Epcot Center: Then and now Part 2

Well, I'm back and now it's time for my second article. This is the second part of my previous article which was about Epcot center. I already did Future World, and now, the other side of Epcot which is World Showcase. I really do not have much to say about World Showcase, so this might not be as long as the last one was, but I will try and do as much as I can to make this one interesting. I remember when I first heard about World Showcase, I thought that meant we were gonna leave the U.S. and tour the world for real, but as I got older, it was not like that at all. At World Showcase you can take the tour in only one day. I was only 13 when first went into World Showcase, I really did not car that much about it, but overtime, I got a much better understanding about all the different cultures of the world. Not much has changed unlike most of Future World. I am gonna give the rundown on each of the current 11 countries from southeast to southwest.

CANADA



The replica of the Hotel du Canada, along with the adoring Victoria Gardens, and a gold mine brings the feeling of Canada to life. Inside, guests see a circle vision film entitled, O'Canada, which take guests through a tour of all the beauty and scenery of Canada from the French city of Montreal to the busy metropolis in Toronto, even to the great outdoors. The movie got an update in 2007, it was hosted my Martin Short, but the theme song stayed the same. I have to say that this attraction helped me understand and respect the history of Canada. I give it 4 stars.

UNITED KINGDOM



Resembling a British village, The United Kingdom brings the colorful look and feel of the European lifestyle. It is also one of those places that where you can enjoy a traditional English Tea. Along with all the great gift shops, there's also some good entertainment; like for example, there's a band called the British Invasion, that is mostly a tribute band to the Beatles, they play mostly a lot of Beatles songs from what I heard. I give this 3 stars.

FRANCE



A replica of the Eiffel tower is almost like you are really in Paris. In the France pavilion, the shops sell books, perfumes, and most of all, pastries. I remember there was this little restaurant that makes the best pastries I ever had. Whenever I go to here, I always got to have one of them. I remember the first time I went I had this great chocolate pastry. Also, there is a 180 degree film called Impressions de France that shows you all the wonders and scenery of France from the beaches of Normandy to the streets of Paris all the way to the Eiffel tower itself. I give the attraction 3 and a half stars.

MOROCCO



Opened on October 1, 1984, Morocco gives guests the view of northern Africa. While the whole place is mostly to resemble the movie Aladdin, to me, I think it almost reminds me of an Indiana Jones setting. I really do not have much to say on this, so I give it 3 stars.

JAPAN



This is a country that I have taken great interest in and is somewhere I want to visit when I leave this world. A five story pagoda and red torii gate welcomes you to the land of the rising sun, Japan. This country has made me come to respect the Japanese culture. Originally there was supposed to be a show that was suppose to take place called Meet the world, that showed guests the history of Japan, however, I think due to political reasons, the show never occurred. I give this attraction 5 stars because I appreciate the beauty and culture.

UNITED STATES



Now we come to the land of the free and the home of the brave, the United States of America. Here, we see a wonderful animatronics show called The American Adventure, but before we go in we enter this grand hall and are entertained by the voices of liberty as mostly a pre show attraction, after that, we make our way into a theater and our hosts Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain take us on an adventure through the history of how we became a nation. Starting with the Mayflower, moving through the revolutionary war, the civil war, and the depression, it features some great American icons that helped make our country what it is today, all this is accompanied with a great theme song called Golden dreams. I have to say that right after September 11th, I finally started to feel very patriotic, and when I went back three months later, this show got a huge standing ovation like never before. This gets 5 stars all the way.

ITALY



This attraction brings a lot of elements together as one and so many wonders; Italy brings the excitement and beauty of Venice to Epcot. One thing I remember is I got my picture taken right by King Neptune's fountain. Other than the shops, there is also street theater, I remember that I participated in one of them and I think it was about the Holy Grail. The best thing I like is the pasta they serve in one of those restaurants. I rate this 3 stars.

GERMANY



There is not a whole lot I can say on this one but I will try and do my best. The feeling of Oktoberfest and beer and bratwursts are alive in the Germany pavilion. I was still too young to drink beer and never been in the Biergarten Restaurant, but I do remember there was this place that serves the best chocolate I ever tasted. I give this 2 and a half stars.

CHINA



The gate of the golden sun and the temple of heaven welcomes you to China. Inside, guests see a circle vision film showing the landscape and the history of China. There were two film versions; both were hosted by the ancient Chinese poet, Li Bai. The first film was called Wonders of China, which showed guests places like Hong Kong, Shanghai, and even famous landmarks like the Forbidden City in Beijing and the Great Wall. The film got a minor update in 2003, and the name changed to Reflections of China, there were very little changes but most of the narration changed. I give this 4 stars.

NORWAY



Opened in 1988 and is to this date, the latest addition to World Showcase, Norway gives guests a look at the country's history by showing you a stave church to a Viking ship. The ride Maelstrom, gives guests a more in depth look at the history of the Viking days of Norway, to a troll infested swamp, then comes down a giant waterfall and into the North Sea. After passing an oil rig, guests exit their boats, then enter a seaport town, and then are shown a five minute film more about Norway and what it is today or you can just move out, but you have to wait in the holding area. I have to rate this 4 and a half stars because it is the only sort of wild ride in World Showcase.

MEXICO



A Mayan stone Pyramid welcomes us to Mexico. As you make your way inside, it will mostly be nighttime as you are at a fiesta. Along with all the shops and a restaurant, you can also go on a boat ride and sail through the history of Mexico on El Rio Del Tiempo (The River of time). As we enter our boat, we start with pre Columbian Mexico in ancient times and are surrounded by movies of the lives of the Mayas and Aztecs. I have to say when I rode this, I was sorta spooked out; one reason is that the Mayas predicted the world will end in 2012 and their sacrificial methods, after we exit that part we come to more child friendly version, kind of reminds you of "it's a small world after all." Then we come across lush tropical beaches from places like Acapulco and Cancun, and then we are hounded by two or three sales people who are trying to sell us some of their merchandise. Then, for the finale, we come to a fiesta in Mexico City. The ride got an update in 2007; it was hosted by the three Caballeros, which consist of Panchito Pistoles, Jose Carioca and Donald Duck. I have not yet gone on that yet but I don't think it is all that better that the other version was. I find this to be very interesting because I am interested in studying about the Mayas and the Aztecs. I give this 5 stars.

ILLUMINATIONS


Epcot's nighttime fireworks show that is presented every night on world showcase lagoon, it is the most spectacular night time show. There have many versions of this show in the past, along with the fireworks display; they play great famous symphonies by famous composers like Mozart and Beethoven. The current show on display is called reflections of Earth; it is a display that occurs in the second half of the show where a globe lights up. That's all I have to say about this.

And now, we have come full circle. I do apologize if I could not be a bit more specific about the countries. I always consider Future World over World Showcase. I may write my next article on one of the Future World Attractions, but I haven't decided on which one yet. Well, thank you for reading and I hope I'll have another one up soon.