Florida – The Parks and other places

Florida seems to be popular for VIPTRAVELUK at this time of year with everyone booking their summer 2013 holidays and are keen to know which parks are the best and where is good to stay.

Whilst I think that the Disney hotels are outstanding and you can grab some amazing deals such as free dining and free money (yes FREE $$) they aren’t for me. I am an International Drive junkie. I will stay at the basic, yet well equipped hotels and save my money for the array of other things there are to do out there.

For us we went in February this year with our almost 1 year old. We visited Sea World, Island of Adventures, Magic Kingdom, Universal Studios …… you know THE PARKS!

But being strapped in a pushchair or carried all day is no fun for a little person so we sought out other places she could crawl / almost walk around

Hidden among the shopping malls and the bright lights of the parks are some great places to let the kids run and play without costing too much.

Firstly, Chuck E Cheese.

My American friends who have children cringe at the sound of it , they will tell you it is the worst place in the world… why? Because there are kids having a ridiculous amount of fun and its loud! But that is the whole point – To have fun !

 Games for all ages!

For more noise and madness (and lots of fun for the little ones 12 years and under) there is Monkey Joe’s which is located in the Festival Mall. Monkey Joe’s is a good place for kids to run, bounce, slide and simply burn off pent-up energy. Snacks can be purchased at the concession stand. The facility is open for walk-in play time seven days a week. This is a good option to keep in mind for a rainy day or to couple up with a day reserved for hitting the shops!

Along International Drive and impossible to miss is Wonder Works.  It’s in the upside-down building on I-Drive. Kids of all ages will enjoy the many hands-on activities within the amusement/science centre facility. The hurricane ride (65mph winds), the earthquake ride (5.2 magnitude), the virtual coaster and the bed of nails are just a few of the popular features to be found. There were many interactive arcade-like science stations located throughout the exhibits. Also at Wonderworks is the nightly Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner Show…a mix of high-energy comedy, improvisation, magic and audience participation….suitable for the whole family.

Without a doubt visit the parks… after all that’s why people choose Orlando but I would highly recommend that people take a stroll around I-Drive and jump on and off the I-Ride Trolley ($10 for a week pass and you can ride as much as you like) and discover the places they don’t advertise on the high street.

Places we discovered but did not get the chance to see this time were : Fun Spot and Gator Golf (You can buy a small tub of hotdogs and feed the baby alligators out front without having to play inside) but we will certainly get around to that next time!