Inexpensive and smothered in nature, these scenic campgrounds are the best for RV and tent campers within an hour’s drive of Disney World.
Things to do in Orlando and Central Florida, hiking, bicycling, kayaking and canoe, RV and tent camping, road trips, historic places and Funky Florida.
Colt Creek State Park is one of Florida’s newest parks, part of the massive Green Swamp Wilderness near Tampa, with RV and tent camping, backpacking, kayaking, fishing, hiking and off-road bicycling.
On dark summer nights in the Mosquito Lagoon near Titusville, the water glows from bioluminescent plankton. Kayak tours help visitors see the spectacular light show.
Jetty Park, with a terrific beach, fishing jetty and a view of passing ships, has a campground and small cabins. It’s an appealing getaway, with a few catches.
Brevard Zoo has a unique offering in its kayak tours, but it’s a small part of the interactivity and outstanding animal exhibits that make this a great zoo.
Sebring, a small town along the lovely Lake Wales Ridge in Central Florida, is staking a claim for something new — Florida’s first (and only) craft soda festival, the Sebring Soda Festival. Local small-batch sodas made with real sugar are making a comeback, partly as an outgrowth of the craft beer phenomenon. This Sebring festival is a good opportunity to taste what it’s all about.
If you haven’t experienced Florida’s most famous spring, you’re missing one of the most beautiful spots in Florida. This weekend, Ocali Country Days, a special living-history festival, will re-create the Ocala of the 1800s. Year-round, this park has it all: kayaking, hiking, glass-bottom boat rides, horseback riding and terrific cabins.
This small town festival celebrates a uniquely Lake Placid product: caladiums, a colorful plant grown commercially almost nowhere else. There’ll be music, food, a car show, arts and crafts plus bus tours of the caladium fields.
This large state park in a rural, out-of-the-way part of Central Florida, preserves Old Florida cracker history. It offers great hiking trails and camping plus lakes to explore by kayak or canoe. Wildlife, from deer to alligators to sandhill cranes to eagles, is abundant.
The 22-mile-long West Orange Trail stands out as an appealing bike trail, as it winds along Lake Apopka west of Orlando. This smooth paved trail gets it right, with scenery and excellent amenities.