Guests will finally be able to see the world on Soarin’ at both Epcot and Disney California Adventure.
Beginning on June 17, Soarin’ Around the World will debut giving Guests a glimpse of the Great Wall of China, Sydney Harbor in Australia, and the Matterhorn in Switzerland. The ride will immerse Guests in a multi-sensory experience with sights, sounds, and smells.
The soundtrack of the attraction will see a bit of a change that fits with the new destinations, but will still be based on the current version. There will also be a surprise ending for Guests to experience.
Here is a preview of what Guests will be able to expect with the new film:
If you are planning your very first visit to Walt Disney World, and you’re like me, you’ve probably done your Disney homework on the parks and resorts. I’m sure you have lists of what attractions you want to see, what characters you want to meet, and I bet you even made those dining reservations the day you booked your trip, right? Still, despite all your planning and newly accumulated park knowledge, it’s still easy to make those Disney World Rookie mistakes. My goal today is to let you in on some tips and info that I wish I had known before my park visits to help your first time trip to Walt Disney World run a little more smoothly. I’ve already covered What I Wish I Knew Before My Trip to the Magic Kingdom; and so for today, I’m tackling What I Wish I Knew Before My Trip to Epcot!
The length of World Showcase is what I wish I knew before my trip to Epcot!
Two Parks in One
Epcot is one park, but it has two very different sections: Future World and the World Showcase. Future World was originally intended to educate visitors about the world and to be a showplace for new technology. However, Future World has suffered some criticism in recent years as many of its buildings sit empty and seems to be more representative of the past than the future. Still, Future World is home to some of the park’s most popular attractions such as Soarin’, Test Track, and the iconic Spaceship Earth. Epcot’s other section, World Showcase, sits towards the rear of the park and encircles the World Showcase Lagoon. This part of Epcot features eleven pavilions themed after different countries from around the world, as well as one for the United States.
What’s really awesome about World Showcase is that Imagineers went to great lengths to make each pavilion and its design both historically and culturally accurate, so you feel as if you’re in another country and also getting a sense of its history at the same time. Also, I absolutely love eating at the different World Showcase restaurants and shopping for souvenirs from around the world.
Welcome to the first Best Week Ever of 2016! I hope that you all had a wonderful New Year’s Eve celebration, and didn’t suffer too badly for it the next day. As it turns out, Walt Disney World itself requires a little “hair of the dog” to recover from the previous week’s capacity crowds. Peak season may have passed, but the Epcot holiday hangover lingers on…
My first Epcot visit of 2016 occurred 4 days into the new year, but the aftermath of holiday crowds — and the flood of cars that had to be parked on every available surface, including the lawn — was still in evidence as I approached the park.
Are you a Disney Park critic? I know, it’s hard to be critical of anything Disney (at least I think so), but even I have to admit that I’ve experienced a few things that some parks don’t do as well as others. Of course, there’s also a number of things that each park does very well! Today, I’m breaking down Disney Park Strengths and Weaknesses beginning with one of my personal favorite parks: Epcot.
Epcot has a very interesting history. What few guests know is that Epcot was one of Walt’s main focuses when it came to his Florida Project and that the park we know today wasn’t exactly what he had in mind. Epcot, formerly known as EPCOT Center, stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow and was intended to be a real, working community with an innovative design to serve as a model for future cities. When Walt passed away, the vision for Epcot gradually turned into a park that celebrated both the future and the world. That is why Epcot is composed of two different sections: Future World and World Showcase.
Soarin’ at Epcot will be closed for a very lengthy refurbishment for the first half of 2016. The refurbishment of the popular attraction found in The Land Pavilion will be closed starting on January 4, 2016, and will reopen sometime during the summer of 2016. No official reopening date has been announced, nor do we know the exact extent of the work that is to be completed.
Currently, a third theater is under construction. This refurbishment is connected to that work. It is also unclear whether Soarin’ Around The World will be ready to debut when the refurbishment work is completed. However, one would expect that it would debut at or around that reopening time. I will keep you posted as more information gets released about this refurbishment.
It looks like the rumors were indeed true! It was announced at the D23 Expo today that Soarin’ Around the World will be headed to not only Epcot, but also to Disney California Adventure.
The attraction will take guests on a journey to far-flung lands and fly above some of the world’s most unique natural landscapes and man-made wonders. Some of the destinations will include the Great Wall of China and Monument Valley.
Disney California Adventure’s Soarin’, which debuted when the park opened in 2001, just saw an upgrade to digital projectors during the transformation of its land from Condor Flats to Grizzly Peak Airfield. In addition, over at Epcot, a third theater is currently being constructed, augmenting the two that have been there since the attraction opened in May 2005. Both upgrades are being done to prepare for the new film.
Soarin’ Around the World is expected to debut in 2016 in both parks.
If you’ve been paying attention to the rumor mill lately, you’ll likely have heard about the supposed expansions for two major attractions at Walt Disney World. One was for Soarin’ and one was for Toy Story Midway Mania! It seems as if those rumors were indeed true, because today, Disney officially announced both of those expansions were coming to fruition.
At Epcot, Soarin’ will be adding a third theater; currently there are two theaters in use with the popular attraction. In addition to the extra theater, there will be updates to the screens, as well as the projection system. (Let’s hope this means we will finally stop Soarin’ with big random spots floating on the screen.)
Over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the extremely popular Toy Story Midway Mania! will also see an addition in the form of an extra track. If you’ve been to the park lately, you’ll notice that the Soundstage 1 (the recent former location of both Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post and Darth’s Mall) has walls around it, which was done in preparation of the expansion.
Both of these expansions are in an effort to increase guest throughput, as both are extremely popular with very long waits most days and FastPass+ reservations often difficult to obtain, especially if you are trying to get one on the day you are visiting the park.
These expansions are expected to be completed by late 2016 and as of right now, both attractions are currently open for guests to enjoy with no refurbishment dates announced.
Before we set off on our exciting voyage, we each spent the night in Vancouver; Erin and her family at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport and my family at the Fairmont Waterfront. My family arrived early on the day before our Disney Alaska Cruise so we had some time to check out Vancouver. Please read on to find out all about our adventures exploring Canada Place, walking the Sea Wall and touring Gastown!
*Twiddles thumbs. Checks Twitter. Reads a blog post.*
Done? Okay, let’s ‘soar’ right in!
Pick your mode of transportation! Soarin’ is a popular ride that allows you to hang-glide over California, feeling the wind in your face whilst smelling the fragrance of zesty orange trees. (Fun Fact: The first model for Soarin’ was made out of an erector set!) Once you land on solid ground, hop in a Chevy at Test Track. Strap yourself in and brace yourself for the ride of your life! Put on your space suit, join the NASA team and shoot for the stars as you travel to Mars in your rocket via Mission: Space. To ease back into Earth’s gravity, swim underwater to the ‘clamobile’ where The Seas with Nemo & Friends take you “under the sea.” Finally, use those feet and travel indoors to Innoventions where you’ll find interactive and educational games the whole family will enjoy.