Welcome to Orlando, home to the one and only Walt Disney World. This number one destination is a wonderland for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re here for the thrilling theme parks or to go golfing on world-famous greens, Orlando is legendary. Let’s start with the staples: Disney World and Universal Studios, then we’ll make our way to city livin’:
Walt Disney World
There is a reason why "world" is in the title. Roughly 50 times bigger than its California counterpart Disneyland, Disney World boasts endless rides and fun-packed activities for the whole family.
For the younger ones or the young at heart, the Magic Kingdom is where your imagination thrives, from the iconic Cinderella castle to the cast of your favorite Disney characters. Journey through the classic “It’s a Small World” ride, adventure down an exotic jungle river or put on your pirate patch with swashbuckler Captain Jack Sparrow. Make your dreams come true with Mickey Mouse in one of his fantastic musical shows.
Adrenaline junkies, Epcot Center awaits! Explore exhilarating attractions as you take a mission in space at the Advanced Training Lab before buckling in to one of the fastest rides in Disney World, the Test Track. Epcot also features an array of delicious international cuisines, from German brats to Japanese teriyaki.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios:
Soak in the vibrancy of a movie set at Hollywood Studios. Starting Spring 2014, team up with Luke Skywalker as you battle Darth Vader in Star Wars Weekends. Don’t miss out on great comfort food at the 1950s-themed Prime Time Café, serving up classic faves like ice-cold malts and mouth-watering fried chicken.
The largest animal theme park in the world, this amazing area showcases more than 250 species and 1,700 animals. Embark on rainforest trails, cross rickety bridges or dig up some dinosaur fossils in The Boneyard. Bring a towel, because at the Kali River Rapids you’re bound to get soaked.
Mom and Dad, if you’re looking for a tasty meal or even a fancy dinner, rest assured it can be found at Disney World. Yes, fine dining and theme parks rarely go hand-in-hand, but Disney has made it possible. At Epcot, there is an array of multicultural eats at the World Showcase. Watch your chef entertain at the Japanese Steakhouse at Teppan Edo, enjoy Italian fare at Tutto Italia or experience a belly dancer perform during dinner at Marrakesh. Head over to 1900 Park Fare at the Magic Kingdom for breakfast and dinner buffets hosted by Disney characters.
Expelliarmus! The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will have you rattling off spells all day - from Hogwarts to hidden corridors. Evade dinosaurs at Jurassic Park River, but don’t leave out the newest attraction, Transformers: The Ride 3D, which conjures up an epic battle with your kids as the heroes!
For more info on the highlights you have to hit, check out
to the top theme parks.
City of Orlando
Although the theme parks attract a lot of attention, the city of Orlando has plenty to offer travelers, including hip nightlife, inspirational arts and tasty fine dining. So take a breather, sit back and a enjoy Orlando like one of the locals.
Spend an afternoon hitting a round of golf at one of Orlando’s 170 champion courses. Without a doubt there are some back nines that will give you a run for your money. If you need a break from the kids, relax and recharge at an award-winning spa like the Waldorf Astoria Spa. Go shopping at top department stores including Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale's and Neiman Marcus. Take a stroll downtown to find some stylish clothing lines.
Dining & Nightlife:
Rated "Best Bar" in Orlando Magazine, Blue Martini is an upscale cocktail lounge with more than just an amazing happy hour. It is rigged with a stage and patio area featuring a titillating tapas menu. Later, get your groove on at Back Booth, which hosts such impressive local and national acts, Orlando Weekly named it one of the best live music bars in the city. Their wide draft selection doesn’t hurt either. If you’re looking for top-of-the-line dining, grab a seat at The Ravenous Pig for mouthwatering platters like their wild king salmon and short ribs.
Experience the vibrancy of the arts with Orlando's fabulous performance theaters and art galleries. Stop by the Mennello Museum of American Art for its vast collection of folk paintings and public art selections. You can count on the Orlando Shakespeare Theater to constantly drive some of the best performances in Florida with historical greats and modern hits.
From world-famous theme parks to buzzing city life, Orlando is a must visit. Take a trip with your family, your spouse or with friends for an unbeatable getaway. For even more suggestions on things to do in Orlando, check out
our travel guide