There are several special events held throughout the year at Disney World. Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival is 1 of those.
In this guide, we’ve got details on when it’s held, what takes place, and thoughts on whether or not it’s worth it.
Let’s get started…
What is it?
The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival is an event held at Epcot every spring that focuses on special exhibits related to gardening (hence the name).
During the festival, nearly all of Epcot is decked out with gorgeous flowers and vegetation and all things garden.
If you find yourself visiting Epcot while the festival is taking place, you’re in luck, because, in our opinion, the park is at its most beautiful then.
In addition to the beautiful flowers and topiaries, there are other activities that occur including unique food. More details on that below.
How much does it cost?
There is no special ticket required to attend the Flower and Garden Festival. Your park ticket to get into Epcot will allow you to enjoy all of the Flower and Garden Festival events.
When is it?
The Flower and Garden Festival typically takes place from the first part of March through the end of May or early June.
However, things are going to go a bit longer in 2021.
In 2021, the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival dates are March 3 – July 5, 2021.
That’s about 120 days to take in all of the gorgeous displays.
What exactly takes place during the festival?
There are several different things that take place at Epcot during the Flower and Garden Festival.
Here’s what you can expect for 2021:
One of the best parts is that the whole park has lots of topiaries (over 100!) that have been created in the shapes of Disney characters.
Here’s the list for 2021:
- Sorcerer Mickey Mouse, Broom, Ostriches, Hippo and Mushroom – Main Entrance
- Woody, Bo Peep and her sheep – Future World West
- Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Goofy – Between Future World & World Showcase
- Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale – Between Future World and World Showcase
- Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Huey, Dewey and Louie – Showcase Plaza
- Buzz Lightyear – Future World East near Mission: SPACE
- Figment – Future World West near Imagination!
- Topiary Butterflies – Future World West
- The Three Caballeros (Jose, Donald and Panchito) – Mexico Pavilion
- Anna and Elsa – Norway Pavilion
- Troll – Norway Pavilion
- Dragon Topiary – Japan Pavilion near Torii Gate
- Pandas – China Pavilion
- China Zodiac Topiary Garden – China Pavilion in front of Nine Dragons
- Simba and Friends (Rafiki, Simba, Mufasa and Sarabi) – Future World West
- Snow White and Dopey – Germany Pavilion
- Lady and the Tramp – Italy Pavilion
- Beauty and the Beast – France Pavilion
- Remy – France Pavilion
- Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy – Between United Kingdom and Canada Pavilions
- Peter Pan and Captain Hook – United Kingdom Pavilion
- Winnie the Pooh and Friends (Rabbit, Eeyore, Piglet and Tigger) – United Kingdom Pavilion
- Tinker Bell and Fairy Houses – United Kingdom Pavilion
- Bambi and Friends – Future World East near Mouse Gear
Every year Disney changes up the displays just a bit and typically adds at least a couple of new ones to the mix.
Due to the popularity of the Food and Wine Festival, Disney started offering food and beverage options in special kiosks throughout the World Showcase at all of its festivals.
This year there will be more than 20 kitchens to grab festival-themed food and beverages.
You can get the complete list of Flower and Garden food menus here or, browse through the list below for the highlights:
- Bauernmarkt: Farmer’s Market: Venture to Germany for Bavarian bites
- Cider House (Located in World Showplace): Ciders and artisanal provisions
- The Citrus Blossom: Lemon, orange and lime-themed dishes
- Epcot Sunshine Griddle: Brunch favorites
- Festival Favorites (Located in World Showplace): Guest-favorite dishes, microbrews and other beverages
- Flavor Full Kitchen Hosted by AdventHealth: Healthy cuisine featuring vegetables straight from the garden
- Fleur de Lys: Haute cuisine and boissons
- Hanami: Find innovative plates crafted with culinary Zen in Japan
- Jardin de Fiestas: A food-tastic tour filled with spice in the Mexico Pavilion
- The Honey Bee-stro Hosted by National Honey Board: Menu of all-natural food and drink infused with honey
- La Isla Fresca: Caribbean-seasoned dishes
- Lotus House: Authentic Chinese eats
- Magnolia Terrace: Comfort food inspired by the Gulf region
- Northern Bloom: Fare from Canada
- Pineapple Promenade: Tropical fruit fix, from tart ‘n’ tangy to the sweetest frozen treats
- Primavera Kitchen: Hearty helpings of Old-Country dishes served with a glass of vino
- Taste of Marrakesh: Exotic flavors of Morocco
- Trowel & Trellis Hosted by Impossible Foods: Dishes inspired by Impossible foods (plant-based)
- Refreshment Port
- Refreshment Outpost
- Cool Wash
- Funnel Cake
- Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company
Gardens & exhibits
Every year Disney installs several large gardens and exhibits.
Here’s the list for 2021:
- Outdoor Escapes Presented by OFF! Repellents at Future World East – Refreshing spaces that show just how easy it is to create an outdoor escape. Closes at dusk.
- Floating Gardens – More than 100 petite plots drifting on the ponds that border the walkway between Future World and the World Showcase.
- Festival Blooms – Thousands of flowers creating living panoramas overlooking Future World’s East and West lakes.
- The Goodness Garden Butterfly House Presented by GoGo squeeZ at Future World West – See and learn about butterflies’ lifecycles. Closes at dusk.
- (NEW!) Prehistoric Garden at Future World West – Check out plant life that’s thrived since the age of the dinosaurs.
- Bold Bromeliads at Future World West by the Land
- Health Full Trail Presented by AdventHealth – Learn ways to stay healthy at this Outdoor Kitchen and garden along the Imagination Walkway. Closes at dusk.
- The Honey Bee-stro Hosted by National Honey Board at Future World – Learn about honey bees’ critical role in the environment and enjoy sweet and savory treats. Located near Imagination! Pavilion.
- Tropical Rainforest Garden at Mexico Pavilion – Discover the rich biodiversity of the Mexican rainforest and learn about its species.
- Extraordinary Orchids at Mexico Pavilion – Spectacular plants blooming in radiant color.
- Bamboo Garden at China Pavilion – A garden filled with bamboo in a variety of colors, patterns, and sizes.
- Chinese Zodiac Topiary Garden at China Pavilion – Celebrate the year of the Ox in this inspired display of Zodiac animals, made entirely from dried plant material.
- Alpine Miniature Garden at Germany Pavilion – A showcase of diminutive dwellings nestled in a forest of shrubs.
- Growing the Future presented by Murata Electronics at Germany Pavilion – Beginning in April, join Science from Scientists in an experience that explores how cutting-edge technology from Murata, paired with agricultural science, can transform the way we seed the future.
- Garden Italiano at Italy Pavilion – A Tuscan kitchen garden with all the produce and herbs needed to create a classic Italian feast.
- Kokedama Garden at Japan Pavilion – Admire fresh expressions of an ancient Japanese art.
- Bonsai Collection at Japan Pavilion – Learn about the ancient art of bonsai and watch bonsai masters carefully shape and tend to these miniature works of art.
- Urban Spice Garden at Morocco Pavilion – Discover how Eastern cultures flourished, trading signature spices and herb blends.
- English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London – Learn about the history and art of tea blending in the English Tea Garden at the United Kingdom Pavilion, featuring plants used in some of Twinings’ blends.
- Shakespeare Garden at United Kingdom Pavilion – Features excerpts from some Shakespeare’s most famous sonnets and the flowers that influenced them.
Scavenger hunts have become a popular festival addition. They are a great way for families to enjoy wandering the World Showcase because it keeps the kids entertained and the hunts usually take you into areas you may skip.
- Spike’s Pollen-Nation Exploration family scavenger hunt returns and will include new locations to discover.
- Eggstravaganza Scavenger Hunt (only available March 19 – April 4 and while supplies last) This one will lead guests on a scavenger hunt for eggs through Epcot.
Although there won’t be any of the popular Garden Rocks concerts this year, there will still be some entertainment for guests to see:
- Jammin’ Gardeners (Canada Mill Stage)
- Voices of Liberty (America Gardens Theatre)
- Mariachi Cobre (America Gardens Theatre)
- Pianist (World Showplace)
Plus, look for additional performances by local Orlando entertainers.
PhotoPass pictures and Magic Shots
Note: These images are from 2020. For 2021, masks are required for all photos.
Throughout the park, you’ll find PhotoPass photographers available to take your picture with some of the topiaries.
There are typically a couple stationed at the front of the park, on the main walkway in Showcase Plaza between Future World and the World Showcase, in France, and on the bridge heading over to France from the United Kingdom.
Most of the photographers are able to take both regular pictures in addition to cute festival-themed Magic Shots, so be sure to ask for those if you stop for a photo.
Fun (and CUTE!) Flower and Garden Festival merchandise can be found throughout the park.
The selection isn’t as big as in previous years, but there’s still a lot of cute stuff to see.
In addition, there is an adorable new Minnie Mouse Flower and Garden Festival Dooney and Bourke print available:
Get the Flower and Garden Festival map
The regular Epcot map includes Flower and Garden info during the Festival.
Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival Passport/Guide
Disney has begun issuing these cute little passports for festivals.
Inside the Flower and Garden Festival passport, you’ll find info on every topiary, food kiosk, concert, etc.
You can get them for free all over Epcot but it is typically easiest to just grab one as you enter:
Best time to visit
The Flower and Garden Festival (like the other festivals offered at Epcot) is popular with the locals, so avoid the weekends for the lowest crowds.
Also, the opening days of anything (including festivals like this one) are extremely popular so be prepared for that if you plan to visit during that time.
Is Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival worth it?
The great thing about this festival is that anybody can enjoy this event. If you plan on being at Epcot during the festival dates, definitely take some time to enjoy Epcot looking its most beautiful.
Historical Flower and Garden information
Even though the Flower and Garden Festival is back for 2021, because of current health and safety measures it looks a bit different from years past.
Notably missing are things like the popular Garden Rocks concert, tours, and the playgrounds.
We do hope that in future years we will be able to see some of those return. And in anticipation, we’re keeping that historical Flower and Garden information here.
There are typically a couple of tours that are only offered during the Flower and Garden Festival.
Here is what we saw back in 2020 (these are historical offerings for reference only and are NOT being offered for 2021):
- Epcot Gardens of the World Tour – a 3 hour tour led by a Disney horticulturist. These are offered on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, from 9:00 AM to noon and cost $85.00, plus tax. You have to be 16-years-old or older to attend. You can book it by calling (407) WDW-TOUR.
- English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London Tea – this a free tour that lasts 20 minutes and takes place in the United Kingdom pavilion. Guests should register by signing up in The Tea Caddy in the UK pavilion.
- Royal Tea Garden Tour – this 45 minute tour has guests exploring an elegant tea garden to learn all about the artistry and history behind growing and blending tea. The cost is $20.00 per person and can be booked by calling (407) WDW-TOUR.
Garden Rocks Concerts & Dining Packages
Here is what we saw back in 2020 (these are historical offerings for reference only and are NOT being offered for 2021):
In 2020, the Garden Rocks Concert Series was scheduled to take place daily. Of course, when the parks closed those concerts were canceled, too.
Here’s how it was supposed to go:
General seating for the concerts is free and is included in your price of admission to the park.
But, if you wanted a more up-close view of the show you could purchase a Dining Package that would get you a seat in the first 3 rows (more on that below).
These concerts were fun and featured groups whose popularity peaked a couple of decades ago, but who still sound great.
You could catch the concerts every day during the festival at 5:30 p.m., 6:45 p.m., and 8:00 p.m.
The lineup for 2020 was:
- March 4-5 – Peabo Bryson*
- March 6-9 – The Orchestra starring former members of ELO
- March 10-12 – The Guess Who
- March 13-16 – Simple Plan
- March 17-19 – STARSHIP featuring Mickey Thomas
- March 20-23 – Mark Wills*
- March 24-26 – The Spinners
- March 27-28 – Sister Hazel
- March 29-30 – The Pointer Sisters
- March 31-April 2 – Former Journey Lead Vocalist Steve Augeri
- April 3-4 – Blood, Sweat & Tears
- April 5-6 – Exposé
- April 7-9 – Berlin
- April 10-11 – A Flock of Seagulls
- April 12-13 – Atlantic Star*
- April 14-16 – Tony Orlando
- April 17-18 – High Valley
- April 19-20 – Rick Springfield
- April 21-23 – TBD
- April 24-27 – Plain White T’s
- April 28-30 – Don Felder, formerly of The Eagles
- May 1-2 – Don McLean*
- May 3-4 – Casting Crowns*
- May 5-7 – Ambrosia with Peter Beckett*
- May 8-9 – Thelma Houston*
- May 10-11 – The Allman Betts Band*
- May 12-14 – Air Supply
- May 15-18 – Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone
- May 19-21 – Mike DelGuidice & Big Shot*
- May 22-23 – Claudia Leitte*
- May 24-25 – Daughtry*
- May 26-28 – Marshall Tucker Band
- May 29-30 – Crowder*
- May 31-June 1 – Survivor
* Acts new to the Garden Rocks Concert Series
It wasn’t too hard to snag a seat to one of the concerts; however, you would want to arrive about 30 minutes before the show, or, if you preferred, you could avoid the line (and wait) altogether by booking one of the Garden Rocks Dining Packages.
Each dinner package included 1 guaranteed seat to the Garden Rocks concert on that night and a meal that included an appetizer, entrée, and dessert, or if a buffet, it included 1 full buffet.
If you lined up early for the dining package, you’d be allowed to enter a bit earlier than the standby line, and you could choose where to sit (on an aisle in the center usually gives the best view).
There was reserved seating for this package which is the first 3 rows of the theater, and unless you want the front-center seat, you could show up much closer to show time (even up to just a few minutes before the show starts) and still snag a good spot.
These packages could also be booked with the Dining Plan at a cost of 2 credits/person.
HISTORICAL 2020 Garden Rocks Dining Packages
Biergarten Restaurant (World Showcase – Germany Pavilion)
Lunch: $57 for adults; $32 for kids
Dinner: $57 for adults; $32 for kids
Coral Reef Restaurant (Future World – The Living Seas Pavilion)
Lunch: $69 for adults; $22 for kids
Dinner: $69 for adults; $22 for kids
The Garden Grill Restaurant (Future World – Land Pavilion)
Breakfast $52 for adults; $31 for kids
Lunch: $65 for adults; $39 for kids
Dinner: $65 for adults; $39 for kids
Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room (World Showcase – U.K. Pavilion)
Lunch: $57 for adults; $22 for kids
Dinner: $57 for adults; $22 for kids
So, will you be attending the Flower and Garden Festival? Or do you have questions that weren’t covered here?
Please share in the comments.
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