Tuesday’s Tip- Celebrate World Party Day at Epcot

Hi All!  As you may have read in some previous posts I’ve been very intrigued by unique and obscure holidays lately, so I’m highlighting some of these holidays and how they relate to my favorite place- Walt Disney World!!!!

So today is “World Party Day!” If I could choose a place to celebrate today it would definitely be Epcot at Walt Disney World!  I mean where else can you visit eleven countries in one afternoon?

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Not only can you visit the countries and experience the culture of Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, United States, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, and Canada, but you can end your day by celebrating Disney style with a real world party; Illuminations! If you’ve never experienced Illuminations you need to!  It an incredible spectacle of fireworks, pyrotechnics, and beauty.

Below is a time lapse that we did of Illuminations a few trips ago 🙂  Enjoy and party and enjoy the world today!

 

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Ready to travel the world at Epcot?  Be sure to contact Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com for your FREE no obligation quote!  All of her planning and booking services are 100% free of charge to you!

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Fun Fact Friday- Tower of Terror Part 2

Have you ever noticed that you can see the Tower of Terror from Epcot’s World Showcase?  If you’ve never noticed don’t be alarmed, the Imagineers didn’t really want you to!  With a ride that tall it was inevitable that you would be able to see it from quite a distance.  With that in mind the Imagineers chose a color palette that would blend in.  When you view Morocco from across the World Showcase Lagoon you can see the Tower of Terror in the distance, so they picked a color that would blend in to the already existing Morocco.  This makes it less obvious that the tall building isn’t just a part of the scenery.

Tower of Terror as seen from World Showcase Lagoon

Tower of Terror as seen from World Showcase Lagoon

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Day 7 in review

We are to the point in our trip where we’ve pretty much done most things at the park that we enjoy doing at least once.  We headed back to Epcot this morning and it was our first morning time at Epcot.  We had fast passes for Soarin, Spaceship Earth, and The Seas with Nemo and Friends.  We’ve really enjoyed taking this years trip at a more relaxed pace.  We are not rushing around because our trip is spread out, and that gives us a lot more time to take it all in and enjoy!


After we got of The Seas with Nemo and Friends, we headed to the world showcase starting with the Canada side.  We decided to watch the 360 degree circle vision movie “Oh Canada.”  I haven’t seen that since I was in 6th grade, and my husband had never seen it!  Sometimes the circle vision movies make me a little motion sick, but I was okay this time!  After Canada we headed to the UK for Craig to get his Boddingtons at the Rose and Crown Pub, and then to France for a Grand Marnier slush for me!  We had lunch at the pastry shop in France, and then decided it was time to head back to the hotel for napping and packing (we are transferring to the Pop Century resort for two more nights after tonight).

After napping (more napping and less packing) we headed to the magic kingdom! Our first stop was a fast pass kiosk. Here we were able to secure a fast pass time for haunted mansion after dinner. Before dinner we had just enough time to watch Mickeys Philharmagic… My favorite 3D movie at the parks!


We enjoyed dinner at the Crystal Palace. This was was our first time eating dinner there and I was not disappointed! We met pooh and tigger the other morning at park fare and we lucked out that Eeyore and Piglet were the two we met during dinner rather than duplicating!

After dinner we headed to our haunted mansion fast pass where the coolest part of our day happened! I noticed a cast member looking at the mansion when we got off and I went to look at his pins (I ended up trading for a really cool flounder pin). And we started chatting! He actually told me a secret about something that’s coming which I hope to share when it’s gone public). We chatted for about 10 minutes and he made our day Sooooo magical!!! He gave a special fast pass to ride anything because he had “kept talking so long.”


We had certainly enjoyed talking to him and it was a pleasure, but it was a nice magical touch that made our day just a little more special!

So after that we went to the fast pass kiosk (saving our magic fast pass for later) and got a fast pass for dumbo! I highly recommend riding this one at night or dusk because it’s beautiful!


Afterwards we headed to space mountain with our magic fast pass and it was down!!!! No worries though we were able to walk onto the people mover! And the cool thing was when we went through space mountain on the ride, the lights were on! You could see the inside of space mountain with lights on!!!!


Space mountain was still down, so we rode small world. As we were getting off Small World, we saw the that Space Mountain was still down but that Enchanted Tales with Belle was only a 10 minute wait, so off we went.  All I can say is WOW!!!! Well done Disney!  I highly recommend this experience for all ages! (I will do a full blog post on it at a later time)

  
By the time we got out of Enchanted Tales, Space Mountain was back up and running.  We headed there with our magic fast pass in hand!  So awesome!  It was the perfect ride to end our evening!  We headed back to the resort and got a cocktail at the Scat Cats Lounge.

What a great day 🙂  Today’s Step Count-

  

30 Day Disney Challenge- Day 18 “Favorite Disney Memory”

Confessions of a Mouskaholic's 30 Day Disney Challenge

Confessions of a Mouskaholic’s 30 Day Disney Challenge

Okay, this may be one of my absolute silliest Disney stories that I have, but it is one of my favorite memories!

During my husbands very first Disney trip, in 2008 we only had 2 days to visit the park, and knowing that we only had the two days, I selected Hollywood Studios and Epcot.  I knew that my husband would love the World Showcase and seeing all the cultures, so we spent a lot of time in each country.  We started in Mexico and eventually made our way to Canada.

We were crossing the bridge between France and the United Kingdom (Fun Fact, the water under that bridge is representative of the English Channel!!!)  As we were crossing the bridge we passed a Father and a little boy who I would estimate to be about 8 years old.  As we passed the little boy exclaimed “Daddy I farted!”   Craig and I stifled our laughter until they were out of ear shot, but we just thought it was so funny!  Now EVERY single time we cross the bridge between France and the UK we look at each other and say “Daddy I farted.”   Is it a dumb thing to remember yes, but it makes us laugh 🙂

Bridge between France and UK at Epcot

Bridge between France and UK at Epcot

30 Day Disney Challenge- Day 12 “Favorite World Showcase Country”

Confessions of a Mouskaholic's 30 Day Disney Challenge

Confessions of a Mouskaholic’s 30 Day Disney Challenge

Within the 1.2 miles of the World Showcase at Epcot there are 11 countries, and something for just about everyone.  There are shows, attractions, live music, shopping, and enough food and drink to make anyone want to be rolled out of Epcot!

For me, I love just about EVERYTHING in the World Showcase, and think that each country’s pavilion is special and unique in its own way.  This maybe the hardest decision I’ve made yet in the 30 day challenge.  My top two finalists are Mexico and Japan, and after much consideration, I’ve concluded that Mexico is my favorite pavilion.

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There are several reasons that Mexico is my favorite-

* There is a ride.  Many of the pavilions do not have a ride, rather a movie or other attractions.  The ride may be a little cheesy, BUT it’s one of my husbands favorites, and I just love watching him get excited about it!  (Added bonus there is never a line for the ride!)

* The inside of the pavilion is just beautiful.  I love the feeling of the open air market and how it is set up with individual “puestos” or stands.

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* There are two amazing table service restaurants, as well as a quick service restaurant in this location. (To read my review of San Angel Inn and La Hacienda de San Angel, Click Here)

* La Cava del Tequila offers the best margaritas on Disney property (at least in my opinion!)  I love love love margaritas.  They are probably my all time favorite libation.  They have an amazing pineapple margarita that I look forward to on every trip!  They offer flights of tequila and small plates (for a more intimate experience check out “Wind Down” at La Cava del Tequila.)  AND Neil Patrick Harris is a semi-frequent visitor at La Cava.  It is my dream to meet him there sometime haha!

* Inside La Cava del Tequila there is a really cool mural that shows the process of how Tequila is made, and there is a representative from Tequila Mexico on hand who will explain the process of how tequila is made from the agave plants.  I think it is fascinating, and a great cultural experience.

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* In addition to all the fabulous things you can see inside there pyramid, there are additional puestos outside as well as meet and greets with Donald Duck (my hubby’s favorite character) and live mariachi music.

I think this is one of the most well rounded countries in the world showcase!  There is so much to do and see!  Amazing food, amazing drinks, culture… this pavilion has it all!

Disney Challenge- Day 1 “Favorite Disney Park”

Confessions of a Mouskaholic's 30 Day Disney Challenge

Confessions of a Mouskaholic’s 30 Day Disney Challenge

For many I think this would be a hard question- “What is your favorite Disney Park.”  All of the parks have their great qualities, however, Epcot is without a shadow of a doubt, my favorite Disney park.

I love everything about it!  I love the learning is available there, I love that you can experience many cultures in one place, and I love the FOOD!

Epcot is special to me as well because that was the first Disney park that my husband ever got to experience.  On our way to my best friends wedding in Siesta Key, we stopped in Orlando for only one day, and could go to one Disney park.  I choose Epcot for him to experience, and now it is his favorite park as well!

2010 Trip to Epcot

2010 Trip to Epcot

If you’re interested in booking your own trip to Epcot and the other Magical Parks at Walt Disney World or Disneyland, be sure to contact Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com for your free quote!

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Restaurant Review- Dining in the World Showcase: Mexico

Let this be said about me, I LOVE MEXICAN FOOD!!!!!!  I mean seriously, there is a restaurant near our house and we eat there EVERY Wednesday.  There are even times that we eat there twice in one week because we love it so much.  With that being said, eating in the Mexico pavilion at the world showcase is almost a given on any trip of ours.  The difficulty with this is choosing between the two table service restaurants- La Hacienda de San Angel, and San Angel Inn.  La Hacienda is the newest restaurant having been added to the pavilion in 2010.  We have dined at both restaurants and they both have amazing qualities.  Here are my thoughts on both-

San Angel Inn

San Angel Inn

San Angel Inn

San Angel Inn is located inside the pyramid in the Mexico Pavilion.  I love love love the atmosphere of this restaurant.  The entire inside of pyramid is set up to be like a nighttime open air market place in Mexico.  The restaurant is situated between the market and the river that houses the “Gran Fiesta Tour” ride.  The setting for this restaurant is quiet, romantic and peaceful.

Your meal starts out with chips and salsa, and I love the salsa at this restaurant, it has almost a smokey quality.  The food is good, but not great.  When I choose this restaurant it’s mainly for it’s quite romantic atmosphere.

San Angel Inn Dinner Menu

San Angel Inn Dinner Menu

La Hacienda de San Angel is located directly across from the pyramid.  While a beautiful new restaurant, the setting isn’t nearly as romantic or intimate as the atmosphere at San Angel Inn (just my opinion, feel free to disagree!)

La Hacienda interior

La Hacienda interior

While the setting isn’t as spectacular, the food is much better.  I like their food selection as the taste of the food.  (I had the Tacos Camerones and they were AMAZING!!! It was served with refried black beans with a crumbled cheese and I couldn’t get over how delicious they were!)

La Hacienda de San Angel menu

La Hacienda de San Angel menu

The prices of the two are comparable and a good value on the Disney dining plan.  While the setting isn’t as intimate, La Hacienda does have a very nice view of the World Showcase Lagoon.  If you plan your reservation accordingly and are willing to wait for a seat by the window you can have an incredible view of Illuminations.

There are definitely perks to both locations, so whichever you would choose, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed!  Be sure to get your dining reservations, as you will need them at either location!

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

If you are planning your own Disney trip and would like help planning or booking, be sure to contact Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com !  She can help with all of your Disney planning needs, including dining reservations!