Where to View Illuminations?


Where is your favorite spot to see Illuminations from at Epcot? We always just seem to watch it from wherever we happen to be around the lagoon. Once we got a table at the Cantina in Mexico and watched it from there. I heard you can also ask for a lagoonside table at the Rose and Crown in the UK.


While enjoying a pint of Guiness with a good Shepard’s Pie in the Rose & Crown’s patio area.


the great place to view of illuminations in front of future world.


We have always watched from the lagoon side but last week we were at the Showcase Plaza when it was time for IllumiNations. We sat behind one of the shops there and were quite happy. We were really close to the fireworks. It was pretty cool!


Germany, never any smoke.


The best place I have ever viewed Illuminations is a little indentation in front of the UK pavilion.


From an Illuminations Cruise!! Best seat in the house.

If that’s not possible (and it usually isn’t as I rarely have an extra $120 sitting around), an outdoor table at Rose and Crown is a wonderful viewing spot. But that’s a coin flip whether you’ll be seated inside or outside.


The Unofficial Guide recommended the bridge as a reasonable spot, but we got really smoked out.


That is where we viewed it the first time our DS came to WDW with us and it was a great spot!! :wub:


What Wish said! :wink:


It really depends on where you want to exit. If you are exiting near the International Gateway exit, the bridge can be a great spot but it depends on how the wind is blowing that night. Ask a CM working near the bridge the night of and see where they think will be the least smokey. That’s what we did and they were absolutely right! The night we asked they suggested near Canada. We looked at the bridge and it was in a cloud of smoke. When in doubt, ask a CM! They are always helpful!


EXACTLY!! :cool:

Another great spot is on the bridge just across from “France”! There’s some really nice alcoves there!


Can you see it well from Canada? Say the canada food cart? :biggrin:


I saw it from there once, not the best view, but do able.


We saw just fine from Canada and only got our spot about 15 min. before the show. Other “prime” locations were already taken. I like to watch it from different locations each time… gives you a different perspective. As long as your view is not obstructed by trees, building or light posts you should be fine.

May I add that my absolutely favorite Illuminations experience was on our last Sept. trip. We were able to watch the fireworks from our 1BR BC Villa and we could even hear it! Now, that is Disney Magic at it’s best!


Our best spot ever was from our balcony at Boardwalk - when they upgraded us from a studio to a one-bedroom, deluxe. That was memorable. I really like to view it from around the American Pavillion.


We watched from our BCV studio balcony. Didn’t see the water portion of the show, but we could see everything else (including the torches around World Showcase and the “light show” on the pavilions) and hear it as well! Very cool!


Let’s see.
As said earlier, plan around your after park plans. That is, if you need to get to DTD, you’ll have to get a bus at one of the Epcot Lagoon resorts, there is no service to DTD from the park itself. Also if you’re eating in the Boardwalk area, the same is true, minus the bus. If you’re going anywhere else, you must exit north through the main entrance/transport center.
That said.
Top of the Lagoon, if you’re lucky, if the wind is down or there isn’t a party, you can get right next to the water, but you have to remain seated. If this area stays roped, then just behind the rope.
Moving towards Canada, the waterside fence just south of the Canada boat landing down to the food cart. You have to play around a little, as with most areas, because the trees on the shore and on the islands can be in the way.
If you can find a clear section in England, that would work too.
there is a point beside Rose and Crown that is usually reserved for private parties, but once in a while you can get to, it offers a very similar view to that of the Illuminations cruises.
The Bridge, closer to England than to France, again, for tree reasons.
The island on the French side, but look out for trees and stay to the left.
As you start to move back along the shore, there are many many places where trees will obstruct your view if you don’t grab the spot of your choice early.
If you can get out onto the Morocco boat landing, which is sometimes a reserved area and sometimes available, that can be good as well, although the globe is in the trees for half it’s trip to the center of the lagoon.
The plaza area by Italy, especially again, if the reserved section is open to the public.
Japan’s kind of iffy, especially with that arch in the water, the section of fenced grass that keeps you from the water, and trees.
The Mexican cantina can be a good place, you might even be able to slip to the railing if you’re alone 15 minutes before showtime.
Finally, the bridge just above Mexico, on the divider between Future World and World Showcase.
In all cases, try to get close to the water and try to keep your feild of view as clear as possible. That’s what I think.
Also, you can get an aerial view by going to http://local.live.com. But it only works with Internet Explorer, not with Netscape or other Mozilla based browsers. (Thank you Microsoft for your compliance. Not! :laugh: )


I’ve seen Illuminations dozens and dozens of times over the years from every imaginable viewing spot and my pick for No. 1 is the area between and behind the two gift shops that flank Showcase Plaza. For the uninitiated, Showcase Plaza is at the end of the walkway that leads from Future World to the World Showcase.

Although I rate this as the best viewing spot, it’s not necessarily the most comfortable. The prime places to watch are at the railing that runs along the front of the lagoon, but people here sit on the concrete so as not to obstruct the view of others behind them. It can get a little uncomfortable, especially considering you must get here early to grab a spot.

The view from this vantage point is unparalleled, though. You have a virtually unobstructed view and everything happens directly in front of you. You’re close enough to actually see the detail of the scenes projected on the globe’s video screens and feel the tremendous blasts of heat spewed by the fire effects and pyrotechnics of the “inferno barge.”

Sometimes, depending on which way the wind is blowing, the area closest to the water is roped off but even if this happens, the view from here is still spectacular.


Oh, this might be the most important of all. Try and take the time during the day to walk all the way around the World Showcase and get a good feel for what might be “your” special place. It also depends what you’re planning. That is if you’re just viewing the show or if you’re photographing or even videotaping it. Each would have it’s own requirements.
Additional tips for those of you who do tape. My Sony, and most digital camcorders, have exposure adjustments on those menus that you never use. Try setting the camera to Sunset/Moon instead of just leaving it on auto. Also, while you’re in there, there’s usually as setting that will allow you to shoot in simulated widescreen (it cuts the top and bottom off the normal picture). This is important, not for today, but for the future, when you all have widescreen digital tvs. This way, your picture will fill the screen. But of course widescreen isn’t for everyone, but think about it. Think about a tripod, hands get jittery with too much coffee and sugar. Finally, if you’re going to do this right, get a wide angle lens for your camcorder. It will make a big difference in how much of what you saw with your eyes will get recorded by the camera.