Explore Orlando-Family Vacation-Disney World

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Orlando

Make no mistake, Orlando and its numerous roller coasters, theme lands, and iconic mouse strike a chord in the wide-eyed child inside of us all.  Nevertheless, the Magic City has a wide world of action outside the amusement park empire.  Stylish downtown Orlando and other areas around Central Florida have a thriving nightlife along with the best dining and shopping, as well as plenty of locals who aren’t selling you a novelty t-shirt.  With its parks and museums, the myriad culture around Orlando is irresistible once you experience it. Let Hyatt act as your compass and your insider, with a wealth of ideas for your Orlando vacation, proving it’s a large world after all.

Architecture-Arts & Culture-Orlando
ARTS/CULTURE
Orlando Museum of Art

2416 North Mills Avenue

Orlando, FL

+1 407 896 4231

What it lacks in size, it makes up for in rousing contemporary pieces like Warhol's Marilyn Monroe portrait.

Harry P Leu Gardens

1920 North Forest Avenue

Orlando, FL

+1 407 246 2620

Wander through butterfly gardens, camellias, and the largest formal rose garden in Florida. Keep your camera ready; you could snap colorful photos that grace the walls of a museum nearby.

Mennello Museum of Folk Art

900 East Princeton Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 246 4278

Visit "Old Mayor," a tree over 500 years old that sits outside the entrance, before getting inspired by landscape painter Earl Cunningham's frenetic style.

Morse Museum of American Art

445 North Park Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 645 5311

The collection of stained glass from Louis Tiffany's works is exquisite.  A strict no photograph rule is in place, but you'll be so awestruck, a picture wouldn't do it justice anyway.

Mad Cow Theater

105 South Magnolia Avenue

Orlando, FL

+1 407 297 8788

Bring your own wine to this beloved theater that shows old and new plays and musical performances.  Save even further on Mondays with discounted tickets.

Shakespeare Theater

812 East Rollins Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 447 1700

If you just can't get enough of this intimate setting's dynamic performances, Shakespeare action figures are for sale in the gift shop.

Bob Carr Performing Arts Center

401 West Livingston Street

Orlando, IL

+1 407 849 2577

An ideal place to kick back and escape the heat, it's also the only spot in the Orlando area to check out what's gracing Broadway these days.

Cornell Fine Arts Museum

1000 Holt Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 646 2526

If you've ever had a hankering to explore vintage watch keys, you're in the right place.  If not, there's plenty of 19th century master works on display.

Enzian Theater

1300 South Orlando Avenue

Maitland, FL

+1 407 629 1088

With a cult classic showing twice a month (think Groundhog Day) and a full bar with gourmet food, this theater beats every multiplex in town hands down.

Places to Visit in Orlando
PLACES
Church Street Station

East Church Street and South Orange Avenue

Orlando, FL

+1 407 244 3400

Their slogan "Let the good times roll" is homage to the railroad station it encompasses. More than 50 restaurants and shops, along with unique games, keep things steaming.

Winter Park Farmers Market

200 West New England Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 599 3399

The highlights of every Saturday morning include a kettle corn tent, freshly squeezed strawberry lemonade and Winter Park honey.  It is Florida, but you are still, technically, in the south.

Loch Haven Park

900 East Princeton Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 246 2287

Surrounded by three lakes, this park's beauty will spark your appetite for the museums and performance centers within walking distance.  Bring a snack because you won't find many restaurants nearby.

Old Town

5770 West Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway

Kissimmee, FL

+1 407 396 4888

On Saturday nights, a time warp takes you back to the era of bobby socks and greasers when you witness the string of classic cars cruising by.

Cocoa Beach

2 South Orlando Avenue

Cocoa Beach, FL

+1 321 868 3329

An hour south of Orlando, this surfer's paradise is wonderful for day-trippers who want to breathe the sea air outside the city.  The nighttime is humming as well, with live music on Cocoa Pier.

Mead Gardens

1300 South Denning Drive

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 262 2049

A serene escape from the artificial landscape, this garden is ideal for getting away from the smothering summer heat.  Slide off your shoes, but watch out for snakes.

Sanford Historic District

300 North Park Avenue

Sanford, FL

+1 407 688 5000

Nicknamed "Celery City" for last century's vegetable cultivation, the architecture tour and other sites give this town more flavor than its nickname suggests.

Celebration

690 Celebration Avenue

Celebration, FL

+1 407 566 1200

Separated into villages, this model town was Disney's idea of utopia.  Built in the '90s, everything but the number of ducks next to the lake was carefully considered.

Cheese-Olives-Eat-Drink-Play in Orlando
EAT/DRINK/PLAY
310 Park South

310 South Park Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 647 7277

Some will tell you not to leave Florida without trying alligator tail.  No one prepares them better than this inviting Winter Park restaurant, which is perfect for dining outside.

Cuba Libre

9101 International Drive

Orlando, FL

+1 407 226 1600

In Florida, Miami is known for Cuban culture, but this café proves Orlando carries authentic flavor further north.  Try the grilled pineapple mojito, a treat just to say out loud.

The Dessert Lady

129 West Church Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 822 9919

Stop in to Patti Schmidt's "dessert bordello." With titles like Strawberry Not-So-Short Cake and Bourbon Pecan Pie on the menu, the portions are as large as the owner's character.

La Coq au Vin

4800 South Orange Avenue

Orlando, FL

+1 407 851 6980

Their philosophy, "from farm to the table," results in French cuisine fused with Floridian dishes like Space Coast crab and lobster strudel. And it works.

Café Tu Tu Tango

8625 International Drive

Orlando, FL

+1 407 248 2222

This unique café has something special around every corner, like tarot card readers, flamenco dancers, and art for sale lining the walls to compliment your tapas or Cajun egg rolls.

Seasons 52

7700 West Sand Lake Road

Orlando, FL

+1 407 354 5212

Try large, fresh dishes like the Tiger Shrimp Penne, but whatever you choose, everything is less than 500 calories. Lucky for you, that doesn't exclude the Blueberry Cheesecake shot glass.

Mediterranean Blue

435 East Michigan Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 422 2583

The world-class friendly service really makes a difference, but the top-shelf fresh ingredients in the pasta salads, Greek sandwiches and gyros speak for themselves.

Great Shopping in Orlando
SHOPPING
Mitsukoshi Department Store

2101 Epcot Resorts Boulevard

Lake Buena Vista, FL

Down to the Hello Kitty land, this condensed version of the amazing Tokyo department store is worth the trip down to Epcot Center.

Park Avenue

150 North New York Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 644 8281

In Winter Park's village setting, this relaxing shopping area has almost anything you can imagine, from wine and cheese shops to quaint gift shops, containing all levels of sophistication.

Etoile Boutique

2424 East Robinson Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 895 6363

This whimsical home decor, retail and vintage clothing boutique is jam-packed with homemade and unique finds, such as wedge sandals from the 1970s.

Park Avenue Compact Discs

2916 Corrine Drive

Orlando, FL

+1 407 447 7275

Surely one of the finest local record stores in Florida, this Orlando staple uniquely proves music hasn't all gone the way of digital downloads.

Tuni's

301 South Park Avenue

Winter Park, FL

+1 407 628 1609

This stylist-centric boutique is the destination of choice for trendy locals, from the original fabric designs to a posh jewelry selection.

Marie-France

716 East Washington Street

Orlando, FL

+1 407 835 8855

With an eclectic mix of modern and vintage styling, they aim to place you in unique apparel.  Their exclusive soy candles make great gifts to carry back home, too.

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