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The Best of Central Florida

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There’s more to Florida’s meaty middle than the many theme park offerings of Orlando. Once you’ve checked in with Harry Potter, Shamu, and the crew, head out for an airboat ride near Cocoa Beach or spot enormous alligators from a boardwalk winding through a prairie near Gainesville. Don’t miss the state’s fabulous springs, too, where crystal clear waters lure manatees during the winter months and you can paddle through some of the most pristine natural environments in the state.
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512 E Washington St, Orlando, FL 32801, USA
Far from the madding crowd at Disneyworld, in old downtown Orlando, lies a magical place known as Lake Eola Park. This oasis of light and tranquility has a very special vibration; it serves as the perfect venue for those of us seeking to connect...
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1920 N Forest Ave, Orlando, FL 32803, USA
While Orlando typically inspires images of amusement parks, the city is also home to sites that are completely separate from the manufactured worlds of Disney and Universal—such as the Harry P. Leu Gardens. The urban oasis teems with...
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565 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789, USA
Touted for their house-cured meats and ploughman’s board with a Scotch egg, there is plenty on the menu for the less pig-centric too. Grouper brandade fritters, local oysters on the raw bar, and bright fresh salads are just a few of the...
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12087 Southwest, US-27, Fort White, FL 32038, USA
The six-mile-long river at the heart of this beautiful state park in Central Florida looks like it's cut from malachite—all striking shades of deep green and blue, crystal clear and loaded with fish and turtles. And the most fun you can have on a...
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4151 N Atlantic Ave, Cocoa Beach, FL 32931, USA
Beachwear and surf gear is its own shopping genre. Orlando and the beaches offer a variety of surf shops, from over-the-top mega-stores to small, locally owned shops. Iconic Ron Jon Surf Shop retails all things beach and surf—from sand pails to...
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1478 Buena Vista Dr, Orlando, FL 32821, USA
When guests enter the fantastical, circus tent-like La Nouba Theatre, they're invited to kick the mundane to the curb. The acrobatics and theatrics will amaze, and the thematic tale of the Cirques clashing with the Urbanites will reawaken the...
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8199 W King St, Cocoa, FL 32926, USA
Leather-clad bikers mix with sunburnt tourists at this classic riverside eatery and Twister Airboat Rides attraction a few miles inland from Cocoa Beach. With one fun stop you can snack on fried alligator at an old-school fish camp on the banks of...
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54 N Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32801, USA
Orlando's theme parks all have their venues for hosting big concerts. But when indie bands come through town, you'll almost always find them playing downtown at The Social, an intimate little club with exposed brick walls, excellent acoustics, and...
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Florida 32899, USA
NASA’s launch headquarters welcomes guests, who get to view the Space Shuttle Atlantis, train for their own space shuttle launch (okay, actually a heart-pumping simulation experience of a launch), as well as watch movies featuring images from the...
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2 Summerlin Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801, USA
Dripping in chandeliers, painted in pastels, with plush boudoir-style seating, this local boutique is like walking into a magazine spread. Shop the trendy fashions, shoes, and accessories to keep your style sizzling.