Last updated: 10:01 PM ET, Thu March 26 2015

City Pulse: The only Guide to Orlando, Florida You Need

Destination & Tourism | Tom Bastek | March 26, 2015

City Pulse: The only Guide to Orlando, Florida You Need

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

We Say:

Most people know Orlando as a vacation destination with theme parks, outlet shopping, and tourist attractions. Not mentioning them would be leaving out a part of its history. But Orlando comes from and contains so much more. Originally the citrus capital of the country, Orlando actually was a resort destination from the post-Spanish-American War era to the early 1920s. In 1965, when Walt Disney decided to build Walt Disney World in the Orlando area, the resort boom took off again and has yet to let up. Orlando is also a huge industrial and hi-tech center and has the seventh largest research park in the country. Whether in town for business or pleasure, everyone is bound to find something to do, eat, and see that pleases them.

They Say:

Although its world renowned theme parks are what put Orlando on the map, the city existed long before the first roller coaster or castle was ever built. What was once a city centered around the cattle and citrus industries, Orlando has boldly emerged as the theme park capital of the world. And, with more than 59 million visitors in 2013, this Central Florida city is also the most visited tourist destination in the United States. From theme parks and sunshine to continuously evolving retail, dining, and entertainment offerings, Orlando stands apart for its ability to provide experiences to meet every traveler’s need.

The destination’s Downtown is home to a vibrant renaissance highlighted by the opening of a new performing arts center, a thriving culinary community, and new sports and entertainment venues. The destination will also be the future home to American Tennis thanks to a new partnership with USTA to build the largest training facility in the country in Orlando.  – Visit Orlando




Current Traffic: Google Traffic

Airport: Orlando International Airport

Public Transit: LYNX

Bikeshare: Orlando Bike Share

Walkability Score: 24 at Walk Score

Parking Options/Expense: ParkMe, Best Parking

Best Accommodations: ( Higher Guest Rated)

Boutique: Castle Hotel Orlando

High End: Waldorf Astoria Orlando

High End: Four Seasons Orlando at the Walt Disney World Resort

Mid-Range: Sheraton Lake Buena Vista Resort

Bargain: Polynesian Isles Resort

Foods to seek out:

Angus Smoked Beef Brisket – 4 Rivers Smokehouse

Dole Whip – Disney’s Magic Kingdom

Fried Green Tomatoes – K Restaurant

Known For:

1. Theme Parks – Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment

2. Weather and Central Location – Year-round sunshine and close proximity to beaches on both of Florida’s coastlines

3. Meetings & Conventions – Top meetings destination with second largest convention center in the country, the Orange County Convention Center.

Sports Teams

NBA: Orlando Magic

Soccer – MLS: Orlando City SC

Arena Football: Orlando Predators

Hockey – ECHL: Orlando Solar Bears

Cool attractions


1. Check out what’s going on at ESPN Wide World of Sports.

2. Grab a pint at Orlando Brewing.

3. Go old school video games, drinks and art at BART.


1. Take the spouse shopping at the Orlando International Premium Outlets.

2. See the world from above with Orlando Balloon Rides.

3. Go see La Nouba Cirque du Soleil.


1. Take the kids to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

2. Be a dolphin trainer for a day at Discovery Cove.

3. Watch ‘gator wrasslin’ at Gatorland.


1. Speakeasy - Hanson's Shoe Repair

2. Night Club - Vanity

3. Music Room – Back Booth

Orlando is:

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