Epcot’s China Pavilion Offers a Serene Spot for Weary World Showcase Travelers

Recently we talked about the peaceful feeling one has when stopping in the Japan Pavilion at Epcot, and the same can be said about the China Pavilion. Like its counterpart across the lagoon, this is another pavilion that has a lot to offer to guests.

The China Pavilion is located between Norway and Germany and is one of the original pavilions that opened on Epcot's first day in 1982.

As you enter the pavilion you are passing through the ceremonial gate of China and you'll see a replica of the Temple of Heaven in front of you. On most days you'll find Disney Princess Mulan near the ceremonial gates, waiting to greet the little princesses (and princes) in your group.

Ceremonial Gate in China PavilionCeremonial Gate in China Pavilion

After entering through the gates, stop and take some time to explore the garden in the pavilion. The lotus pond in front of the temple is stocked with floating waterlilies and other plants and fruit trees, and also features a small waterfall. The area was designed to create a mood of serenity and if you stand there long enough you might feel a sense of calm wash over you.

Cross over the pond's footbridge and you'll find yourself in front of the three-tiered Temple of Heaven. This building is a one-half scale reproduction of its counterpart inside the Temple of Heaven located near Beijing. The architecture of the building includes many details that are significant to the Chinese, including the 12 columns that support the roof.

These columns represent the 12 months of the year and the 12-year cycle of the Chinese calendar. Near the center of the room in the temple you'll find four columns that represent the four seasons.

Temple of HeavenTemple of Heaven

Inside the temple is where you'll have a chance to take a cinematic tour of ancient and modern China through Reflections of China, a Circle-Vision 360deg film.

Li Bai, a Tang Dynasty poet, is your guide for this film. Your journey will take you down the Haungpu River to Shanghai, and then you'll visit the Sea of Clouds where perhaps you'll find inspiration like generations of poets before you. Soon you'll find yourself on the Yangtze River and then the journey takes you across the Gobi Desert to Inner Mongolia. Other locations you'll see on your journey include the Great Wall of China, Hong Kong, and Beijing's Forbidden City.

Journey back outside into the pavilion and inside the courtyard you'll discover shops and a couple dining locations.

The Yong Feng Shangdian Department Store is one of the larger shopping locations within World Showcase and offers shoppers a variety of merchandise. You'll find specialty items, tea pots, stuffed pandas, and clothes. The jewelry section sells coral, jade, and crystal. The Kidcot Stop is located in the open air market near the back of the pavilion.

Water lillies in lotus pondWater lillies in lotus pond

If all the touring and shopping has left you hungry, you can choose from the quick service Lotus Blossom Cafe or the table service Nine Dragons restaurant. The Lotus Blossom Cafe offers quick dishes including sesame chicken, pot stickers, egg rolls, and sweet and sour chicken. Our friends at the Disney Food Blog have a quick review of the location, along with the Joy of Tea cart here.

For those looking for a sit-down meal the pavilion offers the Nine Dragons table service location for lunch and dinner. The reviews are often mixed for this location, but if you're curious be sure to check out the review from the Disney Food Blog.

In addition the Mulan meet-and-greet near the front of the pavilion, guests will also find the Dragon Legend Acrobats performing outside the front of the pavilion each day. Be sure to check the Times Guide for exact days and times for performances.

The China Pavilion is definitely an area that shouldn't be overlooked as you tour World Showcase, there's just so much to appreciate once you walk through the gates.

Tell us: What is your favorite part of visiting the China Pavilion? Leave us a comment!

Kristen K. wrote on Tue, 12/17/2013 - 14:41:

Kristen K.'s picture

I really love the gardens in this pavilion, they're so peaceful and beautiful. It's a lovely spot to stop for a break.

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