Revealed: Disney World Cutting Massive EPCOT Pavilion

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A large geodesic sphere, known as Spaceship Earth, is illuminated in vibrant rainbow colors against the night sky. Flags can be seen in the bottom right near trees silhouetted by the glow of the lights.

Credit: Disney

The World Showcase at EPCOT, part of Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, is a unique theme park experience that allows visitors to travel the globe in a single day.

Featuring 11 pavilions, each representing a different country, the World Showcase offers a blend of cultural exhibits, dining, and entertainment that highlights the diversity and richness of our world. From the bustling marketplaces of Morocco to the tranquil gardens of Japan, the World Showcase is a beloved attraction for Disney park fans.

A bustling parking lot with numerous vehicles, with the iconic EPCOT geodesic sphere visible in the background against a clear blue sky.
Credit: Inside the Magic

In recent years, EPCOT has undergone significant transformations, bringing new attractions that blend Disney magic with cutting-edge technology.

In 2022, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind opened to much fanfare. This innovative roller coaster, located in the newly reimagined World Discovery neighborhood, is a first-of-its-kind storytelling coaster that features a reverse launch and a 360-degree rotating ride system, allowing guests to experience the story from every angle. The attraction has quickly become a must-see for thrill-seekers and Marvel fans alike.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at night with Spaceship Earth in the background at EPCOT in Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: Disney

Following this, in 2023, EPCOT introduced Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana. This walkthrough attraction invites guests to explore the natural water cycle in a fun and interactive way, inspired by Disney’s animated film Moana (2016). The experience combines beautiful landscaping with educational elements, making it a perfect addition to EPCOT’s focus on edutainment.

As the Disney World park continues to evolve, fans eagerly anticipate the opening of CommuniCore Hall and Plaza this summer. These new spaces are expected to serve as the heart of EPCOT, providing areas for festivals, events, and interactive exhibits. CommuniCore Hall will offer a flexible event space, while the Plaza will serve as a communal area where guests can gather and relax.

Concept art for the exterior of Communicore Hall at EPCOT
Credit: Disney

Future Updates for EPCOT: The Waiting Game

Despite the excitement surrounding these new additions, speculation abounds regarding the future of the World Showcase pavilions. Many Disney enthusiasts have expressed a desire for updates and new attractions within these cultural hubs. However, it appears that significant changes to the existing pavilions are not on the immediate horizon.

One of the pavilions that fans often discuss is the Mexico Pavilion, home to the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros.

This boat ride, featuring Donald Duck and his amigos, rarely has a long wait time, yet it suffers from queue bottlenecks. As one fan noted, “The 3 caballeros ride never has a wait, and even still the queue bottlenecks. The sheer volume of people going to Disney these days is the thing preventing that ride from getting a Coco overlay.

Unless they were to somehow move the tequila bar and have the queue snake around and through a separate entrance. It just simply cannot handle the volume of people otherwise.”

donald duck and three caballeros at epcot
Credit: Becky Burkett

This comment highlights the challenges Disney faces in updating attractions within the existing pavilion structures. The Mexico Pavilion, with its popular La Cava del Tequila bar, is already a crowded area, and any significant changes would require careful planning to accommodate the influx of guests.

Another pavilion frequently mentioned by fans is Germany. Unlike Mexico, the Germany Pavilion does not have a major ride or show, despite its popularity.

One user pointed out, “Imagine if Disney followed through with the original designs to build an attraction in the Germany pavilion. It’s one of the busiest pavilions that doesn’t have anything like a boat ride or theater show. Granted, it’s not indoors like Mexico, but it feels more cramped than others.”

Spaceship Earth at EPCOT framed from the arch in the Japan Pavilion in World Showcase. At EPCOT in Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: Ed Aguila, Inside the Magic

The original plans for EPCOT included a boat ride for the Germany Pavilion, which would have taken guests on a scenic journey through the country’s landscapes and folklore. However, these plans were never realized, leaving the pavilion without a marquee attraction. The addition of such an experience could help distribute crowds more evenly across the World Showcase and provide guests with another engaging way to learn about German culture.

EPCOT has always been a park that balances tradition with innovation. The World Showcase, with its focus on cultural authenticity and education, remains a cornerstone of this philosophy. However, as the park continues to grow and attract more visitors, the need for new and updated attractions becomes increasingly apparent.

While the recent openings of Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind and Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana, have injected new life into EPCOT, the question of what comes next for the World Showcase remains. Disney has teased potential updates in the past, but concrete plans have yet to materialize. In the meantime, fans continue to speculate and dream about what the future holds for this beloved area of the park.

What do you think the future holds for EPCOT? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

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