Everyone dreams of that perfect vacation to Orlando: 1 week in the parks, some fun and relaxation at the pool, and maybe even a fancy meal or two. Of course, there is plenty to do in Orlando, and whether you’re looking for an alternative experience outside the theme parks, you’re bound to find something fun for the whole family while on vacation. But with so much to do and see, it’s difficult to determine which attractions are must-do’s, and which experiences are meant to be skipped. With that said, should you be in need of things to do outside of the Orlando theme parks, we have covered 3 things you can do outside the theme parks and still enjoy your vacation.
1. RETRO DISNEY THRIFTING & MORE
Ever wanted to find retro Disney merchandise that you wouldn’t find on the shelves at the parks? I mean, who wouldn’t, am I right? Admittedly, this can be a difficult feat to accomplish out at the parks, but that’s where we save the day. Located just 30 minutes from the heart of Orlando, this beautiful town called Sanford features one-of-a-kind dining and shopping experiences. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a day full of shopping or maybe even eating, Sanford has got you covered. We decided to head out to their local thrift and antique shops searching for retro Disney items. One place where we found some of these limited retro items were at the Treehouse Antiques Shop. We highly recommend checking this shop out if you decide to make your way to Downtown Sanford. Other than thrift shopping and finding amazing limited items, Sanford also has tasty foods and cool things to see in the area. You can eat lunch at a traditional German restaurant followed by visiting the Willow Tree, finally you could end your evening in Sanford by getting some delicious artisanal marshmallow treats from Wondermade.
2. EXPLORE MOUNT DORA FLORIDA
Mount Dora, Florida – located about an hour north from Disney – is a beautiful town with tasty foods, beautiful scenery and local history. If you’re looking to learn a little history outside of Orlando, Mount Dora could be for you. They have a limitless collection of beautiful classic cars, a replica of a 1940s gas station along with a breathtaking lake which has amazing waterside restaurants. Known for its annual festivals and antique shops, you can get all the small-town southern charm you need in one place. Mount Dora has extensive amounts of antique shops in the downtown area and is home to one of three freshwater lighthouses in Florida. On our trip to Mount Dora we started our day by eating lunch at the Magical Meat Boutique, which is a British Pub. Then we walked around the downtown shops, down to Lake Dora and even down some back streets to see what we could find. We learned some local history about the town while we were exploring. We really enjoyed our trip to Mount Dora a lot and we recommend giving it a shot!
3. THEME PARK OUTLET
You’ve seen outlet stores everywhere but have you ever seen a theme park outlet store? Look no further Lake Buena Vista has you covered. Located just outside of Orlando and in proximity to Disney you can find the Lake Buena Vista Outlets on 192. You can find yourself in a world of theme park outlet stores, food, and more. We decided to take a spin around the outlet stores and show you what kind of finds we got. We saw Disney, Universal and other random merchandise everywhere. We even found some misprinted Disney merch, which is very interesting to see. Other than the theme park outlet stores they had many other stores located at this outlet. We decided to go into the Crocs outlet and a few other stores before we went home. Above you can check out clothing hauls of the day.
Everyone dreams of that perfect vacation to Orlando: 1 week in the parks, some fun and relaxation at the pool, and maybe even a fancy meal or two. Of course, there is plenty to do in Orlando, and whether you’re looking for an alternative experience outside the theme parks, you’re bound to find something fun for the whole family while on vacation. But with so much to do and see, it’s difficult to determine which attractions are must-do’s, and which experiences are meant to be skipped. That being said, here is our list of 3 things you can do outside of the theme parks and still enjoy your vacation.