Orlando Travel Guide – Hotels, Things to Do, Restaurants and More
Your must-do list for a trip to Orlando
While millions of people are drawn to Orlando for its vast theme park offerings, there are plenty of must-see activities that are less crowded in the city. Whether paying homage to the Pulse Memorial or spending your Sunday morning at the Lake Eola Farmer’s Market, here are some of the top things to do in The City Beautiful:
Pay tribute at the Pulse Memorial to the 49 people who lost their lives in the Pulse nightclub shooting in 2016.
Lake Eola farmer’s market
Lake Eola is the heart of downtown Orlando, and there’s no better way to experience all the area has to offer than by visiting the Lake Eola Farmer’s Market on Sundays. Shop for produce, crafts, food, local dishes and more. When you’re done, head to The Stubborn Mule for brunch and mimosas on the patio.
New Smyrna Beach
About an hour’s drive from downtown Orlando is New Smyrna Beach, located on Florida’s idyllic east coast. You can drive on the beach ($ 20 fee), park on a nearby lot and walk, or pay a pass to the Canaveral National Seashore. Hunger? Check out The Garlic for an Italian feast, JB’s Fish Camp for a range of fresh seafood, and Third Wave Cafe & Wine Bar for the best organic lunch you’ll find by the beach.
Winter garden farmer’s market
Fifteen miles from Orlando is the quaint town of Winter Garden, where you can enjoy delicious food, local crafts, and groovy live music offered on Saturday mornings all year round. This expansive farmer’s market is also within walking distance of charming downtown Winter Garden and the Plant Street Market, home to Crooked Can Brewing.
Screamin ‘Gator Zipline
Head to Gatorland for a true Florida experience: zip-line over swampy swamps teeming with crocodiles and alligators. One must reserve.
Light up your night at Bioluminescence Kayaking, about 50 minutes from Orlando, where you can take a 2-hour light-up bioluminescence kayak tour in the Atlantic Ocean. Make sure to pack your waterproof camera to capture the magic. Advance reservations are recommended.
Enzian Theater is a one-screen movie theater that shows a rotating roster of independent films and local screenings. It has comfortable seating and a tempting selection of food to snack on while you watch a movie. You can also spend time at the Eden Bar, the bar outside the venue, before or after your movie. If you visit in April, you can celebrate the annual Florida Film Festival.
Boxi Park Lac Nona
Boxi Park Lake Nona is a 30,000 square foot outdoor space for dogs and families with food trucks, live music, a playground and a beach volleyball court.
Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures
Nothing says Florida like an airboat ride through the swamps. Reservations at Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures are recommended but not required.
The place live
Catch an entertaining show at Plaza Live, one of Orlando’s oldest venues.