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Mostly wit & sarcasm, but contributes occasionally
Silver Donor
Feb 3, 2012
Virginia Beach, VA
Heading to Orlando with a couple friends (all in our mid-late 30s but young at heart) next week for a long weekend getaway with no definitive plans and the flexibility to day trip within central Florida. What are some fun things to do in the region that aren't part of the "Big 3" (Disney, Universal, SWE)? Not saying they're off the table, just looking for some things that are a little more laid back, off the wall, and/or different from the major parks.
Cocoa Beach is a short drive, and the Kennedy Space Center and Ron Jon Surf Shop are both worth a visit.

As for things closer to Orlando, Gatorland is the original amusement park, and is good for a visit. Dezerland and Orlando Kart Center are also both fun places to spend an hour or two. Fun Spot has two locations in the area, and has more of a carnival feel, so that might also be worthwhile.

You really can't go wrong in Central Florida, as there are tons of options!
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If you're going to the Tampa area their Aquarium and the Salvadore Dalí museum in St. Pete are worth a visit.
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They have casinos. Not into them, but it seems some locals avoid the usual tourist destinations.
Discovery Cove, while part of SeaWorld, is unlike any other theme park. Literally my Happy Place. It's extremely relaxing.
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