One of the wonderful things about a visit to Walt Disney World resort is the chance to visit the World Showcase. If you have dreamed of taking a trip around the world, a visit to the various countries’ pavilions, located in Epcot, is a way to experience the sights, sounds and tastes of different countries without the need to update your passport. One of the most beautiful and interesting is the China pavilion.
One of the first things that you will see when approaching the China pavilion is the Gate of the Golden Sun. This amazing piece of architecture was created to look like the gate at a Beijing palace. The Temple of Heaven is another gorgeous structure. As you walk towards the temple, you will notice right away the fine details.
Temple of Heaven
The Temple of Heaven is not only lovely, but it is also a great place to take the time to just relax. This is not typical of much of Disney, but in the Temple of Heaven, relaxation is part of the charm. The Temple includes perfectly manicured gardens and reflecting ponds that encourage visitors to remove themselves from the hustle and bustle and just enjoy the beauty that can be found in being still.
Since Disney wants the experience to be as genuine as possible, these gardens and reflecting ponds are typical of what you would find if you visited China.
Take some time to really enjoy the beauty of this space before rushing back into the rest of the resort.
Reflections of China
Reflections of China is a short film intended to introduce viewers to the beautiful country of China. You will enjoy sweeping views of the most well-known of the country’s sites including the Great Wall of China. The 360 views will make you feel as though you have stepped into that magical land.
The architecture and landscaping in the China pavilion are beautiful.
This movie is a good starting point for your exploration of China, so take the time to watch the film. It’s a chance to enjoy a bit of air conditioning and get off of your feet for a few minutes.
Excavation Site in Xi’an
An important part of any country is their history. When you take the time to visit the Epcot China pavilion, part of that experience will be to see what it is like to excavate pieces of China’s long and fascinating history. One of the richest caches of artifacts in the country has come from the excavation site in Xi’an. This site has been replicated for you, so that you can feel as though you are watching history being discovered.
One of the most important discoveries ever made in China is the Terracotta Army, discussed below.
Many who visit the Epcot China pavilion find the replica of the Terracotta Army to be one of the most memorable portions of their trip. Lined up in neat rows, these “soldiers” stand guard as they have for thousands of years. They were created during the Qin Dynasty (221-210 B.C.). A plaque describing these soldiers explains that they were to be “protectors of the Emperor beyond the grave”.
Since being discovered in 1974, these amazing artifacts remain one of the most hugely popular exhibits to grace museums around the world. When on display, they draw crowds so large that they rival those coming to see artifacts from King Tut’s tomb or from the Titanic.
The army included not only soldiers, but also chariots, horses, musicians and even acrobats. Some estimate that there are 8000 soldiers, about 150 chariots and 600 horses. No two soldiers look alike. They vary both in size and in their facial features. This has led some experts to speculate that each may have been created in the likeness of an actual soldier.
The artists at Disney went to painstaking lengths to ensure that this amazing piece of history was replicated authentically down to the last detail. This is sure to be something that you will never forget.
Everyone loves Chinese food! The food that you will find in the China pavilion is NOT the typical fast food takeout Chinese. Instead, when dining at the Nine Dragons Restaurant or the Lotus Blossom Café, you will be treated to authentic Chinese cuisine. For a quick bite, try the Lotus Blossom Café. For a dining experience that is a bit more formal, consider the Nine Dragons Restaurant.
If you want a few mementos of your time in the Epcot China pavilion, you should spend some time browsing the offerings at the Yong Feng Shangdian Department Store. If you enjoy shopping then you will love this store. It is filled with all types of treasures such as vases in every size, authentic clothing items, and much more.
There are plenty of shopping opportunities.
If you are in a bit of a hurry, you can stop by one of the kiosks that are located in the pavilion. The kiosks sell a variety of items and you will be able to pick up a few souvenirs without taking up a lot of your time.
Disney World wants every guest to be able to enjoy the many sights and sounds of the China pavilion. The attraction is accessible for wheelchairs and scooters. Listening devices are available as are devices that will translate the narration into several languages.
It is difficult to say exactly how much time you should devote to the Epcot China pavilion. Some guests stay for hours, enjoying the peaceful gardens, and the replicated history of the dig in Xi’an. Others move through the attraction more quickly.
If you want to be able to see everything, you will need to devote at least two hours to the pavilion. This includes spending a few minutes shopping. Of course, if you choose to eat here, or if you get caught up looking at all of the beautiful items in the Yong Feng Shangdian Department Store, it could take much longer.
The Epcot China pavilion is appropriate for guests of all ages. There is no height requirement for any of the features or attractions in this pavilion.Herb Leibacher