While I have absolutely NOTHING against a few days (or weeks) spent in Disney World or Universal Studios, sometimes it’s nice to steer away from the theme park life and enjoy a simple vacation in the sun. Whether you're looking for some activities to supplement your theme park days or you want to see what else Orlando has to offer, here's a rundown of some cool places in central Florida you can check out.
Have you ever tried to look for a restaurant and thought, “hey, it'd be cool if fish were swimming around me.” You’re in luck! Located inside SeaWorld (yes, a theme park...) Sharks Underwater Grill in Orlando boasts an aquarium so big the entire restaurant appears to be underwater. While you pop some shrimp into your mouth, get the adrenaline pumping as you watch sharks swim by. An undoubtedly exhilarating experience, this restaurant is first on the list for your trip to Orlando.
Nothing says vacation like a trip to the mall, especially as one as big as The Mall at Millenia in Orlando! Filled with designer clothes and decor under high glass ceilings, this mall is a must for serious shoppers.
Another classic vacation excursion is wine tasting. While there are not many wineries in Orlando, you can find some excellent wineries nearby. Lake Ridge Winery is currently the state’s largest winery. For a bit of a more berry flavor, stop at Oak Haven Farms Winery where you can find wine made from strawberries and blueberries as well as muscadine grapes. Quantum Leap Winery in Orlando sources grapes internationally for their wines to give your taste buds a flavorful experience. Cheers!
Unwind with a stroll through Bok Tower Gardens. The smell of fresh flowers are sure to ease the senses and bring you the type of calm only nature can provide. One of the greatest works of landscape artist Frederick Law Olmsted Jr., these gardens were meant to provide an “informal woodland” setting while you are awestruck by the magnificent views of the Singing Tower.
If you’re up for more time carousing through gardens, you may want to head over to the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens. Located only 20 minutes from downtown Orlando, this zoo is home to 23-acres of gardens and over 500 animals. Also open for your viewing pleasure is an insect zoo and reptile house.
Feeling a tad bit adventurous? Forever Florida is a unique attraction to head toward. Offering a zip-line, trail buggy, and horseback riding through the wilderness, they cater to all levels of experience and fun. If you’re looking for a night away from the city of Orlando, you may also consider one of their remote campsites!
Jump on an all-terrain vehicle and take 273 acres by storm at Revolution Off Road! Perfect for gearing up to explore, what’s not to love about this popular attraction? Get dirty and sweaty as you ride around on a dune buggy. Offering fishing on its private lake, as well as clay duck shooting and archery lessons, Revolution Off Road is great for adventurers at heart.
One of my absolute favorite things to do in Orlando is visit Medieval Times & Tournament. Witness real-life jousting and dashing knights on handsome steeds. Offering a old-time feast, mouth-watering meats, and delicious spirits - this dinner show attraction is popular for many reasons. Have a few laughs and a few drinks while picturing the olden days!
Enjoy stand-up? Find yourself filled with childlike curiosity at a magic show? Why not combine the two and visit this popular Orlando attraction! This show with non-stop audience participation is sure to knock your socks off. Located at the Wonderworks Museum, you can’t go wrong. Before you head to the show, visit this unforgettable museum and find yourself amazed at all of the interactive exhibits!
If you have a knack for golfing, or have always wanted to learn how to golf, perhaps you’ll be inclined to check out Drive Shack Orlando. Welcome to golfers of all experience levels, this attraction takes golfing to the next level. Rather than your typical golfing range, play fun games such as Monster Hunt, where you have to destroy all the monsters to save the princess. After you’ve hit enough balls around, head out to the bar and have a drink to wind down.
If you’re hoping to tap into your inner child, be sure to visit Hukoo’s Family Fun Center. With 25,000 square feet of entertainment, it’s virtually impossible to find yourself bored. Find your inner road demon with bumper cars or play endless arcade games. The choice is yours, and with plenty to choose from!
Need help planning your trip to Orlando? I can create a custom trip itinerary for you if you click here!