75 Things To Do in Orlando with Kids Other than Theme Parks

Camels in Florida? Who knew. Photo courtesy of Giraffe Ranch
Camels in Florida? Who knew. Photo courtesy of Giraffe Ranch

Most of us know Orlando as the theme park mecca, offering tons of memories at Disney World and Universal. But Florida's mega tourist destination offers a variety of fun things to do with kids of all ages other than the obvious options. Whether you live in Florida or are just visiting, Orlando is a great destination for families on both short and extended stays. 

We’ve rounded up a list of 75 things to do with kids in Orlando outside of the theme parks. From hiking to museums to themed dinners, these fun spots offer a variety of family entertainment and must-do activities for kids in Orlando, with or without a visit to the Mouse. Get ready to forego the theme park ticket and experience the real Orlando. 

For local events occurring during your Central Florida vacation, visit our Orlando event calendar.  Looking for a place to stay?  Check out our list of the best Orlando hotels for families.

While we try to promote safe activities that occur outdoors or with social distancing guidelines in place, please keep your family and others safe by wearing a mask and maintaining appropriate distance. If you arrive at an event that appears too crowded, try using the “nearby” search feature on our event calendar to find something else to do. 

Get a bird's eye view on the Icon Wheel at Icon Park
Get a bird's-eye view of the region aboard the Icon Wheel. Photo courtesy of Icon Park

75 Things to Do in Orlando Other than Theme Parks

  1. Take a ride on The Wheel at ICON Park for a fabulous view.
  2. Explore the oceans of the world at SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium.
  3. Swing like Tarzan at Orlando’s Tree Trek Adventure Park.
  4. Take a safe climb on the rock wall at the Oviedo Recreation Gym.
  5. Zip line over gators at Gatorland.
  6. Take some silly family photos with celebrities at Madame Tussauds.
  7. Take a dip in the crystal-clear waters of one of Central Florida's beautiful natural springs.
  8. Learn how to wakeboard or paddleboard at the Orlando Watersports Complex.
  9. Journey through a land of wacky and weird fun at the new Museum of Illusions.

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    Pick your perfect pack of colors at the Crayola Experience. Photo courtesy of Crayola 
  10. Create your own crayon label and make masterpieces of color at Crayola Experience.
  11. Discover where chocolate comes from and taste chocolates from around the world at The World of Chocolate museum.
  12. Get catapulted vertically at 100 mph on the Slingshot.
  13. Go kayaking or canoeing on Shingle Creek.
  14. Play a round of putt-putt golf at a local miniature golf course.
  15. Anyone over the age of 3 can find out what it feels like to fly at iFLY.
  16. Cheer on your favorite knight while enjoying a medieval dinner at Medieval Times – a fun night out for the entire family.
  17. Become a pastry chef at Farris and Foster's.
  18. Drive bumper boats, race on a multilevel go-cart course, and ride a wooden coaster at Fun Spot.

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    Kidstown at the Orlando Science Center.
    Experience the wonders of Kidstown at the Orlando Science Center. Photo by Charlotte Blanton
  19. Explore the expansive KidsTown area at the Orlando Science Center.
  20. Expand your building imagination during the monthly mini-build events at the LEGO Store at Disney Springs.
  21. Walk through hundreds of odd exhibits at the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Odditorium.
  22. Bike on the 22-mile West Orange Trail for scenic exploration.
  23. Go park hopping outside of the theme parks by visiting some of Orlando’s best playgrounds.
  24. Paddle the waters of Lake Eola on a swan boat.

    Catch a show like the Lion King Jr. Photo courtesy of Orlando Repertory Theatre
    Catch a show such as Lion King Jr. at the Orlando Repertory Theatre. Photo courtesy of the theater
  25. The Orlando Repertory Theatre gives children a great introduction to theatrical performances.
  26. Hop on the I-Ride Trolley to explore International Drive.
  27. Spot Florida wildlife from the comfort of your own car on a wildlife drive.
  28. Cruise through majestic canals on a Winter Park scenic boat tour.
  29. Feel the thrill of racing on three different tracks at Lil 500 Go Karts.
  30. Feed giraffes at the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens.
  31. Go glamping at Westgate River Ranch.
  32. Relax in a 50-acre botanical oasis or take in a storytime, movie night, or traveling exhibit at Leu Gardens.
  33. Be amazed in the many rooms of wonder at the Great Magic Hall.
  34. Pack a picnic, bring a blanket, and enjoy dinner and a movie under the stars at the monthly Popcorn Flicks in the Park courtesy of Enzian.
  35. Learn the basics of good nutrition and healthy food prep with a family cooking class at Kids Cooking Connection
  36. Explore a local nature trail with these 20 kid-friendly hikes.

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    Silks at Orlando Circus School
    Test yourself on the trapeze at Orlando Circus School. Photo courtesy of the school. 
  37. Clown around or fly through the air on a trapeze at Orlando Circus School.
  38. Laugh, eat, and be amazed at the Outta Control Magic Comedy Family Dinner Show.
  39. Attend a special family performance at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.
  40. Introduce your kids to improv with family-friendly shows at SAK Comedy Lab.
  41. Visit the largest public library in Florida for a fun day of imagination through books and free family activities.
  42. Train-obsessed kids will enjoy their free ride around the city on the SunRail, where kids ages 6 and younger ride for free with a paying adult.
  43. Cool off at one of three Orlando area inflatable water parks.
  44. See if you can get out in time at this family-friendly playground escape room.
  45. Take a day trip to one of the many local beaches.
  46. Mine for gold, thrill to a carnival ride, and enjoy live entertainment at Old Town.

    Sluice for minerals, arrowheads, and gems at Dinosaur World.
    Scour for minerals, arrowheads, gems, and more at Dinosaur World. Photo by Charlotte Blanton
  47. Enjoy some Jurassic fun just an hour outside of Orlando at Dinosaur World.
  48. Challenge your family to a game of laser tag or paintball at Battleground Orlando.
  49. Catch some rodeo action at the Silver Spurs Arena.
  50. Ride to the top of one of Florida’s first attractions, the Citrus Tower.
  51. Cheer on the Orlando Solar Bears ECHL hockey team at the Amway Center.
  52. Get an up-close view of the Space Shuttle Atlantis at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.
  53. Step back in time to 1912 at Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition.
  54. Conquer a glow-in-the-dark ropes course at WonderWorks, the famous I-Drive upside-down attraction.
  55. Experience a magical nighttime tour on the Indian River Lagoon with a bioluminescent kayaking or paddle board tour.
  56. Cuddle an alpaca at the Brevard Zoo.
  57. Glide through the scenic lakeside town of Mount Dora on a Segway.
  58. Tour Giraffe Ranch on a camel or llama.
  59. Prepare to be scared in a ghost tour of historic downtown Sanford.

    RELATED: Kid-Friendly Hikes In and Around Orlando 

    Take a relaxing kayaking tour of Shingle Creek./ Photo courtesy of The Paddling Center at Shingle Creek
  60. During the winter months, spot Florida’s state marine mammal —the manatee—at several locations around Orlando.
  61. Take a free ferry boat ride to Hontoon Island State Park.
  62. Watch a live mermaid show at Weeki Wachee Springs.
  63. Take a ride on the famous Silver Springs glass bottom boat tour. You might even spot one of the hundreds of wild monkeys that roam Silver Springs.
  64. Dine and hit the playspace at the world’s largest McDonald’s.
  65. Tour a working Florida citrus and cattle ranch on a monster truck.
  66. Catch an Orlando City Soccer Club pro game.
  67. Play and eat at Dave & Buster’s on I-Drive.
  68. Take a spin on the world's tallest swing ride.
  69. Book a narrated boat tour through the Dora Canal.
  70. Get a close-up view of a replica of Mount Rushmore at the Presidents Hall of Fame.
  71. Visit a historical pioneer village.
  72. Explore Florida’s waterways and glimpse wildlife on an airboat adventure.
  73. Set sail on a nautical dinner show experience at Pirate’s Dinner Adventure.
  74. Cook your own pancakes at the popular Sugar Mill Restaurant at De Leon Springs.
  75. See the 31-degree high banks of the Daytona International Speedway with a VIP tour.

The list could go on. But this should get you started on planning beyond the Big 4 of Disney World, Universal, SeaWorld, and Legoland.

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