Looking at Orlando today, it’s funny to think that this city was once a quiet settlement of ranches and plantations. Its history goes back to the 16th century, and over the years the Spanish, French, and British all had a part to play in its ruling before it was laid over to the US in the 19th century. Orlando blossomed as the Florida’s citrus industry prospered during this time, but unfortunately a big freeze halted production and many businesses went bust. Half a century later, it was Walt Disney who kick-started Orlando’s renaissance, and thanks to the theme parks you’ll now find in Orlando, the city is forever firmly pinned on the map. Popular Attractions
Orlando is home to so many theme parks and attractions that it’s impossible to keep up. On your doorstep in Orlando you’ve got Universal Studios, Seaworld, Universal’s Island of Adventure, and Disney World’s Magic Kingdom – all packed full of fun to suit all kinds of travelers (and of all ages!). You could spend days, perhaps even weeks, going through all of the attractions in Orlando’s theme parks, so make sure you do your research to not miss anything that interests you during your visit. That said, there is plenty to do outside of these theme parks. Visit Orlando’s art museum for some beautiful American work, get your shopping fix at the city’s world-class malls, knock back 18 holes in one of Orlando’s 170 golf courses, or take a tour to learn more about the city. There are also a few great things to do just outside Orlando. A short drive will get you to some of Florida’s best beaches, where you can truly appreciate all that sunshine. Lastly, nearby Winter City is a local hotspot for dining and nightlife, and is home to numerous beautiful parks. Food
Florida is a state that’s always had a lot of variation in terms of culture, and that can only mean one thing – a lot of different styles of cuisine. Cuban and Caribbean influences abound, and other Latin flavors can be found almost everywhere, as well as America’s old favorites. Make sure you try some seafood, especially if you make your way to the beaches, and Key Lime Pie is a classic Floridian dessert that you will find authentic versions of here. Transport
Orlando International Airport is one of the busiest in Florida, so it’s easy to find a way in. Dozens of domestic flights run every day, connections to Canada, the Caribbean, and the UK are also quite regular, and seasonal flights from Central and South America are available. Tips for Travelers
Most people choose to get around Orlando by car, and aside from the traffic that can occur in the afternoons and weekends, it’s probably the most convenient way to get around. A bus system and other forms of transport are available, if you need them. Florida isn’t called the Sunshine State for nothing – the weather is glorious here nearly all year round. In the summer months it can get particularly hot, so make sure you stay hydrated and take necessary precautions with sunblock. There are all kinds of deals and packages available for theme park tickets, so shop around to find what’s best for you given the amount of time you are staying. Fun Facts
More than 50 million people visit the Orlando area each year. Orland Airport serves around 35 million passengers per year. Orlando is also known as the Theme Park Capital of the World, as well as The City Beautiful.