Hopping Through Epcot’s World Showcase using a Passport
Eating a delectable raspberry and lime macaroon while sitting outside a bistro in France, gazing at the fountains and storefronts, or snacking on fresh hand-rolled sushi in Japan while gazing at the koi ponds, it’s incredibly easy to forget you are actually in sunny Central Florida.
The World Showcase at Walt Disney World’s Epcot is actually home to 11 different respective countries. Each prides itself on a full-fledged experience that makes you genuinely feel as if you’ve been transported around the world.
While people often tell me that Epcot is their LEAST favorite of the Disney franchise, I absolutely scoff! It is, in fact, my favorite! We finally took the kids to all 4 Disney parks, and when I asked the kids afterward which was their favorite, they replied to Epcot as well!
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THE best investment you can make during an Epcot trip is the purchase of the Passport kit they offer to kids. It comes with an eerily authentic looking passport, Stamps (stickers) and a pin. It was around $13 I believe but it doubles as a souvenir and kept my kids quite busy, so I was pleased to spend that amount. It is also available on Amazon for those that prefer to have everything on hand in advance of their vacation.
Immediately, my kids were (10 and 5 at the time) were thrilled. Then I explained to my kids that we would be ‘Traveling’ through 11 countries in the world showcase and that they would need to get their passport signed in each one!
The signing locations are called KidCot Fun Spots, and also offer free little crafts in each area. The crafts are all based around Duffy, which as Disney legend has it, is Mickey’s teddy bear made especially for his travels by Minnie Mouse herself! You can get an actual cardboard cut-out of him to color and personalize in each world. Some countries even offer coloring pages at times and one has a mask you can make and take!
The Kidcot Fun Stop is not always front and center when you enter a country! You have to go and actually look for it, which I love. It forces you to see parts of the country you may have originally overlooked! The amount of detail Disney has put into each country is breathtaking! You feel immersed into the atmosphere, and it’s easy to forget that you’re still in Florida!
Disney takes real care to employ cast members that are actually from each county in their respective areas in the showcase, which makes for an even more authentic experience.
My kids were thrilled to find that not only did the cast member stamp their passport in each country, but they also wrote a little something in on their country’s page. Some were even personalized with the spelling of their name in characters, like in Japan and China.
This is also a great teaching moment. I talked with my kids about international travel and how, just like we were doing at Epcot, you also must stand in line and get your passport stamped to gain entry into other countries.
Upon request, they will also teach your kids a word or two in their country, usually hello or greetings or some form of salutation!
To me, this is a mark of authenticity and harkens back to when we traveled to Trinidad years ago, I still have the paper tucked into my actual passport where the customs agent wrote down a list of indigenous food to try and places to visit- and I ate and went to them all!
Where to Find Kidcot Fun Stops
- Mexico Pavilion (near Animales Fantasticos)
- Norway Pavilion (at The Puffin’s Roost)
- China Pavilion (near the exit of Reflections of China)
- Germany Pavilion (at Volkunst)
- Italy Pavilion (outside, near La Bottega Italiana)
- American Adventure Pavilion (outside, near Heritage Manor Gifts)
- Japan Pavilion (in the Bijutsu-kan Gallery)
- Morocco Pavilion (at the Marketplace in the Medina)
- France Pavilion (at Souvenirs de France)
- United Kingdom Pavilion (at The Toy Soldier)
- Canada Pavilion (at the exit of O Canada!)
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