Mention Orlando in the United States and the first thing that comes to your mind is the world renowned Disney World Theme Park Resort. The massive park alone attracts millions of visitors to the city every year. But there are so many other interesting places to visit and things to do in Orlando apart from just visiting Disney World.
When to visit: The city is always bustling with some kind of event or the other no matter what time of the year you visit it. The peak tourist season in Orlando starts a few weeks before New Year and extends till the end of January. This is the period when the city is at its festive best.
Even though, visiting the city on other occasions is also considered ok if you are a budget conscious traveler. The other two largely popular travel times include the months from March to April and from June to August.
If you want to save up some money on accommodation and other similar facilities while on holiday, you might want to consider visiting Orlando during the low season. This gives you access to great deals on quality hotels (even 3 stars and more) and flexibility with flights.
Booking complete packages: Visiting Orlando would definitely be less stressful if you book the entire holiday as one package. This involves booking the return flights; accommodation and car rental in one go rather than paying for them individually. This way, you can stop worrying about the costs and enjoy visiting the numerous attractions the city has to offer.
Accommodation: Almost every kind of traveler from the elite passenger to the budget conscious traveler would find suitable accommodation in Orlando. The city is filled with hotels of every class and visitors do not need to worry about being left without a place to stay in for the night.
Some of the more popular establishments in the city include the Monumental Hotel which is located close to Seaworld and Aquatica; the Deluxe Orlando Universal Studios which offers an extended stay option for guests willing to stay longer; and the Radisson Hotel Orlando – Lake Buena Vista which is located fairly close to several theme parks and the Florida Mall.
You may also want to consider staying at the Fairfield In and Suites Orlando International Drive which boasts of a central position in the city. Alternatively, the Baymont Inn and Suites Florida Mall is also a good choice if you want to stay close to the Florida Mall.
Peak Season Attractions: Come New Year, and Orlando is transformed into one giant party destination with celebrations galore. Renting a car would be the best option to get around and catch all the main festivities.
Planning your trip to Orlando in the month of January would enable you to enjoy the following events.
Walt Disney World Marathon: Conducted between January 7 and January 10, this huge event attracts runners from around the world in addition to millions of spectators. The Disney/Pixar UP and Away Family Fun Run is a comparatively smaller marathon that enables families and inexperienced runners to run a stretch of 5 kilometers around the city.
Blue Spring Manatee Festival: This event takes place near the end of January in Orange City. Usually held in Valentine Park, the festival offers entertainment in the form of live music shows, and arts and crafts exhibitions.
Hurton Festival of the Arts and Humanities: Celebrated in mid January, the festival comprises of educational programs, lecture events conducted by seasoned speakers and a screenwriting competition.
Sunshine Regional Chili Cook Off: Also held in mid January, the event is conducted at the Kissimmee Lakefront Park and has several cooks from around the country show off their best creations. In addition to the numerous food stalls and cooking competitions; guests can also enjoy live music shows and art exhibitions.
In addition to taking part in all of these activities, Orlando also happens to be a fun place to hang out at with several museums, gardens, state parks, golf courses and of course the downtown area.