The Japan Pavilion at Epcot

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Written By Carlos Braga

Epcot is a park known for its diversity of cultural activities to see. Today we are going to talk about one of our favorite areas of the park, the japan pavilion!           

It's hard to choose which is the most beautiful place among so many amazing attractions scattered throughout the parks.

The entire Disney team thinks about all the details with such care, which leaves any traveler in doubt when choosing which moment is their favorite during this experience.

At Epcot, for example, we are invited on a trip to know different world nations, where we have the chance to visit in one place, the customs, characteristics, cuisine and architecture of up to eleven countries (Canada, China, Germany, United States, Japan, Italy, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, Norway and Mexico), which are divided into pavilions located in the World showcase, which we already talked about here on the blog.

There are so many options that one day seems little to see every detail of these buildings that seem to have come straight from their country of origin to land at Disney.

Today we are going to talk about one of the most beautiful places, not only in Epcot, but in all Disney parks, which is the Japanese pavilion.

Some say it is the most beautiful among eleven pavilions spread across the World showcase, really?

A piece of Japan, in the heart of Orlando

Disney seeks to attract more and more Asian audiences, recently the studios released the live action of Mulan and the animation Raya and The Last Dragon, in addition to the film Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which is part of the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) and introduces fans to the first hero coming from the eastern lands.

This affection for Asian culture has already appeared since the park's creation in 1982, when Disney gave rise to Epcot and its concept of the city of the future, together on that date, the Japanese pavilion was born.

And it's not just visitors coming from afar who will be enchanted by this small part of Disney parks.

Japan Epcot Pavilion
Epcot Japan Pavilion

The entire Asian culture, especially the Japanese that we Brazilians are more used to, is very rich and enchants anyone.

Its history is fantastic, its buildings are beautiful and the cuisine is not even mentioned, that's why this piece of Epcot it is so special and considered by many visitors to be the most beautiful pavilion among the eleven created.

But what do I find in this pavilion anyway?

As in all pavilions, visitors can find a bit of Japan here, because wherever we look we see clear references to Japanese culture, present in the streets, in the decoration of the environments and of course in the famous buildings inspired by Japanese temples, that look like a series of houses stacked on top of each other, with multiple roofs.

But anyone who thinks that all pavilions follow the same formula is wrong, here in Japanese, the interaction with nature is very great, precisely to bring a sense of peace, as if for a minute you left Orlando and were teleported to Tokyo.

This happens all the way, the Japanese pavilion is next to a large lake, which in itself is an incredible setting for photos with family and friends and adds a very special charm to your experience in this place.

In addition to the lake, another very emblematic landmark of this pavilion is the large red gate, called Torii, a replica of the one on Itsukushima, an island located in Hiroshima Prefecture.

You can be sure, when you arrive at this place, with a beautiful and calm lake in the background, with this typical Japanese gate and in the environment you hear traditional songs of this people, the feeling of having traveled to the east will be great.

How to get to the Japan Pavilion at Epcot?

Anyone who has had the pleasure of visiting Disney parks knows that Epcot is very big.

It is almost twice the size of the Magic Kingdown for example. It is a very conceptual space and since its creation, it was thought to represent the future, modernity and technology.

That's why the name Epcot is the acronym for Experimental Prototype Community Of Tomorrow, which we can translate as Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow.

The park was created in 1982 to show visitors what the world would be like in the future and how society could live in harmony with these new discoveries.

Inside Epcot you will find two areas.

The first is Future World, which is right at the entrance to the park, where it is possible to visit a series of incredible attractions, all inspired by futuristic, scientific and technological themes, it is possible, for example, to simulate a trip to Mars, have you ever thought that cool?

Exactly in the middle of the park is the big lake that we mentioned here at the beginning of our conversation.

Around this lake are the eleven pavilions that together form the area called World Showcase.

World Showcase: Japan
World Showcase: Japan

The Japan pavilion is just at the other end of the park, when we go through the entrance gate, you need to walk a little bit and go through other pavilions before reaching the Japanese pavilion.

It is located between two other incredible pavilions that also deserve your attention, the one in Morocco and the traditional American one.

But no need to worry.

Disney parks always think about our comfort and you can get maps of Epcot or even talk to guides present there, what you need is willingness to know everything this magical place has to offer us.

What are the attractions of the Japan Pavilion at Epcot?

Inside the Japan pavilion you can enjoy Matsuriza, which is an incredible drum show that lasts from fifteen to twenty minutes.

This show shows visitors a little bit of Japanese culture and customs, through this presentation that involves music and dance.

Disney always prepares shows like these for us in their parks, which take place outdoors and we can see and feel them up close.

In case you're passing by when the show starts, we're sure you'll be enchanted by the choreography and rhythm of the artists and to make it even more beautiful, everything is done against the backdrop of a large Japanese temple, it's impossible not to stop and take some photos or record a souvenir video.

Another famous attraction at the Japanese pavilion is picking pearls from oysters, called "Pick-A-Pearl" (take a pearl), very different right?

This type of game follows the tradition of the fortune cookie a little, it works like this, paying a fee, you can choose for an oyster among dozens that are in an aquarium.

Each oyster has a different pearl, of different sizes and Colors different, it's up to your luck and intuition to make the best choice.

This pearl can be turned into a kind of necklace for you to leave there already wearing this prize or you can just keep it and take it home.

If you choose an empty oyster, rest assured, you get a new chance, no one leaves this attraction empty-handed.

Exploring the buildings of the pavilion can also be a great attraction, the place has a characteristic architecture of Japan, temples, lakes, hills, the Torii gate, everything makes for great photos and memories for a lifetime.

The Japanese pavilion is also one of the most suitable to accompany the fireworks show that takes place at the end of the day.

As it is next to the lake, the view is great to follow the show, even though it does not have the same proportions as the Magic Kingdown, I guarantee that it is impossible not to be moved by this experience.

The famous little shop in the Japanese pavilion. What can we buy there?

We Brazilians love the famous ?souvenirs?.

No matter where we go, we always bring some gifts from the place for our friends and family, going to Disney so you can't imagine the amount of options we'll find, especially here in the Japanese pavilion.    

Mitsukoshi - Japan Pavilion at epcot
Mitsukoshi – Japan Pavilion at epcot

In addition to the typical attractions and restaurants, another differential of this pavilion is its little store, or rather, ?lojão?, after all, it is one of the largest in the Disney parks and considered by many visitors to be the best in the entire World Showcase.

It's Mitsukoshi, which is actually a huge chain of department stores that exists in several countries.

If you, like us, like to follow various channels on Youtube or are always following the curiosities of the moment, you must have seen a video of people tasting typical foods, sweets or treats from Japan.

Now imagine that you can find all this in this store, pretty cool, right? There we can buy the famous snacks.

Chocolates of various types and flavors, candies, chewing gum, teas, sweets and treats very different from what we are used to.

And even if you're the type that doesn't really like to buy souvenirs, a visit to Epcot's Mitsukoshi is worth it just to see the diversity of products present there.

have you ever thought ?what should a supermarket be like in Japan?? Or else ?what do japanese stores usually sell?? We can satisfy that curiosity with a visit to this store.

Mitsukoshi - Japan Pavilion at epcot
Mitsukoshi – Japan Pavilion at epcot

And it doesn't just sell food there, you can find plush toys, toys and t-shirts from the most successful Japanese cartoons here in the West, such as Hello Kitty and Pokemon.

And of course, Japanese culture is also remembered, you can buy typical Japanese clothes, decorations for your home and many other items with the special touch of this rich culture.

Japanese pavilion restaurants, what you will find to eat

Did all this talk make you hungry too? So let's talk about the restaurants that are here in the Japanese pavilion.

It may seem like an exaggeration, but choosing a place to eat inside the parks is one of the biggest challenges in this whole experience, you know?

There are so many different options and each one offers a special dish, some known all over the world, even by those who haven't had the opportunity to visit Disney.

Inside Epcot, for example, in the Japan pavilion, we have four different restaurants, Teppan Edo, Katsura Grill, Takumi-Tei and Tokyo Dining.

Katsura Grill – Japanese Restaurant at World Showcase

let's start with Teppan Edo. Here you will find a very fun atmosphere, great for eating with large groups of friends or with the whole family.

You sit in front of a plate where a master will prepare your food just a few centimeters from you, a true show of cooking and skill of the staff of this restaurant that will win you over not only for their taste, but also for their show that is a spectacle aside.

In the same building as Teppan Edo is the Tokyo Dining, a more traditional restaurant, with a menu full of typical Japanese foods, is one of the most sought after and praised places by visitors.

Further away is the Katsura Grill, we already talked about it here on our website, but to sum it up, this restaurant offers a real experience.

It is located on a hill and offers all visitors an incredible feeling of peace and tranquility, it is the ideal option to relax a little amidst the intensity of Disney, while enjoying a menu full of typical foods.

Finally, Takumi-Tei who is the youngest among the four, he is the most chic, for those who love a beautiful photo on Instagram, this is the place.

Tokyo Dining – Japan Pavilion at Epcot

Some types of clothing are prohibited to maintain respect for the environment that preserves Japanese culture with delicious dishes that have made any restaurant in Tokyo envious.

We take the opportunity to remind you that if you visit Disney during the pandemic period, the park may have some restrictions and some of these restaurants may be closed.

That's why it's always recommended to check the park's official website to check availability, not only of the restaurant, but of all attractions during this period, until everything goes back to normal.

Discover the Japanese Pavilion at Epcot and be enchanted by the place

With World Showcase, Disney was able to show some of the different cultures around the world in an incredible way. Among the eleven pavilions, the Japanese one is undoubtedly very special.

It is one of the most beautiful, has a huge store with different products, has attractions that present a little of the customs of Japan and has fantastic restaurants that will make your hunger very happy.

If you have the chance to visit Epcot, ?miss it? a few minutes in this pavilion and win photos, videos, memories, experiences, sensations and memories for a lifetime.

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