Epcot is a really big place without a very high concentration of fun stuff for little kids, so be prepared. As long as you know that going in, you should be fine. I wish we had time to do the Spaceship Earth and Ellen’s Energy Adventure. I think Garrett would have enjoyed them but we just ran out of energy before we got back around the lake to any energy adventures. Next time we will hit those first.
1. The Seas with Nemo and Friends is arguably the best thing Epcot has going for the preschool crowd. The clamshell ride is fun, but Turtle Talk with Crush is hilarious. The audience gets to ask Crush questions and interact with a real “live” Crush on the screen. It’s a must do. Then you can spend time looking through the reefs at the aquarium.
2. The Circle of Life is another film that Garrett enjoyed. It teaches kids about environmental problems and how we all must work together in the Circle of Life.
3. Journey into Imagination with Figment was a cute ride that talks about the 5 senses and science stuff. Imagineworks interactive play areas was very cool. Garrett loved the musical leap pad place and making music with his hands.
4. One of Garrett’s most favorite things about Epcot was the Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure with Perry the Playpus from Phineas and Ferb. You check in at the main station by the fountain and get your assignment on a portable phone, then you head off into the countries on a big scavenger hunt to help save the country from evil Dr. Doofensmirtz. You can choose about 10 different countries to save, including Mexico, Norway, Japan, England and a few more. It takes about 20-30 minutes per country to finish a mission, so be ready to dedicate a lot of time per country helping your kid figure out all the clues. It’s a good way to keep them entertained, though, if you can let one parent do that while the other browses the shops. Be advised that you HAVE to finish one country’s mission before it lets you move to another. Don’t leave that country without completing the mission or you’ll have to go all the way back and do it.
5. Hit up the Kidcot stations. Each country has a coloring stop where the kids can sit and color a fan. There are people working at each country’s Kidcot station to sign and stamp their fans. Garrett got his name written in Arabic in Morocco and Japanese in Japan. Canada drew a maple leaf and other countries gave stamps. It was good entertainment and incentive to keep going around the lake to the next country to see what they would do.
6. Canada has a great 360 degree movie that feels like you’re flying across Canada from coast to coast. G enjoyed the scenery and feeling like he was flying. China has another 360 Circlevision film if you enjoy that one.
7. If you have a Frozen fan, BE SURE to go meet Anna and Elsa at Norway in Epcot. The lines were very short when we were there in 2018 and they spent at least 10 minutes talking to Caroline. It was amazing since she loves these two Disney characters the MOST.
1. Have breakfast with Handy Manny, Special Agent Oso, Little Einsteins and Dora at Hollywood and Vine restaurant. Make reservations well ahead of time, but this is one of the cheaper of the character meals that we found.
2. Disney Junior- Live on Stage is a fun show for the smaller kids featuring Little Einsteins, Jake and the Neverland Pirates and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Be aware that you much sit on the floor for this show, so if you get dead leg after sitting on the floor for 20 minutes you might want to just stand at the back.
3. The Magic of Disney Animation has a short presentation inside a theater where you watch how characters are created. Garrett met Winnie the Pooh inside this area and loved playing with the giant touch screens near Winnie. In an age of iPads, though, it’s tough to sit and watch your kid color a picture on a 1990’s model touch screen. But, he loved it…
4. By far, our favorite ride at HS (and in all of the parks, possibly) was the Toy Story Midway Mania ride. You put on 3D glasses and ride through a carnival midway where you shoot at carnival games on the screen. It was lots of fun, and Garrett said this was his favorite ride in the whole place!
5. Frozen Sing-a-Long: Let it go and sing all your favorite Frozen songs with Anna and Elsa! This one is great for the girls but the boys? Maybe?
6. Muppet Vision 3D is a fun little movie theater experience. Nice and easy and silly. Perfect for the 5 year old crowd.
7. You’ll find Lightning McQueen and Mater at the back by the entrance to the Stunt show. Great photo op there!
We only spent a half day at Hollywood Studios and headed back to Magic Kingdom for fireworks at night. There is a lot more to do for older kids here, but not a huge amount for the smaller kids. I’m sure we missed a lot of fun stuff, but we will see it when he gets older, I’m sure.
Even with a four day park-hopper pass there was no way for us to see and do everything Disney had to offer. I also have a strict rule about Disney that we have followed every time we have visited the park. Wanna hear it?
Here is my #1 rule of visiting Disney with a small child:
Never push your child past his breaking point for the sake of “fun”.
That’s rule number one, Jack. I know how much stress Garrett can handle, and I know when he’s getting tired, and I know when a meltdown is imminent. No matter how much you feel like you need to get your money’s worth at the Disney Parks, it’s never worth pushing your child so hard to see everything that you squeeze all of the joy out of the trip. Disney is a super stressful, overstimulating place. I’ve witnessed more screaming children and unhappy parents at Disney Parks than any other place on Earth. Schedules are thrown out the window, crowds are overbearing, and waiting in lines to go anywhere (including leaving!) is no fun for anybody. Try to remember that it’s supposed to be fun, and don’t ruin an entire family vacation by pushing your kids to their breaking point. Plan plenty of breaks in the schedule. Or, take unplanned breaks and just let your kid run around like a crazy person for a minute. Nobody will judge. Take some time around mid-afternoon to go back to the hotel room, rest, and let your kids decompress for a while before going back to the park at night for fireworks. It will make your trip so much easier to not push your family to see EVERYTHING that Disney has to offer. It’s pretty much impossible, anyway, unless you stay for several weeks.
What are your kids favorite things to do at Disney? Share them in the comments! I’d love to hear if you agree or disagree with my ride choices for preschoolers!
If you liked this post, be sure to read my other Walt Disney World Vacation Planning Posts: