Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Red Loop. Today we are sharing some of the magic you can expect at the 2017 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival. This is our favorite event at Epcot. Find out what the adults can enjoy in our Grown-Ups Guide to the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival.
Our first Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival didn’t have the fun Outdoor Marketplaces. The festival was still beautiful but the addition of food made it awesome. There isn’t as many options as Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival has but we consider that a plus. It means we can actually get everything we want. 🙂
There are two new Outdoor Marketplaces this year bringing the total up to 15. The Flower & Garden Festival is kind of like a mini Food & Wine Festival since there are alcoholic options at each of the marketplaces. There is a little something for everyone with mixed drinks, beer, cider, wine, etc. There are also a lot of good non-alcoholic options. The Frozen Desert Violet Lemonade is one of my favorites.
We didn’t make it to the festival last year so there are several booths that will be new to us. I think I’m most excited about Cider House. I tend to prefer cider over beer so I feel like this marketplace was put there just for me. The Florida Beer Company Caribe Blood Orange Tropical Hard Cider sounds amazing. I’ll update this post with our favorites after our trip next week. In the meantime, you can view the menus here.
More Than Just Topiaries
The topiaries are the headliners at the Flower & Garden Festival. I’m always in awe and I can’t wait to see the Figment topiary. But there are also some cool exhibits and displays. I think kids of all ages will enjoy:
- Bonsai Collection – The Japan Pavilion will give you an appreciation this ancient art form. It’s always one of our favorites.
- Health & Healing Garden – In The Land check out ancient plants that have the ability to heal.
- Pepper Fire Garden – Also in The Land Pavilion take a peek at the world’s hottest peppers.
- Prehistoric Plants – This sounds awesome. It displays examples of greenery that existed when dinosaurs roamed the earth. If they ever add a dinosaur topiary I might not leave that spot.
- Shakespeare Garden – Or I may never leave this spot (because cider.) The garden matches up famous quotes to flowers and can be found in the UK Pavilion.
Those are just the tip of the iceberg. You can see the full list of topiaries, exhibits, and displays here.
There are two great tours that are only offered during the festival plus the Behind the Seeds Tour that is offered all year. They are all a fun and a great way to mix things up if you’ve been to the festival before.
- Gardens of the World – “Here’s your chance to explore—or even develop—a budding passion for gardening! Join a knowledgeable Disney horticulturist and a small group of fellow enthusiasts on this fascinating 3-hour walking tour throughout Future World and World Showcase.” The tour is $85 plus tax per person and guests need to be at least 16 to participate. Tours take place on select Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM during the Festival. Call (407) WDW-TOUR to make a reservation or visit guest relations when you arrive.
- English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London® – On the tour “you’ll learn you’ll learn more about the artistry behind the growing and blending of herbs, which is vital for the creation of uniquely flavored brews.” There are three different ways to take this tour.
- Self Guided – You can tour the gardens whenever you want and at your own pace. Information can be picked up at the Tea Caddy shop.
- English Tea Garden Tour – This is a complementary guided tour of the garden. Same day sign up is in The Tea Caddy shop in the UK Pavilion. Tours are limited to 20 guests so make sure to sign up early in the day. This tour is offered at 3:30 and 5:00 pm on Monday thru Thursday and 1:00 pm, 3:30 pm, and 5:00 pm on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
- Royal Tea Garden Tour – This guided tour has a small fee and also offers a sampling of tea and scones. Call 407-WDW-TOUR for availability.
- Behind the Seeds – This tour is offered all year and is a great way to learn more about the Living with the Land attraction. For reservations call (407) WDW-TOUR or visit the tour desk on the lower floor of the Land Pavilion near Soarin’.
You can find more info on the Gardens of the World, English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London®, and the Behind the Seeds tours here.
Visiting the Festival Center is always a must for us. It’s a fun place to geek out, even if gardening isn’t really your thing. Inside you will find exhibits, presentations and demonstrations on the Festival Center stages, and opportunities to meet Disney horticulturists, Master Gardeners and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Specialists. There is also a cafe and a shop with festival souvenirs.
The full schedule is available to download. During the first week of the festival, the Festival Center will open Wednesday, March 1 and each day through Sunday, March 5. After that it will be open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM—March 1 through May 29, 2017.
The 2017 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival runs from March 1 until May 29. Admission to Epcot is required but there is no additional charge to attend the festival which makes it a great time to visit. Don’t forget to pick up a passport! It’s a great keepsake and free souvenir.
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!
Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Red | 2017 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival Loop:
- 1st Stop – The Disney Chef | Recipe from Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival
- 2nd Stop – My Dreams of Disney | Exploring the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival
- 3rd Stop – Disney in Your Day | Best of the Flower and Garden Food Booths
- 4th Stop – Rolling with the Magic | Grown-Ups Guide to the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival
- 5th Stop – Magical Memories with the Mouse | Garden Rocks – What Music Has to Do with the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival