The Perez Bunch (my bunch) resides in the very lovely city of Orlando, Florida. While the city is beautiful and the events can be quite pleasant, the weather is brutally hot most of the year. As a stay-at-home momma, like me, you are probably always on the hunt to entertain your children and keep the days fun. My son Leo is as energetic as they come! It’s easier to be out and on the move than to be home, where boredom takes full effect. So I have spent many many days looking for new activities and trying out different spots. I’ve put together our top eight favorite places in and around Orlando to go for an easy breezy (and inexpensive) day of play. And I’m not talking big-buck theme parks like Disney and Universal. Everyone knows they are here in Orlando, and my goodness they can be fun; but if you live in Orlando you also know the sky-high temperatures and insanely long lines don’t always mesh well with the little ones. Leo and I are frequent visitors to all of these spots down below, we hit at least one or two of them each week over the summer, so take our word for it and check them out!
- Orlando Science Center– Recently the Orlando Science Center spent a ton of money and time revamping their KidsTown, and this was money and time well spent! The center has multiple floors and exhibits that are kid friendly, and many of them even offer hands-on experiences for the little ones. They schedule various workshops and 3-D movies throughout each day that are free with admission. This place is sure to keep your little ones on the move for a few hours!
- Crayola Experience – For us the drive is a bit lengthy, but that’s how you know it’s worth it! They have two awesome indoor playgrounds, one for toddlers and one for bigger children. The art activities are superb to any other place we’ve ever been to, after all it is Crayola, and they keep Leo entertained for hours on end! They have a wallet-friendly annual pass that is well worth it if your little one loves to visit as often as mine does!
- Oviedo Aquatic Facility – In the heart of Oviedo is their aquatic center, which is practically a small-scale water park for children! They have a playground smack dab in the middle of a shallow pool perfect for toddlers and small kids. In the deeper end of the pool they have a big blue water slide older kids can enjoy. Equipped with umbrella-covered chairs and a lifeguard at all times, this is my absolute go-to for an inexpensive day in the sun!
- Fun Spot America – This is a small amusement park that has no affiliation with Disney or Universal, which means it is much much cheaper! The park is completely outdoors so bring plenty of sunscreen and water, but the carnival-like rides and games vary to entertain kids of all ages! If you do give this one a shot, know that you can purchase a “Chaperone Pass” for an extremely low price that allows you to accompany your children on rides for just a few bucks, rather than spending money on an entire ticket for yourself. MAJOR WIN!
- Monkey Joe’s – This is an indoor play spot filled with fun bounce houses and arcade games. They provide separate bounce houses that are only for children under the age of three, which I really appreciated when Leo was small and a little too fragile to hang with the bigger kids. The price is really reasonable for a day of play, and they also offer Frequent User Cards that are well worth it if you visit often. We actually had Leo’s second birthday party here, and let me tell you, they did all of the work for me! I highly recommend it.
- Oviedo on the Park – One street down from the Oviedo Aquatic Facility is this little gem, featuring a FREE splash pad, a shaded playground, a sweet little pond with swan boats, a small amphitheater, and a concession stand. Yes, Oviedo outdid themselves with this one. Check the city website for outdoor movies, food trucks, small concerts and other events! We absolutely love visiting for a day (or night) of play.
- Brevard Zoo – This isn’t exactly in Orlando, but if you reside in Orlando this zoo is so much better than the Central Florida Zoo and I had to share! I was completely blown away by all the fun this zoo had to offer. For one, the animal enclosures and habitats seem much larger and much more accommodating than any other zoo I’ve seen. The last time we were here, I was just shy of nine months pregnant and I still had a blast. You can feed birds and giraffes, play at the splash pad, take a kayak out on the water, climb on their awesome outdoor playground, and so much more! I cannot wait to go back and visit again, well worth the drive!
- Pottery Painting – So I know this isn’t a specific place, but that’s because you can almost always find a pottery painting shop right in your neighborhood. We love doing this on our quieter days, days with less sleep than usual or a cranky, teething baby sister. Like I said, my son is extremely energetic, so this day of play all depends on his mood. Leo absolutely loves bringing home a new piece of his art, he adores showing it off to everyone who sees it, and it’s something I can take part in as well.
So there you have it, my top eight spots for quick and easy family fun. I may have broken the rules with the last two, but I wouldn’t be giving my true suggestions without them! Wondering why I didn’t include any outdoor parks? When the weather gets cooler, Leo and I hit a park playground almost every other day! We’ve spent many days trying out different parks, sometimes even making a good thirty-minute drive to test a new spot. Parks are seriously our forte, so keep an eye out for our favorite Orlando parks and playgrounds soon; we have so many, they need their own list!
And if you have any other spots you and your children love for a day of play let me know, I’m always looking to take my babies on new adventures!