Exploring Epcot’s International Flower & Garden Festival

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Its that time of year again! I took a plane train and automobile down to the the sunshine state for a little dose of happiness.

The International Flower and Garden Festival at Epcot is in full swing until July – so of course I had to make my annual trip down to Orlando to get my eat on at the happiest place on earth. If you are a plant lover such as myself, then the International Flower and Garden Festival at Epcot is the perfect time to take a trip.

Plus this year is Disney’s 50th Anniversary, so they are going all out with the decorations and festivities.

After my disastrous last trip to Epcot, I figured it was time for a redo – in style.

I once again joined Disney travel agent Karli Keene for a quick trip to our favorite vacation destination.

This time we stayed at Disney’s all star music resort and boogied down to country music every night on our way to bed. For one of the budget resorts, it certainly doesn’t feel like one.

With our magic bands at the ready, we were prepared for everything the Mouse Man has to offer.

We started our morning with a quick ride on Living with the Land – a floating ride that takes you behind the scenes of Disney’s flora and fauna that supply the parks with food and flowers.

I don’t want to spoil too much because it is genuinely a fascinating ride, but you first float through several scenes depicting how farmers have developed throughout the centuries before coming to Epcot’s modern hydroponics.

The ride takes you through various greenhouses that showcase everything Disney grows – with plenty of hidden mickeys to find throughout. I’m a huge lover of plants and gardening so this was an absolute treat to experience.

The food grown here can be found in the actual restaurants throughout Disney properties. Real research is done at the epcot facility – and funnily enough, my husband is also an engineer who occasionally works with Disney’s energy engineers with power functionality. 

Afterwards, to work up our hunger, we meandered over to the aquarium after riding the Finding Nemo ride, which shows not only the sea creatures seen in the movie but a variety of other water dwelling critters as well. I could stand and watch the manatees all day.

For our first meal of the day, we stopped at the Sunshine Griddle where we loaded up with pretty much on of every option available.

The avocado toast had watermelon radishes, marinated tomatoes and edible flowers on top of mashed avocado on a toasted slice of ciabatta.

Followed by fried cinnamon roll bites with cream cheese frosting and candied bacon.

And corned beef brisket hash with a perfectly poached egg on top. Talk about some yolk pour porn.

Of course I had to try the mysterious pink drink I kept seeing everyone carrying, and it turned out to be a fruit loop infused milkshake.

And there’s no better way to start off your day with an alcoholic coffee. Caffeine and alcohol – two of my favorite things.

To build our appetite back up, we decided to explore the flower sculptures found throughout the park before we found ourselves in front of the Citrus Blossom – where we knew we had to stop for another bite to eat.

For a lighter fare, I went with the tuna tataki bowl with spicy yuzu, sweet mango and avocado and was topped with a pappadam crisp.

And for my drink, of course I tried the classic orange sunshine wine slushy – which hit the spot on a hot Florida afternoon.

Karli popped to a different stand that I can’t quite remember the name of to grab this brisket and mashed potatoes – It was so good!! If someone recognizes where she grabbed it, let me know in the comments!

Since our bellies were full, we decided to park hop and take a quick bus ride over to animal kingdom for a safari ride. Safari rides are always a fun way to cool off – and if you are lucky like we were, you’ll get to see a variety of African animals.

Take the safari early afternoon before the animals start taking naps for the best ride! Another tip is to try to time the safari right after a heavy rain, when its cooled off a bit, but if you can’t make it the safari, if it starts raining, run to go see the otters – the rain is their favorite time!

After a ride on the Flight of Passage, we headed back to Epcot for our dinner and evening activities. 

At the Farmer’s Feast, we got to try the early spring menu with this award winning goat cheese creamsicle pop – which was absolutely heaven and deliciously creamy smooth in texture.

The char grilled bison ribeye with a port wine goat cheese butter sauce on top was also absolutely phenomenal.

The only dish that I didn’t really love was this chilled leek soup – which in theory was tasty but should have been served in a much, much smaller bowl because it was just way too much liquid to consume.

Then to end the night, I grabbed a cheesy stuffed arepa in Mexico so I could live out my Encanto dreams to the fullest.

Karli grabbed a bruschetta scone and then we split a raspberry chocolate cake to wrap up the day in a chocolaty bow.

I might be in the minority, but Epcot is one of my favorite Disney parks. And with the ability to literally eat – and drink – around the world is an absolute plus in my book.

And if you stay around after dark, you’ll be treated to the new light show on the spaceship earth geosphere.

It’s definitely the perfect way to end your day at Epcot.

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