Ultimate 1-Day Epcot Itinerary

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Coming up with the perfect 1-day Epcot itinerary is a harder task than you might think. There are so many factors in play at Epcot, things can get complicated.

Epcot is unique compared to all the other parks. Between the rides, the festivals, the countries, and all the food, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. The fact is, there are a lot of things to do at Epcot.

That’s where this Epcot touring plan comes into play. I want you to take a look at all of the various entertainments and identify what your priorities are.

From there, you can begin to create your ultimate 1-day Epcot itinerary. This post is a monster, but I really wanted you to be able to get a true picture of what Epcot has to offer (Updated January 10, 2022).

New entrance to Epcot, Spaceship Earth

Basics for Your Epcot Itinerary

Before we get to the more exciting aspects of planning your Epcot itinerary, it’s important to know the lay of the land.

Epcot Hours

For a very long time after the reopening, Epcot consistently opened at 11:00a everyday. This was obnoxiously late, especially for people accustomed to taking advantage of rope drop.

Fortunately, this has begun to improve, slightly. As of right now, Epcot typically opens at 10:00a.

However, the closing time can vary pretty dramatically. As I’m writing this, Disney’s official calendar lists closing time as 9:00p.

The closing time primarily depends on the projected crowds. If Disney feels crowd levels will be higher, they extend the closing time. Epcot can be open as late as 11:00p during very busy times of the year.

Epcot also offers Extended evening hours, usually once a week. This is a benefit for guests staying at Disney Deluxe resorts and other Disney Good Neighbor hotels.

The extended evening hours run for 2 hours after the normal closing time. The day that is chosen isn’t always the same, so make sure to check the calendar during your trip if you qualify.

Epcot Map

Click Image to Enlarge – Image Courtesy of Magic Guides

Epcot has an entirely different layout from any of the other Disney parks.

First, there are two entrances instead of one. The most heavily used is the main entrance, over by Spaceship Earth. This is the entrance used by anyone coming to the park via bus, parking lot, monorail, or ride share.

The second entrance is called International Gateway. This is located in World Showcase, in between United Kingdom and France pavilions.

Guests staying at Beach & Yacht Club Resort, BoardWalk Resort, and Swan and Dolphin Resorts can walk to International Gateway. The Skyliner Gondolas also drop guests off directly outside of International Gateway.

One thing you’ll likely notice is that World Showcase is huge. It’s actually 1.2 miles around. So plan on doing a lot of walking when you’re at Epcot.

New “Lands” in Epcot

One of the changes happening at Epcot with the remodeling is new names for the section of the park which used to be called Future World.

I would still expect people to refer to them as World Showcase and Future World for a while until we all adjust, but let’s take a look at their new names:

  • World Celebration (the center section of Future World)
  • World Discovery (the side with Test Track and anything having to do with outerspace)
  • World Nature (the side with Soarin’, the aquarium, and so on)

Seriously, not the best names they could have come up with.

What is the BEST day to visit Epcot?

Now that the Epcot festivals are taking up 95% of the year, this question is relevant for most people’s trips.

How does this impact deciding what day to go to Epcot? Because Epcot is very much a locals park, and during festivals they swarm Epcot on the weekends.

From Friday evening through Sunday, Epcot is a popular date night/hangout spot for the locals. There are times on a Saturday night when World Showcase can get a bit of a college party vibe.

That’s not exactly what most families are looking for.

Because of this, the best days to visit Epcot are Monday through Thursday.

Construction Projects Currently Going on at Epcot

There are a lot of projects going on at Epcot right now. The entrance and Future World are undergoing a rather substantial redesign.

The entrance itself has been finished, but the rest of Future World is still heavily worked on.

The good news is that for the most part, the construction won’t impact your trip. There’s nothing closed down that will really bring down your trip.

The main impact it has is in terms of simply being an eyesore. There are construction barricades up throughout Future World, creating some detours.

It’s a little bit of a maze getting through some sections, but it’s well labeled and not confusing. It’s just not as attractive as you might like.

At this point, we have no official word on when this project will be finished. But everything indicates we still have a ways to go.

How much time do you need at Epcot?

Ok, most people are going to say that Epcot is a one day park. Some even say there’s not enough to do to even fill a full day.

I strongly disagree with those people. Epcot is NOT a half a day park.

Epcot is at least a 1 and a half day park, but you can easily spend 2 days in Epcot. We have gone to Epcot many times now, and we’ve never managed to see and do EVERYTHING we wanted to do in one day.

In fact, we have yet to see and do everything the park has to offer. Because we’re always distracted by rides and food.

Admittedly, that’s because we enjoy experiencing what the different countries have to offer, not just eating the food and running (though trust me, we really enjoy eating the food too…).

But that’s how Epcot is meant to be enjoyed. The whole purpose behind Epcot is to learn about technology, the natural world, and the cultures of the world, while also having fun.

However, I recognize that most people only want to designate 1 day to Epcot, hence this 1 day Epcot itinerary you are currently reading.

So, plan on spending 1 full day at Epcot. Especially with the park not opening until 10:00a, you need all the time you can to get a solid Epcot experience.

How the Epcot Festivals Impact Your Day

Really, this question all comes down to how much of the Festival you want to experience.

Most everyone wants to eat and drink at the outdoor kitchens. But even that “eats” into how much you can experience. See that pun there?

But beyond the food and drink, each of the festivals has other things to experience which are unique to that festival. If you want to take advantage of some of these things, you’ll have to cut some other things out of your day.

Luckily, there’s really no wrong answer to this. Whether you focus on the Festival activities or on the traditional Epcot offerings, you’ll still have an amazing day.

But now you can probably see why we have yet to manage to do everything. We fall into the category of people who get sucked into the festivals.

What is there to do at Epcot in 2022?

The general assumption is that there’s not a lot to do at Epcot. On the whole, this assumption is false. There’s a TON of stuff to do at Epcot.

However, everyone who goes has different priorities and expectations. I’ll be the first to admit, Epcot is likely more fun for adults than kids.

But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing for kids to do. And yes, your vacation should be about the grown-ups too, not just the kids!

Nemo and Dory at Epcot

Epcot Rides

Compared to other parks, the list of Epcot rides is definitely on the shorter side. And many of them are frequently written off by people.

I’m going to break this list into two different categories: rides and attractions. Epcot has many different short movies/presentation style experiences.

Epcot Rides

  • Frozen Ever After (Norway)
  • Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros (Mexico)
  • Journey into Imagination with Figment (World Celebration)
  • Living with the Land (World Nature)
  • Mission: SPACE Green or Orange (World Discovery, 40″ height requirement)
  • Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure (France Pavilion)
  • Soarin’ Around the World (World Nature, 40″ height requirement)
  • Spaceship Earth (World Celebration)
  • Test Track (Future World East, 40″ height requirement)
  • The Seas with Nemo & Friends (World Nature)
  • Turtle Talk with Crush (World Nature)

A note about Mission: SPACE. There are two options for the ride, orange or green. Orange is a more intense version, involving spinning at rapid speed.

The wait time for Mission: SPACE Orange is always longer than Green. The Green version often has a wait of under 20 minutes.

Epcot Rides Coming Soon

  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind (World Discover)- official opening on May 27, 2022

Take a look at the Guardians of the Galaxy ride report to learn what we know so far about this exciting new ride.

Other Epcot Attractions

  • SeaBase (World Nature)- did you know there’s an aquarium inside Epcot?
  • Awesome Planet (World Nature)
  • Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360 (Canada)
  • Disney and Pixar Short Film Festival (World Celebration)
  • Impressions de France (France)
  • Reflections of China (China)
  • House of the Whispering Willows (China)
  • The American Adventure (America)
  • Beauty and the Beast Singalong (France)
  • Walt Disney Imagineering presents the Epcot Experience (World Celebration)
  • Kidcot Fun Stops (World Showcase)
  • ImageWorks – The “What If” Labs (World Celebration)

Other Epcot Attractions Coming Soon

  • Moana’s Journey of Water

Epcot Festivals

Epcot has four different festivals throughout the year. Each festival has it’s own theme and offerings, but the general formula is the same.

There are outdoor food booths (the largest draw for any festival), entertainment, special decor, and so on. Many of the festivals looked different in 2020 and 2021, but now the festival offerings begin to return to normal.

The four festivals of the year are:

World Showcase

Have you ever wanted to travel around the world, but didn’t have the money or tolerance for all those plane rides? Well, World Showcase at Epcot might be the next best thing.

There are 11 countries represented in World Showcase.

  • Canada
  • United Kingdom
  • France
  • Morocco
  • Japan
  • The American Adventure
  • Italy
  • Germany
  • China
  • Norway
  • Mexico

Each of these pavilions is actually sponsored by a private company associated with the country it represents.

Morocco was previously sponsored by the Moroccan government, but Disney recently took over control of the Morocco pavilion.

Typically, the countries are staffed with Cast Members from the representative country to provide a more authentic experience.

However, since international travel is not really a thing right now, many of the Cast Members in World Showcase are Americans.

Each of the pavilions represents architecture of their respective countries. They also typically have restaurants, bakeries, stores, entertainment, and a couple have rides.

Entertainment

At long last, international performers are starting to return to World Showcase!

This is crucial because having the international performers there is such an enriching part of the Epcot experience.

I highly recommend taking the time to watch whatever international performers are around during your stay. My personal favorite is the Matsuriza Taiko Drummers in Japan.

Epcot's Matsuriza Taiko Drummers performing in Japan Pavilion

Activities for Kids in World Showcase

A major concern that most people have is that Epcot is not a good park for kids. This is a common misconception, but there’s actually a lot for kids to experience at Epcot.

The main issue seems to be when adults want to spend time eating and drinking in World Showcase while kids get bored.

But Disney is pretty smart. They make a lot of money on food and drink sales in World Showcase, so they want both kids and parents happy to stay there.

Kidcot Fun Stops

Each of the pavilions in World Showcase have a designated Kidcot Fun Stop. Kids can collect activity cards from each Kidcot station while engaging in an activity and learning about the cultures of different countries.

Here’s where you can find the Kidcot Fun Stops:

  • Mexico Pavilion (near Mexico Folk Art Gallery) 
  • Norway Pavilion (at The Puffin’s Roost) 
  • China Pavilion (near the exit of Reflections of China) 
  • Germany Pavilion (at Volkunst) 
  • Italy Pavilion (outside, near La Bottega Italiana) 
  • American Adventure Pavilion (outside, near Art of Disney) 
  • Japan Pavilion (in the Bijutsu-kan Gallery) 
  • Morocco Pavilion (at the Marketplace in the Medina) 
  • France Pavilion (at Souvenirs de France) 
  • United Kingdom Pavilion (at The Toy Soldier) 
  • Canada Pavilion (at the exit of Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360)

Scavenger Hunts

Each Epcot festival has at least one scavenger hunt for kids (and adults) to participate in. Typically, the scavenger hunts cost around $8 to get the map.

However, sometimes there are some free scavenger hunts to participate in.

1-Day Epcot Itinerary

Ok, now, let’s start putting together all the pieces of the puzzle. But there are some things I want you to think about first. The answers to these questions will help shape your itinerary.

  1. Is your priority to get on as many rides as possible?
  2. Do you qualify for Early Theme Park Entry?
  3. Do you want ample time to explore the nooks and crannies of the countries?
  4. How many shows/movies can your family tolerate?
  5. Do you plan to focus on eating/drinking at a lot of Festival booths?
  6. Will you buy Disney Genie+ or Lightning Lane access?

You’re going to take the answers to these questions, and use them to adjust the amount of time you spend at each step of your Epcot touring plan.

If you know you want to focus on eating and drinking around the world, then you’ll eliminate some of the rides in the afternoon.

Conversely, if rides are king, you’ll spend less time in World Showcase. You can still follow this basic Epcot itinerary I’m presenting, you’ll just customize the amount of time you spend in each step.

Also, as a warning, there’s a lot of walking at Epcot. In order to get on rides with lower lines, or break up long stretches in World Showcase, you have to zig-zag the park.

If you’re more concerned with minimizing walking, you’ll want to tackle attractions located close to one another.

As a random side note, because of all that walking, make sure you have happy feet! Here are some of the best shoes I’ve tried out at Disney World.

NOTE: We don’t yet know how Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will play into this. Nor do we know if it will even be offered as a standby line. I’ll update this post once I know more.

Disney’s Early Theme Park Entry and Epcot Touring Plan

The advent of Early Theme Park Entry now has a significant impact on an itinerary at any of the parks.

If you are staying at a Disney World resort or a Disney Good Neighbor Hotel, you qualify for Disney Early Entry into all of the parks. This allows resort guests to get into the park, and on the rides, 30 minutes before non-resort guests.

Make sure you understand how Disney Early Theme Park Entry works before your trip.

For guests who are eligible, those extra 30 minutes will likely have some of the shortest lines of the day. If you can take advantage of early entry, I highly recommend it. This is the new rope drop.

If you are an off-site guest and can’t take advantage of rope drop, skip step 1 and go right to step 2 in your Epcot itinerary.

Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane at Epcot

Also, this particular itinerary is assuming you don’t have Disney Genie+ or plan to buy Lightning Lane access. Essentially, this is the free version of the Epcot Itinerary.

For people with Disney Genie+, your itinerary will look different based on what you’re able to book, and when. You can still use this basic framework, simply plug in the rides you’re able to get passes for and go from there.

But if you are planning to purchase Disney Genie+ or Lightning Lane access, here are the rides which are eligible:

Epcot Disney Genie+ Rides

  • Disney and Pixar Short Film Festival
  • Journey into Imagination with Figment
  • Living with the Land
  • Mission: SPACE – Green
  • Mission: SPACE – Orange
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • Spaceship Earth
  • Test Track
  • The Seas with Nemo & Friends
  • Turtle Talk with Crush

Epcot Lightning Lane Rides

  • Frozen Ever After
  • Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure

If you do plan to use Genie+ (which unless you are going during high crowd times, I don’t think is truly necessary at Epcot), make sure you are ready to start booking right as the window opens at 7a the day you go to Epcot.

The running joke right now is that when people request a popular ride for early in the day, they’re being offered a show in the evening as the available option.

So be prepared to be flexible with your ride and time options. Honestly, in Epcot I’d probably be more inclined to buy the Lightning Lane access instead if I’m having a hard time getting onto Remy’s without a ridiculous wait.

But I digress…

Head on over to my general guide about Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane if you don’t have a clue what I’m referring to. But the short version: this is the paid FastPass replacement to allow you to skip the lines.

What is the first thing to do at Epcot?

Regardless of what your overall plan is for Epcot, the first thing you should do it head for a ride at park opening.

But to determine which ride, there are a couple of factors I want you to consider while answering this question.

  • Which gate are you entering at?
  • Is there a ride you absolutely want to get on?

The most popular rides at Epcot are Test Track, Soarin’, Frozen Ever After, and Remy’s.

Starting on January 10, 2022, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure opened up for stand-by lines for the first time, so that one can be added to the list of long waits.

Across the board, all the guests at rope drop are heading to one of those rides.

If you enter Epcot through the main entrance, you are pretty close to Test Track and Soarin’. If you’re entering at International Gateway, you are closest to Remy’s and Frozen Ever After.

So, the most obvious strategy is to simply head to one of the rides that’s closer. That gives you a leg up on people coming from a longer distance.

Despite this, my family has almost always followed this pattern, regardless of entrance gate: Test Track, Soarin’, check wait times to determine next ride.

However, with Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure now offering standby lines, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to head there first if you’re entering through International Gateway.

Because of that, I’m now going to create 2 separate morning Epcot itineraries:

  • Main Entrance Plan
  • International Gateway Plan

With these plans, its the morning that will be slightly different, the afternoon and evening will generally be the same.

Morning Epcot Itinerary – Main Entrance Plan

Let’s face it, with Epcot opening at 10:00a, there’s not much of a morning to play with. This is unfortunate since morning is typically one of the best times to get on rides.

If it’s a higher crowd level day, you might need to cut out out one or two chunks of steps 1-4. Remember, a lot of this is a judgement call based on what happens the day of.

Anything that is cut out, try to tack it back into the plan in the evening.

But seriously, if you absolutely want to ride Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, just head there first. It’s a serious walk from the Main Entrance, but it will likely be the shortest wait of the day.

Step 1: Feel the Need for Speed

It’s time to head to Test Track.

Plan to get to Epcot at least 30 minutes to an hour prior to early theme park entry (this applies for early entry only).

Pro Planning Tip: If you are coming from International Gateway and want to ride Test Track first, take a look at the Epcot map before you go. There are a few different paths to get there. You don’t want to make a wrong turn as you’ll lose too much time. Or just pull up directions on a map app on your phone.

You might get in line and the ride still isn’t running. But don’t fret, it will run soon and you’re in good position.

Test Track does break down frequently. If it’s down when you get there immediately skip to Step 2.

Step 2: It’s Time to Soar

Next, you want to cross from World Discovery to World Nature and head towards Soarin’.

By this point, the posted wait time for Soarin’ should be between 15-20 minutes. Your actual wait will hopefully be less. But even 15-20 minutes isn’t half bad.

The best seats for Soarin’ are the front row of the middle section.

**Check the wait for Soarin’ as soon as you get off Test Track. If the wait is 30 minutes or greater, check the wait for Frozen Ever After or Remy’s.

If either of them are less than 20 minutes, head there instead. Soarin’ will have shorter lines later.

Step 3: Let it Go or Become a Rat

Ok, this is going to be a little bit of a hike, but not too bad. After this, you can concentrate more on being efficient with your walking.

Head on over to Norway to take a ride to visit with Anna and Elsa on Frozen Ever After. Turn left when you enter World Showcase from World Celebration. You’ll go through Mexico and hit Norway after that.

OR walk the opposite direction around World Showcase and head towards France to get on Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.

Frankly, the lines for both of these rides might be too long at this point. But always check and see on your app. If they are too long, head right for step 4.

Step 4: Let’s have a Fiesta!

Considering this is a ride that typically has very low wait times, it might seem like a curious choice. However, it allows you to start taking advantage of where you already are.

This keeps you in World Showcase, which is where you want to be next anyway, trust me.

So head on over to Gran Fiesta Tour in the Mexico Pavilion to have a party.

Gran Fiesta Tour at Epcot

Morning Epcot Itinerary – International Gateway Plan

For all of you coming in from Crescent Lake or the Skyliner Gondolas, this is the plan for you.

Because of where you are already, the first half of the day is very heavy on World Showcase, it simply makes the most sense.

However, if you have people in your group who desperately want to get on Test Track (this is my family, it’s our favorite), then simply follow the other morning plan.

As long as you walk fast and are at the front of the pack at International Gateway, you can make it to Test Track and have a short wait.

Step 1: Parlez-vous Francais

From International Gateway there is really only one option that makes the most sense: Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.

France Pavilion is literally right next door to International Gateway and this is a hot new ride. Lines throughout the day are going to be pretty darn long.

If you were good at getting to Epcot early and are at the front of the pack entering International Gateway, Remy’s should be a near walk-on for you.

Step 2: Let it Go

Because I’m an absolute geek, I actually measured out the distance between Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and Frozen Ever After, Soarin’, and Test Track.

I found that the distance for each and every one of those rides is 0.6 miles. So you’re looking at an equidistant hike to all of them.

With that in mind, it turns to strategy.

Frozen Ever After is the other Lightning Lane access ride, meaning you can always purchase access to it as a back up, but this is a free itinerary, so we might as well try to ride it for free!

Because of that Frozen Ever After is my pick for step 2 of the International Gateway strategy.

According to Google Maps, it’s actually 1/10 of a mile quicker to turn left out of France Pavilion and head back towards United Kingdom Pavilion and head towards Norway that way.

However, I think I’d head right towards Morocco for the sheer fact you should encounter less people walking. At this point you’ll have people coming from World Celebration if you go the other way. Might as well avoid the crowds while you can.

Step 3: Fiesta Time

Mexico Pavilion is right next door to Norway, so this is a completely opportunistic move. Lines are longer by this time anyway, so you might as well knock one off the list that typically stays short anyway.

So get in line for Gran Fiesta Tour and enjoy.

Afternoon Epcot Itinerary – Both Plans

There will be some slight differences in the exact rides you choose to do in this section, but there is much about this part of the itinerary that will be the same for everyone.

I’m writing this with the assumption that there is a Festival of some sort going on during your trip. Because really, they’re pretty much year round at this point.

With that understanding, it’s time to eat!

Step 5: Eat and Drink Around the World

Epcot's Flower and Garden Festival Macaron Lollipop

I’m sure everyone is hungry by now so it’s time to eat! Start making your way around World Showcase sampling the outdoor kitchens or restaurants.

It’s up to you whether you want to head clockwise or counter-clockwise. There is much debate whether the correct way is to start with Canada or Mexico, but really it doesn’t matter. Go whichever way has the first booth you want to eat at!

As you do this, consider popping in to the different countries to explore. You’ll need time to let your food settle. Each country has some really cool things to look at.

Explore the shops, watch some of the movies. Don’t sweat about deeply exploring every country on this round. You’ll be back through again later.

Pick the countries that most interest you for this first loop around World Showcase. That way you know for sure you get to experience your priority countries.

Remember, it’s 1.2 miles around World Showcase, so you’ll get the miles in today. By eating as you go, you won’t need to stop for lunch.

If the kids needs something a little more standard, stop at Regal Eagle Smokehouse at the American Adventure. It’s the best quick service restaurant in Epcot.

It’s also halfway around World Showcase so it’s the perfect spot for lunch.

Some highlights to consider as you make your way around: American Adventure animatronic show, Beauty and the Beast Sing-a-long.

Step 6: Head back to World Celebration

A lot of the “lesser” rides should still have quite reasonable wait times at this point. Rides like Journey into Imagination, The Seas with Nemo & Friends, and Living with the Land tend to always have waits on the lower end.

As you head back in that direction, pull out My Disney Experience and see where everything stands. Your plan for the next little while is to simply bounce around this area and see what you can get done.

This is where things might start to differ slightly depending on what you accomplished earlier in the day. The main difference being whether or not you rode Test Track and Soarin’.

If you haven’t ridden those rides yet, save them towards later in the afternoon/evening. They will still have long lines in the early afternoon.

I would suggest something along these lines:

  • Journey into Imagination
  • Living with the Land
  • The Seas with Nemo & Friends
  • Turtle Talk with Crush
  • SeaBase (it’s in the same building as Nemo)
  • Spaceship Earth
  • Mission: SPACE
  • Soarin’
  • Test Track
Hidden mickey in Epcot aquarium

This makes the earlier part of the afternoon a bit more efficient. You don’t have to start criss-crossing back and forth until you get to the later part of the plan.

Even if you’ve already gone on Soarin’ or Test Track, if you see the waits go down, you might as well ride again!

Our mission is always to ride Test Track at least twice since it’s a family favorite.

This should take you into evening.

Evening Epcot Touring Plan

The sun is setting and the lights are turning on. I LOVE how beautiful Epcot is all lit up at night. Once the sun goes down, please take some time to simply enjoy the beauty and take some pictures.

A note on dinner: depending on how much Festival food and/or snacks you want to eat, you might not need dinner.

My husband and I have successfully done an entire day at Epcot without ever needing a restaurant. There’s just so much food.

But, I also understand if you want to eat at one of the amazing Epcot restaurants. It’s really a hard call. We are big fans of Rose & Crown Pub, Biergarten, and La Creperie de Paris.

Journey into Imagination building at night at Epcot

Step 7: Go Back and Explore the World

The evening is a great time to head back to World Showcase. Your plan now is to eat more booth food, drink more drinks, find more snacks…oh and explore the countries you missed earlier today.

World Showcase will probably feel a little more crowded at this point, but unless it’s a Friday through Sunday, it should be pretty reasonable.

Also, the later it’s open, the more everything will thin out.

While you’re here, keep an eye on the wait times for Frozen Ever After and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure. Be opportunistic!

Step 8: Last Minute Rides and/or Harmonious

This is of course going to vary depending on what time Epcot closes. The later the closing time, the more opportunity you have to re-ride your favorites.

One of the big tricks at Disney is to hop in line for a ride right before park closing. Disney artificially inflates the wait time as a deterrent. It’s often one of the shortest waits of the day.

If there is any ride you weren’t able to get on earlier in the day, now is the time to revisit that attempt.

Test Track has always been my number 1 recommended ride for getting on right before closing. As a bonus, riding Test Track at night has a completely different feel than during the day.

However, if you haven’t been able to get on Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, right before closing is probably your best bet.

But truly, this strategy would apply to any of the top 4 rides.

The main hiccup to this strategy is if you want to watch Harmonious, Epcot’s fireworks show. If you haven’t seen it yet, I highly recommend watching it.

However, it usually runs right at closing. This means you need to choose which is more important to you: a hard to get on ride with short waits or a very entertaining fireworks show.

It’s a tough call.

If you’re lucky, the show will run prior to closing. If that’s the case, watch as much as Harmonious as you can, then book it to a ride.

Final Thoughts on This 1-Day Epcot Itinerary

I think this is a pretty solid Epcot itinerary. It could be a little overly ambitious on a heavy crowd day. You simply can’t get as much done when there’s a big crowd. There’s no way around that.

I’m hopeful that this strategy helps you to experience a full day at Epcot without having to spend the extra money on Disney Genie+ or Lightning Lane.

As always, you never know exactly what’s going to happen on the day of your trip. Test Track might be out of commission most of the day, driving up demand for night time.

You could get distracted by all the food and miss some of the rides. Just remember to think on your feet and be adaptable.

While this Epcot touring plan gives you a good framework of a successful plan, you WILL need to alter it on the big day. But don’t worry, you’ll still have an amazing time.

If you’re looking for some other itinerary ideas, take a look at these:

Epcot itinerary pin image featuring Mission space entrance

Your Thoughts

What do you think about this Epcot touring plan? Do you think it’s doable or a little over ambitious? What have you tried that worked really well? Let me know in the comments below.

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  1. thank you for the tips on what to do when. One thing really disappointed me though in Epcot. You wrote “The whole purpose behind Epcot is to learn about technology, the natural world, and the cultures of the world, while also having fun.” No, it is not. Is USED to be. Now? now it has turned into a commercial movie based place, like the other parks. Sad if you think about it. Now, instead of learning about Energy, you get a roller coaster for Guardians of the Galaxy. instead of learning about the future in Horizons, you get a ride to space to ohh and ahh over. Instead of learning about the entire history of motion cumulating in the auto, you get a fast car ride. All nice rides, but not what EPCOT was supposed to be. Instead of a ride that educated you a “little” about Norway, you get a ride about the movie Frozen. It’s still different than the Magic Kingdom, but too much focused like the M K is. ON rides and movies. Not on the Experimental city of the Future that it was originally set to be. I remember the old days. I saw the new days. I miss the original concept for this one. 🙁

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