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Explore the Area!

Visitors to Orlando's tourist corridor know about the area's world-famous attractions and those familiar with the area know that there is much more to see and explore! Museums, historical attractions, beaches, eco and wildlife tours, sporting events and more are within easy reach!

History

Looking for locations of historical significance? Self-guided walking tours are available through the City of Eatonville (407-623-1313), the nation's oldest incorporated African-American municipality. Visitors may also explore the Zora Neal Hurston National Museum of Fine Arts (407-647-3307) and the Wells' Built Museum of African-American History (407-245-7535), a hotel previously frequented by Duke Ellington and Ray Charles. The Orange County Regional History Center (407-836-8500), traces the area's rich history with an array of interactive exhibits.

Museums

Museum lovers will be delighted to know that the area boasts the world's most comprehensive collection of Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass at the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art (407-645-5311). Hands-on exhibits entertain adults and children at the Orlando Science Center (407-514-2000). The Mennello Museum of American Art (407-246-4278) exhibits the most complete collection of works by American folk artist Earl Cunningham. The Orlando Museum of Art (407-896-4231) is the permanent home for collections of 18th, 19th and 20th century American Art, including works by world-renowned artist Georgia O'Keefe and photographer Ansel Adams. The museum also holds an impressive collection of Art of the Ancient Americas, including artifacts from the Aztecs and many other cultures, as well as an extensive collection of ceremonial and utilitarian African art. Be sure to check out the Orlando City Hall Terrace Gallery. Great art and admission is free! (407-246-4279).

Churches

Services for every denomination are available within a short drive. For a detailed listing go to Central Florida Church Directory or check with the hotel for recommendations and directions.

Sports

The basketball fan can cheer on the NBA's Orlando Magic (407-89-MAGIC), catch an Orlando Predators (407-648-4444) arena football game or enjoy one of the many Atlanta Braves spring training games.

Beaches

Just a short drive from the world-class attractions and resorts of International Drive are some of Florida¹s best beaches ... Daytona Beach, New Smyrna Beach, Canaveral National Seashore, and Cocoa Beach. Enjoy a day at the beach!

Nature and Eco-Tourism

A beautiful slice of old Florida can be found right in the I-Drive area. The Rosen Shingle Creek Resort is located a 230-acre site nestled along Shingle Creek, the headwaters of the legendary Florida Everglades. The spectacular facility is surrounded by enchanting flora and wildlife, much of which has been preserved to create a natural backdrop for this property. Guests may venture out and immerse themselves in the fantastic Florida surroundings. The hotel’s eco-tourism offerings include nature trails for hiking, walking, and birding, plus fishing by reservation along the legendary Shingle Creek. (866-996-9939).

If you are looking for a chance to spot Florida's plentiful wildlife and to explore more of natural Florida, consider one of the area's state parks at http://www.floridastateparks.org.

Blue Spring State Park is located along the St. Johns River near Orange City. It is winter home to numerous endangered manatees with temperatures in the spring staying at 72 degrees, creating a safe haven for the manatee during the cooler months and a cooling swim for visitors during the summer.

Another option, Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park includes a wide variety of native wildlife including manatees and a floating observatory that allows visitors an underwater view of the spring with its resident manatees and the hundreds of fish in their native habitat. A Wildlife Walk take s visitors on an elevated boardwalk through habitats for Florida Black Bears, cougars, bobcats, river otters, grey fox and red fox and more. Hands-on activities re featured at the Children's Education Center.

Bird watchers will love the 19 Central Florida stops on the Great Florida Birding Trail, a 2,000-mile trail designed to conserve and enhance Florida bird habitat by promoting bird watching and environmental education. The trail is a collection of 446 sites throughout Florida. For details and a guide visit www.floridabirdingtrail.com.

 

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