Sure, 50 million people visit Orlando each year — and yes, most of them come for the tourist attractions — but there’s so much more to The City Beautiful than I-Drive and The Magic Kingdom. Sticking close to home for spring break? You’re in luck! We’ve created a list of unique, affordable, local outings that make Orlando such a great place to raise a family.
Then you’ll want to try…
1. RDV Ice Den. Dig out your coat and gloves (do you even HAVE gloves?!?), and tie on a pair of ice skates for open skate at RDV. Visit their website for public skate times and prices.
2. Boing! Kids bouncing off the walls? Take them to Boing!, a giant indoor trampoline facility in Oviedo. Live closer to downtown? Try Airheads. Have kids that span a wide range of ages? Monkey Joe’s might be a good fit for you.
4. Bowling. Call a friend, find an alley near your house, and get there early. You’ll find wide open lanes and an hour (or more) of fun for the kids while you sit back and catch up with your gal pal. Tip: call ahead to make sure you don’t visit during league time.
5. The Swan Boats! Give your legs a workout and catch a unique view of the downtown Orlando skyline. Paddleboats are available for rent from 10am to 7pm (or later) and hold up to five people.
6. Take Me Out To The Ballgame! Spring Training Baseball Family Fun! Check out the schedule of Spring Training and our list of helpful information, tips, and tricks for making the most of spring training baseball season here in Central Florida.
Want to learn?
Schedule a trip to…
1. The Orlando Science Center. Loved by locals for its diverse exhibits, well-priced annual pass and super cool skybridge, kids of all ages find OSC fascinating. Open daily.
2. The Orange County Regional History Center. Located in the heart of downtown Orlando, the History Center is smart, surprising and fun. Best suited for school-aged children.
3. Mad Science! With two locations and lots of class options, you’re sure to find something that works for your schedule.
4. Visit your local library! With over 20 branches around Central Florida, the library is a great way to spend an afternoon or two over break. Orange County branches can be found here, and Seminole County branches can be found here!
Look no further than…
1. The Orlando Museum of Art. With an incredible kids’ section and a healthy collection of art from all periods, the OMA is a fantastic jewel in The City Beautiful‘s crown.
2. Yes You Canvas! The step-by-step, hour-long, group painting classes at Yes! You Canvas are great for grade-schoolers and older. Locations in Baldwin Park and Oviedo. Check their calendar to see which painting they’re doing each day over the break — and be sure to sign up for your seat in advance.
Need a mommy break?
Let the kids explore (while you sit and watch!) at…
2. Amaya Papaya Play Lounge, an indoor playground for children ages 0-5. Located in Cassleberry.
3. Grammy’s Indoor Playground. Also made for the little ones (ages 0-5). Grammy’s Fairytale Theatre is held Mondays at 4pm. Located on Aloma Avenue in Winter Park.
4. One of Orlando’s wonderful parks. Meet up with some of your girlfriends for a “Stroller Date” at a local park. Here’s some info about a few of our favorites. But there’s so much more, including Azalea Lane (Winter Park), Lake Lily Park (Maitland), R.D.Keene Park (Windermere), Eastmonte Park (Altamonte), Maitland Community Park (Maitland), Chapin Station (Winter Park), Delaney Park (Downtown), Friendship Park (Oviedo), and Minehaha Park (Maitland) — just to name just a few!
Need some fun in the sun?
1. Some water fun. Check out our list of local splash pads! There’s bound to be one near your home!
2. Outdoor yoga. Sunshine Warriors — a one-hour class just for kids — meets on Saturdays near downtown.
3. Springs and State Parks. One of my favorite places to take out-of-town guests is to a closeby spring. These hidden gems are all throughout Central Florida. You’ll want to know the best time to arrive, and what to take. Blue Spring info can be found here, and enjoy the Pancake house at DeLeon Springs!
4. The beaches. This is a no-brainer for us Floridians, but here’s a post to give you some last-minute tips for New Smyrna Beach.
Still looking for ideas?
1. Pigtails & Crewcuts in Dr. Phillips. So much more than haircuts, their kids spa day packages can keep a whole gaggle of girls busy!
2. Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens. If you haven’t visited this local zoo, you’re missing out. Absolutely worth the trip.
3. Farmer’s markets. Orlando’s markets are widespread and well done. Not sure where to begin? Try Lake Mary or Winter Park on Saturday, and Lake Eola or Lake Lily on Sunday.
4. Lil’ 500 Go Carts in Maitland. Three different tracks and 100% local. Kiddie track has carts for parents and kids to ride tandem.
You’re certain to have a fun-filled Spring Break, and hopefully never hear the words, “I’m bored!” Enjoy the break!
Originally posted March, 2014 by former contributor Kristen, updated March 2015 by OMB.