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Today I’m sharing the scoop on how to enter Epcot at Disney World. Curious about which entrance is better to use to get to your favorite rides, Disney restaurants, and attractions? I’ll give you the scoop on this popular theme park…
Along with Epcot entry tips, recommendations, and maps and photos of your entrance options for Epcot in Orlando…
In this post, I’ll share which rides you’ll be near when you enter Epcot from each location…
Plus tips on taking the Skyliner to Epcot’s side entrance – the International Gateway – which makes it easy to hop over to the countries in the World Showcase and Food and Wine festival Disney World event.
What to know when you enter Epcot at Disney World
- Get tips for entering Epcot through International Gateway.
- Learn different forms of Disney World transportation options for entering Epcot.
- Find out exactly where to find it among Disney’s theme parks.
- Plus, see a video too.
See what to do on your first day at Disney World...
Check out video of how to enter Epcot
See more tips from Jenna Loves Magic on YouTube…
How to enter Epcot through the main entrance (front of the park)
There are a few ways to enter Epcot park at different points.
The monorail to Epcot will drop you off right at the front of this Walt Disney World theme park…
Where you can grab an ice cream or bite to eat at Connections quick service.
At this entrance to Epcot, you’ll be led directly to the Spaceship Earth ride…
The RIGHT side of Epcot from the entrance…
Once you get into Epcot park, if you bear right, you will quickly head over to Future World West and Nature World to check out The Land Pavilion…
Above is the Disney World Epcot map found online. See it here on Disney’s website.
The LEFT side of Epcot from the entrance…
It’s highly recommended that you get lightning lane passes for these popular rides.
See funny Disney World quotes...
Can you enter Epcot through International Gateway
Any guest can enter Epcot through International Gateway with valid park reservation tickets when Epcot is open.
This is one of my favorite tricks for getting to certain parts of Epcot without having to go through the main entrance.
So exactly how do you enter Epcot at International Gateway?
You will need to take the Disney Skyliner, which is a free aerial gondola that’s offered by Disney. The skyliner will drop you off at the International Gateway station of Epcot.
You do not need to be staying at an onsite Disney World Resort to use the skyliner. It’s open to all guests.
Using this entrance will leave you right next to the France Pavilion and the United Kingdom Pavilion.
PRO TIP - If you use this entrance, you must stop by Les Halles Boulangerie Patisserie for an authentic French snack.
Can you enter Epcot from Skyliner
Yes, for sure. You’ll be dropped off right outside of an Epcot entrance.
Technically not in the park, so plan on going through security and presenting your tickets prior to entering.
PRO TIP - I’ve found that using the skyliner entrance has less wait times vs the front entrance of the park.
Can you enter Epcot from The Boardwalk
You can get to Epcot from the Boardwalk located resorts.
If you’re up for a walk, you can walk the Boardwalk over to Epcot’s International Gateway entrance. Alternatively, you could take water transportation via the Friendship Boat.
You can pick this boat up at the Friendship Launch and take it over to Epcot’s International Gateway.
FYI - The Friendship Boat runs between Epcot and Hollywood Studios with stops at boardwalk area resorts along the way.
If you’re wondering if Epcot is free to enter, the answer is no. It’s a park that you have to pay for and reserve in advance of your Disney World trip. Check the Disney World website for up to date park ticket costs for the days of your trip.
Epcot does change its operating hours throughout the year.
Currently at the time of writing this article, the park is open from 9am - 9pm.
If you have early entry, you can get into the park at 8:30am.
Keep in mind that on some days, the park may be open later for “extended evening hours.”
If you need to check times for your trip, please refer to Disney’s calendar.
You can use either entrance during the Epcot Food and Wine Festival. Attending the festival is included with your park tickets for that day. If you have the option, using the International Gateway entrance is my recommendation because the wait to get into the park is usually less. Once you’re in, you can ask any of the cast members for the quickest route to the festival.
Tips for planning a Disney World trip
Shop my favorite things to buy in advance for a Disney World trip:
- Disney outfits for women
- Brooks sneakers for women (see more on shoes for Disney)
- Matching Disney adult and kids hats
- 2 pack of ponchos
- best neck fan for Disney World
Get more Disney World travel tips...
- See the ULTIMATE GUIDE to Disney World resorts
- Get tips for booking Disney World tickets
- See this beginners guide to Disney World packages
- Tips for flying to the closest airport to Disney World
- Learn about taking a Skyliner ride during EPCOT fireworks time
- Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
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Top Disney World restaurant guides
- What to order at Topolino's Terrace for dinner at Riviera Resort
- Sanaa bread service
- Where to get breakfast in EPCOT
- Joffrey's Disney coffee
- Le Cellier
See top Disney World hotel tips and guides...
Disneyland travel tips...
- When Halloween starts at Disneyland
- Complete guide to Halloween at Disneyland
- 1 Day Disneyland Itinerary Example
Disney dining tips from Jenna Loves Magic
Remember: for any sit-down dinner or character meal, I recommend to definitely book 60 days out, or whenever your Disney dining dates open.
If you’re staying on site, you can book dining reservations earlier as a perk.
Don’t have reservations? Check regularly during your trip, on the app, or walk up to the restaurant early in the day and request a day-of reservation. Disney reservations are often dropped day-of since sometimes people “hoard them”.
I once was a walk-up and was told there would be a 90 minute wait for a table at Steakhouse 71.
Not a problem, since it’s an interesting hotel to walk around and they have an arcade.
Anyways, within 5 minutes my reservation was ready because someone canceled. So you never know.
Also see my other favorites on this list of the best places to eat at Disney World. (coming soon)
Relax and enjoy your time entering Epcot International
Hope that answers all your questions about entering Epcot.
Most people visiting Disney in Orlando for the first time don’t even know there are two different options for entering Epcot... and that both of them are available using free Disney World transportation services.
Hope you know what you need to learn when to use each entrance to Epcot to help plan your Disney World trip itinerary.
Next, see what it’s like to go on the Disney Skyliner at night…