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Things To Do In Orlando Not A Theme Park

Have Fun At Nona Adventure Park

Things to do In Orlando Florida | NOT Theme Parks!

For proof why Orlando is often considered the so-called water sports capital of the world, look no further than Nona Adventure Park.

This inflatable aqua park is the first of its kind of Central Florida, and comes accompanied by a 60-foot climbing tower, intricate ropes course, and a dedicated wakeboarding arena.

Meet Celebrities At Madame Tussauds

Trick your friends into thinking youve just bumped into a few holidaying celebrities with a visit to Madame Tussauds famous wax museum.

If youre strapped for time, opt for a skip-the-line pass to squeeze more into the day. Or, if youre pinching pennies, grab a ticket that includes access to Sea Life and/or The Wheel for the best overall value.

Stroll Around A Local Garden

Despite the abundance of congestion, traffic, and man-made entertainment in the area, the Orlando metro area still manages to offer a variety of quaint parks to escape from it all. At Harry P. Leu Gardens, you will have the opportunity to stroll around beautifully landscaped gardens filled with tropical plants.

Winter Park is home to a number of attractive parks, including Kraft Azlea Gardens and Mead Botanical Gardens. Both of these pretty parks offer a glimpse into the natural plants and animals found in the area. At Kraft, you will be able to enjoy wonderful lake views, take advantage of ample birdwatching opportunities, and surround yourself with gorgeous Spanish moss trees. The quiet nature trails at Mead allow you to really decompress.

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Giraffe Ranch In Dade City

Does anyone else have kids that love giraffes? My oldest absolutely loves them so including the Giraffe Ranch in nearby Dade City in this list of things to do in Orlando besides theme parks was a no brainer. Youll get the opportunity to get up close and personal with giraffes and other exotic animals like ostriches, antelope, and even rhinoceroses.

Get the full safari experience by touring the 47-acre ranch in either a custom-designed safari vehicle, on the back of a camel, on a Segway, or as part of a llama trek. Add-ons are available too if youre interested in feeding some of the animals or seeing some up close. Tours are offered twice a day so be sure to sign up in advance.

Orange County Regional History Center

Things To Do In Orlando That Are NOT Theme Parks

The Orange County Regional History Center is one of the most underrated attractions in Orlando. I absolutely 100%, head over heels, fell in love with this museum and highly recommend it during a visit to Orlando . This museum, located in downtown Orlando, has four floors of interactive exhibits that walk you through the history of central Florida.

From the origin of Disney World to the history of African-Americans in that region, this museum covers it all. And makes it fun! They also have special exhibits highlighting things pertinent to the area. During my visit, it was a special exhibit dedicated to The One Orlando Collection . If youre looking for things to do in Orlando besides Disney, Orange County Regional History Center definitely tops the list.

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Canoe Or Kayak The Wekiva River

Located on the Wekiva River, Wekiwa Springs State Park gives you a break from the go-go-go vibe from all the parks. About an hours drive away, youll find thirteen miles of trails, plenty of space for a picnic, and lots of opportunities to enjoy the water. Rent a canoe or kayak and spend the day exploring Floridas wilderness.

Meet Some Alligators At Gatorland

Built over 110 acres and home to thousands of alligators and crocodiles, Gatorland in Orlando is known as the Alligator Capital of the World. If you are looking for a thrilling wildlife adventure in Florida, you have to come to Gatorland. A totally unique experience!

Venture into the breeding marsh to get close to scores of alligators . Go flying on the Screamin Gator Zip Line. Or get your adrenaline rushing on a Night Shine tour. Whatever your choice, you will experience the real wild Florida in Gatorland.

Recommended by Tanya from Travels and Treasures

  • Image credits: Tanya from Travels and Treasures

There is plenty of fun to be found in Orlando besides theme parks. If youre looking for something unique and unusual that will appeal to all ages, sign up for this head-over-heels experience at the Upside Down House .

Located at 9067 International Drive, the structure stands out as a zany residence. Not only is it awesome on the outside, but the inside hosts three floors of unique science games and hands-on experiences like a bubble lab, virtual reality station, laser tag, impressive optical illusions, a bed of nails, and more!

Tickets may be purchased online and range from $25 $60 per person depending on age group and choice of package. Give yourself about 2 hours to see everything in WonderWorks. Patrons line up for show seating from 30 to 45 minutes in advance.

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Sea Life Orlando Aquarium

Dive deep into an underwater world of wonder at SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium, part of ICON Park. Soak up incredible views from Orlandos only 360-degree underwater tunnel, where sharks and rays swim overhead, and gaze at breathtaking creatures as you walk through themed habitats. It also features a special play area for younger guests.

Save on discount tickets: SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium

Take A Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour


We absolutely loved Winter Park! From the extremely gorgeous homes, to the parks, to the cute downtown area with lots of shops and restaurants, its a very nice town that we loved working in and walking around.

One thing we didnt know about Winter Park until after our visit there is that they have boat tours! For $14 or $7 you can hop on one of their 18 passenger boats for a tour around the Winter Park chain of lakes. The tours run every hour from 10 AM-4 PM and are cash or check only.

On the boat you get to learn about the history of the area, see some nice homes, and enjoy a nice ride on the water. We hear this is so much fun and a hidden gem!

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Stroll Down Disneys Famous Boardwalk

Just a stones throw from Epcot, the Coney Island-style Disney Boardwalk combines plentiful unique shops with constant entertainment and bustling nightlife.

Along the quarter-mile promenade sit an array of dining opportunities, spanning everything from multi-course fine cuisine to on-the-go hot dogs and pizza windows.

Keep an eye out for street performers and try your hand at a carnie game or two!

Dine At The Worlds Largest Mcdonald’s

This McDonalds is not like the rest. First of all, its shaped like a giant bag of fries, and secondly: itâs world class. To accommodate the throngs of people lining up to get Happy Meals, it has a touch screen ordering system that possibly makes fast food even faster. For the food, itâs not just McChickens and McWings, they also sell pasta and pizza! As if thatâs not enough, they also offer a full dessert bar. Naturally, the restaurant has plenty of cheap arcade games to keep the kids entertained. This world-class McDonaldâs is located at International Drive, a place that has a lot more to offer, it might take you a whole day to explore!

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Spend An Afternoon At The Wekiwa Springs

The Wekiwa Springs offers visitors the opportunity to relax in its beautiful setting, enjoy a picnic, or take a swim in the cool spring. For those adrenaline junkies out there, you can get your fix by partaking in a myriad of water activities like canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling, as well as other activities like hiking and cycling.

Pirates Cove Adventure Golf

Things To Do In Orlando Not Theme Parks

Orlando is home to some of the best golf courses in Florida. But what if you could golf on the seven seas! Landlubbers, get ready for a swashbuckling romp at Pirates Cove Adventure Golf, one of the most fun things to do in Orlando.

Voted Best in Florida by Orlando Magazine, enjoy renowned innovative hole designs, lush landscaping, and a charming pirate theme on this golf adventure. Along 18-holes, youll traverse through waterfalls and caves.

The adventures and lore of infamous Florida pirates come to life when you enter the world of 18th century buccaneers. Pick your own colorful golf ball and putt your way through sunken ships and dreaded pirate dungeons.

One of the best cheap things to do in Orlando, discover the wholesome fun for the whole family. Right on International Drive, start your adventure for just $15 for adults and $13 for children.

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Orlando Kid Friendly Places That Are Not A Theme Park

Yes, Orlando is Theme Park Capital of the World. But did you know theres TONS of great things to do with your kids in this amazing citywithout ever seeing the mouse?

I have complied a list of some of my favorite and yet to visit places in Orlando that are 100% kid friendly and more budget conscious. And with the new year underway, this is a great list to share with your family and maybe even cross some of these places off your list Heres 25 Orlando Kid Friendly Places to Visit with your family that are NOT a theme park. Here are 8 more Orlando things to do too!

  • Winter Park Farmers Market I LOVE this place. Every Saturday in the heart of Winter Park is an amazing Farmers Market. Lots of great and unique vendors including fresh produce, kettle corn, homemade pasta, plants and more. I have taken my kids here often to roam the streets, people-watch and of course grab great deals on local foods. Dont miss the Winter Park Art Festival, one of the BIGGEST events in the state.
  • Ride the Swan Boats at Lake Eola If you didnt know, Lake Eola is the iconic lake of Orlando. In the middle is a gorgeous fountain that lights up at night . For a small fee, you can actually rent a swan shaped paddleboat and check out the lake firsthand! And theres a great playground, real live swans, and walkway around the lake for a great view from just about anywhere.
  • Pinocchios Marionette Theater Puppet shows come to life with Orlandos only marionette theater. Definite a wonder for all ages.
  • Gray Line Orlando Tours

    One of the best ways to really “see” Orlando is on a Gray Line Orlando Tour. Their City of Orlando Tour is an excellent option for first-time visitors and it comes highly recommended by travelers. Orlando is a large metropolitan area with a vibrant downtown. Start with a cruise through Lake Eola around Winter Park and through the town of Celebration, where you can enjoy the unique architecture of this global city.

    After you get off the boat, you’ll have time to stroll around Park Avenue, Orlando’s shopping and dining district filled with cute boutiques, great wine bars, and more. Finally, pay a visit to the City of Celebration, an ideal community designed by none other than Walt Disney himself.

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    See A Show In Orlando

    If you thought NYC and Las Vegas were the show capitals of the country, think again. Orlando is filled with jaw-dropping shows, from the Blue Man Group to La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil.

    Show fans who are stuck at a theme park with their family or friends will be glad to know that many amusement parks offer award-winning shows and performances throughout the day. Disney World theme parks are known for their legendary shows such as Fantasmic at Hollywood Studios.

    Outdoor Movie Night At Leu Gardens

    Things To Do In Orlando That Are Not Disney (Orlando Attractions)

    The first Friday of every month is Date Night at Leu Gardens. Grab some chairs or a blanket, pick up a bottle of wine and a to-go dinner, and get situated in the garden for their feature film.

    Times vary throughout the year: for February, March, October thru December movie time is 7:30 pm. From April thru August, it is 8:30 pm. And Septembers movie time is 8:00 pm. Doors/gates open usually an hour to an hour and a half ahead of time.

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    Learn Something At The Orlando Science Center

    Who said you couldnt learn a thing or two on vacation? The Orlando Science Center is the perfect indoor thing to do in Orlando if its raining or too hot to want to explore outdoors.

    The museum has four floors of interactive displays, rotating guest exhibits, labs and workshops, two movie theaters, a domed observatory, and laser light shows.

    Where: 777 E Princeton Street, Orlando

    Sip Butterbeer At Hogwarts

    Whether youre secretly waiting for your acceptance to Hogwarts or just want to get in on the fun, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal is a delight for any fan. Catch a ride on the Hogwarts Express, try a Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean, and find your true wand at Ollivanders. Remember, the wand chooses the wizard!

    Of course, no trip is complete until youve sampled one of our favorite park treats: Butterbeer! This non-alcoholic beverage brings you right into the story.

    INSIDER TIPIf this is high on your list, head to the parks as early as you can and hit the Wizarding World first. Lines are long here but the wait time is always worth it!

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    Shop Til You Drop At Citywalk

    For a relaxing date night out and about, head to Universals Citywalk. Like Disney Springs, this outdoor mall is full of shops, restaurants, and entertainment. At Citywalk, you can find everything from Blue Man Group to mini-golf to celebrity chefs and everything in between. Itll seem more like being in Las Vegas than Orlando with the nightlife youll find. As Universal calls it, its the Epicenter of Awesome.

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    Muster Up The Courage To Ride The Orlando Starflyer

    Things To Do In Orlando That Are Not Theme Parks

    At 450 feet above the ground, the worlds tallest swing rideStarflyer is adamantly not for the faint of heart.

    Guests with enough courage will be transported vertically up the tower, while rotating around at exhilarating speeds of up to 45 mph.

    For the thrill-seekers, Starflyer is one of the most exciting things to do in Orlando.

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    Things To Do In Orlando Besides Theme Parks / Things To Do In Orlando With Kids # 41 50

    Old Town Kissimmee

    Get to know classic Florida at OldTown Kissimmee. There are many restaurants and shops here and you caneasily spend a few hours wandering around. There is also a small amusement parkwith rides for kids. .

    Aquatica Park

    AquaticaPark features unique attractions and one of the biggest theme parks inOrlando. Among its popular attractions is the Dolphin Plunge, in which you cansee dolphins that are swimming. Also, another exciting ride is Ihus BreakawayFalls.

    Cirque du Soleil

    Watch acrobat shows that are unique at the LaNouba Cirque du Soleil. They have amazing shows such as the Michael JacksonOne, KA, Mystere, O, The Beatles Love, R.U.N. and Zumanity.

    Coco Key Water Park

    This is one of the most popular water parks in Orlando. You dont need to stay at the hotel to visit Coco Key Water Park, which is a great perk. Make sure to check Groupon for deals first.

    Dr. Philipps Center of Performing Arts

    Watch a Broadway show at Dr.Philipps Center of Performing Arts. There are many shows such as KingDiamond: The Institute North American Tour 2019, Lewis Black, and The FourItalian Tenors, among others.

    Orlando Premium Outlets

    Do you want to shop for popular brands at discount prices,then be sure to visit the OrlandoPremium Outlets.

    Lake Eola Park

    Head to Lake Eola Park for beautiful views or the Orlando Skyline. You can rent swan-shaped paddle boats, take pictures of birds and live swans around the park as well as see turtles just hanging out.

    Pirates Dinner Adventure

    Eat At The Citys Best Restaurant: The Melting Pot

    If youve only got time for one dine-in restaurant, make it The Melting Pot, a venue famous for its specialty cheese, chocolate, and broth fondues.

    Impressively, this revered eatery holds the coveted title of Orlandos very best restaurant , as voted by thousands of happy customers.

    For a cheesy overload, the Quattro Formaggio awaits.

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    Shop Till You Drop At The Orlando International Premium Outlets

    Lets hope theres some extra room in your suitcase because some of the bargains and sales at the Orlando outlet stores are simply too good to pass up.

    Boasting internationally renowned brands like Lacoste, UGG, Kate Spade, Nike, and Burberry, with discounts up to 70%, the Orlando International Premium Outlets truly is a shoppers paradise.

    Wet Your Whistle On A Brewery Tour


    Orlando is quickly jumping on the craft beer bandwagon, with new breweries popping up year after year.

    The easiest way to sample all of the local favorites is by joining a dedicated brewery tour locally-guided adventures typically stop into six popular locations, with tasting and snacks included throughout.

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    Explore Lake Eola Park

    Though Central Florida is missing the beaches, it isnt lacking natural beauty. Whenever you visit Lake Eola Park, we have a few recommendations to maximize your experience:

    • Bring bread to feed the beautiful swans and birds splashing in the lake.
    • Charge up your smartphone or camera to take photos in front of the breathtaking palms and flowers.
    • If you like to be active, wear a pair of comfortable sneakers so you can walk or jog around the mile-long path.
    • Pack a picnic spread to enjoy a family-style lunch outdoors.
    • Lake Eola Park is a great stop for families while in Orlando, and even boasts a picture-perfect view of the city skyline.

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