Updated: 2 days ago
Orlando, Florida, is one of the most visited cities and home to at least a dozen theme parks. But there has to be more for those of us that want more than the Theme park experience. I’ll show you my five favorite off-the-beaten-path spots to hit up while visiting Central Florida in this guide.
The first spot is the Kennedy Space Center. The Kennedy Space Center has been the primary launch point for NASA’s space exploration since 1968. The most famous project to have come from the Space Center was the Apollo Project. At the Kennedy Space Center, you’ll be transported into outer space to feel G forces, touch a piece of Mars, meet astronauts, and take a virtual moonwalk. This is truly a fascinating experience for the science lover and kid at heart.
Traveling back to earth and into Kings Landing, you won’t see any Lannister’s here. However, you will be transported to another world. This cannoning company offers crystal clear springs that feed the Wekiva River Basin. You’ll encounter giant Lilly pads, jungle fauna, and wildlife along this tour. You can take an eight-hour trip down the river or a two-hour trip out and back in the spring. Both are amazing and a great way to venture outside of Orlando.
The overlooked aspect of Orlando is that it is slowly becoming a Foodie Paradise. I have the perfect plan to explore the local cuisine in the Audubon Park Garden District and take in the area on foot. This area is slowly becoming the go-to place in Orlando with its award-winning shopping district, café’s, bakeries, music, and craft beers.
We head to the west coast and the Homosassa Boating and Snorkeling experience. This is by far the best-kept secret in Florida. At this experience, you’ll take a boat up the rivers in the Crystal Rivers and Homosassa Springs State Park. Once there, you will have the option to choose to swim in the rivers with the manatees that call this area home. This swim is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of swim to be up close to these beautiful giants.
Last but not least, Gatorland, the “alligator capital of the world.” This is an adventure park itself. You’ll be able to take an airboat ride through Florida’s wetlands, experience one of a kind reptile show with gator wrestling and original jumparoo. You’ll also be able to cool off at the Gator Gully Splash Park. Don’t worry, they keep the gators separate from the human swimmers. I’d also recommend grabbing a bite to eat at the Pearl’s Smoke House to try smoked gator and gator nuggets.
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