What We Love Most about Epcot’s Italy Pavilion

Epcot's Italy pavilion has always ranked in my top two or three favorite pavilions in World Showcase thanks in part to the overall beauty of the area. Also it's the closest I'll find myself to Venice (or any other spot in Italy) anytime soon.

What do you love about Epcot's Italy pavilion?What do you love about Epcot's Italy pavilion?

But there's more to the Italy pavilion than just "looks" so let's talk about our favorite things in Epcot's Italy pavilion.

The views: On a recent visit I did something that I haven't done in a very, very long time: I actually walked down to the waterfront in the pavilion and peered out across World Showcase Lagoon. This area is gorgeous and you're meant to feel as though you're visiting the canals of Venice. The view is lovely and because it's a bit detached from the rest of the pavilion it's often a nice, quiet spot to relax for a few minutes.

The views are amazing!The views are amazing!

The buildings: The pavilion is modeled after St. Mark's Square in Venice and features a replica of Doge's Palace and the Campanile di San Marco, the bell tower of St. Mark's. The columns at the front of the square are topped with St. Mark's Lion and a statue of St. Theodore. The piazza is also home to a fountain featuring a model of the sea god Neptune. This is a great spot for a family photo and to toss in a coin a make a magical wish.

The shops: Shopping is always fun in the Italy pavilion but on a recent visit I discovered a shop that is now near the top of my favorites list: the Enoteca Castello. I've walked past this shop for years, never stopping in to see what might be of interest. But I won't be making that mistake anymore! Many fans know Enoteca Castello is THE place to go for a glass of Rose Regale.

Stop in for a glass of wineStop in for a glass of wine

On my recent visit I stepped into the shop and found a wonderful Peach Moscato. The tables out front of the shop are a great spot to stand and enjoy your glass of wine while watching the people stroll past. In addition to the wine available for purchase, you'll also find some nice bar-themed souvenirs (I purchased an Italian marble Mickey-shaped coaster).

The food: I have two words when it comes to the Italy pavilion: Via Napoli. This is hands-down the best pizza you'll find on property at Walt Disney World and if it isn't on your list of must-eat-at locations every time, it should be.

This table service spot is home to three whimsical pizza ovens named Stromboli, Vesuvio, and Etna and the menu features great pizza and much more. The wood-fired pizza is made with caputo flour imported from Naples and the water from the restaurant's wells is identical to water found in Naples. So it's the real deal when it comes to pizza.

Pizza at Via Napoli is a must!Pizza at Via Napoli is a must!

Other menu favorites include Fritto Misto and Arancini. You'll also find pastas, parmigiana dishes, salads, appetizers, and of course Italian Margaritas.

Tutto Italia is serving up lunch and dinner in the pavilion with a menu featuring pastas, salads, panini sandwiches (at lunch), roasted chicken, steak, and more. It's a great spot when you're looking for a traditional Italian meal and we'd recommend it.

Both Tutto Italia and Via Napoli are one table service credit on the Disney Dining Plan and we'd recommend making Advance Dining Reservations for both locations.

We love the buildings in the pavilionWe love the buildings in the pavilion

Whether you're stopping in Italy for a glass of wine, a spot of shopping, or a great meal it's definitely worth an extended visit. There might be a pavilion or two that you can just breeze through and be on your way, but spending a little extra time in Italy is definitely on our must-do list.

What is your favorite thing about Epcot's Italy pavilion? Let us know in the comments.

Thanks to the Disney Food Blog and Kristen K. for use of their photos.

Wendy wrote on Tue, 01/26/2016 - 01:53:

Wendy's picture

Love the pizza at Via Napoli !!!

James wrote on Fri, 01/29/2016 - 15:19:

James's picture

This is one of my favorite places in all of Walt Disney World. Being on that side of World Showcase looking into Future World and tasting some delicious wine, reminds me that I am on vacation. I love staying at the Beach Club, walking through the International Gateway Entrance and having Wine, Cheese, and Italian specialties to end a perfect day. Epcot is the one theme park where you can go to later in the evening, watch the sunset, and relax! Italy is the perfect place to do that. I highly advise sipping on some wine, sitting near the water, watch the people walk by and then go over to the UK have a beer, sit in the garden and watch the people walk by.

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