5 day itinerary for Orlando- As many of you may know, I have called Orlando my home for the last 13+ years. I have seen this beautiful city evolve from a Disney- only vacation spot to a bucket list destination. If you are planning your first trip to Orlando, I suggest dedicating at least 5 days for the trip and renting a car, especially if you want to explore more of the city, away from the theme parks. In this post, I am sharing a 5 day itinerary for Orlando, non-theme park version.
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Okay, let’s begin our trip here in Orlando! First things first, we want to fuel our bodies with some food as we have a long, adventurous day ahead of us, however, we do not want to overdo it because we are going zip lining. For breakfast, I recommend heading to Keke’s breakfast, a local favorite. They have several locations all over town, so feel free to stop by the nearest location. Click here to find the closest location to you.
Next we head to our first adventure. If you are the daring type, then Orlando Tree trek Adventure Park is where you want to go. An adventure filled with zip lining and rope courses and you can swing like Tarzan. Click here to purchase your ticket.
Now, if you don’t really see yourself swinging on trees, then I have another option for you, Gatorland. It is a 110-acre wildlife preserve and theme park where you get to see a bunch of gators (possibly hold one too) and a variety of other wildlife. In addition to live gator feeding shows, you can zipline too and learn about the diverse Florida wildlife. Definitely worth a visit. Click here for more information.
Generally, you won’t spend an entire day at the above 2 parks, I’d say less than half a day, which means it gives you plenty of time in the evening to do some more activities. I suggest heading to Disney Springs for the remainder of the day, which is Disney’s shopping, dining, and entertainment complex. There is no entrance fees charged. There are about 100+shops, 65 dining options, and 25+ entertainment options. If you are looking to dine in one of the restaurant there, I highly suggest making a reservation ahead of time because the waits are extremely long. I love going to Disney Springs for all the dessert options such as Gideon’s Bakehouse and Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew. For dinner, I recommend Jaleo by Jose Andres. Click here for more information about Disney Springs.
Today’s agenda —–>> Adventure
-Breakfast @Keke’s breakfast cafe
-Zipline @Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park or visit Gatorland
-Walk around Disney Springs
-Dinner @Jaleo by Jose Andres
-Dessert @Gideon’s Bakehouse
We are going to get a workout in today! So let’s make sure we start our day with a good meal. I love a good breakfast, especially at Argos Family Diner. Quality, home cooked meal every single time! Click here for directions.
Wekiwa Springs State Park is a crowd favorite. Locals love spending the hot summer days here enjoying various water activities such as swimming, kayaking, canoeing, and much more. The park opens at 8 AM and has a limited capacity, so I highly recommend getting there early. Click here for fees and other information.
Head to Santiago’s Bodega for a late lunch and cool off from your outdoors activities. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon off, either schedule a massage at Four Seasons Orlando spa or simply take a nap because we are going to party tonight and continue our 5 day itinerary for Orlando!
Universal’s City Walk offers several dining options, something for everyone in your family. American, Italian, Japanese, or seafood, no matter what you are in the mood for, City Walk most likely has something to offer to you. BigFire and Antojitos authentic Mexican food are some of the crowd favorites. Once you are done with your dinner, you can enjoy the rest of the evening strolling around and check out the shops or head to one of the clubs for some late-night entertainment. Keep in mind, there is no entry fees to City Walk, you just have to pay for parking.
Today’s agenda —–>> Workout + party
-Breakfast @Argos Family Diner
-Spend the day outdoors by visiting a spring- Wekiwa Springs, Rock Springs or Blue Spring
-Lunch @Santiago’s Bodega
-Massage @Four Seasons Orlando spa
-Stroll around Universal’s City Walk + dinner +party
On today’s agenda, we are going to start our day slowly. We will explore one of the many unique towns of Central Florida has to offer, we are heading to Mount Dora. Located about 30 mins from Orlando, Mount Dora is known for it’s antique shops and annual festivals.
You can also take the Mount Dora trolley for an hour long historic tour of the town, snap a pic with Old Joe, the 15- foot alligator statue, or admire the historical buildings such as the 1893 Donnelly House. For brunch, I highly recommend Pisces Rising.
For the evening, we are heading to enjoy one of the many activities International Drive Orlando has to offer. In addition to shopping at the outlets located on I-drive, you can ride the big wheel at ICON park, visit Madame Tussauds wax museum, visit Fun Spot America theme park, Wonderworks Orlando and so much more! You can easily spend an entire day here.
This 11 miles long road has a ton of restaurants to choose from, so rest assured, you won’t be hungry for too long. If you are in the mood for some Tex-Mex, check out Uncle Julio’s restaurant, get the chocolate pinata dessert!
Today’s agenda —–>> Explore a local town
-Brunch in Mount Dora
-Explore Mount Dora
-Evening @International drive + Icon Park + Madame Tussauds
-Dinner @Uncle Julio’s Mexican restaurant
You didn’t think I was going to forget a visit to one of Florida’s finest beach in this 5 day itinerary for Orlando, did you? Florida has some world class beaches along it’s coastline, each one has something unique to offer and I truly love spending my weekends at a beach.
Orlando is centrally located in the state of Florida, the closest beach is a 45 mins drive, Cocoa Beach. However, there are several other amazing beaches all within driving distance. My absolute favorite is Siesta Key, also named as one of the best beach in the U.S.! You can also checkout Clearwater beach, New Smyrna, Daytona beach, and a ton of other beaches. Another option is to take a day trip to the oldest city in the U.S., St. Augustine. It was founded by Spanish explorers in 1565! You can check out my blog post here for more about St. Augustine.
You will find many options for dinner around the area. Now, just in case you do decide to come back early and still have some energy for more fun, then I recommend watching some improv comedy at SAKS located in downtown Orlando. Click here for show timings.
Today’s agenda —–>> Beach day
-Beach day or day trip to St. Augustine
-Watch improv comedy show at SAKS
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Last day of our trip and we still have lots more to do on our 5 day itinerary for Orlando! So if you are in the mood for another day trip, a visit to the Kennedy Space Center is definitely worth your time. Click here for the tickets. Keep in mind, it is about an hour away from Orlando. Also, Farm & Haus is a great breakfast option.
Option B, is to stay in Orlando and enjoy some nature in Leu Gardens and then the Museum of Illusions. Once we are done here, the city of Winter Park is a great way to spend the rest of your day. You can either just stroll around the streets with a gelato in your hand, take a Winter Park scenic boat tour or shop at one of the unique stores. End your trip with some amazing dinner at either Eddie V’s Prime Seafood restaurant (fine dining) or one of the many restaurants in Winter Park.
Today’s agenda —–>> Explore Orlando
-Breakfast @Farm & Haus
-Leu Gardens/drive to Kennedy Space Center
-Museum of Illusions
-Explore Winter Park
-Dinner @ Eddie V’s Prime Seafood
THINGS TO KNOW- 5 DAY ITINERARY FOR ORLANDO
When to visit Orlando
Summers are extremely busy here and so is the holidays timeframe! If you are flexible with your dates, I say come between September- November, which is usually off-season, the weather is still hot and toasty, and hurricane season is coming to an end (yes, it is a thing here). Summers can get extremely hot and humid here.
Getting around Orlando
Unless you are planning to stay at a Disney or Universal property, you will need a car to get around town. The city itself is pretty large geographically and is not a walkable city. Public transportation is not popularly used and Ubers/taxis can get expensive. So plan accordingly.
Where to stay in Orlando
There are literally tons of options here! Orlando is a big tourist destination, so I can bet you there is a hotel for every budget. Again, if you are planning to stay near the theme parks, Disney, Universal Studios, SeaWorld, have lot of options on property. They offer shuttles that can take you to the theme parks, airport, etc. However, if you would like to stay elsewhere, then International drive has a lot of options to choose from. You can also read my blog post on how to choose the best hotel for your trip.
Hope to see you soon in Orlando!
This is a great itinerary I love it is not all about the parks, and you get a little bit of everything around the area…definitely saving for later, thank you
I love Orlando and have been many times! Adding this to my list of things to do next time I’m there!