One of the biggest advantages of staying at Disney’s Pop Century Resort is the access to Disney’s Skyliner, a gondola system that transports guests to both Epcot and Hollywood Studios. Currently, the Skyliner services Pop Century, Art of Animation, Caribbean Beach (main hub), and Riviera Resorts. I’ll be honest, I was not excited about the Skyliner when it was first announced. I’m terrified of heights, and it just didn’t sound exciting to me. I knew, for the sake of my clients, I wanted to at least try it. I’m so glad I gave it a shot! I mentioned in a previous post that we rode the Skyliner over to the Disney's Riviera Resort on the day we checked in for dinner. This was my first ride on it, and I absolutely loved it! Because of Covid, only one family/party is allowed per gondola. This was great for space, not being stuck with strangers and not disturbing anyone if our kids started getting fussy. We did have to collapse the stroller (side-by-side double strollers must be collapsed, regular ones or front-and-back doubles typically do not), so that was a little bit inconvenient, but it was still well worth it. The overall convenience of going straight from our resort to the park gate definitely outweighed that little struggle. With two barley-walking toddlers, a diaper bag, and a heavy stroller to carry, it did take some focus and planning to get on and off the gondolas, as they don’t stop (they do slow down and can be stopped if needed). This is another place the front carriers came in handy. We could safely strap the babies onto us and still have use of our hands to get the stroller and bags.
Disney’s Skyliner is the newest form of transportation, taking guests from four Disney resorts to both Epcot and Hollywood Studios
For our second (and later, sixth) day in the parks, we hopped on the Skyliner and headed towards Epcot. The main Skyliner hub is located at Caribbean Beach resort, so we did have to exit one gondola and get in another line to actually get to Epcot, but it wasn’t a big deal at all. Due to Covid and physical distancing, only one group is allowed per gondola, so this can slow the line some. Make sure to give yourself plenty of time if you’re traveling during a high-demand time (near park opening or park closing). Even with the line, it took us very little time to get to the park. The Skyliner station for Epcot is located at the International Gateway entrance, which some people don’t even know exists. This is where you can enter and exit Epcot between the UK and France pavilions of World Showcase. The Boardwalk, Beach Club, and Yacht Club resorts can be accessed by this gate, as well as a walking path to Hollywood Studios.
Because we were visiting during the Taste of Epcot International Food & Wine Festival event, our main goal for Epcot was to snack! We love the special foods in this park, and there are even more during these events! We were able to walk around the countries, check out the food options, look around the shops, and really just relax and take our time. Because there are less rides (that we could do) in Epcot, we didn’t feel rushed to get to each ride. After walking around the “world” and letting the girls nap in the stroller, we did some rides and got lunch. It rained on and off that day, so the covered pavilions and Food & Wine Festival Center were welcomed breaks.
A break in the rain called for stretching our legs and photos with the “Epcot Ball” in the background
In Epcot, the girls rode Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, Journey into Imagination with Figment (probably their favorite ride of the whole trip!), Spaceship Earth, and Living with the Land. They could have ridden Frozen Ever After, but we decided not to wait in the line this time. Epcot also has several non-ride attractions like short films, shows, and interactive galleries. It is currently undergoing a renovation in preparation for Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary next year, so look for lots of new things coming soon!
Like Magic Kingdom, Epcot also has some random character appearances. We were able to see Mickey and Minnie in a cavalcade, and both Winnie the Pooh and Mary Poppins in select locations. There is also a Princess Cavalcade in Epcot; we just didn’t hit it at the right time.
Mickey and Minnie journeyed around the “world” in Epcot”
If you’re like us, you’ll want to make sure and save plenty of appetite for this park. We had so many wonderful snacks, I can’t narrow down my favorites! The girls also enjoyed getting more snacks than usual, and they tried several new foods! Our days in Epcot were great, and it remains at the top of our list of favorite parks (though with little ones, Magic Kingdom might be the favorite for the family). Keep a lookout for the next post coming soon - Hollywood Studios!
Kara Brown is a Vacation Specialist with Coasters & Castles Travel and a mom to twin toddlers. She loves traveling with her family and making priceless memories. Kara specializes in Disney destinations, Universal Parks & Resorts, and Royal Caribbean cruises. You can contact her at KBrown@travelcnc.com.