Setting: Disney designed the Mexico Pavilion to look like an ancient Temple in Tenochtitlan, the capital of what was once the vast Aztec Empire. The structure is immense and the rich details are worth taking a moment to appreciate.
Unlike the other World Showcase Pavilions, most of the attractions, shops, and restaurants are located inside one air-conditioned building. Coupled with the perpetual nighttime atmosphere, Mexico is one of the most relaxing and comfortable Pavilions to enjoy.
Pay special attention to the Temple’s interior backdrop, a spectacular Mayan Temple and smoldering volcano surrounded by a rich Yucatan jungle.
Attraction Info: The Mexico Pavilion features the “Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros,” which is similar to “it’s a small world” at the Magic Kingdom.
The ride vehicles slowly meander around the river surrounding the interior of the Pavilion. Donald Duck and friends intermittently show up to play songs or cause mischief. Waits are almost always under ten minutes, even if the queue snakes around and out of the main entrance area. The ride opens with the rest of World Showcase, which is typically at 11am, and runs until regular Park close. The ride is also open during evening Extra Magic Hours. On particularly busy days, visit before 12:30pm or after 7pm to avoid longer waits.
Just inside the entrance to the pyramid is an interesting cultural exhibit highlighting Coco.
For a look at just about everything inside the exhibit, see this post.
Also check out the wood carver on the main level near the entrance.
Finally, check your Times Guide or the My Disney Experience app to see when and where the traveling Mariachi band will be playing. Their first set is usually 11am or 11:30am with hourly shows that continue into the early evening.
La Cantina de San Angel is the outdoor quick service location with seating that overlooks World Showcase Lagoon.
The food is fresh, but portions are on the small side and prices are above average. Before 3pm, cast typically allow guests to eat inside La Hacienda de San Angel restaurant, since it only serves dinner. Seating inside is comfortable and air-conditioned, making it a better choice for lunch.
The Beef Nachos make a great, shareable snack or meal in the early afternoon.
Later in the evening, only outdoor seating is available, and it’s not unusual to see few tables available. Guests typically squat in the seating area, with or without food, waiting for the nighttime spectacular to begin.
Choza de Margarita is another option for food and drink with an emphasis on margaritas. You’ll see it across from La Cantina.
The Empanadas are particularly good and the margaritas are the same style and quality as other outlets in the Pavilion. It makes for a nice stop when the line at La Cantina or La Cava is longer than you’d like to wait, or if something on the menu sounds particularly tasty.
La Hacienda de San Angel is the table service restaurant on the Lagoon.
The menu is relatively limited, but many tables inside offer an indoor, air-conditioned view of the nighttime spectacular. Consider a reservation around 8pm and request a window table if you’d like an opportunity to enjoy the show as you dine. It’s a good choice who have seen the fireworks before, but there’s also a good chance that your table will have a limited or no view of the spectacular whatsoever. This makes La Hacienda a better choice for a repeat viewing rather than a first go-around.
San Angel Inn is the restaurant inside of the pyramid that overlooks the Gran Fiesta boat ride. Request one of the tables that overlooks the water and you’ll be able to watch the boats glide by. San Angel Inn has improved quite a bit over the years and is now a recommended restaurant. The one downside is that tables are close together and you’ll most likely feel like you’re dining with whoever is at the table next to you.
San Angel Inn is also extremely dark, to the point where it’s difficult to read the menu or take decent-looking pictures of the food. It’s hard to beat the waterside tables, but like La Hacienda de San Angel across the way, Disney and the restaurant can’t guarantee that you’ll be seated there.
Drink Around the World: Mexico is most people’s favorite drinking destination, both at Epcot and in the “real world.”
La Cava del Tequila, located inside the pyramid, seats about 30 people, in addition to drinks to go. The bar offers more than 70 tequilas ranging in price from about $10 to more than $50.
The La Cava Negroni is our favorite cocktail, particularly with the jalapeno frozen inside of the square ice cube. The specialty drinks that the bar offers are typically fresher than the more commonly-ordered margaritas.
While drinks are now made in large batches in advance and served out of jugs, the margaritas are still better than most other World Showcase mixed drinks, despite a high price point at an average of $15 plus tax and tip.
Outside, La Cantina de San Angel offers Dos Equis and Tecate on draft, in addition to frozen and pre-mixed margaritas.
Choza de Margarita outside is usually the best value/time proposition, but the line is outside and uncovered. La Cava is at least indoors, even if lines are typically longer and prices are higher, particularly after the tip. You can pull up the menus for all of Mexico’s dining options at DisneyWorld.com here.
Donald in a sombrero meets guests outside to the right of the pyramid.
There are a variety of shops and street carts in Mexico providing guests with plenty of unique and mass-produced merchandise.
Piñatas, hand-crafted silver and jade jewelry, sombreros, and worry-dolls are all favorite items you won’t find anywhere else at Disney World.
Mexico is the first World Showcase Pavilion that most guests will pass as they head into World Showcase. Canada is on the opposite side. Because the majority of its dining, attractions, shopping, and other amenities are inside and air-conditioned, the pyramid would be a pleasant respite even if there was little more than a drinking fountain inside. Fortunately, Gran Fiesta Tour is a lot of fun and the Coco exhibit is beautiful. Most guests will enjoy spending time here.