Orlando is often celebrated for its world-renowned theme parks, parks in central florida and entertainment attractions. However, beyond thrilling rides and magical experiences. Orlando offers diverse and enchanting world of natural beauty. This guide invites you to explore hidden treasures of Orlando. Where lush parks and pristine gardens beckon you to immerse yourself in wonders of great outdoors.
You will have look at crystal clear springs of Blue Spring State Park to untamed wilderness of The Everglades. Serene charm of Lake Eola Park to enchanting campgrounds of Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort Orlando’s natural attractions provide refreshing escape for nature lovers. Join us on journey through these captivating parks in central florida and discover serene side of Orlando that often goes unnoticed amidst buzz of its theme park magic.
5 Best Parks in Central Florida
To have best time with family and children and engage in many exciting activities visit these best parks in central Florida:
1. Blue Spring State Park
- Location: 2100 W French Ave, Orange City FL 32763
- Open: Daily from 8 am to 8:30 pm (hours may vary)
- Phone: +1 386-775-3663
Nestled in heart of Florida Blue Spring State Park is hidden oasis covering over 2,600 acres. The park boasts largest spring on St. John’s River where crystal-clear water maintains year-round temperature of around 73Â°F (22.8Â°C) during swimming season.
However park’s true magic happens from November to mid-March when it transforms into manatee refuge. During this period hundreds of West Indian Manatees flock to spring’s warm waters offering unique opportunity to observe these gentle giants up close.
Beyond manatees Blue Spring State Park is teeming with diverse wildlife. You’ll spot vibrant array of tropical birds, graceful turtles, playful squirrels and yes even occasional alligator. Whether you’re taking walk along boardwalk or picnicking by spring’s edge park’s natural beauty will leave lasting impression. One of best parks in central florida to have fun with family.
2. Canaveral National Seashore
- Location: 7611 S. Atlantic Avenue, New Smyrna Beach Florida 32169
- Open: Summer: daily from 6 am to 8 pm, Winter: daily from 6 am to 6 pm
- Phone: +1 386-428-3384
Canaveral National Seashore is sanctuary where nature thrives. This coastal paradise provides haven for endangered species particularly sea turtles that return to its pristine beaches to lay their eggs in soft sand. This park’s diverse ecosystems offer plethora of outdoor activities making it popular choice for nature enthusiasts.
Adventure-seekers will find opportunities for horseback riding, canoeing, kayaking, surfing, swimming, fishing and boating. Hikers can explore park’s scenic trails with one leading from Visitor’s Center into heart of this captivating wilderness.
3. Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
- Location: 4510 N Fort Wilderness Trail, Orlando FL 32836
- Phone: +1 407-824-2900
For those seeking unique camping experience, Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort offers delightful blend of natural beauty and Disney magic. With nearly 2,000 diverse camping sites from rustic tent spots to spacious RV pads it accommodates campers of all preferences. Each campsite is equipped with modern amenities including running water, electricity, outdoor grills and picnic tables.
If camping isn’t your style resort also features 409 air conditioned cabins accommodating up to six guests comfortably. These cozy cabins come with full bathrooms, complimentary Wi-Fi and bunk beds. Additionally resort offers private showers and laundry facilities for added convenience. Amidst lush surroundings you’ll find yourself immersed in nature while still enjoying comforts of Disney hospitality.
4. The Everglades
- Location: Everglades City FL 34139
The Everglades vast subtropical wetland region, begins near Orlando and becomes more prominent about 3 to 4 hours south of Downtown Orlando. Here environment is ever-changing offering glimpse into one of Florida’s most untouched and unique ecosystems. Swamps and mangroves dominate landscape providing habitat for various snake and alligator species. Meanwhile skies come alive with symphony of bird songs making this sub-tropical wilderness their home.
For intrepid explorers airboat tours provide thrilling way to navigate winding waterways and get up close to resident wildlife. While Everglades may be bit of drive from Orlando it’s an unforgettable adventure into heart of Florida’s wild side of some best parks in central florida.
5. Lake Eola Park
- Location: 512 E Washington St, Orlando FL 32801
- Open: Daily from 10 am to 10 pm
Lake Eola Park, nestled in heart of downtown Orlando offers serene urban escape. This park spans 23 acres and features an almost mile-long walkway around lake’s perimeter. As you stroll along path you’ll encounter an array of attractions including an event amphitheater delightful playground for children, striking Chinese pagoda and iconic Linton E. Allen Memorial Fountain.
Lake Eola itself is home to population of graceful swans which have become emblematic of park. You can even rent swan-shaped paddle boats for leisurely cruise on lake. These park’s central location makes it favorite among locals and tourists alike providing peaceful respite amid bustling cityscape.
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To sum up, parks in central florida is where magic and nature coexist, you’ve experienced city’s lesser-known wondersâ€”glistening springs teeming with wildlife tranquil lakeside escapes and enchanting campgrounds beneath stars. Beyond glittering theme park lights Orlando offers serene respite for those seeking beauty of natural world.
Whether you’ve marveled at gentle giants in Blue Spring State Park strolled pathways of Lake Eola Park, embarked on an adventure in Everglades or found comfort in embrace of Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort Orlando’s hidden treasures have left an indelible mark.
As you bid farewell to this enchanting city may you carry with you memories of Orlando’s serene sideâ€”peaceful and friendly blend of magical nature that makes this city truly extraordinary. Orlando’s natural beauty awaits your return ready to captivate you once more. So do have fun in these parks in central Florida with family and friends.
When is best time to visit Blue Spring State Park?
The best time is winter, from November to March, for manatee viewing.
What activities can I enjoy at Canaveral National Seashore?
You can indulge in horseback riding, kayaking, surfing and more.
Are pets allowed at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort?
Yes, Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort is pet-friendly.
What wildlife can I encounter in The Everglades?
You may spot alligators, snakes and diverse bird species.