As a blogger, I may be compensated in some way (either pay, product, or experience) for sharing the post below All opinions are my own. ~Heidi
Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Green Loop. Today we are taking a closer look at the fun you can find in Future World at Epcot.
I see so many people rush in to The Land Pavilion, get in line for Soarin’, and rush right back out. I would never want to minimalize Soarin’ – it really is a fabulous, not-to-be-missed attraction – but there’s so much more to be seen, discovered, and enjoyed in The Land. So, kick back your feet, grab a cup of your favorite beverage, and let’s chat about the reasons why you should spend more time in The Land on your next visit to Epcot.
History & Facts
- The Land opened in 1982.
- It’s focus was – and is – on food and agriculture.
- It covers 6 acres, making it the largest pavilion in all of Epcot – but you wouldn’t know it from the outside!
- From 1982-1992, The Land was hosted by Kraft. In 1992, Nestle took over the sponsorship and continued hosting the pavilion until the late 2000’s.
- The Land was closed for renovations in late 2004 and reopened in 2005.
- Much of the fresh produce that you enjoy eating at Epcot is grown right here in The Land pavilion!
The Land pavilion is home to some of my favorite attractions in all of Epcot’s Future World, along with one that I have yet to experience.
The newest attraction inside The Land pavilion, Soarin’ opened to the public in 2005. Just a few weeks ago, the movie was updated from Soarin’ Over California to Soarin’ Around the World. I’m anxious to see this new update when I visit in September!
From the Disney website description of the ride:
In the grand Disney tradition, Imagineers pulled out all the stops to make fantasy reality, bringing the feeling of flight to life using a 180-degree, 80-foot IMAX projection dome and aerially captured footage that simulates the graceful motion of a hang glider.
Spectacular new digital projection technology lifts the sensation to new heights of brilliance. Thrill as you’re raised 40 feet in the air, engulfed in the stunning panoramas and swept from one scenic locale to the next!
No mountain is too high. No landscape is too far. Whether you’re soaring above man-made marvels like the majestic Great Wall of China, cruising over natural sights like Iguazu Falls in South America or swooping past sailboats on Australia’s spectacular Sydney Harbour, this is your chance to experience the joy of hang gliding as you never have before.
So get ready—and strap yourselves in for this epic re-imagining of a beloved Future World attraction!
I’ve cheated and watched a video of the new film a few times:
TIP: We like to head straight to Soarin’ upon entering the park (at opening) – you can usually walk right on at that time. Of course, if you get a FastPass for later in the day, you can ride twice!
Living With the Land
I still remember the first time we experienced this attraction and I think that’s why it remains on my favorites list and I have to ride it on every visit. Originally called Listen to the Land, this attraction featured live narrators until 2008 when the pre-recorded voiceover was added. Over the years, I have taken more pictures in this attraction than any other attraction in all of Walt Disney World! I don’t even have much of a green thumb, but the gardening techniques shared in this attraction fascinate me!
If you look closely, you’ll even find some Hidden Mickeys throughout this attraction.
There is rarely ever much of a line for this attraction, so I’d highly encourage you to check out this 14-minute journey on your next visit.
Circle of Life
This is the one attraction in The Land that I have yet to experience and I’m not even sure why. It’s located in the Harvest Theater and features The Lion King’s Timon, Pumba, and Simba. It’s a 20-minute film about environmental responsibility.
If you’ve seen it, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Sunshine Seasons Food Court
I haven’t eaten in the Sunshine Seasons food court since 2009, but I may have to change that on my next trip. I have heard many people call this the best quick service venue in Epcot, if not the entire Walt Disney World Resort! Vegetarian options are available, as well as Asian-inspired cuisine, various soups, salads, and sandwiches, and a wood fire grill.
Dine with Chip ‘n’ Dale, Farmer Mickey and Pluto at the Garden Grill restaurant. The meal is served at your table, family style, and includes:
- Basket of Warm Bread with Orange Blossom Honey Butter
- Harvest-inspired Farmer’s Salad – featuring produce from the greenhouses in The Land pavilion
- Char-grilled Sliced Filet of Beef with Red Wine Demi-Glace
- All-Natural Sliced Turkey Breast – with turkey Gravy
- Sustainable Fish of the Day with Tomato Jam
- Garden Fresh Vegetables, Sweet Potato Fries, Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes, Rice Pilaf, Macaroni & Cheese and Bacon and Leak Stuffing
Kids (ages 3-9) will enjoy Oven-roasted Drum Stick with baked macaroni and cheese, broccoli and crispy sweet potato sticks; Served with choice of small lowfat milk, small water or small juice box. Dessert: Cupcake Cone with Crispy Pearles.
We have dined here and really enjoyed the character interaction – in fact, I believe each character visited at our table not once, but twice, during our meal! We also enjoy that the entire restaurant rotates and you see parts of the Living With the Land attraction while you dine.
Behind the Seeds Tour
While I have yet to take this tour, I have it on my “Must Do” list. I’m always envious when I see people participating in this one; and, as tours go, this one is really reasonably priced!
Tours depart every 45 minutes from 10:30am to 4:30pm. The cost is $20 per adult and $15 per child (ages 3-9). Of course, park admission is also required. You can book in advance by calling (407)WDW-TOURS or you can sign up at a booth right outside of Soarin’.
The tour is guided and gives an up close look at four greenhouses that are part of the “Living with the Land” attraction. Behind the Seeds is led by a member of the Epcot Science Team. Highlights include:
- Sensory challenge with herbs/spices
- Lady bug release
- Vegetable taste test
- Fish feeding
- Sprouting a seed in your pocket to bring home
- Close look at the alligators
- Latest gardening tips
- Seeing how exotic crops and gigantic fruits and veggies are grown without soil
(tour information from The Dis.)
As you can see, there is much to see and do in this pavilion – and it’s not obvious from the outside. Please promise me that, on your next visit to Epcot, you’ll take more time to experience all that The Land has to offer. Sure, get in line for Soarin’ right away; but, when the ride is over, cross the pavilion and take the much slower-paced Living With the Land boat ride. You might even grab some lunch or dinner while you visit.
Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Green | Discover Future World Loop:
- 1st Stop – My Dreams of Disney | Rediscovering the Imagination Pavilion
- 2nd Stop – Magical Memories with the Mouse | Go Under the Sea Figuratively (or Literally!) at Epcot’s The Seas with Nemo & Friends
- 3rd Stop – Heidi’s Head | Everything You Need to Know about The Land
- 4th Stop – Superheroes and Teacups | Spaceship Earth: The Heart of Epcot
- 5th Stop – Frontierland Station | Discover Future World: Test Track
- 6th Stop – Disney Nouns | Universe of Energy
- 7th Stop – The Delightful Life | Discover the Music of Future World
- 8th Stop – My Dreams of Disney | A Child’s Innocence on Mission SPACE
- 9th Stop – Rolling with the Magic | Innoventions & Festival Center