There are a number of ridiculous and largely pointless debates one can get into among Walt Disney World fans. Which is the best Disney World park? Is the Epcot of today really that bad compared to the Epcot of yesterday? What truly is the worst ride in the history of Disney World? These can be fun debates to have, largely because there really is no right answer. But there is perhaps no question less important, but more fun, to ask than this: which way do you go when you enter Epcot’s World Showcase?
When you get to the end of World Celebration and find yourself facing the World Showcase lagoon, you have a decision to make: do you go left or right? I myself tend to go left, toward Mexico. However, on my last trip to Epcot, it was time for lunch when I made it to World Showcase, and I had reservations at Le Cellier, so I did something I don’t recall ever doing before: I went right.
I have a confession to make. I've sat on this for too long and it's time I come clean.The last time I went to Epcot I started in Canada.I'm sorry. I feel like I really let a lot of you down. I promise to do better going forward.July 27, 2022
The World Showcase is a big loop, and so eventually you’ll hit all the same places. One thing that does appear to be true with most people, though, is that whichever direction they choose, they tend to choose that direction regularly. But is there a right way to eat and drink around the world?
Start With Mexico
If you go left, the first World Showcase location you’ll find is Mexico. If you’d like to start your trip around the world with a margarita (and who wouldn’t?), then there is a pretty solid argument for starting here.
There's also a good reason to go left if you’re at Epcot to do the rides. Mexico is home to the Gran Fiesta Tour starring the Three Caballeros, which is a fun little boat ride that rarely has a long line. Also, the next pavilion you’ll come to going that direction is Norway, where you’ll find Frozen Ever After, one of the top attractions at Epcot.
The San Angel Inn is a popular spot for a meal in Mexico. While it works equally well for lunch or dinner, since Epcot's steakhouse is located in Canada, it's potentially a strong argument for starting in Mexico. Hit the San Angel Inn for lunch, and finish your route in Canada having a delicious steak for dinner.
Start With Canada
If you’re looking to start your World Showcase experience with a drink, but a margarita isn’t what you’re looking for, perhaps you’d prefer a cold beer. In that case, you can start by going to the right and finding the Canada pavilion.
Beer drinkers have even more reason to go right, as after one leaves Canada in that direction, they’ll enter the UK pavilion. The Rose and Crown is a popular spot for both food and drink at Epcot, so if you’re heading that way, you want to go right.
While the ride side of World Showcase doesn’t have a big ride attraction until you get to the recently-added Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure in France, there’s still a lot to recommend it. Canada has the Canada Far and Wide Circle-Vision movie. Circle-Vision is a major part of Disney theme park history that everybody should experience. Canada also has a stage that frequently has great bands playing. Very little goes better with good beer than good music.
What Walt Disney World Fans Think
I was always under the impression that most people, for whatever reason, tended to go left more than right. However, when I posted the tweet above, most of the actual comments I received were from people who thought going to the right was the… right choice. So I put a poll in the field. Which way do people actually tend to go? As it turns out, my initial impression was accurate.
Ok, after my post yesterday I'm curious if the results will actually be close to 50/50. Where do you start at World Showcase?July 28, 2022
While the early votes were pretty well split evenly, the vote ended up shifting strongly toward a clockwise rotation through World Showcase by a two to one margin. Honestly, perhaps that’s a reason to consider going right. Most people apparently go left, so maybe Canada is normally less crowded?
It's honestly unclear why more people hit Mexico first. Maybe people have a natural inclination to want to move in a clockwise direction. I honestly wondered if most people being right-handed might mean they tend to go right more than left when given a choice, but perhaps not.
Option 3: The International Gateway
While I intentionally left any other options off of my poll because I wanted to see people make a clear choice between Mexico and Canada, there is a third option that several people pointed out in the comments. The International Gateway is located between the UK and France pavilions, and it connects to several Epcot area resorts, as well as the Skyliner and the Friendship Boats from Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
A lot of people prefer, if given the choice, to enter Epcot from there. Based on comments, the vast majority of them head to France rather than the UK pavilion, likely for the simple reason that there is a lot more of the World Showcase in that direction. Moving toward the UK takes you out of World Showcase and back into the front half of the park.
But not everybody really has that choice. Unless you're staying in a resort served by the boats or the Skyliner, you'd potentially have to go out of your way to use this route to get into Epcot when just taking the normal bus transportation to the front door will probably be easier, even if the bus transportation can be its own nightmare.
The truth, of course, is that there's no wrong way to do Epcot. The only wrong choice would be to visit Walt Disney World and not visit Epcot at all. While plenty of people think Epcot has lost some of its luster as the park has evolved over the years from Epcot Center to simply Epcot, it’s still a very unique spot with a character all its own. It’s my favorite spot in all of Walt Disney World, no matter which way I go.
CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.
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