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Your 2024 Guide to EPCOT Flower & Garden Festival

Updated: Mar 5

EPCOT, situated within the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, is a theme park famous for celebrating different cultures, new technology, and various aspects of the universe, including land, water, and space.

Moreover, EPCOT hosts four annual festivals dedicated to the Arts, Flower & Garden, Food & Wine, and the Holidays. Currently, the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival runs from February 28 to May 27, 2024. Here are seven must-see highlights for attendees!

What does EPCOT stand for?

EPCOT Geosphere with some flags on the right and trees on both sides

Before we get started, a common question that I hear is, "What does EPCOT stand for?" The answer to that is the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. This name reflects Walt Disney's original vision for the park. He intended EPCOT to be a utopian city showcasing futuristic technologies and urban planning concepts, serving as a model community for the future.

However, after Disney's death, the plans for EPCOT were altered, and it became a theme park rather than a functioning city. Today, while EPCOT retains elements of innovation and futurism, its focus has shifted to celebrating culture, technology, and imagination within a theme park setting.

Explore the Topiaries

Asha, Valentino, and Star from Wish in front of the Epcot Geosphere at the entrance of the park

Think of your favorite Disney characters like Snow White, the Seven Dwarves, Captain Hook, Peter Pan, and Minnie Mouse - now think of them as topiaries! EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival is known for its life-like topiary displays of beloved Disney characters.

Miguel and Dante from Coco made out of topiaries near the Mexico Pavilion

This year, they have added new topiaries of Asha, Valentino, and Star from Wish, Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy, and Miguel and Dante from Coco. EPCOT's Flower and Garden Festival topiaries are meticulously hand-crafted and absolutely breathtaking! Do not miss the opportunity to explore the entire park and marvel at all 29 displays!

Visit Butterfly Landing

Explore Butterfly Landing, an enchanting garden that adds to the festival's allure! Here, amidst a vibrant array of nectar-filled plants, you will encounter a kaleidoscope of butterflies up close, showcasing their mesmerizing colors. Informative signs provide fascinating insights into butterfly habitats and lifecycles, making it an educational and immersive experience for all.

One of the highlights of this area is the chance to witness butterflies in their chrysalis form, with the possibility of observing their mesmerizing transformation. Do not miss out on this captivating display of nature's beauty, presented by AdventHealth in World Nature.

Tour the Rest of the Exhibits and Gardens

Plants and a huge tea cup with more plants instead in the English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings® located in the United Kingdom Pavilion

As you wander through the park, you will encounter an array of captivating exhibits and gardens to delight in! Each country along the World Showcase boasts its own unique garden featuring plants indigenous to that region. Explore vibrant flowerbeds, stumble upon exotic gardens, and discover more about sustainable foods, celebrating our ability to live in harmony with the natural world.

Here is a listing of some of the Gardens at the Festival:

World Celebration Gardens

- The Communal Garden - Embrace the earth and foster connections within the diverse and thriving communal garden plot.
- Festival Blooms - Marvel at vibrant floral displays, forming captivating living panoramas.

World Discovery Play Garden

- Camp Get Out ‘N’ Play Garden Presented by OFF! - Bring together the entire family to explore this camp-themed garden, where youngsters can leap, play, and climb.

World Showcase Gardens

- Shakespeare Garden - United Kingdom Pavilion - Immerse yourself in the world of Shakespeare amidst this serene garden, featuring excerpts from the bard’s most famous sonnets and the dazzling flowers that inspired them.
- Gnome Garden - Germany Pavilion - New! - Encounter whimsical topiary versions of magical garden gnomes, originating from German folklore.
- Bonsai Collection - Japan Pavilion - Delve into the art of bonsai, meticulously shaped and nurtured by bonsai masters, transforming them into miniature works of art, fostering harmony with nature.
- Garden Italiano - Italy Pavilion - From ripe tomatoes for fresh spaghetti sauce to fragrant herbs for pizza toppings, this Tuscan kitchen garden supplies all the ingredients needed to craft a traditional Italian feast.
- English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings® - United Kingdom Pavilion - Discover the rich history and art of tea-blending in this elegant English tea garden, showcasing the plants employed in crafting Twinings’ exquisite blends.

Enjoy the Food and Drinks

EPCOT's festivals are known for having delicious food and drinks and this festival does not get left out! There are many outdoor kitchens for you to enjoy, including BRUNCHCOT, EPCOT Farmers Feast, The Citrus Blossom, and Florida Fresh. You can find avocado toast, orange sesame tempura shrimp, grilled lobster tail, and strawberry shortcakes at these locations, and that is just the start of what is available.

Hot Take: I think Flower and Garden Festival Food is better than the Food and Wine Festival Food. 🫢

The Honey Bee-stro food booth Hosted by National Honey Board™

One of the festival's most sought-after culinary stops is The Honey Bee-stro hosted by the National Honey Board™. Indulge in delectable dishes like Chicken and Waffles, featuring crispy chicken paired with a honey-sweet cornbread waffle, accompanied by whipped honey butter and spicy honey. Alternatively, savor the Honey-Glazed Cauliflower served with honey-roasted carrot puree, wild rice pilaf, spring vegetables, honey-blistered grapes, and sunflower brittle.

Wash it all down with a refreshing Honey-Peach Cobbler Freeze with Streusel. While enjoying these treats, take the opportunity to learn about the honeybees’ critical role in our environment. For dessert, visit the neighboring Swirled Showcase for a delightful Honey Bee-stro creation: honey-mascarpone cheesecake.

For a comprehensive overview of the festival's culinary offerings, visit Disney's website. Alternatively, you can grab a Festival Passport from Guest Services, located to the left of the iconic EPCOT "ball," detailing the outdoor kitchens and food selections.

Passport book for EPCOT International Flower and Garden Festival and mini bracelet Disney gift cards for the festival

Within the Passport's final flap, you will discover the Garden Graze Menu, featuring eight festival offerings. The challenge is to sample five of these items, and upon completion, present your stamped Passport at Pineapple Promenade to receive a special treat!

P.S. This Festival Passport offers plenty of information on what can be found at the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival if you forget anything mentioned within this article and your phone battery is running low at the park.

Attend the Garden Rocks Concert Series

It would not be a festival without live music and Disney knows that! As such, the Garden Rocks Concert Series has returned with this year's Flower & Garden Festival. The series runs the entire duration of the festival from February 28th to May 27th this year, and there are many returning and new musicians coming to play!

The Garden Rocks Concert Series offers a diverse lineup of performances, ranging from internationally acclaimed artists on Fridays through Mondays to local bands energizing the crowd from Tuesdays through Thursdays.

Held at the America Gardens Theatre within the American Adventure Pavilion, these concerts offer attendees the chance to enjoy live music while soaking in the festival ambiance. The best part is that the shows are free admission with a valid EPCOT festival date ticket. The shows are at 5:30 PM, 6:45 PM, and 8:00 PM.

Here is a current listing of those performing in the Garden Rocks Concerts:

- The Vybe - February 28 and 29
- Jason Scheff, Longtime Lead Singer of Chicago - March 1 and 2
- Richard Marx - March 3 and 4
- Evolution Motown - March 5, 6 and 7
- Berlin - March 8 and 9
- Rick Springfield - March 10 and 11
- Dian Diaz - March 12, 13 and 14
- Modern English - New! - March 15 and 16
- The Commodores - March 17 and 18
- Foreigners Journey - March 19, 20 and 21
- The Orchestra - March 22, 23, 24 and 25
- Funkafied - March 26, 27 and 28
- Mike DelGuidice - March 29 and 30
- The Pointer Sisters - March 31 and April 1st
- The Female Collective - April 2, 3 and 4
- Blue October - April 5 and 6
- Crowder - New! - April 7 and 8
- Hooligans - April 9, 10 and 11
- Jo Dee Messina - April 12 and 13
- A Flock of Seagulls - April 14 and 15
- The M-80’s - April 16, 17 and 18
- Plain White T’s - April 19, 20, 21 and 22
- The Champagne Orchestra - April 23, 24 and 25
- Starship Featuring Mickey Thomas - April 26 and 27
- Herman’s Hermits Starring Peter Noone - April 28 and 29
- Southbound - April 30, May 1 and 2
- Monsieur Periné - May 3
- Raul Acosta & Oro Solido with Luisito Ayala y la Puerto Rican Power - New! - May 4
- Raul Acosta & Oro Solido with Magic Juan - New! - May 5
- Fonseca - New! - May 6
- Gilly & The Girl Band - May 7, 8 and 9
- Simple Plan - May 10, 11, 12 and 13
- Element - May 14, 15 and 16
- The Spinners - May 17 and 18
- Sister Hazel - May 19 and 20
- Epic Live! - May 21, 22 and 23
- Lit - New! - May 24 and 25
- Casting Crowns - May 26 and 27

The entertainment is subject to change without notice.

Garden Rocks Dining Packages

Garden Rocks Concert Series stage in the American Adventure Pavilion

You can opt for a Garden Rocks Dining Package and indulge in a delightful meal at one of EPCOT's renowned restaurants while securing a reserved seat for a Garden Rocks performance on the same day. Prices for adults vary, starting from $36 at the Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue and going up to $99 at Le Cellier Steakhouse.

Included in the package is a satisfying meal at a select restaurant:
a) At Spice Road Table, guests savor a delightful spread comprising two small plates, a shared tagine, a dessert platter for sharing, and a nonalcoholic beverage.
b) For other participating restaurants, the meal encompasses an appetizer, main course, and dessert, or access to a full buffet, where available, accompanied by a nonalcoholic beverage.

Reservations are required in advance for all restaurants except Regal Eagle Smokehouse.

Scope out the Exclusive Festival Merchandise and Scavenger Hunt

Orange Bird Sipper

To commemorate your time at the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival, pick up one of the exclusive festival merchandise found around the park. There is plenty of Orange Bird, Coco, and butterfly merchandise, live plants, and many other items attributed to this festival for you to bring home and remember the great time you had!

Signage for Spike’s Pollen-Nation Exploration Scavenger Hunt

Exclusive to the Flower and Garden Festival is Spike’s Pollen-Nation Exploration Scavenger Hunt, priced at $9.99 (subject to change without notice), offering participants a special prize upon completion. To join in the fun, purchase a map from any festival merchandise location. Then, embark on a quest to locate Spike hidden within various global gardens throughout the park.

Once found, place the corresponding plant sticker over the correct garden circle on the map. These stickers depict the different plants Spike is pollinating, such as sunflowers and magnolias, with signs provided for easy identification. What does Spike look like? He is a plastic bee figurine atop a black pole nestled within flowerbeds or planters.

Ride Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind

Model size replica of the Star Blaster from Guardians of the Galaxy

Unrelated to the festival itself but is a must-do at EPCOT, try to ride EPCOT's newest attraction, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, located in the World Discovery part of the park. This ride is my absolute favorite at EPCOT! Disclaimer: This ride does spin and is in a dark room, but it is an incredible, fun, and well-constructed ride.

This ride uses a Virtual Queue where you use the My Disney Experience app at 7 am the day of your EPCOT park reservation to get a spot in line. If you miss this opportunity, at 1 pm once you are in the park, you will have another chance to put yourself (and your party) in the virtual queue then. You can also purchase an Individual Lightning Lane for this ride. Check out the My Disney Experience app for more details.

Now it is your turn to explore!

Encanto characters made out of topiaries at the end of the World Celebration Bridge (left to right: Luisa, Mirabel, Antonio, and Isabella)

Among the enchanting topiaries, immersive Butterfly Landing, colorful gardens and exhibits, lively concert series, and delicious food and drinks, this festival holds a special place in my heart as my favorite among the four. I genuinely hope you have a fantastic time enjoying it as much as I do!

Have you been to the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival before? Are you planning to go this year? Let me know in the comments below! Share this article with the person or people you want to go on your next adventure with! Also, be sure to SUBSCRIBE below to learn about other places you should add to your "To Visit" List! Ready? Okay, vamos. Time to have fun!

Bonus Pictures from 2023:

Minnie Mouse, Mickey Mouse, Pluto, and Chip and Dale as topiaries at the Flower and Garden Festival

Festival Passport for the EPCOT International Flower and Garden Festival with Daisy and Donald Duck as topiaries in the background.

Luisa, Mirabel, Antonio, and Isabella from Encanto as topiaries

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*This article is not sponsored by Disney or its affiliates.*

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