1800 Wekiwa Circle Apopka, FL 32712 +1 407 884 2008
Florida's fresh water comes from underground springs that rush through the state's underlying limestone base, or aquifer. Often, those springs bubble to the surface. You can see how it all works at Wekiwa Springs State Park where the waters are crystal clear and stay at a comfortable 72 degrees all year. At this scenic spot, you can hike, camp, fish, go canoeing and, if you're lucky, spot some wildlife. Opens everyday at 8a.
528 Park Avenue South Winter Park, FL 32789 +1 407 622 0102
Specializing in art of the American West and in general nature scenes, this gallery gives visitors and residents the opportunity to express their appreciation for the great outdoors. You'll find original artwork by nationally renowned artists such as John Seery-Lester, Richard Sloan and Carl Brenders, along with creations by a variety of Florida painters. Whether or not these names ring a bell, a visit to the gallery is always fun, thanks in large part to the animal motifs. View huge dolphin sculptures and paintings of native Florida wildlife.
Although it sits on only 25 acres, this spot offers visitors the chance to get involved in some active recreation and to explore Florida's historic past. The park's centerpiece is a replica of a fort built on Christmas day, 1837, to protect European settlers during their war with the Seminole Tribe. An on-site museum houses military and Seminole artifacts. The site also houses a restored pioneer home and sugarcane mill, both graced with historical farming equipment. Once you've soaked in your fill of history, have some fun on the basketball, volleyball and tennis courts located in the park. You'll also find a playground, horseshoe pits and picnic areas.
This 52-acre preserve offers a meandering nature trail perfect for quiet hikes. Stroll through wetlands, taking in the educational displays that dot the path. You may encounter native Florida birds, such as herons and egrets, and, if you're lucky, a deer or two. Leashed pets are allowed. All in all, Howell Branch Nature Preserve is a nice spot for a relaxing getaway.
This 440-acre preserve offers opportunities for the whole family to learn about Florida's fragile ecosystem. The on-site Vera Carter Environment Center houses a variety of exhibits on local flora and fauna, and also hosts a plethora of environmental programs, many of them geared toward children. If you're looking for a great way to spend a lazy day, consider a stroll down the miles of trails offered on the preserve, which meanders through pristine wilderness.
Local amateur horse shows held at this 40-acre public equestrian park (usually on weekends) spotlight best-of-breed competitions, the dressage skills of young and amateur riders, jumping prowess and racing aptitude. The park also houses the Mid-Florida Midget Race Track and Association. A 'midget car' is a special vehicle designed for children ages 6 to 16. Junior Mario Andrettis regularly show off their racing skills on this track.
This establishment offers in-the-saddle fun for riders of all skill levels. No experience is required for the 50-minute Nature trail ride; it's suitable for adults and for children aged six and older. People who can manage a trotting horse may want to take the hour-long Intermediate trail ride; for experienced riders, there's the 90-minute advanced trail ride. Reservations though are required for the advanced trail. All rides take place on 750 acres of pristine Florida land, reminding visitors of what the area looked like before European settlers landed here. After your ride, take the kids over to the on-site barnyard and playground. Opens everyday at 9a.
7769 West Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway Kissimmee, FL 34747 +1 407 396 2222
For a truly memorable morning, take a ride on one of many helium balloons. You'll soar over majestic landscapes accented with rivers and lakes. Airtime runs for about an hour, but the whole event takes three to four hours. As part of your experience, you'll watch professionals inflate your balloon, and after the flight, you'll be treated to a glass of champagne and assorted snacks. Reservations are required. Meeting places are determined at the time of reservation.
2501 North Old Lake Wilson Road Kissimmee, FL 34747 +1 407 396 1887
This 10-acre exhibit is a horticulturalist's paradise. Opened in 1993, it is the brainchild of Kerry and Chris Richards, Miami nursery owners active on the international orchid circuit. The pair wanted to build a world-class exhibit honoring the flower they love, and they have certainly succeeded. Here you'll find a rainforest conservatory boasting huge, flowering plants, waterfalls, and exotic birds and fish. A nature walk takes visitors around ponds and through rainbow-hued orchid gardens. The center also offers an extensive list of plants for sale.
This sculpture collection is housed in a Mediterranean-style building that served as home to the renowned Czechoslovakian sculptor from 1949 until his death in 1961. Prior to his Florida retirement, Polasek had served more than 35 years as chair of the Chicago Art Institute's sculpture department. Visitors can stroll through three galleries and a three-acre sculpture garden, gazing on the master's paintings and his classical sculptures. The latter are heroic in style, chiseled with an attention to muscle and sinew reminiscent of Michelangelo's works.
Embassy Suites Orlando International Drive South Convention
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Embassy Suites Orlando International Drive Convention Center hotel is popular among business travelers and families alike. Each suite boasts a bedroom and bath, and a living area complete with ...
If your family needs a roomy hotel accessible to Disney,
consider staying here. Within walking distance of Downtown Disney, this pink, eight story Doubletree Guest Suites hotel offers all guests 600 sq.ft. living spaces. The suites feature bedrooms, living ...
Located in the heart Downtown Disney, the House of Blues
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