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Walt Disney World's EPCOT Part 2: EPCOT FESTIVALS

Diane Schroeder, Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

with If You Can Dream It Travel

Epcot is a Disney Park that has something for everyone in your party, whether they enjoy flowers and gardening, food and wine, the holidays, the arts….

Hey! There’s an Epcot Festival for that!


International Festival of the Arts

Usually mid-January through mid-February– This festival includes the Disney on Broadway concert series, walk-up Food Studios, and the Wonderful Walk of Color Cuisine featuring beautiful food. The World Showcase Plaza hosts live musical performances daily–we especially enjoyed the guitarist pictured above. At the Festival of the Arts, you can experience a kaleidoscope of visual performances, plus art that you can participate in around the Park. Meet talented artists, watch them create, and purchase an original piece of art as a souvenir to take home if you wish.

International Flower and Garden Festival

Early March through early July– Stunning floral displays await you along with topiary and garden displays throughout the entire Park. Enjoy educational areas, butterfly gardens, and fabulous food samples from a multitude of kiosks featuring eats from our good earth. The Garden Rocks concert series showcases fun tunes from yesterday and today, and the concerts are included in your admission. Don’t miss this beautiful festival!

International Food and Wine Festival

Just started on July 27, 2023 and runs through November 18, 2023.

Includes the fan favorite Eat to the Beat Concert Series included with your admission, scavenger hunts, and global marketplaces filled with snack-sized international food, wine, and other libations to try. You can enjoy food from 6 continents and walk around the “World” eating and drinking! This is a very popular festival that has grown over the years. This year, taste your way around the world with “Emile’s Fromage Montage” scavenger hunt featuring delicious cheeses served in inventive ways. (food photo by Disney)

Festival of the Holidays

November 24- December 30, 2023. You can celebrate traditions from around the world during this international yuletide extravaganza. Holiday Storytellers bring beloved traditions such as Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Lunar New Year and more to life! Witness stories told through music and dance, with performers in traditional costumes. Super popular nighttime event Candlelight Processional features celebrity readers who share the story of Christmas with a full choir and 50-piece orchestra, this is not to be missed! The World Showcase cookie stroll and holiday kitchens with seasonal recipes from around the world are ready to help you eat your way through this festival. You can even meet Santa Claus at The Odyssey Pavilion! Experience a glimmering greenhouse at Living with the Land and its holiday overlay.

All of the Epcot Festivals include special merchandise created specifically for the occasion. You’re sure to find something to take home as a special reminder of your time there.

Some of the festivals offer wristlet gift cards! Even if you are making only a few purchases, I highly recommend getting one of these wristlet gift cards, especially if you aren't charging food and drinks to your MagicBand. These wristlets are sold at the festival kiosks. You can load $15 and up on the little gift card. Keep your receipt in case you lose the wristlet! It is very easy to make purchases and have this little card scanned from your wrist. The wristlet gift card might especially be handy for day guests who are not staying at a Disney resort or do not have a MagicBand. It could also be a great way to allocate a certain amount of spending money to kids. I like saving mine for keychains, making it a no-cost souvenir!

I bought this Pineapple Dole Whip with my wristlet gift card at The Refreshment Port during an Epcot Festival.

There are many special kiosks set up during the Food & Wine Festival (July 27-November 18, 2023) where you can spend your gift card on treats that are available only during the festival, such as a Gyro at "Greece". Isn't the little building the cutest? Get your Gyro or Spanakopita and a glass of wine here! (food photo by Disney)

Although it is called the Food & Wine festival, there are many specialty drinks available that are not wine, like the Sake Passion Cocktail at "Japan".

Concert Series Dining Packages…. Some of the Festivals have concert series included in your admission, but if you want a guaranteed seat for the show, you can purchase a Dining Package. This can be especially helpful if you really want to see a headliner or the Candlelight Processional. Dining packages are available at several Epcot restaurants, just ask your travel planner for details on how you can participate or check Disney Dining.

Food Allergy?

If you have a food allergy like I do, you may be interested to know that many of the Global Marketplaces at 2023 EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival offer menu items that may be suitable for common allergy-friendly requests. This helpful benefit is also available for other festivals and restaurants at Walt Disney World. Check the Allergy menu included in the app or at the kiosk, or ask to speak to a chef for details. The picture below shows the My Disney Experience app where you can access Allergy Friendly Menus at the bottom of the screen.

No matter which Epcot Festival is your favorite or one you would like to attend, I hope you get to experience it soon.

Each one offers so much to appeal to the senses, the mind, and the spirit! We would love to help you with plans to help you have the best experience ever!

Want to know more about butterflies?

There is always something to learn about at Epcot!

Which Epcot Festival is my favorite? After a long winter, there is nothing like seeing the gorgeous flowers and topiaries that tell us Spring has finally returned!

Diane Schroeder, Authorized Disney Travel Planner

fb: Diane with If You Can Dream It Travel

Insta: dianesmagicaltravels

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