End of Summer Bucket List: 25 Things to Do in Orlando Before School Starts

Take the family to Aquatica, a favorite water park in Orlando, before school starts back up. Photo courtesy of Sea World Orlando
Take the family to Aquatica, a favorite water park in Orlando, before school starts back up. Photo courtesy of Sea World Orlando

With the start of a new school year right around the corner, many Orlando parents are left wondering how to make the most of the end of summer break. Good thing Mommy Poppins is here! We've crafted a list of 25 fun things to do before summer ends, including a fairy door scavenger hunt, inflatable water parks, summer day trips, and so much more.

Be sure to also visit our Orlando Summer Activities Guide to find more family fun ideas, and subscribe to our email list to get stories just like this delivered straight to your inbox.

Orlando End-of-Summer Bucket List

1. Hunt for Fairy Doors

The fairy doors have returned to Leu Gardens! Stroll the botanical gardens while searching for 20 whimsical fairy doors hidden throughout the property.

See mind-boggling magic tricks performed at WonderWorks Back 2 School Bash.
See mind-boggling magic tricks performed at WonderWorks Back 2 School Bash. Photo courtesy of the venue

2. WonderWorks Back 2 School Bash

Wrap up summer with a trip to the iconic upside down building on I-drive, and save on admission during WonderWorks Back 2 School Bash. Check out our WonderWorks review to make the most of your visit!

3. Block Party at Kennedy Space Center

Visit the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex August 5-7 during the Summer of Artemis Block Party. Don’t miss the Planet Play attraction for the kids while you’re there!

4. Splash Pads

Get little ones out of the house before naptime at a local splash pad, many of which are free!

5. Inflatable Water Parks

Jump, climb, bounce, and slide at these fun inflatable aqua parks.

girls doing handstands on the beach
It's fun in the sun all year at Clearwater Beach. Photo courtesy of Visit Clearwater

6. Visit the Beach

Sneak in one last beach trip to one of these Florida beaches near Orlando.

7. Enjoy a Summer Day Trip

Load the kids up in the car and head out for a summer day trip; we’ve rounded up 20 fun destinations all within a couple of hours drive from Orlando.

8. Take in a Flick

Catch a movie without breaking the bank at these free (and cheap) summer movies.

9. Summer Concerts

Take in an evening summer concert.

Putter around at Congo River Mini Golf...just watch the waterfall.
Putter around at Congo River Mini Golf...just watch the waterfall. Photo courtesy of Experience Kissimmee

10. Tee It Up

Challenge the kids to a round of mini golf at one of the many fun courses around Orlando.

11. Cool Off with Ice Cream

Ice cream is the perfect end of summer treat, and one of these great ice cream shops around Orlando is the perfect place for a visit.

12. Orlando Science Center

Take a trip to the Orlando Science Center to check out the fun exhibits, including the temporary Bionic Me exhibit, on display through September 5.

13. Indoor Playgrounds

Escape the summer heat and storms at an indoor playground.

14. Arcades, Go-Karts, and Trampoline Centers

Older kids can escape the Florida elements at these indoor entertainment centers.

Catch up with the friendly rays at the Brevard Zoo.
Catch up with the friendly rays at the Brevard Zoo. Photo courtesy of Florida's Space Coast Office of Tourism

15. Animal Encounters

Get up close and personal with local and exotic wildlife at an Orlando zoo.

16. Public Swimming Pools

Take a dip in one of these swimming pools that are open to the public.

17. Water Parks

Take advantage of our proximity to these top Orlando water parks.

18. Museums

Orlando has a variety of fun museums to visit, including a train museum, fire museum, chocolate museum, and more.

Float along in the natural spring at Kelly Park.
Float along the natural spring at Kelly Park. Photo by Charlotte B

19. Splash into the Springs

If you haven’t already visited a Florida freshwater spring, it’s a must-do summer activity! Tip: Plan to arrive early, as most springs hit capacity quickly after opening.

Family at ICON Park
ICON Park is a true entertainment destination in Orlando. Photo courtesy of ICON Park 

20. ICON Park

Play tourist for the day at ICON Park. Take a ride on The Wheel, pose alongside wax figurines at Madame Tussauds, learn all about creatures of the sea at Sea Life Orlando, and more.

21. Escape Rooms

For tweens and teens, treat them to an escape room adventure with friends.

22. Explore the Local Waterways

Hit the water with these local kayak and paddleboard tours, or take the boat out for one of these kid-friendly boat trips.


Spend the day at Disney Springs. Photo by Charlotte B.

23. Disney Springs

Get your Disney fix at a fraction of the cost at Disney Springs.

24. Go Camping

Spend a weekend camping at these Florida campgrounds with extra entertainment geared toward kids and families.

25. Go Back-to-School Shopping

Through August 7, save money on school supplies, clothes, computers, and more during Florida’s Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday.

Sensory Sensitive Sundays at Chuck E. Cheese
Chuck E. Cheese - Altamonte - 9:00 AM Pick
Breakfast with Santa at The Alfond Inn
The Alfond Inn at Rollins College - 9:00 AM Pick
Cracker Christmas at Fort Christmas Historical Park
Fort Christmas Historical Park - 10:00 AM Pick
Gatorland's Holiday Ho-Ho-Ho-Down
Gatorland - 10:00 AM Pick
Light Up SoDo
SoDo Shopping Plaza - 2:00 PM Pick
Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides