If you haven’t been to Epcot since June 16, 2016, but plan to go in the future, be sure to take time for their marvelous new Soarin’ ride. We were surprised but also absolutely thrilled to find that they’ve totally updated their adventure from an aerial ride around America’s Southwest to a breath-taking, 4-minute flight around the globe soaring over more than a dozen of the world’s greatest wonders. Want to know what and where? Here are a few interesting details: First stop is the Matterhorn. Like a huge, pyramidal hat, this massive mountain crowns both Switzerland and Italy and is one of the highest peaks in the Alps (and all of Europe: 14,692 ft.). The flight then soars north to Isfjord, Greenland, where Polar bears reign. Males weigh up to 1,543 pounds and live in the icy waters of the Arctic Ocean, which crowns the northern tip of world with its massive 5,427,000 square miles of ice and freezing waters. Next we fly across the famed Sydney Harbor in Australia, past the Sydney Opera House, which is one of the world’s most famous and distinctive buildings, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and host to more than 1,500 cultural performances annually. (We saw The Merry Wives of Windsor there when we visited back in 2004.) Neuschwanstein Castle, nestled in the Bavarian Alps was commissioned by Ludwig II (in Germany). It’s perhaps the world’s most popular “dream castle” and was the inspiration for Disney World’s Cinderella’s Castle. (This photo is actually of Disney’s castle and not from Soarin’.)Mt. Kilimanjaro, with its three extinct volcanoes, is the highest peak in Africa (19,341 ft.) and the crowning beauty of Tanzania, where herds of wild elephants and other exotic animals roam freely in the scorching savannas. (The elephants take dust baths to clean themselves!) Many of the sites are familiar to everyone, because they’re world famous! The Great Wall of China was begun hundreds of years before the time of Christ and measures 13,171 miles. It’s one of the few man-made structures that is easily visible from outer space! The Great Pyramid of Giza (Cheops) in Egypt was built around 2560 B.C. and held the record as the tallest man-made structure in the world for 3,800 years! India’s Taj Mahal, described by Rabindranath Tagore as “the teardrop on the cheek of time,” is a glistening white marble mausoleum by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan to commemorate his beloved wife. Soarin’ blows by hot air balloons floating above Monument Valley in Utah and encounters outrigger canoes off the Lau Islands in Fiji. At the border of Argentina and Brazil, Soarin’ glides above the world largest system of waterfalls along the Iguazu River. From South America the flight goes past Europe’s beloved Eiffel Towerbefore finally returning home to where it started: Disney World and the EPCOT Center, affectionately known as “the happiest place on earth.” If you go, I highly recommend getting a fast pass as soon as you buy your ticket, and be at the “starting” line first thing in the morning on the day you go! That way you can go once or twice (or three times, like we did by making a beeline to the ride the minute the park opened)! As fun as Disney World and Epcot are, I want to say that there’s one truly happier place on earth, and that is being at the center of God’s will, wherever He wants you. Whether you’re on vacation or at home, let God make you the happiest person on earth by being—not in the “dead center”—but in the living center of His will, abiding always in Him! May God bless and keep you!
“Happy is that people, that is in such a case:
yea, happy is that people, whose God is the Lord“ (Psalm 144:15).
(I took all the photos at Disney World, EPCOT, and on the Soarin‘ ride this March, 2016, while on spring break.)