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Free Things to Do in Orlando

If you can believe it, some people do more in Orlando than just go to Disney. If you are a Florida local or just a visitor looking to save some money, you will appreciate our list of free things to do in Orlando. We aren’t just talking about vague activities like swimming or hiking either. Everything on this list is sure to be a good half day activity for you and the family. We are always looking for other free things to do in Orlando, so if you know of any, please add them to the comments section below.

A few of these things may not be free all the time or to everyone. That said, anything on the list that does cost money is less than $10.

Old Town

As the name suggests, this place is a kind of replica of main street USA for an era gone by. The park, if you want to call it that, is full of stores, soda stands, gift shops, haunted houses and other activities. While it is free to enter Old Town, none of the attractions are free. This place is similar to the Disney Village if you have ever been there. There are free rock and roll concerts and vintage car shows every Saturday.

Cornell Fine Arts Museum

The Cornell Fine Arts Museum is said to be one of the best college fine art museums in the entire Southeast. In the museum you will find some odd 6,000 paintings, sculptures, and more. If you are in to fine art, you are sure to appreciate this museums collection, as it is the oldest in all of Florida. There are constantly new exhibits as well as special events here. Call ahead to see what is going on. There is a $5 admission price for non-students.

Lake Eola Park

The Lake Eola Park is an oasis amidst the hustle and bustle of downtown Orlando. This is the perfect place to come enjoy a picnic, play at the park, or simply walk around the lake. There are a number of pavilions, parks, and picnic areas around the lake. This area often has special events, concerts, and festivals; so check a local paper to see if anything is going on.

Ocala National Forest

This is one of the top national parks in Florida. It has a wide variety flora and fauna. The park sports a number of springs, lakes, creeks, trails, and other things to explore. Thanks to the warm climate, the park is open year round for camping (not free). Some free activities that can be done at the park include hiking, swimming, snorkeling, and paddling if you have your own gear.

Fort Christmas Historical Museum and Park

This is a neat recreation of the famous Fort Christmas from the second Seminole Indian war. The fort portrays life from that period of time. There are a number of restored historical homes, farms, and other antique buildings complete with era specific items. This area also hosts special events from time to time, so called ahead to see if they have anything special going on.

Kelly Park

Kelly Park is home to the popular Rock Springs. While most springs in Florida create a mini swimming pool, Rock Springs creates a river. The springs create a short section of fast moving water that slowly turns into a lazy river. Many people come here with inner tubes in hand to enjoy a refreshing and lazy day on the water. If you don’t have any inner tubes, there are a number of rental places in the area. This park is extremely popular during summer holidays.

Harry P. Leu Gardens

This state owned facility has a little something for everyone. It isn’t quite free, but admission is only around $7 per person with discounts for children. The gardens are spread out over three acres. one can easily spend half the day here wandering around the gardens and exhibits. There are also classes on gardening, landscaping, and garden tours available for an extra fee.

Big Tree Park

The Big Tree Park is a prime example of the Florida marsh lands. At the park you will step back into time and see what Florida once looked liked. The area is filled with Spanish moss, towering cypress trees, and wild vegetation. As you make your way down the boardwalk, you will eventually come to the parks namesake, the big tree. The big tree is a cypress tree that is over 3,500 years old.