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Things to do in Orlando

Endless adventures and world-class entertainment take centre stage on a holiday in Orlando. Home to headline acts like Walt Disney World Resort and Universal Studios™ – it's a playground for both little ones and the young at heart. With no shortage of spellbinding spectacles and hundreds of standalone attractions that don't require a day pass, finding things to do in Orlando is a piece of Mickey Mouse-shaped cake.

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Orlando's top attractions

The countdown is on, and there's some very important decisions to make – which attractions deserve a spot on your Orlando itinerary? Unforgettable adventures and anything-but-average activities are dotted all over, so strap in and brace yourself for a whirlwind of wonderment…

Fireworks and animations over the iconic Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom Magic Kingdom Park. ©Disney

Unforgettable theme parks

Let's face it, Orlando's pulling power has a lot to do with magic kingdoms and wizarding worlds. Prestigious theme parks have almost 50 years of experience under their belt, not to mention a staggering 50 square miles of real estate to bring the bucket list creations to life. Walt Disney World Resort leads the way with endless lands of enchantment, fantastical fireworks, extravagant entertainment and all-star attractions. While the fairly new kid on the block, Universal Orlando Resort™, takes you to new heights and heart rates.

Whether you embark on a guided tour of an African savanna in Disney's Animal Kingdom or escape the clutches of a terrifying T-rex at Universal Studios™ Jurassic Park River Adventure™ - things go from mild to wild in Orlando. Welcome to a place where 10,000-mile journeys take 10 minutes and zooming through the galaxy is just another day, we guess it really is a small world after all...

Kayaking through emerald waterways in Orlando, Florida

Get outdoors

For the days you're looking to come down from the coasters, swap man-made masterpieces for nature's own creations. Practice your stand up paddle boarding skills in the waterways of central Florida, or explore the breathtaking rivers and lakes from the comfort of a glass bottom kayak. Horseback riding can be both romantic and adventurous, and there's plenty of experiences to be had a stone's throw away from the Orlando area. Rope courses for both adults and kids let you traipse through treetops and zoom along zip lines. For a bit of everything, head to Wekiva Island and relax at Central Florida's best swimming hole.

Kennedy Space Centre Visitor Complex

Come face to face with the marvel of space travel at this 140,000 acre complex! Home to real life rockets, mind-blowing NASA technology and a huge hangar full of memorabilia from missions past and present. In-depth bus tours bring you up close and personal with official launch sites, as well as the gargantuan Vehicle Assembly Building. The mammoth structure is one of the largest buildings in the world by area, and the high bay doors take around 45 minutes to completely open. No such thing as a quick getaway here! Well, at least until the rocket makes it to the launch pad. If you've ever wondered what it's like to travel to space, try your hand at an astronaut training simulator and learn to pilot your very own shuttle.

Space rockets at sunset at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Florida

Central Florida Zoo

Animal lovers can indulge their wildlife wonderment at the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens. Over 400 animals and 200 different species – including some of the rarest and most endangered on the planet – call the zoo their home. Guests are invited to keeper chats, feeding experiences and other encounters throughout the park. Whether it's slithering snakes, graceful giraffes or mischievous monkeys, find your favourite residents amidst the feathers, scales and fur! The beautiful botanical gardens showcase some breathtaking flora teeming with butterflies and hummingbirds. Perfect for a leisurely stroll and look at nature's best bits.

Pirate's Cove Mini Golf

Ahoy to guaranteed family-fun at the swashbuckling mini golf of Pirate's Cove. Perfect for all ages, there are three different adventure courses to choose from. Jam-packed with innovative hole designs, lush landscaping, cascading waterfalls and dreaded pirate dungeons – you'll have to putt your skills to the test! As your crew tackle Blackbeard's challenge, who will claim the treasure of a winning hole-in-one?

An outdoor drive-in movie theatre in Orlando, Florida

Catch a movie at then Silver Moon Drive-in

An American institution and rite of passage, feel like one of the locals with a night at the movies! You'll find this nostalgic theatre throwback in Lakeland, just under an hour away from the bright lights of Orlando. Showing the latest releases across two screens, seven nights a week, there's sure to be something you're dying to see over the course of your stay! Rock up, pick your favourite spot and don't worry about packing a picnic. The Silver Moon's snack bar is second to none. Overflowing with delicious goodies, the hardest decision you'll have to make is between the juicy hot dog or the homemade pizza. Of course there's plenty of sweet treats too, from pretzels and popcorn to candies and chocolates. Cinema snacking will never be the same after this!

Shop 'til you drop

Retail therapy is always a good idea. Especially when you're surrounded by discount outlets and luxury shopping centres galore! Brimming with deals on all your favourite designer gear, make sure you save some space in your suitcase for all the extra goodies. Magnificent malls pepper the highway and city centre, and offer delicious dining experiences for when your arms are tired of carrying all your bagged bargains.

Powder-white sands backed by high-rise skyscrapers at Clearwater Beach on Florida's Gulf Coast

Day trip to Clearwater or Daytona Beach

West coast vs East coast – this one's your call. Are you after the tranquillity and powder-white sands of the gorgeous Gulf, or the wild waves and wide open fun of Daytona Beach? Warm waters and show-stopping sunsets are part and parcel of the charming Clearwater coastline. Head out to sea on a dolphin watching tour and witness the playful porpoise splashing about. Stroll the palm-lined promenade for your perfect spot on the sand, roll out your towel and settle in for a serene sunbathing session.

Daytona is for the more adventurous beach lover. 23 miles of hard-packed sand means you can drive your car onto the beach – so toing and froing buckets and bags is a thing of the past! Besides the golden shoreline, there's plenty of exciting entertainment in this energetic town. The International Speedway hosts major NASCAR events, Daytona Lagoon boasts adrenaline pumping waterslides, plus there's laser tag, go karting, outdoor thrill rides and summer concerts to boot. Of course, there's nothing to stop you from venturing to both beaches during your Orlando holiday!

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