After spending the winter mired in a polar vortex, I began looking forward to my annual trip to Disney World during the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival even more. The weeks of bundling up under blanket after blanket somehow made the idea of being surrounded by beautiful flowers under the warm Orlando sun even more appealing. Well, after my most recent trip, I can say that Disney’s Symphony to Spring was worth the wintry wait.
As always, the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival is a stunning showcase of the best of what Disney’s horticultural team can do. They manage to transform Epcot into an even more beautiful park, adding amazing topiaries depicting Disney characters with the attention to detail you expect from Disney. The results of their labors had my jaw dropping more times than the Tower of Terror.
I just love to walk around the World Showcase and see the different topiaries in each country. Starting in Canada, you’re greeted by Bambi, Flower, and friends. Mary Poppins, Winnie the Pooh, and Peter Pan take residence in England. Cross the bridge into France and you might find yourself dancing with the princesses. Once in France, you’ll find all your favorite characters from Beauty and the Beast. Belle, Beast, Lumiere, Cogsworth, Mrs. Potts, Chip: All exquisitely crafted from flowers. In Italy, topiaries take the form of Lady and the Tramp. As you approach Germany, you’ll see the familiar sight of the Seven Dwarfs beside World Showcase Lagoon. Head to the African Trading Post if you want to see the iconic scene of Rafiki holding up baby Simba recreated in topiary form.
Future World also has its fair share of great topiaries, including Mickey and Minnie. Mater and Lightning McQueen have found an appropriate home outside of Test Track. The entrance to the park also includes a cute display of Donald, Daisy, and Goofy catching bugs and enjoying all that Spring has to offer.
The walkway between Future World and World Showcase features a lush landscape and a blanket of flowers. Another one of my favorite parts of the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival are the flowers floating in the water by this walkway. Another reason why I love visiting Epcot in the spring! Every part of Epcot’s horticultural transformation is inspiring, and walking amongst the artistry is a joyful experience.
But there’s more to the Flower and Garden Festival than just, well, flowers and gardens. The Festival Center, located at the former site of Wonders of Life, features many seminars and classes from HGTV personalities. The Festival Center is also where you can buy your Flower and Garden Festival Merchandise that ranges from shirts to gardening tools to wind chimes to a new Vera Bradley bag. Me? Well, I was sure to pick up the commemorative pin featuring Kermit and Piggy, as well as the irresistibly cute Topiary Vinylmation.
I almost forgot to mention one of my Flower and Garden Festival traditions: the Flower Power Concert series. Disney invites bands from yesteryear to come and perform their hits at the American Gardens Theatre. My absolute favorite band to see is the Guess Who. They always put on a great show, and who can resist “These Eyes”? There are concerts each Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, so the parks can get pretty crowded during those times.
I should also mention that Disney has added a bit of the Food and Wine Festival by adding food booths to the Flower and Garden Festival. While seeing the flowers is still the main attraction for me, being able to sample delicious small plates while doing so is an added bonus.
Epcot never looked as stunning as it does when the Disney team wraps it in all its floral splendor. I would recommend trying to plan a visit to Walt Disney World during the Flower and Garden Festival. There is fun to be found for all ages, and Epcot in spring is truly something you have to see for yourself.