Tips for Navigating Sensory-Friendly Areas and Experiences of EPCOT
The Sensory-Friendly series continues with a stop in Sensory-Friendly EPCOT. This park actually has quite a few quiet respite areas for guests seeking sensory decompression.
The Land of Relaxation
The Land Pavilion houses Soarin Around the World, Awesome Planet, The Garden Grill, Sunshine Seasons, and Living with the Land. So, yes….this building is busy. HOWEVER, it is possible to relax and decompress. Living with the Land is a quiet boat ride through modern and future types of agriculture. Sounds boring, right? Yeah, it is. Perfect for grabbing a nap or some quiet time. The line is rarely long, so no problem with waiting. Similarly, it is rare to find the huge seating area for Sunshine Seasons full. In fact, closest to the queue for Living with the Land is generally empty. This provides a good spot to sit and room for running, spinning, etc.
Sensory Breaks are NOT Imaginary
Consider, too, the Imagination Pavilion. The Figment ride itself can be a bit much. It is, after all, exploring all of the senses. It’s loud, it smells, so if you
think that may be too much, I would skip it. Otherwise, it’s a cute ride. If you choose to skip the ride, head in to the play area. While it’s not even close to what it once was, there are a few sensory-friendly play areas with plenty of space to run around. There are also some characters in there now. If you are a DVC member, you can also head upstairs to the lounge here.
Outside, there is a large space that dead ends into a cast member only area, and this is great for running around. There are also bathrooms here and they are rarely busy. And finally, there is a Pixar short films viewing area (formerly Captain E.O.) that can be a good space to cool down and decompress.
A Grand and Miraculous Sensory Break
Let’s not forget the icon of EPCOT, Spaceship Earth. This quiet, dark, omnimover ride provides a quiet, air conditioned respite. and the post ride area provides a few interactive areas that can be used to decompress. The areas outside of Spaceship Earth are also packed with benches and seating areas. And, of course, Connections Cafe.
Seas the Sensory Break
The Seas with Nemo and Friends is a sensory-friendly haven. I have literally spent hours in there! There are a ton of dark, quiet, air conditioned areas to decompress!
The World is Sensory-Friendly
World Showcase is actually a sensory-friendly safe haven. Starting in Canada, as you should, Victoria Gardens is beautiful and quiet. Similarly, the UK Pavilion Gardens offer seating, shade, and, occasionally, entertainment. Including characters!
Continuing around the world, the space between the UK and France (the chunnel, if you will) has some quiet, albeit hot because there is no shade, space along the water. And Morocco is so full of quiet spots there should be a sign that says “Quiet Space.” Head back to the Fez House and take a seat. You will not regret it. I promise.
Perhaps my favorite of all pavilions, Japan has the most beautiful scenery. The Koi pond is an amazingly peaceful area with an incredible view of Spaceship Earth. And further back, there are even more areas.
The American Adventure has a ton of seating areas, inside and out. Then, it becomes more challenging. Italy, Germany, China, Norway, and Mexico don’t have quite as many quiet areas in seclusion. It’s not impossible, but it’s also not as easy. Especially at peak times or during Festivals.
Heading Outside the Gates
EPCOT is a unique park, in that it has a front and back entrance. This can provide Sensory-Friendly EPCOT areas that aren’t actually inside the park! Hop on the Monorail (main entrance) or the Skyliner or Friendship Boats (International Gateway) to get a quiet getaway. Or walk around the Boardwalk area (International Gateway). Take a quiet stroll around Crescent Lake, take your shoes off and run through the sand at Beach Club, grab a snack, and more!