Continuing our journey to each country in the World Showcase at Epcot, I felt it was time to take a quest to the Canada Pavilion. This pavilion offers a lot more than meets the eye upon initial glance. Not only that, but the country has one of the most beautiful gardens around. And there’s a waterfall.
Sometimes I wonder how many people visit Epcot and have no idea of the canyon, bridge, and waterfalls in Canada’s Pavilion. If you were literally strolling along the World Showcase promenade and didn’t venture into the pavilion, you would never know these things were there.
All of the countries are worth taking a day to explore in great detail, especially for those of you who don’t get to travel abroad. In fact, that’s probably one of the reasons they mean so much to me. Because you see, I have a teenager with severe food allergies, and for us, traveling out of the country is not an option.
Today, here on the site, we are going on a quest for Canada in true Epcot fashion. This review will discuss the entertainment, attractions, architecture, and dining options you can expect to find in the Canada Pavilion.
Epcot’s Canada Pavilion Review
Canada is the first pavilion to the right-hand side of the World Showcase when you leave Future World. If you were to go left, the Mexico Pavilion would be your first stop. Canada is a little misleading from the outside. By that, I mean it’s much larger than you would probably imagine, but that takes a little bit of exploring to figure out.
Here’s what all you can expect to find while touring the Canada Pavilion.
- Totem Poles
- Victoria Gardens
- Hotel Du Canada
- Canada Far & Wide
- Mill Stage Performances
- Le Cellier Steakhouse (TS, Signature)
- Popcorn in Canada (QS)
- Northwest Mercantile
- Trading Post
There are quite a few architectural elements representing Canada in its Epcot pavilion. The first thing that comes to mind though are the detailed totem poles that tower overhead as you approach the pavilion.
One of the totem poles is carved out of wood, while the other two are fiberglass replicas.
Canada also has a tremendous garden that blooms year-round. Below is a picture of the gardens in full bloom.
These gardens are inspired by the Butchart Gardens of Victoria, Canada. Victoria has the country’s mildest median climate and is commonly referred to as the “City of Gardens.” If you would like to know more about the gardens in Victoria, there’s a good article here.
As far as actual architecture, the large building that centers the pavilion is the Hotel du Canada. It is a miniature replica of the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. There’s a pretty neat story about how the actual hotel came to be in Canada. It was originally built by an American, Charles Hays, who died on the Titanic.
The hotel was supposed to be a deluxe stop on the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway (also Hay’s doing.) The opening of the hotel was planned after his return from the Titanic voyage but had to be postponed given the circumstances.
Anyway, the hotel has become a prime destination for royalty, politicians, and the very famous. You can read more about the story here if you have an interest.
A friend of mine once shared with me that this is his favorite building in the World Showcase. So when I see the hotel, it always makes me smile and think of him.
My favorite part of the pavilion is the scenic Rocky Mountain overlook with a waterfall located in the Hotel du Canada’s upper courtyard.
The space provides several great photo spots to have a family picture made. You could probably do a photo in each pavilion and share how you went to 11 different countries in one day or something. You might even throw a few people off, or at least have them question you.
There is a staircase that leads down to a canyon and a pathway you can explore. Here’s a picture of the terrain you’ll cover. It’s not too rough.
And you’ll wind up at the entrance to the pavilion’s sole attraction. If you don’t want to do the film, the path continues back out to the Victoria Gardens side of the pavilion.
Technically, you could tour the gardens first and walk the opposite way through the pavilion. The good thing is that it’s rarely crowded. This area of the pavilion is what I’m referring to when I mention it’s more secluded, and guests might not be aware of it.
Canada Far and Wide is the newest and only attraction in the pavilion. It replaced the former, long-running Circle-Vision Film O’Canada!
The entrance is tucked in behind the backside of the waterfalls. The new film lasts about 20 minutes, and there’s a pretty large waiting area outside the theater entrance. It’s not the worst place to end up in the event of sudden rain. However, if the rain lasts, it’s a bit of a walk to the nearest covered location.
For those unfamiliar with Circle-Vision, you will enter a large room and stand in the middle while a film is projected around you in a circle. I think that most of these performances are worth seeing at least once, and the time investment is pretty minimal.
Try to experience this in the heat of the day when you need a break to refresh.
Out along the World Showcase Promenade sits The Mill Stage. You might find a band playing anything from fun, folk music to traditional Canadian rock and bluegrass.
Performance times are listed on the daily time guide and in the My Disney Experience app when bands are available.
Canada is home to one table service restaurant that is considered signature dining. Le Cellier Steakhouse is located in the “cellar” of the Hotel du Canada and offers various steak and seafood items.
This is a fairly popular dining location in Epcot. The restaurant serves lunch and dinner and is known for its Canadian cheddar cheese soup and pretzel bread. We have eaten at Le Cellier twice over the years and have had two entirely different experiences.
On the first visit, we had excellent service and food. On our last visit, it was the complete opposite, and we have yet to return. That’s been a few years back, but I read many reviews, comments, and feedback. If I were to give an opinion from what I’ve read, it would be that the restaurant is still hit or miss.
The other negative factor about Le Cellier that comes to mind is that the seats are extremely close together. Those looking for a little privacy while dining will not find it here. You can preview the Le Cellier menu here on Disney’s site.
As far as dining goes in the Canada Pavilion, a quick-service kiosk offers popcorn out in front of the country. The pavilion is also home to a festival kitchen at each of the four Epcot festivals held throughout the year.
Epcot’s Canada is home to two different retail locations. The first is the Trading Post, painted to have a totem pole style entrance.
Here is a sample of some of the Canadian merchandise you’ll find inside.
Connected to the Trading Post is Northwest Mercantile. Both shops carry a wide variety of Canadian-themed merchandise. You’ll also find some lovely plush items like Huskies and different bears in the shops.
Out front along the Promenade, there’s an additional kiosk that sells keychains and other leather items. Many of the items at the booth are personalized. These are all fun stops to check out while exploring the pavilion.
All of the countries in the World Showcase offer a free children’s activity. The location to find the activity in each pavilion is know as the KidCot Fun Stop.
Canada’s Kidcot is located past the Victoria Gardens at the covered area where the Circle-Vision film exits. When I’m touring with my niece this is one of her favorite things to do as we explore.
Thanks for joining along in our quest to the Canada Pavilion. With only a few countries left to cover I’m running out of ideas to name each journey.
If you have any questions or would like to share any fun traditions you have at Epcot with your family, please do so in the comments below. I always enjoy fresh ideas and fun perspectives. It is my belief that everyone’s voice can benefit other fellow Disney travelers as well.
Some of the other World Showcase countries include:
- France Pavilion
- Morocco Pavilion
- Japan Pavilion
- Germany Pavilion
- Italy Pavilion
- China Pavilion
- Mexico Pavilion
- United Kingdom Pavilion
Here are a few more photos of the Canada Pavilion:
If you love Epcot as much as I do, you might consider staying at one of the Disney World Resorts in the area. For instance, Disney’s Beach Club (review) is right next door to Epcot and the Yacht Club (review) is on the other side of Beach.
Lastly, you might enjoy a stay at Disney’s Swan and Dolphin Resort (review). This resort has an excellent location but will be a little different since it’s not owned by Disney.
Have you had a chance to visit the Canada Pavilion at Epcot? I love to explore the area and walk through the garden! Let me know what you enjoy in the comments below.