Everyone who plans a trip to Florida includes at least one day in Orlando. Situated in central Florida, it is the most popular tourist destination in the US, attracting over 75 million visitors every year. A Mecca for theme park enthusiasts, there is so much more than Orlando offers to its visitors. From art museums, wildlife encounters, and exciting outdoor activities. Though it might be tempting to spend the day lazing around by the pool during the hot Florida summers, there is plenty to do in Orlando to cool off, including incredible water parks. There are so many theme parks; park-hopping seems like the obvious choice. Beyond family-friendly attractions, there are many places in Orlando to explore. With museums and art galleries set between leafy parks, gardens, and lakes, you can slip into cozy cafes, bistros, and brewpubs.
If you are looking for a little adventure and planning to gather all the best things to do in Orlando for the ultimate vacation, these are the top offbeat things to do right now! Some of America’s finest parks, museums, and entertainment centers are within easy reach in Orlando. You can also hire a town car from Orlando airport transportation services to have you picked up right from the airport and take you around places. These places are closer to each other so you wouldn’t have to spend much time commuting.
Mead Botanical Garden
If you want to wander past beautiful flower gardens, ponds, and butterfly gardens, botanical gardens are the place to be. They also feature on the great Florida birding trails, so you might want to bring your binoculars if you want to spot rare bird species like blue herons, cardinals, and woodpeckers. It is the best place to visit during the early morning hours as it is the quietest during the morning. It is a great way to start your tour of Orlando.
Orlando Museums of Art
The next stop on your itinerary should be the Museum of Art. Take the scenic route via Lake Shore Drive or North Mills Avenue. You’ll cross the shores of Lake Sue and Lake Rowena. The museum opened in 1924 and currently hosts a collection of thousands of ancient artifacts of American and African heritage. There are other excellent museums and art galleries in the neighborhood that you can also visit.
Center for Performing Arts
If you are looking for some family-friendly entertainment, Dr. Phillip Center for Performing Arts is the spot for it. With live music and Broadway shows like Hamilton or the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, who will play the background score of the movie while you watch it. It is also the home to the Ballet, which performs shows like The Jungle Book and The Nutcracker.
Lunch in Colonialtown
Colonialtown is known for its eclectic dining scene. Home to hip restaurants, cafes, bars, and brewpubs, it is the perfect spot to stop for lunch. It is also within walking distance from the Harry P Leu Garden, which sits on the northern edge of the town. It is a charming neighborhood along North Mills Avenue and East Colonial Drive. The area is popular in the Asian culinary scene, so you can satisfy your taste buds by trying some amazing Asian food.
Lake Eola Park
After a filling lunch at Colonialtown, you can take a relaxing afternoon resting time at Lake Eola Park. An oasis in the middle of the business district, you will enjoy the fantastic views across the water to downtown. For locals and tourists, this place is one of the best places to be in Orlando. You can also spot ducks and swans along the lakeshore or even rent a paddleboat for a leisurely paddle around Lake Eola. On the southern edge is a park is a place for beer lovers who get to choose from 500 beers from around the world. On Sundays, there is also a farmers market that you can visit.
If you want to experience the life of one of your favorite cartoon characters, Tarzan, this is the place to be. This treetop adventure is filled with activities like Tarzan ropes, 50-ft tall ladders, suspension bridges, hanging nets, zip lines, etc. It is a race, and you need to get to the finish line with the help of these props. There are different courses with different difficulty levels, including one made just for kids. All of them end with a 4000 ft. long zip line across treetops.
These are all places besides the famous destinations that you could check out during your visit to Orlando. Depending on the timing of your visit, some places may be a little modified for temporary time periods. Keep track of the Covid restrictions in place to ensure a healthy trip in Orlando while enjoying your favorite destinations and restaurants.