Mexico Pavilion – World Showcase – Epcot
As you turn into World Showcase, the Pyramid sits high on the skyline. It is modeled after an Aztec Temple of Quetzalcoatl (the god of life) at Teotihuacan. Quetzalcoatl is represented by large serpent heads along the entrance stairs.
Upon entering the building, you see a gallery of artifacts from various periods of Mexican history. You walk into a formal portico and then a colonial plaza where you experience an evening at a festive marketplace.
Mexican Folk Art Gallery is one of a number of galleries with rotating exhibits that are featured in World Showcase pavilions. It is located in the upper level of the Mexico pyramid, right when you walk in. The current exhibit in the Mexico pavilion is “‘Remember Me!” La Celebración del Día de Muertos, a colorful exhibit featuring the work of prominent Mexican and Mexican-American artists. The exhibit opened in Fall 2017, just prior to debut of the Disney-Pixar film “Coco.” Día de Muertos, better-known as the Day of the Dead in the U.S., is a two-day celebration that honors the deceased. This exhibit captures the essence of this event with a variety of art, including:
- Papel picado, sugar skulls and paper sculptures
- Pre-Hispanic art pieces on loan from various museums that showcase the early history of this celebration
- Four featured pieces of modern artwork — along with details about the artists’ unique processes and inspiration
Among the featured artwork is a dramatic sculpture group — the centerpiece of the gallery– titled Bridal Couple. The sculptures were created by a father and son in Mexico City whose family has been hand-making this type of celebratory art for more than 300 years.
There is also a new addition to the Mexican Folk Art Gallery. The new Mirror de los Muertos allows you to turn yourself into a “Day of the Dead” skeleton-like creature, just like those featured in Disney-Pixar’s film, “Coco.”
“Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros!” opened April 6, 2007; replacing El Rio del Tiempo. Gentle boat ride remains the same but with a new storyline and film featuring Donald Duck, José Carioca (the parrot), and Panchito (the Mexican charro rooster) from the 1944 Disney film “The Three Caballeros.”
San Angel Inn – Located in the back of the pyramid’s lower level, you can dine in the shadows of an ancient volcano, San Angel Inn is overflowing with atmosphere.
Hacienda de San Angel – This table service restaurant is located overlooking the water, across the way from the Mexican pyramid.
Cantina de San Angel – The counter service restaurant, adjacent to the Hacienda, serves
La Cava del Tequila – La Cava (The Cave) is on your right after you descend the stairs inside the Mexico pavilion, on the site of a former jewelry shop. It’s beautifully decorated, very atmospheric — dark terra cotta hues and soft lighting lend the space an appropriate cave-like feel.
Choza de Margarita – Kiosk specializing in margaritas, located to the left of the entrance of the Mexican pyramid.
Mariachi Cobre – a 12-piece band entertaining with exhilarating rhythms and classic Mexican melodies. Members play violins, guitars, trumpets and more. The group entertains outside unless the weather is bad and then you can find them inside.
The group now performs a special show, “Mariachi Cobre Presents the Story of Coco,” several times a day.
For more information on Epcot Live Entertainment, visit Steve Soares WDW Entertainment Website.
To the right of the Mexico pavilion is a semi-circular path that is the home to beautiful orchids and other tropical plants.
Inside the Festival Marketplace, wheelchair touring becomes difficult even with 36 inches between carts. It is tricky to navigate.
There is very dim lighting in the festival marketplace and San Angel Inn restaurant.
Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival – Tropical is the theme for Mexico with beautiful orchids and brightly colored bougainvillea displays. The bougainvillea is brought in special for the Flower and Garden Festival.
Epcot’s International Festival of the Holidays features storytellers in each country.
Donald Duck, dressed in his Mexican attire from the 1944 Disney film “The Three Caballeros,” makes appearances the pavilion in a special area to the right of the main entrance to the pyramid.
Each of the World Showcase Countries has a special “KIDCOT” area that provides an opportunity for your child to interact with a native of the country you are visiting.
Epcot Passports are great fun for kids as they have them stamped at each pavilion around World Showcase.
The Festival Marketplace has very low lighting and also many items to distract your children. Keep a close eye on them here!
Artesanias Mexicanas – Home decor is the theme for this shop which includes pottery, glassware, and decorative gifts.
El Ranchito Del Norte – A changing collection highlighting the various stores in the plaza.
La Familia Fashions – Looking for silver? Check out this shop!
Plaza De Los Amigos – Clothing, blankets, crafts, toys, leather wallets and handbags, candy, tequila, and more.
There are two major areas represented in the Mexico showcase. A portrayal of the arid desert regions of Mexico can be seen at the Cantina de San Angel, while the Mexican tropics are represented as a Mayan temple rising out of the Yucatan jungle. The Mayan pyramid is reflective of the pre-Columbian heritage of Mexico.
To create the tropical jungle, Disney horticulturists use a variety of plants including: Moreton bay fig, silver trumpet tree, Mexican fan palm, and a number of orchid trees. The arid desert at the Cantina is highlighted by a 250-year-old Yucca tree.
El Rio del Tiempo – The River of Time, Closed on January 2, 2007 and reopened as “Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros!” on April 6, 2007. The short but pleasant boat ride was sometimes called the Mexican “it’s a small world” because of its upbeat, repetitive theme song and small Audio-Animatronic dolls.
The dances seen on the film in the pre-Columbian section of the El Rio del Tiempo boat ride illustrated a time when Mexican Indians prevailed in areas of the sciences and arts. The dances represented Nature and Science, Mathematics and Astronomy, Quetzalcoatl and Texcatlipoca, Aztec Warriors, an Aztec Marketplace, and Moctezuma’s Palace.