Obviously, there’s a lot to do in Orlando, Florida – especially if you love visiting theme parks! This family friendly vacation destination has got to be the theme park capital of world. Of course, everyone can name a few of the big ones, but can anybody name ’em all? Here’s your ultimate Greater Orlando area theme park cheat sheet. Whether you use it as a wish list, bucket list or for a road trip round of travel trivia is up to you. Have fun!
Opened in 1949 and still owned by the same family, Gatorland is Orlando‘s longest running theme park. This 100+ acre attraction features a free-flight aviary, petting zoo, animal shows, alligator breeding marsh, a Screamin’ Gator Zip Line and more along with the chance to see lots and lots of alligators and crocodiles including four rare leucistic “white” alligators.
A relative newcomer to the Orlando theme-scape, the just over ten year old Holy Land Experience is a “living, biblical museum that takes you 7000 miles away and 2000 years back in time to the land of the Bible” through a range of exhibitions, live shows and more.
Just a short drive from Orlando in Titusville, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is a theme park that’s out of this world and guaranteed to capture the imagination of kids and scientists of all ages. From scheduling a lunch with an astronaut to having an Angry Birds Space Encounter, a visit to the Kennedy Space Center is educational and entertaining, combining science and American history with plenty of wow.
Only a few years old, Legoland is the newest Orlando area theme park. Located in Winter Haven where Cypress Gardens used to be, the original botanical gardens are still there and open to visitors but now are just one feature of this park with water rides, roller coasters and plenty more – all designed for families with children ages two to 12.
SeaWorld Orlando Resort is home to three theme parks: SeaWorld, Aquatica and Discovery Cove.
– SeaWorld Orlando
See the legendary Shamu, get up close and personal with some of nature’s wettest wildlife, check out the new Antarctica attraction (penguins!) and more at these popular and well established park.
Just across the street from SeaWorld, Aquatica offers water play along the lines as slides, wave pools and lazy rivers with all ages in mind and with a South Pacific theme.
– Discovery Cove
Interaction’s the name of the game at Discovery Cove, whether you’re up for a swim with dolphins, snorkling along a coral reef or saying hello to exotic birds and rare land mammals.
Another triumvirate of themed fun! Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and Wet ‘n Wild offer big hits for the whole family.
– Universal Studios Florida
Who could resist the chance to play like you’re the star of some of Hollywood’s biggest movies? Harry Potter’s Forbidden Journey, a Transformers 3D experience, an Incredible Hulk roller coaster and all sorts of other blockbuster-themed rides, shows and activities await!
– Islands of Adventure
There’s a Marvel Super Heroes Island, a Toon Lagoon, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and even a Jurassic Park at Islands of Adventure where you can indulge in film fantasy and adventure.
– Wet ‘n Wild
Universal’s water park offering a splash of fun for all ages and levels of activity with more multi-person rides than any other in the Orlando area.
Maybe you’ve heard of this place? Yep, this where the magic happens. With seven theme parks together under the banner of the world’s most famous mouse, a trip to Disney World is to many vacationers the very essence of Florida style fun.
– Magic Kingdom
Adventureland, Fantasyland, Cinderella’s Castle … You know the score and why this is such a beloved theme park.
Where science fiction meets science fact and the future and the past intwine to create a great time for all, Epcot celebrates technological innovation and the culture and cuisine of 11 nations.
– Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios gives visitors the chance to go behind the scenes and sometimes even into the scenes of some of their favorite movies. From Animation Courtyard to Pixar Place and beyond, you’ll find this park is a real hit with the whole family.
– Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Opened on Earth Day 1998, the 580 acre Animal Kingdom is the biggest theme park among all of Disney’s properties across the world. Themed entirely around animal conservation with lots, here Disney is more than a talking mouse and cranky duck but kimodo dragons, macaws, rhinos, and hundreds more varieties of animals to view, pet and learn how to protect.
– Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon
– Typhoon Lagoon is the most visited water park in the world with water rides for all levels of activities and “areas for little squirts and plenty of tropical lounging for grownups.”
– Disney’s Blizzard Beach
This is Disney World’s other water park and the second most visited the the world after Typhoon Lagoon featuring one of the world’s tallest and fastest free-falling water slides as a wide variety of splash filled amusements.
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Photo: Christian Lambert