areas: Mike & Sulley’s Monstrous Garden and Cactus Road Rally Garden with Mater and Lightning McQueen topiaries. When the sun sets, the fun doesn’t stop thanks to illuminated topiaries and play gardens that glow brightly for an after-dark festival experience.
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We didn't purposely plan to be there during F&G, but based on what we've learned for our upcoming trip, I'm really glad we will be there for it. We've even given up 2 ADRs in favor of eating through the booths, and will probably even give up one more for it.

(There's a very good review on one of the restaurant sub-boards that has schnitzel in the title with pics of a lot of items from the F&G food booths.)
DH and I went to F&G the first year they introduced the food booths. That's our favorite part of F&W, but we ended up enjoying the F&G booths even more. There aren't quite as many options as F&W, but the booths also didn't seem as crowded during F&G. Plus you can graze around the world while looking at some gorgeous topiaries and gardens.

We are going back during F&G this year, and we decided to do the food booths over an ADR for lunch.


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