Orlando, located in central Florida, is a tourism hot spot. It is one of the most popular areas to visit in the United States and for good reason. Both Disney and Universal set up shop here with amazing parks. There is so much to do in Orlando. You could never see and do everything in one visit, and thats why people keep coming back for more. What you choose to do in Orlando depends on if you are traveling with young children, older kids and teenagers, or just adults. Yes, adults can have an amazing time in Orlando when they get away without their kids. An adult trip to Orlando can be just as fun as traveling with kids. You get to tailor your itinerary to what you want to see and do. If you are planning a kid-free getaway to central Florida, here are ten things you must experience!
Central Florida might be most well known as the home of fairy tales coming to life, but it should also be known for its amazing culinary scene. When traveling without your kids, you can skip the fast food and dine for pleasure. Here are our recommendations:
LakeHouse in Hyatt Grand Cypress
All foodies must have a meal at LakeHouse. Located in the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, this restaurant overlooks the gorgeous private lake on property. Central Florida might be known for theme parks, but the lakes in this area are too gorgeous to miss! This 21 acre lake just adds to the culinary experience here. They revamped the whole space and created a new restaurant that is modern and spacious, with a menu that offers uniquely served and prepared variations of common dishes.
What makes the cuisine here so special is that they carefully source their ingredients. The dishes are designed and served to be shared. Let everyone order the dish of their choice, and you can all try everything. We love this style of dining. Come here for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They also have special menus for holidays.
Highball and Harvest at the Ritz Carlton
For a fun and upscale twist on southern cuisine, get yourself to Highball and Harvest. Their menu is full of items made with locally sourced ingredients and even ingredients they grow on their own. We love farm to table restaurants like this. They have a 7,000 square-foot garden at Whisper Creek Farm. The bar here is famous for handcrafted cocktails. The Peach Tea served in canning jars is a must. The bartender can spike the tea, giving you a sweetly southern beverage. Order the chicken and waffles or the shrimp and grits and you wont be sorry!
Strong Water Tavern at Sapphire Falls
Located in the Lowes Sapphire Resort at Universal Orlando, Strong Water Tavern is the perfect stop for some post-theme park drinks after a day in Universal Studios. This watering hole is just a cool place to hang out. Order a bite to eat off the tapas menu and sit outside overlooking the lagoon. You must get a rum drink as the tavern has vintage rums you can order from your own rum specialist! Rum makes everything better. Delicious tapas and carefully crafted cocktails after a fun day at Universal is a parents dream come true.
Spa at the Ritz Carlton Grande Lakes
A getaway without the kids requires some quiet relaxation. You know you never get quiet relaxation at home! Add some to your itinerary while in Orlando. We recommend the Spa at the Ritz Carlton Grande Lakes. This spa is absolutely new and has an updated gym with top of the line equipment. Youve never seen a gym like this before, so try to experience it if you can. This spa will totally rock your world. You can walk in feeling tense, stressed, and exhausted and leave feeling relaxed, calm, and rejuvenated. Some of the treatments use herbs they grow on site. Locally sourced spa treatments are just one unique experience here. You can also have a zero gravity massage performed as you gently rock in a hammock.
Of course you need a great place to stay while you are in Orlando, kid-free. Check out Loews Sapphire Falls Resort! This place is a piece of paradise in the heart of Orlando. Relax by the immaculate pool area, sleep in every morning in your comfortable room, and get special access to Universal Studios as a guest of Sapphire Falls. Check out all the delightful details on this resort right here!
If you have not been to Universal Orlando Resorts in a few years, here are some of the new and updated rides that are a must for adults.
There are two Wizarding World of Harry Potter lands, one in Islands of Adventure and one at Universal Studios. With a park to park admission ticket you can take the train between the two lands. The experiences here are almost a park all to themselves, drawing people from all over the world. Even if youve just seen a couple of the Harry Potter films, you have to check these places out. The rides are amazing, and you really do feel like youve walked into a magical world.
Do not miss the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit! This ride is ridiculous. You climb straight up 17 stories and then take off hitting speeds of 65 miles per hour. You customize your experience on this ride by picking your music and they even record you on the ride and make a music video out of it all. How cool is that?
The Incredible Hulk Roller Coaster has been updated. It is bigger and badder and so much fun. You cant ride this ride with young kids so take advantage of your time here without kids and ride this roller coaster that goes 67 miles per hour with a zero gravity roll.
Skull Island: Reign of Kong is another new ride at Universal. It is so realistic. You will love this new concept in rides that creates an illusion of being in the middle of the action. Experience King Kong battling some crazy creatures in 3D. It is just like Kong is coming between you and the beasts that he is battling. This is a truly unique attraction.
The Simpsons Ride at Universal is hysterical and highly entertaining from the moment you get in line. Throughout your wait, you will be laughing at Simpsons cartoons that are setting you up. This ride is set in a Springfield carnival and you feel like you are really living in the Simpsons world. Grab a bite to eat, a Duff beer, and play Simpsons style carnival games after you laugh your head off on the ride.
As you can see, theme parks and rides are not just for little kids. In fact, there are several that are not designed for kids at all. Grown ups need to have fun too, so add at least one day here to your trip.
If you are looking for excitement outside of the theme parks, Hard Knocks Combat Sports should be on your list. While Hard Knocks has locations all over the country, their Orlando location is on International Drive near Orlando Studios and other popular Orlando attractions. You check in and pick your mission. The armory is where you choose the realistic weapon that suits you and your mission. Get all geared up and enter one of the arenas or simulators and let the battle begin. The arenas are challenging and full of obstacles and real life settings. Whether you are traveling as a couple or with a group of friends or co-workers, you will have a competitive experience together at Hard Knocks. We think it would be perfect for a bachelor or bachelorette party!
Go ahead and treat yourself to an adult-only getaway to Orlando, Florida. You can skip the princesses and fairy tales and have a kick ass time away. Eat, drink, relax, and let loose. There really is something for everyone in central Florida, whether you are traveling with kids or not. You can always come back with the whole family, but for your next trip, do something just for you because you deserve it!
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If you need to save up a little money for a trip to Orlando, here are 7 Apps for Saving Money While Shopping.
Photo Credits: EveryAvenueGirl, Hyatt Regency, Universal Studios, Hard Knocks