Mexico
Epcot


Mexico

INTRODUCTION


As you turn into World Showcase, the Pyramid sits high in 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.  


ATTRACTIONS


"Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros!" opened April 6, 2007; replacing El Rio de 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."
Gran Fiesta Tour Photo Gallery

Animales Fantasticos - The Spirits in Wood

Mexico crafts" - In villages surrounding the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, artisans create fantastic wood carvings of animals, humans, and beasts. Their work is prized for the way they freely mix reality with magic. This modern folk art is also unique for the way it blends traditional with contemporary themes. In just a few short decades, Oaxacan woodcarving has become recognized as an important expression of how ancient cultures interact with a modern world."

"Oaxacan parents tell stories to their children about fantasy animals that live in the nearby forests. Most of these magical creatures are mis-chief makers and the children are warned to stay clear of them. Today, these fantasy animals have emerged from the woods. They have been set free by the artisans who captured them in the branches of the trees. These brightly colored animals have traveled far from their home in Southwest Mexico, but bring with them their legendary playfulness." (Quotes from the display)

Casa MexicanaCasa Mexicana offers an opportunity to "Discover Modern Mexico". Located just before the entrance to the Gran Fiesta, you'll find the home of the Pakatilchi family. As you walk into the first level, there is a large area for Mexico's Kidcot station that was filled with children making masks! Off to the left is an alcove where you can select one of four "adventures" and send home a video postcard. I was torn between the cliff diving and the puppet show video, and ended up selecting the puppet show. You have a few seconds to act out (there is no audio with the video) your "adventure" and then email it to yourself and someone back home.

 

 

Window into MexicoAs you reach the second level of the Casa, you'll find a dining room table all set for the family meal. The design and colors of the home are what you would expect to find in Mexico today, according to the Cast Member I spoke with. There is even a musical section with a number of guitars on display. There are two "windows into Mexico" in the Casa which are located above a map of the country. You push one of the buttons on the map representing one of X regions in Mexico and your window shows a short video representative of that area. You can select the Yucatan Peninsula, South and Gulf of Mexico, Central Mexico, Baja, Northern Mexico or the Pacific Coast. Casa Mexicana opened in March 2004.

Epcot Attractions At A Glance


DINING


San Angel Inn - dine in the shadows of an ancient volcano, San Angel Inn is overflowing with atmosphere.

Hacienda de San Angel - Quick and Full Service Dining

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.

Epcot Restaurant Ratings and Reviews Epcot Restaurants At A Glance
Menus From Around the World
Vegetarian and Other Special Diets


ENTERTAINMENT


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.

For more information on Epcot Live Entertainment, visit Steve Soares WDW Entertainment Website.


TOURING TIPS


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 difficult to navigate. 

There is very dim lighting in the festival marketplace and San Angel Inn restaurant. 

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival Highlights - Tropical is the theme for Mexico with beautiful orchid brightly colored bougainvillea displays.  The bougainvillea is brought in special for the Flower Festival! Be sure to check out the resident botanist's camp.

Holidays from Around the World features storytellers in each country.  In Mexico, Los Tres Reyes Magos make appearances throughout the afternoon. 


Donald KIDS AND CHARACTERS


Donald Duck, José Carioca (the parrot), and Panchito (the Mexican charro rooster) from the 1944 Disney film "The Three Caballeros" make appearances outside the pavilion.

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!

Epcot Characters At A Glance
Character Meet and Greet FAQ!

 

SHOPPING


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.

(Exerpt from Shopping Around the World) "Our shopping adventure began in Mexico where the Plaza de los Amigos (a large, indoor shopping area) offered lots of items to choose from, not to mention sweet relief from the blazing sun. No sooner had we begun when there was a camera flash -- Deb2 snapped a photo of Lisa wearing an Extra Large Sombrero ($13) that she felt was the perfect symbol of our South of the Border neighbor. But let's face it -- it'd be hard to pack in your suitcase!

JoDeen found some very pretty Chili Pepper Glass Swizzle Sticks for $2.50; Gary, Karen and Jen were partial to the Oaxacan Wood Carvings ($15), as well as the heart-shaped hand-painted boxes for $8. Jen's children, Brianna and Caleb, enjoyed picking out the maracas, which were two for $6. Other items from Mexico that were selected: Marionette String Puppets ($7), Medium Size Pinata ($10), Kids' Straw Hats ($5.50), Paper Flowers ($3-6)"


INTERESTING FACTS


There are 2 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 TiempoEl 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 illustrate a time when Mexican Indians prevailed in areas of the sciences and arts. The dances represent Nature and Science, Mathematics and Astronomy, Quetzalcoatl and Texcatlipoca, Aztec Warriors, an Aztec Marketplace, and Moctezuma's Palace.