Epcot: Vacay for a Day

We’re making up for lost time. Last week we enjoyed Adventures at Animal Kingdom. And so this Saturday, we decided to have a one-day Epcot vacay. It was a beautiful Florida day – the kind that screams “Disney World.”

We left our house a little after 9 a.m., drove to Epcot, parked, walked to the entrance, and were through the baggage check and ticket window before 10 a.m. Driving directly on I-4 on a Saturday morning is much faster than taking the back way. We were surprised to find the crowds so light – we noticed this as soon as we realized we’d made it to the parking spaces in front of the trees – meaning, no tram yet. We prefer to walk at Epcot, so we were quite pleased.

We think of Epcot as our home park. It’s always a thrill to see that big Epcot ball and realize we can drop in any Saturday morning. Epcot was what drew me to Disney World in the first place when it opened in 1982. This October 1, it’ll be 30 years since it opened followed by my first visit soon after in November.

Our plan was to be spontaneous and so when we noticed the Spaceship Earth line was short, we got in it. We love this ride and I miss the other 2 that were similar – Horizons and World of Motion.

The plan then was to track down Vision House in one of the wings of Innoventions. Which one? Well, after stopping off in the restroom, we saw Innoventions West and thinking it was probably in the other one, we entered anyway because it was right in front of us. We saw a CM standing there, but unsure at this time what this new attraction was called, we hesitated to ask – lol! Lucky for us, we had chosen wisely.

We waited for the next 20-minute tour, which consisted of a CM, another couple, and us. We love touring model homes and wandering the aisles of Lowes or Home Depot just to browse, so this was especially fun for us. In this case, it was all about how to create your own “Green” home. The other couple especially giggled over the toilet – she said she’ll be talking about that for years – lol!

We liked the cool e-tablet in the kitchen and how it stored recipes.

Then we decided to ride Nemo – we hadn’t done this since January of 2010 when we rode it for the first time at WDW with our friends from California/Colorado. We enjoyed it more this time – the first time we couldn’t help compare it to the one at Disneyland inside the submarine ride.

With just a bagel for breakfast at home, we were hungry after this and Rich spotted Coral Reef. He had never eaten here before and I had only once after it opened in 1986 on my second trip to WDW in 1987. It was only 11 and it didn’t open until 11:30 so we read the menu and sat on the bench in the shade for awhile. Eventually, a group of six showed up and went inside. Aha! We didn’t realize the doors were open. So we went inside, gave our name at the podium and were given a pager. After washing our hands in the restroom, we were seated.

Oh my goodness – how cool! And since when did it look like a Vegas showroom – lol! Was it always that way or was this a new arrangement since my first visit? I have no idea but we loved it. We were the first to be seated, in fact, and were given a table for two in the front row – the “show” being the fish swimming by in the Aquarium. “Tom Jones, are you in there?” We had a fabulous meal and Rich posted the report here.

Here’s a stock photo of what the restaurant looks like all lit up.

What the restaurant lighting really looks like – here’s a pic of Rich thoroughly enjoying himself – as if he’s in a Vegas showroom – lol!

And a mystery woman – lol!

It was a bit jarring to leave our dark, air-conditioned world under the sea for the brightness and heat of outside, but these flowering trees are stunning. Anybody know the name of them?

We’d hoped to make it to the La Cava del Tequila inside Mexico for an after lunch drink, but when we popped our heads in, it was standing room only. It opens at 12 and it was about 12:30 by now – you have to get there at opening to get a table. But we did ride the Gran Fiesta Tour with the Three Caballeros inside attraction – always a favorite – and then finally bought one of those Mexican blouses I’ve had my eye on for years. Outside, we stopped to enjoy the Mariachis.

The other new thing on our agenda was Tutto Gusto – the wine bar in Italy. We’d skipped dessert at lunch so maybe we could get a glass of bubbly and some dessert to go with. And unlike La Cava del Tequila, it was pretty quiet and easy to get a table. Rich will write up a separate report for this, too.

Stuffed to the gills, hot, and tired, we grabbed the first Friendship boat to Mexico and then walked through Future World, and out to the car. We usually end our morning day trips in summer at about 1 p.m. and now it was 2 p.m. We were in desperate need of a nap and some A/C. So off we went via the back way and drove home, which by now, felt like an eternity away. This is when we miss living closer like we did before, but Rich’s job/our church are close to where we’re living now.

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One thought on “Epcot: Vacay for a Day

  1. Larry says:

    Excellent visit and it’s so much fun to be spontaneous. I can’t wait to hear your impression of Tutto Gusto.


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