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50 Things To Do in Orlando With Kids Before They Grow Up

50 Things To Do in Orlando With Kids Before They Grow Up

By Guest Contributor

Our guest contributor is Angie Lynch, who writes A Whole Lot of Nothing

As a native Floridian, I know my way around the Sunshine State. Having kids with whom to experience all of the activities and attractions, it’s extra fun to see the Orlando area from a kid’s point of view. Orlando is known for being a vacation destination, and alongside all of the theme parks, Central Florida is home to amazing kid-friendly activities. From the nature trails to water parks to professional sports and art classes to sweet treats, Orlando has a never-ending list of fun things for families and kids to do.

1. See the nighttime fireworks show at Magic Kingdom over Cinderella Castle at Disney World.

2. Attend an Orlando Magic basketball game.

3. View the manatees at Blue Springs State Park.

4. Swim with the dolphins at Discovery Cove.

5. Go ice skating at RDV Sportsplex.

6. Take a hotel tour of Disney resorts while Christmas decorations are on display, making sure not to miss out on the life-size gingerbread house at the Grand Floridian.

7. Walk through the downtown farmer’s market, eating grilled corn on the cob.

8. Drink a pint of Butter Beer at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.

9. See the stars at the Orlando Science Center observatory.

10. Ride a bike on the West Orange Trail.

11. Watch a movie with dinner at the AMC Downtown Disney 24 Fork & Screen.

12. See all of the millions of Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in December. (Unfortunately, Holiday 2015 was the last year for this attraction.  Thank you to reader Ann for the update.)

13. Jump off onto a zip line over the swamp canopy in Kissimmee.

14. Get slimed when you stay a weekend at Nickelodeon Suites Resort Hotel. (closed as of April 18, 2016. Sad panda and thank you to readers who chimed in.)

15. Meet Mickey Mouse at Disney World.

16. Play and learn science at Wonderworks, the upside down building.

17. Choose an adventure at Wekiwa Springs.

18. Visit the Holocaust Memorial in Maitland and watch a film about those who lived it.

19. [Redacted]

20. Dine with the Disney Princesses at Akershus in Epcot.

21. Go on the Phineas & Ferb Agent scavenger hunt in Epcot.

22. Have a gourmet mini cupcake and a cup of frozen yogurt at Sweet! by Good Golly Miss Holly.

23. [Redacted]

24. Earn a driver’s license from Driving School at LEGOLAND.


25. Trade pins with cast members all around Disney World.

26. Watch the annual Citrus Bowl Parade pass through Downtown Orlando.

27. Order the Kitchen Sink at Beaches & Cream at Disney’s Beach Club, and eat the entire thing.

28. Visit the Orlando History Center during one of their special events.

29. Hang out at the Children’s Library at the downtown Public Library, reading aloud your favorite books.

30. Plan ahead for an Off-Broadway tour performance at Bob Carr Performaning Center.

31. Spend a day at Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Odditorium discovering historic oddities.

32. During the non-summer months, picnic with the elephants at the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens.

33. Putt-putt to your heart’s content at the one of the 5 Central Florida Congo River Golf locations.

34. Drive out to Green Meadows Farm and petting zoo to meet with the animals, ride the train, and take a pony ride.

35. See the hundreds of alligators and gator wrestling show at Kissimmee’s historic Gatorland. Make sure to find the enormous albino aligator!


36. [Redacted]

37. Jump around at AirHeads Indoor Trampoline Arena.

38. Have lunch at Dave & Busters then stick around for an afternoon of arcade fun.

39. Find your way through Long & Scott’s Corn Maze during the Fall months, making sure to take a hay ride through the farm.

Corn Maze

40. Attend a spring training game for the Atlanta Braves at Disney’s Wide World of Sports.

41. Watch the as the ducks march through the Peabody Hotel on International Drive.

42. Take an airboat ride through the Florida swamps at the headwaters to the Everglades.

43. Pick a bushel of citrus from U-Pick Showcase of Citrus in Clermont.

44. Attend an Orlando Solar Bears hockey game (beginning in Fall 2012).

45. Spend the weekend at Star Wars Celebration at the Orlando Orlando County Convention Center.

46. See a kid’s theater show at the Orlando Repertory Theatre.

47. Take an art class at Crealde School of Art in Winter Park.

48. Race the whole family in go-carts at Fun Spot.

49. Swim the day away on the water slides and wave pools at Wet n’ Wild.

50.  [Redacted]

Related: Here’s our 65 Things You Must Do & See at Disney World list.


(This series was inspired by Mommy Poppins’ 100 Things to Do with Your Kids in NY Before They Grow Up.)

Top Photo credit: Thinkstock

Guest Contributor
About the Author

Guest Contributor

We often publish pieces by guest contributors. If you’re interested in being one, please drop us a line at contact[at]alphamom[dot]com.


We often publish pieces by guest contributors. If you’re interested in being one, please drop us a line at contact[at]alphamom[dot]com.

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  • Rick

    April 29, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    Not a mention of catching a UCF football game or maybe experiencing a Daily City Food Truck bazaar? I question your list as much of it isn’t the real Orlando but the Tourist Orlando.

    • Kim

      April 30, 2013 at 5:21 pm

      Food Trucks are a great one!

      Gooooo KNIGHTS!! My girls also LOVE going to basketball games in the UCF Arena. 

      Also the Orlando Predators are a great game to go see, I’d never even heard of Arena football before moving to Orlando, and it is so much fun!

    • jimmyjohns

      October 15, 2014 at 11:13 am

      UCF sucks. Why would that be on a “Must-Do” list?

  • Kim

    April 30, 2013 at 8:13 am

    Mostly a great list, however there are no more elephants at the Central FL Zoo and Botanical Gardens. So change it to picnic with a Camel and Rhino. 🙂

    My girls are only 2 and 4 and I’m surprised at how many of the items we’ve done already! I can’t wait until they are a little older and we can check off a few more. 

    We love Green Meadows Farm it is such an awesome family day! Disney is always a crowd pleaser. 🙂

  • Leisa

    May 3, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    Thanks for Including the Orange County Library System in your list! Great programs for kids and parents.

  • Jennifer

    October 3, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    So crazy, I live in Toronto, I am from Orlando, and my sister is moving to Portland Maine…Looks like you have my family activities covered!

  • jfgnme

    January 13, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    kim possible at epcot is now Agent P. Perry the Platypus from Phineaus and Ferb is the new character for Epcot’s adventure/detective hunt. I have teens and they still love to do this!! 

  • Elizabeth Webber

    February 28, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    I found this great new place called Galaxy Fun Orlando. It’s an indoor playground like I’ve never seen before. It’s huge! My favorite part is how clean they keep it

  • Sami

    April 29, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    WhirlyBall at WhirlyDome is always a blast!!  

    I would also add a movie in the park at the Enzian 

  • Leslie

    November 24, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    We went to the Orlando science center and there isn’t a planetarium.

    • Isabel Kallman

      November 24, 2015 at 5:27 pm

      You’re right; thank you. It was mislabeled. It should say “observatory,” referring to the Crosby Observatory (that’s where you see the stars as we mention). Changing it now.

  • Tally

    January 26, 2016 at 10:46 am

    For those of us that live in the Orlando area with children, this list is a good start but we’re lucky enough to see new additions to this every month.  Some additions:
    -Orlando Eye Attraction
    -Ride the Orange Blossom Cannonball in Tavares or Winter Garden for Spring Fever in the Garden
    – Pick strawberries at Oak Haven Farms or Pappy’s Patch U-Pick
    – Pick blueberries at Blueberry Hill in Clermont
    – See  ice sculptures and slide down ice slides at ICE! at the Gaylord
    – Cut your own Christmas Tree at Santa’s Christmas Tree farm in Eustis
    – Would also add the Blue Springs Manatee Festival in Orange City each January to the see manatees item
    – Bring children to Touch A Truck event each year offered by Trinity downtown
    – Take your family and out of town visitors on a scenic cruise on the Winter Park chain of lakes
    – Learn and see butterflies at Lukas Nursery Butterfly Encounter in Oviedo
    – Ride Santa train to see the lights or see nightly snowing during Christmas celebration in Celebration
    – Go for a lakeside stroll and have a picnic at the park near Lake Monroe in Sanford
    – Spend a day in charming Winter Garden, go to the splash pad, visit a brewery, and visit the free Railroad Museum and complete the scavenger hunt at the visitor’s center
    -Make your own pancakes at the Sugar Mill at DeLeon Springs Park
    – Take a walk, play at the park, or see animals at Turkey Lake Park near Metrowest
    and more!

  • Ann

    March 7, 2016 at 11:23 am

    Sadly, you need to take the Osborne Family Lights off the list since Disney isn’t doing that any more after this past holiday season. 🙁

  • Mark Mantle

    March 16, 2016 at 12:46 pm

    Orlando Science Center is awesome.
    Central Florida Zoo is a waste of time anb money.

  • […] . The same cool mom posted a list of things to do with your kids in the Orlando area . You know there is always delicious food everywhere you go, and Orlando is no exception. […]

  • Ali

    April 22, 2016 at 1:19 pm

    The Peabody (and their ducks) no longer exist.