Travel Tales: Florida 2016 – Day Three

Our short and sweet trip to Florida culminated with a trip to Epcot on the third full day. You should know before I begin that I LOVE Epcot! A lot of people are bored by it, but I love visiting the Fake Countries and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that most of it seems to be stuck in the sixties or seventies, decor-wise. I hope it never changes. With that said, let’s start off with the quintessential picture of the ball (the Daisy topiary is part of the Flower & Garden festival).

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It turns out that if you get to Epcot as soon as it opens, there’s no one there. We walked right over to three of the rides and were on them within seconds. It also turns out that the World Showcase doesn’t open until eleven a.m., which might explain why so few people are there so early, as the fake countries are the major Epcot attraction. However, that gave us time to explore a bit, shop and bit and get on three rides in a span of twenty minutes, so that was nice. We also discovered a temporary butterfly garden that had been put up for the festival so it was nice to walk through that as well.

The edible flower garden on the Living with the Land ride.

The edible flower garden on the Living with the Land ride.

Bruce from Finding Nemo, which of course I had to pose in.

Bruce from Finding Nemo, which of course I had to pose in.

Once the World Showcase opened, however, the real fun began. I love the pretend countries! They will never hold a candle to the real ones, of course, but they are really fun to pretend in for a while. We began our journey around the world in Mexico, where we had a snack of chips with a trio of dips and went on the Three Caballeros ride (if you’ve never seen the classic The Three Caballeros, I highly recommend you get yourself to itunes and watch it).

Mexico

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In Mexico, we quickly established that one of the themes for the day would be trying on the cultural hats in every country (or some sort of cultural garb), along with taking at least one picture. Sarah and I, along with our friend Kristen, have a tendency to take pictures of ourselves in places that look like we’re somewhere other than New York (for example, in a Chinese Garden we pretended we were in Asia, in a Tuscan garden we pretended we were in Italy, etc.). We call the series “Fake Vacations” and Epcot was the perfect place to add to our repertoire.

Norway

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I would venture to say that the Norway section is the least interesting. There just simply wasn’t all that much to look at. There used to be a ride, but it’s being refurbished and turned into a Frozen ride that I believe is opening this summer. However, Norway did provide some fun and games with hats and the giant troll that is in the souvenir shop.

China

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In China we made a quick loop around the stores and found more hats (I don’t know why I chose to look so sad in the Chinese hat!).

Germany

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There were not one, but two, hat opportunities in Germany, as well as the ability to get a giant pretzel. The Germany section of Epcot always reminds me of Full House, because in the episode where they go to Disney World, it’s where Danny meets Vicky (not for the first time, just in the park) and she’s attracting birds like she’s Snow White.

Italy

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It may not look like it from these photos, but we spent a fair amount of time in the Italy section. I don’t remember seeing a store, really but they had tons of restaurants. While we were there, a Renaissance show of sorts began with a bunch of guys waving flags like batons. At this point we ducked into a store to get out of the sun. Epcot Day, though the weather was beautiful, was the warmest day we were there.

America

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For what reason does Epcot need an America section? Never really been a HUGE fan of this area, and we didn’t even take a Fake Vacation picture so here’s me with a frozen lemonade instead!

Japan

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Japan didn’t have any hats, but it did have fans as well as cool (as in shady) places to sit and rest for a bit. We are still amazed at how much walking we did in Epcot (almost 19,000 steps) since we also sat a lot and just rested and looked around at the fake countries. I guess walking around shopping adds up after a while!

Morocco

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Morocco offers opportunities to find golden lamps, try on a fez and pose next to a camel! We also took a break here and sat down at the restaurant and got appetizers. We got to sit on the water.

France

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For reasons that should be obvious to anyone who knows me, of course I have tons of pictures of fake France. To explain to those who are new around here, I love everything about Paris. I’ve been to actual Paris three times. So while Fake Paris is NOT the real Paris, it’s an okay substitute for an hour or so. This is also where we had our dinner (I provided a photo of my dessert, which had a very unfortunate hot fudge placement behind the swan!). We wandered Fake Paris for a while, trying on perfumes, trying on berets, listening to the French music. Have I mentioned I love Fake France?

United Kingdom

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The United Kingdom section is adorable, and we got to see Alice, though we didn’t “meet” her and take pictures of her. As with the other countries, we wandered about, shopped in the stores and saw what local foods the section had to offer (though we didn’t eat here at all).

Canada

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By the time we got to Canada, we were losing steam. Though it had been a great day, there comes a point when you just get tired. And so we walked around the Canada section for a little while, and then looped back to France to make our dinner reservation before heading out. We had successfully seen a lot of the world! It was time to head back to the hotel and pack and get ready for our flight home the next day.

All in all, it was a great three days. Our parting shot will be of the Epcot Ball, just starting to glow purple in the evening light:

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