The Magic Kingdom acts like a huge magnet to anyone with children, especially for families planning a trip during the winter school vacation time. Marketing for all the major Orlando attractions is very strong, particularly in the Northeast, and few children miss the siren call on their tv commercials.
It’s an easy trip to plan, but there is so much more to central Florida. My suggestion, if you feel you MUST go to Disney World, is take advantage of the good airfares and go…for one day. Then with your rental car, go see other highlights of the area. There is so much to pick from and you and your family will have an experience few people have because they are only focused on the amusement park.
Florida orange groves are spread through central Florida. The Citrus Tower in Clermont provides greats view from 226 feet.
Manatees are rarely seen in the wild but you can view them at the underwater glass observatory at Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park. There are trails to snake and alligator exhibits as well.
Ancient man lived in central Florda as far back as 200 BCE. The Crystal River State Archaeological Site has six mounds and is considered to be one of the longest and most continually occupied sites in the state.
In the winter visitors to the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge can watch and even swim with manatees.
Take a glass bottom boat trip in Silver Springs in Ocala and see where the Tarzan movies and the tv show Sea Hunt was filmed. Or if you prefer a less commercial experience, rent a canoe at Ocala National Forest and journey along the twisting, winding Juniper Run.
Daytona Beach is famous for its 18 miles of hard packed sand where you can drive your car. Make sure to go to the access point at the north end of the beach, as traffic is only one way.
If you enjoy liighthouss, the Ponce de Leon Lighthouse is the nation’s second highest.
Cape Canaveral is not only a National seashore with over 300 speicies of birds and animal including brown pelicans, turtles, manatees and alligators, it also is the location of the Kennedy Space Center.
Lots to see and do besides visiting Mickey and Minnie!