Top 10 Free Things to do in Orlando, Florida
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
If you and your family have visited Orlando, Florida, before, there is a good chance that you have been to the area’s wonderful theme parks, from Disney and Universal to SeaWorld and Busch Gardens. While these parks are great attractions to visit, we know you might be looking for things to do that don’t have an admission fee or require tickets. We’ve found 10 activities and attractions in the Orlando area that won’t cost you a dime to enter so you can make the most of your next trip!
If you’ve already experienced the Disney parks or don’t want to pay to purchase park tickets, you can still enjoy Disney’s BoardWalk. Built to look like a 1930s Atlantic coastal city, the BoardWalk’s waterfront promenade is filled with unique shops, great restaurants, and thrilling nightlife. You’ll also enjoy the many street performers, including comedians, musicians, and more.
Photo by Flickr user jared422_80.
Black Hammock Adventures
Ready for some excitement? Head over to Black Hammock Adventures on Lake Jesup to explore the free alligator and bird exhibits, which include a 12-foot, 650-pound gator named Hammy. Guests can also purchase tickets for an exciting airboat tour of the lake or enjoy a drink and a view of the lake at the Lazy Gator Bar, which often features free live music on the weekends.
Lake Eola Park
If you’re looking for a break from the city, look no further than Lake Eola Park. Located right in downtown Orlando, this 43-acre park is a relaxing oasis and the perfect place to spend an afternoon. Enjoy the view of the Orlando skyline while eating a picnic lunch along the shore of the lake, let the kids play in the recreational area or feed the resident swans, catch a concert in the amphitheater, or browse the Sunday farmer’s market, all for free.
Disney lovers will also enjoy Downtown Disney, a 120-acre complex filled with restaurants, shops, and entertainment. Admission to the complex is free, and includes access to the three main areas – the Marketplace, Pleasure Island, and the West Side. The Marketplace offers many shops and restaurants, as well as the LEGO Imagination Center, a favorite stop for kids that offers free admission. Pleasure Island and the West Side also offer many unique dining, shopping, and entertainment opportunities that the whole family will love.
Photo by Flickr user osseous.
Fort Christmas Historical Park
Get a history lesson when you travel just 20 minutes outside of Orlando. The Fort Christmas Historical Park features a full-size replica of Fort Christmas, which was originally built in 1837 for the Second Seminole Indian War. The park also includes several historic buildings and homes, a gift shop, and historical demonstrations, all without an admission fee.
Photo by Flickr user Rusty Clark.
Located just south of Orlando in Kissimmee, Florida, Old Town is a popular amusement park and shopping complex. Admission to the park is free, which includes access to events such as the vintage car parade that runs every Saturday night and nightly entertainment. The rides in the amusement park require you to purchase tickets, but your family will have such a great time enjoying all of the great music and entertainment that the roller coaster will be far from your mind!
Photo by Flickr user Experience Kissimmee, Florida.
March of the Peabody Ducks
If you have kids, you’ll love the March of the Peabody Ducks at the Peabody Orlando Hotel. Each day at 11 a.m., spectators gather in the hotel’s lobby as the ducks are escorted down a red carpet to their fountain – all set to the music of John Philip Sousa. At 5 p.m., the process is repeated as the ducks are escorted back down the red carpet to their evening home. The event is free to all visitors, and children can even be nominated to be the Honorary Duck Master for a show.
Photo by Flickr user david__jones.
If you’re an art lover, you won’t want to miss the CityArts Factory in downtown Orlando. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., the Factory offers guests free admission to all five of its art galleries, featuring art from local and international artists on a rotating basis.
Campfire Sing-A-Long with Chip & Dale
What child doesn’t love a campfire? Add a few Disney characters and you’ve got the ingredients for a great time. Take the kids to Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort for the Campfire Sing-A-Long with Chip & Dale. This free event, which is open to the public, is held every evening and features marshmallow roasting, sing-a-long songs, and your favorite chipmunks, followed by a selected Disney movie shown on an outdoor screen.
Photo by Flickr user starrynight_012.
A World of Orchids
Love flowers? Stop by A World of Orchids in Kissimmee, Florida, to tour its 22,500-square-foot conservatory, filled with orchids and other species of tropical plants. You and your family can walk along the 1,000-foot nature walk, enjoy all of the beautiful flowers, and even purchase your own orchids to take home. The conservatory is open every day except for Sundays and offers free admission to all guests.
Ready to plan your trip to Orlando? Don’t forget to book your stay at one of our three convenient Country Inns & Suites By Carlson hotels!
Do you have a favorite free Orlando attraction that you enjoy visiting? Let us know in the comments section below.