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The Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks — EPCOT Forever Returns April 3!

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Summary

For Disney World 50th anniversary, EPCOT debuted a brand-new show called Harmonious, which is the largest nighttime spectacular ever created for a Disney Park. The show unites World Showcase Lagoon with Disney music celebrating the stories of the world. You'll enjoy interpretations of Disney classics like you've never heard before, performed by 240 artists from around the world. In addition to the pyrotechnics, it features massive set pieces, custom-built LED panels, choreographed moving fountains, lights, lasers and more! Harmonious is unlike previous nighttime spectaculars at EPCOT because it does require some strategy and patience to snag the best viewing spots. We have some personal favorite areas to share, as well as some advice on those that offer limited views. Harmonious will end its run on April 2, 2023, with EPCOT Forever making a grand return April 3. If you're wanting to catch Harmonious, be sure to jump on it! We'll update our recommendations to cover EPCOT Forever viewing spots, too, so keep hopping back!

Best Viewing Areas to Watch Harmonious - Pinterest

 

After a long day of thrilling rides and tasting food from around the world, what better way to end your day than with EPCOT fireworks? With plenty of places to watch throughout World Showcase, grab some international cuisine and settle in for a nighttime spectacular sure to excite tadpoles and parent frogs alike.

Overview of Harmonious

Harmonious at EPCOT — Fireworks long-exposure

Harmonious debuted on Oct. 1, 2021, to help kick off the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World. Previous shows around the iconic World Showcase Lagoon included "EPCOT Forever," which ran for two years, and "IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth," which ran for 20 years. Be sure to catch Harmonious on your next visit, as a new nighttime spectacular will debut in late 2023 in honor of the Walt Disney Company's 100th anniversary. (And check out what else is coming to EPCOT in the next few years)

Harmonious celebrates how the music of Disney inspires people around the globe. Enjoy familiar Disney tunes reinterpreted by a diverse group of artists. Hear new iterations of classics from films, including "Hercules," "Mulan," "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," "Coco" and more. It was toadally awesome to hear our favorites in the languages of their respective origins!

Harmonious features huge floating set pieces, custom-built LED panels, choreographed moving fountains, lights, pyrotechnics, lasers and more. It's incredible how so many moving parts (literally) come together to create a seamless show.

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Lion King projections

During the day, you'll notice the center ring and four angled barges (Lily calls them the floating tacos) in the World Showcase Lagoon. Throughout the show, the LED panels are utilized for projections. Being at the centered viewing points allow you to get the full effect, but the angled barges let you see at least one of them from most areas around World Showcase.

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks — MagicBand+

For an extra magical experience, the new MagicBand+ will light up and vibrate in sync to the show. The band lit up for nearly the entire show and definitely added to the fun. It's just subtle enough that you can keep an eye on both without being too distracted.

The projections, water effects and fireworks all work together to create an exciting presentation, and the incredible global Disney music really pulls into a beautiful show. Now, let's talk best spots to watch the EPCOT fireworks!

The Best Spots to Watch Harmonious

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks – World Showcase Plaza

If you’re just watching mainly for the fireworks, then there’s really no bad seat around World Showcase Lagoon! However, if you want the best views of the LED panels and the large circular centerpiece, we’d suggest staking out a spot in these areas.

World Showcase Plaza

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - World Showcase PlazaFor a perfectly centered view of Harmonious, you can’t get any better than the Showcase Plaza (between the Port of Entry and Disney Traders gift shops). But because of its prime location, this area will fill up. We suggest arriving 45 minutes to an hour to guarantee a spot, though we've had luck getting spots about half an hour before showtime when we have a small group. Here, people often sit beforehand and then will usually be asked to stand by a cast member when it's about 10 or so minutes to go. This area is slightly slanted so we’d suggest standing directly in front of the railing (as close as you can get), or in front of the planters at the very back so you can watch the show from the highest point in this particular area.

We ended up standing near the front, right by the walkway that’s created out of tape, so there wasn’t anyone directly in front of us. But there were some taller people right in front of the railing, so our views were still partially blocked because the smaller barges are actually quite low to the water.

In the past, Showplace Plaza was reserved for people who had FastPass+, special events or dessert parties. (While dessert parties haven't returned to EPCOT, dining packages are making a comeback! Guests can enjoy dinner with a show at either Rose and Crown or Spice Road. Both options include prix-fixe menus and unlimited beverages.) While the area has been open during our visits, be prepared to have a backup spot in case it is reserved.

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks — View from walkway to World Showcase

Entrance to World Showcase

If you want a similar view of World Showcase Plaza but without the stress of claiming a spot, we suggest the entrance to World Showcase. The walkway provides that straight-on view of the projections and fireworks. It is of course a bit further back and has some trees, but you can generally just walk right up shortly before showtime. It will be a little harder to see the full projections, but you can see most of the main circle.

This spot is ideal if trying to sneak in a ride beforehand from the front to the park (Soarin' anyone?). The park often closes at the same time as the Harmonious showtime, so you won't be able to do any rides afterward. There's plenty of space here and, the best part is, you have a quick exit out of the park, beating the rest of the World Showcase crowds.

The American Adventure Pavilion

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - From spot between America and Japan

On the opposite side of World Showcase Plaza, the American Adventure Pavilion offers unobstructed views of the circular ring and barges on either side of the America Gardens Theatre (though the theater itself is not an available viewing area).

In fact, the entire stretch between Japan and the American Adventure Pavilion, in particular, is great for Harmonious viewing. These views will be slightly off-center, but it shouldn’t take away from the overall experience (the full view of the center ring makes it a close second to the Showcase Plaza). Be warned that the smaller section on the Italy side of the theatre has a lot more trees and may be more obscured.

Italy

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Italy

In Italy, there is an area that juts out into the lagoon. You could also stand on the bridge for an elevated view. The problem with this spot is that it can also sometimes be used for special events. However, it would be roped off long before the show begins, so you wouldn’t have to worry about losing your spot last minute and scrambling to find a new one.

Between Norway and Mexico

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Norway

There’s a long stretch between Norway and Mexico that has decent views. It may be a bit harder to see what goes on in the middle of the circular centerpiece since you’ll be viewing it from a side angle, but it’s unobstructed by the barges or trees.

Between Canada and the U.K.

Similar to the stretch between Norway and Mexico, you’ll have unobstructed views of the EPCOT fireworks, but it might be difficult to see the full effects of the centerpiece since you’re at an angle. We'd suggest standing in front of the Mill Stage, but other spots in Canada may be obstructed by a barge.

Accessible Viewing Areas

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Accessible Viewing Area in the U.K.

There are four accessible viewing areas: one in the U.K. (next to Rose and Crown), one between Italy and Germany and one on each side of the central World Showcase Plaza. These areas open at 8 p.m. and fill up on a first-come, first-served basis. Plan to arrive early since space is limited. Parties larger than six may be asked to separate and reunite after the show.

Check out our video for a visual guide at the best spots to watch Harmonious!

Best Spots to Watch Harmonious for the Fireworks

While Harmonious can be visually stunning from anywhere around the lagoon, we know that not all viewing areas are equal. Your view might be blocked by trees, or perhaps the circular centerpiece is directly behind one of the barges so you can’t see it very well. But luckily, fireworks go high in the sky! Here are some areas to consider if you're OK with a limited view of the projections.

From the International Gateway Bridge

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - International Gateway Bridge

While you're farther away from the set pieces and the middle of the centerpiece isn't visible from the viewing spot’s angle, there aren't any nearby trees to worry about!

Between France and Morocco

Those small islands with tall trees in the lagoon will likely block your view of the barges. It also may like you’re too far away from the action since you’re still pretty far from the middle of the lagoon.

Germany/Refreshment Outpost/China

The circular centerpiece is partially blocked by one of the barges from most areas along the waterfront in Germany. But if you’re standing directly in front of the food kiosk in Germany that’s used for festivals, you’ll get a decent view.

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Refreshment Outpost

Note that there are a few areas that have limited views of Harmonious set pieces. The China pavilion has many trees in the lagoon and just after that, the Refreshment Outpost is at an awkward angle, also with many trees. The La Cantina de San Angel in Mexico may come as a surprise because the patio area at this quick-service restaurant was regarded as one of the best spots for previous nighttime spectaculars. But unfortunately, one of the barges almost entirely blocks the circular centerpiece.

That said, if having a good view of the projections isn't as big of a deal to you, you can watch the EPCOT fireworks from anywhere in World Showcase. We don't want to spoil the show too much, but just know that fireworks can shoot into the sky from anywhere in the lagoon.

Unconventional Spots to Watch EPCOT Fireworks

Due to the location of the show, EPCOT fireworks are best viewed from World Showcase. While you can see the fireworks from some spots in World Celebration, World Nature and World Discovery, the views are obscured. With major construction going on behind Spaceship Earth, this takes away the possible centered views.

We've tried to watch the fireworks from the park entrance, but unfortunately, Spaceship Earth and the front buildings block most of the view. By going to the side, you can catch some of the fireworks, but you can only see the fireworks peeping over the buildings for the majority of the show. We wouldn't recommend this spot — it would be best to either watch from World Showcase or head out to beat the crowds.

How to View Fireworks Outside of EPCOT

Even without a park ticket, you can still enjoy Harmonious from areas outside of the park. Within walking distance of EPCOT, enjoy a fun night of dining and entertainment before the show with a visit to Disney's BoardWalk. We love grabbing some BoardWalk ice cream and strolling along the water before grabbing a spot. Note that parking may only be available to BoardWalk Inn resort guests or those with a dining reservation.

Staying at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels? Enjoy a fireworks view from your own balcony with select room options. (Did you know the new Swan Reserve is now open, offering even more conveniently located resorts?)

Other Nighttime Spectaculars at Disney World

Best Viewing Areas to Watch EPCOT Fireworks - Disney Enchantment at Magic Kingdom

At Magic Kingdom, catch the new fireworks spectacular, Disney Enchantment, which features projections on Cinderella Castle and Main Street as fireworks burst in the night sky! Also returning April 3, 2023, is the fan-favorite Happily Ever After. At Disney's Hollywood Studios, watch Wonderful World of Animation, a charming projection show on the Chinese Theater highlighting more than 90 years of Disney Animation.

Are you excited to watch Harmonious in person? Where is your go-to spot to watch EPCOT fireworks? Let us know in the comments below!

Related: The Best Places to Watch Magic Kingdom Fireworks

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
View Comments
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Aug 17, 2022 at 9:01 p.m. Mark Says...

It says Epcot closes at 9pm, but the fireworks start at 9pm. I'm guessing all the rides etc finish, then everyone moves to the fireworks then leaves after... is that right?

Reply
Aug 18, 2022 at 8:40 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mark!

Yup, that's correct! Rides will shut down right at 9 p.m. You can watch the fireworks from anywhere around World Showcase, and then after the show is over, everyone leaves the park. (Only exception is if it's a night with Extended Evening Hours for only guests of Disney Deluxe Resorts.)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 22, 2022 at midnight Courtney Says...

Just want to say that we are here today 4/21 and spots were getting taken up an hour and a half before showtime! The area between American and Italy is reserved for private parties, as well.

Reply
Apr 22, 2022 at 9:10 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Courtney!

Thanks for the hop tip!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Feb 10, 2022 at 1:03 p.m. Christina Says...

Can I see the Fireworks from both parks from Disney Springs?

Reply
Feb 10, 2022 at 1:55 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Christina!

Unfortunately, no fireworks are visible from Disney Springs at this time.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 18, 2022 at 7:22 p.m. Deb Says...

What is the nighttime show at the Hollywood Studios that is on the Chinese Theater? Is it worth staying and what time does it take place?

Reply
Jan 18, 2022 at 1:40 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Deb!

There are actually two shows currently hoppening at the Chinese Theater: Disney Movie Magic followed by Wonderful World of Animation. Showtimes are subject to change, but as of today, Disney Movie Magic starts at 8:40 p.m. and Wonderful World of Animation at 9 p.m. We think it's toadally fun to watch them back-to-back! But in the case that you've been at the park all day and you're waiting around with tired tadpoles just to see the shows, we think it's OK to head out early. Fantasmic! is returning later this year, and that one is a must-do!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 13, 2022 at 7:07 p.m. Barbara Tarleton Says...

Are the fireworks every night at both parks? I can no longer find the calendar that showed evening shows and times.

Reply
Jan 13, 2022 at 1:59 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Barbara!

Yes, the fireworks take place nightly at both parks. You can view and confirm the showtimes in advance on the website — Harmonious and Disney Enchantment, or within the My Disney Experience app, which may be easier to confirm on the day of (just use the search function and type in the show's name - it should pop up). Hope this helps!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

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