More than 75 million visitors from all over the world visit the “Theme Park Capital” of the world each year. Many come to experience the house of the famous mouse - but there are also plenty of iconic attractions and entertainment options that make Orlando one of the world’s most sought after destinations.
To break it all down, here are 51 fun things to do on your next trip:
Things To Do In the City Beautiful
1. Experience the Magic of Magic Kingdom Park. The most iconic theme park in the world, Walt Disney World Resort’s Magic Kingdom Park is where childhood dreams come true and is the ultimate can’t-miss experience in Orlando. With more than 40 memorable rides and attractions, character meet and greets, themed dining and shopping, and world-class entertainment, it’s easy to see why Magic Kingdom has been beloved by generations of kids and kids at heart. It truly is “The Most Magical Place on Earth!”
2. Escape the Muggle World & Unleash Your Inner Wizard. Muggles who spent their childhood waiting on an owl-delivered Hogwarts acceptance letter will relish the opportunity to be immersed into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort. J.K. Rowling’s fantastical world is brought to life for an enchanting experience that spans across both Universal Parks – Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios – connected by a train ride aboard none other than the Hogwarts Express. Mischief managed!
3. Explore the Waters and Trails of Wekiwa. Just twenty minutes north of Orlando, you’ll find Orange County’s longest-running tourist attraction: the natural water wonder known as Wekiwa Springs State Park. Kayaks are available for rent on-site to paddle along and observe Florida’s natural beauty and abundant wildlife. Or, explore miles of trails by foot or bike. Whichever path you choose, be sure to be on the lookout for birds – the park is part of the Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail!
4. Practice Your Golf Game. With year round sunshine and more than 150 golf courses, Orlando is a golfer’s dream. Master your game on a number of challenging greens designed by renowned golf course architects and golf’s biggest legends. Arnold Palmer’s Bay Hill & Club is a prestigious course in the heart of Orlando, and host of the annual Arnold Palmer Invitational, a key stop on the PGA Tour. Fore!
5. Drink Your Way Around the World at Epcot. Epcot offers exciting attractions, international pavilions, award-winning fireworks and seasonal events, all with a dash of education. “Drinking Around the World” is a particularly popular (unofficial) attraction amongst the 21+ crowd. Visitors make their way around the 11 pavilions of the World Showcase, stopping for snacks and drinks in each country.
6. Open Your Mind to Science. Central Florida’s award-winning, hands-on science museum, the Orlando Science Center, brings science to life in a way that is equal parts entertaining and educational. Throughout four floors of interactive exhibit halls ranging from the high-tech world of simulation technology to down-to-earth explorations in natural science, there are plenty of opportunities to explore and experiment. The Center also offers labs and workshops, theaters, and an observatory.
7. Explore LEGOLAND. LEGOLAND Florida is fun and colorful interactive theme park with more than 50 rides, shows and attractions inspired by LEGO brands and characters, designed to delight kids ages two through 12. The immersive world of THE LEGO MOVIE comes to life at Bricksburg through life-size LEGO displays, three new rides, a taco stop and character meet-and-greets. LEGO fanatics young and old will be amazed by MINILAND USA, featuring recreations of some of famous cities — including Orlando!
8. Travel Back in Time to Titanic’s Maiden Voyage. Featuring more than 300 artifacts, costumed actors, and full-scale room recreations, Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition allows history buffs or movie fans to journey back in time to April 2012, when the infamous Titanic embarked on its first (and last) voyage. Guests will receive a replica boarding pass and assume the role of a passenger, following a chronological journey of life on the ship. For an extra special experience, book a spot at the First Class Dinner Gala, a unique weekend experience that features a captain’s cocktail party, tour of the galleries, dinner, and re-enactments of the night of April 14th, 1912. Iceberg, right ahead!
9. Embark on an “African” Safari. If a trip to Africa isn’t in the cards, settle for the Kilimanjaro Safari Expedition at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, where you’ll spot elephants, lions, giraffes, baboons, zebras and more roaming the Harambe Wildlife Reserve. The safari jeep ride is an immersive experience designed to replicate an actual African safari in only 22 minutes. No passport required! It’s recommend to go first thing in the morning, when the animals are the most active. Or, check out a nighttime safari tour to witness the animals’ nocturnal behaviors. Hyenas and cheetahs are most active at this time, too!
10. See the Swans at Lake Eola Park. Lake Eola Park, once a sinkhole, is now the perfect setting for a relaxing afternoon in the park in the heart of downtown Orlando. Lake Eola is home to several Orlando icons – a tiered art-deco style fountain near the center of the lake, with a nightly water show that syncs its shooting water up with music and lights; the Chinese Ting, a large pagoda originally built in Shanghai; and a band shell offering free concerts and performances. A scenic walking path surrounds the lake and offers views of its famed residents – swans! Visitors can buy special approved food from feeders found around the lake, or rent a swan-shaped paddle boat to be one with the graceful birds.
11. Shop, Stroll and Dine at Disney Springs. Disney Springs is a shopping, dining and entertainment destination that is filled with magic and surprises. From award-winning chefs and trendy eateries – like Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ to Masaharu Morimoto’s Morimoto Asia – to casual spots like 4 Rivers Cantina Barbacoa Food Truck or Sprinkles cupcakes, there’s something to please all palates. More than 100 retail shops offer hard-to-find Disney themed items and collaborations, along with unique fashion finds and popular brand stores. Thursday through Saturday, Disney Springs is open until 2 a.m., offering plenty of live music and entertainment options.
12. Soar through the Trees on a Zip Line. With courses for all ages and abilities, Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park is a progressively challenging aerial obstacle course set high atop the trees in a natural pine forest. Swing like Tarzan, leap daringly into hanging nets, navigate swinging logs and soar through the forest on giant zip lines at Orlando’s most thrilling tree top obstacle adventure.
13. Cool Down at Typhoon Lagoon. Dive in to the “wreckage” of a fictional whirlwind storm that hurled surfboards into palm trees and impaled a shrimp boat to the top of volcanic Mount Mayday, before calming and leaving behind a tropical paradise of fun. From raft rides, like a 400-foot “water coaster” to the Humunga Kowabunga which sends you into the darkness, flying 214 feet down at a 60-degree angle, Typhoon Lagoon offers plenty of thrilling ways to cool down in the Florida heat. Visitors who prefer to chill will enjoy a relaxing float around the park on the 2,000-foot-long Castaway Creek. Little ones can play away at Ketchakiddee Creek, featuring pint-sized aquatic activities.
14. Cruise on the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour. Embark on a relaxing, one-hour scenic boat tour (just $14 per adult) that cruises the lakes and narrow, man-made canals of historic Winter Park. The tour showcases the area’s exquisite estates and shoreline landmarks, including the private liberal arts college, Rollins. On any given tour, cruisers may observe large cranes swooping into the water or lazy alligators sunbathing on a nearby bank.
- 15. See a NBA Game Live. Cheer on the Orlando Magic as they take on some of the biggest teams in the NBA each basketball season. The games are jam-packed with fun for the whole family, with light and video shows, impressive performances from the Magic Dancers, and plenty of appearances from Stuff the Magic Dragon, the team mascot. The award-winning Amway Center offers unique attractions like an indoor children’s playground and skytop lounge.
16. Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride. Soar up and away and experience Orlando from 2,500 feet in the air. Weather permitting, Orlando Balloon Rides offers daily hour-long flights from 40 different departure locations in the Orlando area. The spectacular views that one can expect include orange groves, untouched forests, and swamps, with FAA-certified pilots providing a guided tour from the sky.
17. Have an Out-of-this-World Day at Kennedy Space Center. The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Florida’s gateway to space, is one small step from Orlando and very much worth the detour. Go behind the scenes at NASA and see where rockets launch, walk through the Rocket Garden, learn about astronauts, and see the actual Space Shuttle Atlantis up close and personal.
18. Find Dining & Entertainment at City Walk. Universal City Walk isn’t just the gateway to the Universal theme parks — with innovative dining and unique entertainment options, it’s a destination in itself! Dining options range from tropical flavors at Bob Marley’s tribute restaurant to a whimsical setting at The Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen. Afterwards, sing karaoke alongside a live band and backup singers at City Walk’s Rising Star or check out a Blue Man Group performance. For a sweet snack, grab a treat from the west coast’s famed chain, Voodoo Doughnuts.
19. See Alligators on an Airboat Ride. Take a one-hour adventure through the Central Florida Everglades on a U.S. Coast Guard-inspected 17 passenger airboat. Each Boggy Creek Adventures airboat tour is a unique experience, with educated captains guiding you through wetlands and wildlife, offering views of Florida’s natural beauty. See alligators, turtles, birds and more in their natural environment! Tip: in the warmer months, plan your tour for early in the morning when alligators are most active.
20. Try “The Grey Stuff” (It’s Delicious!) at Be Our Guest. For a prix fixe, 3-course menu featuring French-inspired dishes – like escargot, artisanal cheeses, filet mignon and tortellini – venture into the Beast’s Castle for a lovely experience as the dining room presents... your dinner! Picky eaters? No problem! Guests age 9 and under can create a custom 3-course menu with kid-friendly options like house-made peach apple sauce, and pan-seared chicken breast. This 3-course dining experience is $62 for adults (ages 10 and up) and $37 for children (ages 3 to 9). Plan way ahead, as it can be tough to snag a reservation.
21. Catch an Adrenaline Rush with Indoor Skydiving. For all the excitement and adrenaline of traditional skydiving without having to jump out of an airplane, the vertical wind tunnel at iFLY creates a wall-to-wall cushion of air on which you can safely float. It’s a simulated skydiving experience without planes and parachutes. All the gear is provided and a personal instructor will guide you through your flight. A basic flight costs $69.95.
22. Stop and Smell the Roses at Leu Gardens. Harry P. Leu Gardens is a lovely 50-acre garden located minutes from downtown Orlando with more than 40 plant collections from around the world – including the largest formal rose garden in the state, a butterfly garden, and a tropical rain forest. Stroll through the beautiful cultivated gardens for just $10 per adult.
23. See Manatees at Blue Spring State Park. Visit the park during the cooler months (November through March) to encounter Florida’s gentle giants. During the warmer months, cool down with a swim in the spring’s pure waters, which have a year-round temperature of about 73 degrees.
24. See Animation and Acrobatics Collide at Cirque du Soleil’s Newest Show. Watch in wonder as the first-ever collaboration between Walk Disney Animation Studios and Cirque du Soleil, Drawn to Life, takes the stage. The audience journeys into a world where an animator’s desk becomes the stage and the Disney drawings and stories come alive through acrobatic performances and musical masterpieces. The show pairs Disney’s magic of storytelling with the mesmerizing acrobatic mastery and original choreography that Cirque du Soleil is famous for. It’s a whimsical, “wow” worthy production that is sure to impress.
25. Stroll through the Galleries at the Morse Museum. The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum is home to the world's most comprehensive collection of works by American artist and designer Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933). The collection includes his well-known leaded-glass lamps and windows, along with the designer's jewelry, pottery, paintings and art glass. One of the museum’s highlights is the restored Byzantine-Romanesque chapel interior that was designed by Tiffany for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. With admission just $6 per adult, a stroll through the galleries is a must-do when in Winter Park.
26. Party and Play at ICON Park. ICON Park, a 20-acre, walkable entertainment hub in the heart of Orlando’s renowned travel district, is an adult-friendly destination with plenty to see and do. Explore more than 40 tasty restaurants, funky bars, shops and fun attractions. When the sun goes down, head to Tin Roof to dance along to favorite hits performed nightly by lively bands, or to Tapa Toro tapas bar and restaurant to scope out the live Flamenco dancers.
27. Satisfy a Sweet Tooth at The Chocolate Museum. Calling all chocolate lovers! The 45-minute guided Chocolate Museum Tour starts with a short presentation in a tropical rain forest setting, depicting where cacao comes from as well as the origins of the sweet treat. Next, a sculpture area showcases chocolate sculptures of some of the world’s most iconic landmarks, where visitors will learn about the chocolate-making process and machinery. The tasting room is definitely the tour’s highlight – sample some of the finest chocolates from around the world!
28. Live Your Star Wars Fantasy. Journey into an immersive experience in a galaxy far, far away. The relatively new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is a themed 14-acre area at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Along with the main attractions – The Millenium Falcon: Smugglers Run and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – the real highlight is admiring the intricate details that bring the planet of Batuu to life.
29. Discover the Magic of Color. Color outside the lines at the Crayola Experience, where imaginations will run wild with 27 hands-on, creative activities and attractions designed to help kids and adults alike explore art and technology while tapping into their creative side. Name and wrap your very own Crayola crayon, star in your own coloring page, and climb the two-story color playground. Florida’s most colorful family destination for interactive, creative play!
30. See Under the Sea. Home to Florida’s only 360-degree ocean tunnel, the SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium allows visitors to get up-close with the creatures of the world’s oceans. Watch as sharks, stingrays, fish, turtles, and eels swim above, beneath, and all around you. With fun talks, animal feeds, special events, dive shows, and touch tanks, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
31. Shoot Hoops like a NBA Star. The new NBA Experience at Disney Springs features 13 different activities that combine the action of the NBA with the magic that Disney is known for, so that all levels of basketball talent can have fun shooting like a pro. Guests embark on a full player journey, from training drills to competitions to championships and beyond, to dribble, shoot, dunk, slingshot, and live out their NBA fantasy. A slam dunk of fun for all ages and skill levels!
32. Fuel Your Need for Speed. I-Drive NASCAR’s state-of-the-art electric race carts reach speeds of 45 miles per hour to get hearts racing. The indoor attraction (perfect for a rainy day plan) also offers an arcade with more than 60 games, pool tables and a four-lane bowling alley.
33. Ride Orlando’s Only Wooden Roller coaster. Fun Spot America is a smaller, watered-down version of the mega theme parks that Orlando is known for, with free admission and a pay-per-attraction system in place. On the plus side, the lines are substantially shorter and the park is home to the first and only wooden roller coaster in Orlando! With six roller coaster and thrill rides, four go-kart tracks, midway games, and fairground favorites like bumper cars and carousels, there’s something for everyone.
34.“Croc on” at Gatorland. At “The Alligator Capital of the World,” visitors will see alligators and crocodiles of all sizes and colors, from babies to 14-foot mega monsters, and rare white leucistic alligators. Aside from plenty of gator spotting, the park also offers a petting zoo, animal shows, free-flight aviary, a zip line, and the new Stompin’ Gator Off-Road Adventure.
35. Snap a Selfie with a Wax Celeb. Strike a pose with life-size wax replicas of famous Americans & historic icons at Madame Tussauds Orlando, the world’s greatest wax museum. The Justice League gallery features all your favorite heroes, including Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman and Aquaman. Heroes unite!
36. Discover Local Craft Beer on the Central Florida Ale Trail. Thirsty for a hoppy experience? The Hop On! beer tour takes beer enthusiasts on guided brewery tours by bus to explore what’s fermenting in Orlando and beyond. Central Florida’s rapidly growing craft beer scene, known as the Central Florida Ale Trail, offers some of the best brews in the Sunshine State. Each tour offers the opportunity to learn about the brewing process, sample local beer, and enjoy games, music and trivia. Beer lovers, rejoice.
37. Ride The Wheel to See Orlando From Above. Ride the iconic Wheel at ICON PARK, Orlando’s can’t-be-missed observation wheel, which towers 400 feet above the city. The climate-controlled capsules offer a comfortable and relaxing setting so you can sip a glass of wine while savoring some of Central Florida’s most spectacular views throughout the 23-minute rotation.
38. Seek Thrills at Islands of Adventure. Perhaps the theme park with the most thrilling rides, Islands of Adventure is home to the Hulk, a high-speed roller coaster with seven inversions at speeds of over 65 miles per hour; a 200-foot free fall drop; a water ride with an 85-foot plunge, and a new “story coaster” inspired by Harry Potter.
39. Treat Your Little One to a Disney Princess Experience. Disney dreams come true at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, with several locations around Orlando. Fairy Godmothers-in-Training pamper and primp your child until they look storybook stunning for a special day at the park. Happily Ever After!
40. Come Nose to Bottlenose, Swimming with Dolphins. Discovery Cove is an all-inclusive day resort that treat guests to up close and personal encounters with marine life. Enjoy the once-in-a-lifetime experience of swimming with bottlenose dolphins, snorkel among thousands of colorful fish and rays, meet playful otters, and hand-feed exotic birds. Set in a tropically-inspired paradise of rocky lagoons, reefs, lush landscaping and white-sand beaches, the day-package includes wet suits and snorkel gear along with fresh meals, snacks and beverages.
41. Wander Through Winter Park. Winter Park is home to an idyllic downtown chock full of charming details that are sure to delight. Hidden gardens and shaded side streets offer one-of-a-kind boutiques and locally-owned shops, sidewalk cafes and restaurants. Nearby museums showcase world-renowned art collections. Park Avenue, often called “Little Europe,” offers more than 40 eateries to satisfy all kinds of cravings, including everything from gelato to award-winning fine dining. Prato, a popular pick for date night, features handcrafted and year round alfresco dining.
42. Swing into Friendly Competition at Top Golf or Drive Shack. Whether an avid golfer or an absolute amateur, you’ll have a blast at one of Orlando’s golf-themed entertainment venues that offer an all-new take on the game for all skill levels. Just 15 minutes from Orlando International Airport, Drive Shack Orlando offers fun games like Shack Jack (a spin on the classic card game), or Monster Hunt, where the player is on a quest to save a princess, destroying monsters along the way. Top Golf Orlando, adjacent to the Orange County Convention Center in the International Drive area also features a fun take on golfing that uses a scoring system similar to that of darts or bowling. As an added bonus, both venues offer impressive food and drink menus.
43. Visit the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens. With more than 500 animals spread across its 23-acres of area, the Central Florida Zoo is one of the wildest family-friendly outdoor attractions in the Orlando area. Visitors will observe animals from all around the globe, including some of the world’s rarest and most endangered species. Check out one of the educational Keeper Chats, cool off at the Wharton Smith Tropical Splash Ground, or take off on a zip lining adventure. The zoo is located 20 minutes away from downtown Orlando in Sanford.
44. Indulge in a Five-Star Dining Experience. One of Florida’s finest restaurants, Victoria & Albert’s restaurant delights diners with an opulent interior, talented culinary team and exquisitely prepared dishes. Whether you choose to enjoy up to seven prix-fixe courses in the Dining Room or 10 at the Chef’s Table, this AAA Five Diamond Award restaurant delivers haute cuisine at its finest.
45. Embark on a Giraffe Safari Expedition or Llama Trek. While not technically in Orlando (it’s about an hour away), Giraffe Ranch is worth the drive for the chance to scope out giraffes and other species from around the world living in 47-acres of rolling countryside and open grasslands dotted with sprawling live oaks and native orchids. Not to be mistaken for a zoo, Giraffe Ranch is a real working game farm and wildlife preserve where zebra, ostrich, warthog, pygmy hippopotamus, rhinoceros have room to roam. Embark on an intimate safari expedition, feed a giraffe, take a Segway Safari, or venture out on a Llama Trek – whichever experience you choose, it’s sure to make for a memorable experience.
46. Shop ‘Til You Drop. From huge malls to outdoor outlets with discount, factory outlets, Orlando has it all. The Mall at Millenia, located minutes from Universal Orlando Resort, features luxury brands and complimentary valet parking in an elegant setting. The Florida Mall, Central Florida’s largest shopping center, is home to a range of market exclusives like Crayola Experience and M&M's® World, along with brand retailers. Bargain shoppers will love their choice of three outlet malls that offer top brands at incredible value: Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores, Orlando International Premium Outlets and Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets.
47. Catch an Orlando City Soccer Club Game. As one of the newest members of the Eastern Conference of the wildly popular Major League Soccer, the Orlando City Soccer Club delights spectators with its fan camaraderie and modern stadium in downtown Orlando. If you visit the Orlando area during soccer season, throw on the team color (purple) and cheer The Lions on to victory at a game!
48. Get Artsy at The Orlando Museum of Art. The Orlando Museum of Art is a leading cultural institution in the region, home to a diverse collection of art in all media. Each year, the museum presents 10-12 exhibitions on-site. On the first Thursday evening of every month, the museum hosts “Orlando’s Original Art Party” to present visitors with an opportunity to discover local artists, listen to live music and mingle.
49. Stroll Disney’s Board Walk. Inspired by the timeless charm of turn-of-the-century boardwalks in coastal cities like Coney Island and Atlantic City, Disney’s Board Walk offers good old-fashioned family fun set on a scenic waterfront. The quarter-mile promenade offers classic arcade games and Surrey bikes, delightful evening street performers, dining, shops and nightlife. The Board Walk is a short stroll to Epcot and a breezy boat ride to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
50. Shop the Winter Park Farmers’ Market. Held each Saturday morning at the historical old train depot, the Winter Park Farmers’ Market is the number one produce and plant market in Central Florida, offering fresh produce, plants, baked goods, artisanal products and more. A popular event for visitors and locals alike!
51. Sip Handcrafted Organic Local Beer. Known as the brew house that kicked off the city’s craft beer craze, Orlando Brewing Company now has a decade of experience under its belt. The taproom offers 30+ taps of their high-quality beer made with all organic ingredients. Free brewery tours are offered Monday through Saturday, excluding the 30th of each month. Cheers!
Experience the Vacation of Your Dreams in Orlando, FL!
This list of the coolest 51 things to do in Orlando shows that there's definitely something for everyone! And the famous Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort and Sea World Orlando are only the most well known options. There are incredibly fun offerings throughout the entire Central Florida!
If you’re exploring "The City Beautiful" with kids, be sure to check out the 10 best kids activities in Orlando. If you prefer to slow the tempo, see the relaxing things to do in Orlando to wind down, or non touristy things to do in Orlando. You may also experience breathtaking views of Orlando and thrilling things to do in Orlando at night. Whatever you choose, you’ll have a great trip!