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EPCOT vs Animal Kingdom: Which Disney World Park is Right for You?

Published Mar 12, 2023

epcot vs animal kingdom

Planning a Disney World vacation can be an overwhelming experience, especially when choosing a suitable park to visit. With four major theme parks to pick from, each with unique attractions and entertainment, it can be challenging to determine which park will best fit you and your family. This comparison guide will look closely at EPCOT and Animal Kingdom, two of the most popular Disney World parks, and help you decide which one to visit. EPCOT, originally known as EPCOT Center, opened in 1982. EPCOT stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. The park is famous for its unique combination of technology and culture. On the other hand, Animal Kingdom is the youngest of the four Disney World parks, opening in 1998. It focuses on animal conservation, education, and entertainment. This guide will compare EPCOT and Animal Kingdom regarding:

We will also answer common questions to help you better plan your visit to these two parks. So, let's get started and find out which park is the best fit for your Disney World vacation.

EPCOT vs. Animal Kingdom: Rides

Rides are a significant part of any theme park experience, and both EPCOT and Animal Kingdom have a diverse range of rides for visitors to enjoy. EPCOT's rides are generally more focused on technology and innovation, while Animal Kingdom's rides strongly emphasize nature and animals.

Soarin' Around The World

At EPCOT, one of the most popular rides is Soarin' Around the World, which takes guests on a simulated hang-gliding journey over some of the world's most iconic landmarks.

Spaceship Earth

Spaceship Earth, located inside EPCOT's iconic geodesic sphere, takes guests on a journey through the history of human communication.

spaceship earth EPCOT

Test Track

Test Track is another famous ride that allows visitors to design and test their concept car on a high-speed track.

Animal Kingdom's rides are known for their immersive experiences that transport visitors to different parts of the world.

Kilimanjaro Safaris

Kilimanjaro Safaris is one of the park's most popular attractions, taking guests on a simulated safari through the African savanna.

Expedition Everest

Expedition Everest is a thrilling roller coaster that takes visitors to Mount Everest.

Avatar Flight of Passage

Avatar Flight of Passage, located in the park's newest land, Pandora – The World of Avatar, is an immersive 3D simulator that takes visitors on a breathtaking journey through the world of Avatar.

While both parks offer a unique selection of rides, Animal Kingdom's rides tend to be more immersive and visually stunning, offering visitors a chance to feel like they are genuinely part of the experience. Therefore, we declare Animal Kingdom, the winner in the rides category.

EPCOT vs. Animal Kingdom: Battle of Restaurants

When it comes to dining, both EPCOT and Animal Kingdom offer a variety of options to suit every taste and budget. EPCOT is mainly known for its international cuisine, with restaurants representing countries worldwide in the World Showcase area.

Some of EPCOT's best restaurants include Monsieur Paul, which serves classic French cuisine with a modern twist, and Le Cellier Steakhouse, which specializes in Canadian cuisine, particularly steak, and poutine. Via Napoli, located in the Italy Pavilion, is a popular spot for authentic Neapolitan pizza. In contrast, Chefs de France, located in the France Pavilion, serves traditional French dishes like escargots and coq au vin.

Animal Kingdom has several excellent dining options, including American cuisine and comfort food. Yak & Yeti, located in the Asia section of the park, offers Asian-inspired cuisine like dim sum and stir fry dishes. Satu'li Canteen in Pandora – The World of Avatar provides customizable bowls with ingredients like grilled chicken and tofu. Flame Tree Barbecue, located in the park's Discovery Island area, is a popular spot for smoked meats and barbecue dishes.

While both parks offer unique dining experiences, EPCOT's international cuisine and upscale dining options give it the edge in this category. Therefore, we declare EPCOT, the winner in the restaurant category.

pandora disney

EPCOT vs. Animal Kingdom: Entertainment & Attractions

Both EPCOT and Animal Kingdom offer a variety of entertainment and attractions that are sure to please visitors of all ages.

EPCOT is home to several popular attractions, including Spaceship Earth, a slow-moving ride that takes guests through the history of human communication and Soarin' Around the World. This simulated hang-gliding experience takes guests on a journey around the world's most famous landmarks.

EPCOT's World Showcase is also a popular destination for entertainment, with live performances by cultural groups worldwide. The American Adventure, a stage show that retells the history of the United States, is also a must-see attraction.

On the other hand, Animal Kingdom is known for its animal-themed attractions and immersive experiences. Kilimanjaro Safaris, a guided tour through an African savanna, is a fan favorite. At the same time, Expedition Everest, a high-speed roller coaster that takes guests through the Himalayas, is a thrilling ride for thrill-seekers. Avatar Flight of Passage, located in Pandora – The World of Avatar, is a state-of-the-art simulator ride that takes guests on a breathtaking journey through the skies of Pandora. Animal Kingdom is also home to several live shows, including Festival of the Lion King, a high-energy musical celebration of Disney's The Lion King, and Finding Nemo: The Musical, a theatrical retelling of the beloved Pixar film.

While both parks offer unique entertainment and attractions, Animal Kingdom's immersive experiences and thrilling rides give it the edge in this category. Therefore, we declare Animal Kingdom, the winner in the entertainment and attractions category.

EPCOT vs. Animal Kingdom: Which Disney World Park Is Best?

Deciding which park is the best can be challenging, as EPCOT and Animal Kingdom offer unique experiences catering to different interests. EPCOT's focus on innovation, culture, and cuisine sets it apart from other Disney parks, making it an excellent destination for those looking for a more educational and laid-back experience.

On the other hand, Animal Kingdom offers a thrilling and immersive experience, unlike any other Disney park. Its focus on conservation and animal welfare makes it a unique destination for animal lovers and thrill-seekers.

Regarding rides, Animal Kingdom has the upper hand with its thrilling roller coasters and state-of-the-art simulators. EPCOT, however, offers a more diverse selection of rides that cater to all ages and interests. Regarding restaurants, EPCOT's World Showcase is home to some of the best dining options at Disney World, while Animal Kingdom's offerings are more limited.

Finally, entertainment and attractions are where Animal Kingdom shines, with its immersive experiences and live shows that transport guests to another world.

Overall, deciding which park is best depends on personal preferences. However, based on the factors discussed, we would give EPCOT the edge as the best park at Disney World. Its thrilling rides, immersive experiences, and focus on animal conservation make it a truly unique and unforgettable experience. Now you know everything about EPCOT vs Animal Kingdom. Contact us for your next Disney Journey.