Creating Memories On A Budget: Five Central Florida Attractions That Are Absolutely Free
There's no need to break the bank for your Central Florida vacation. From stunning architecture to lush botanical gardens, there are a number of free Central Florida attractions for the entire family.
Enjoy A Scenic Picnic
Get ready for a photo opportunity! With more than 10,000 flowers and shrubs, Hollis Garden is among the top Central Florida attractions for capturing stunning vacation photos. Free to the public and open daily, Tuesday through Sunday, this neoclassically designed wonderland of winding paths, fountains and flourishing plant life offers something for everyone. The butterfly garden and koi pond are ideal for awakening the curiosity of children of all ages, while the public art and ornamental fountains provide the perfect backdrop for a romantic walk or afternoon picnic for two. Best of all, the expert gardeners on staff at Hollis Garden switch out the flowers and plants three times a year, so each visit will offer something different from the previous one.
Hit The Trails At Circle B Bar Reserve
Nature enthusiasts and adventure travelers alike can enjoy more than 1,200 acres of trails, marshes and swamps at Circle B Bar Reserve near Lakeland, Florida. A former cattle ranch restored to its original glory, Circle B Bar Reserve is home to one of the most extraordinary bird habitats in Central Florida. Recognized by USA Today as one of the 51 Great Places to See Wildlife, this admission-free attraction is a must-see item on your Central Florida vacation agenda. This reserve is a nature treasure trove for birders and hikers. Not only can you marvel at that beauty of bald eagles and waterfowl, but you may even spot an alligator lurking in the waters of Lake Hancock. While you're there, be sure to check out the Polk Nature Discovery Center, a fun and educational facility that explores the ecosystem of Central Florida through exhibits designed for visitors of all ages. Kids, and kids at heart, love to climb the full-sized 'Learning Tree' housed inside the center.
Take A Refreshing History Lesson
When you think of Florida, it's hard not to conjure up tasty images of the state's official fruit, the orange. Many would agree that a Central Florida vacation just wouldn't be complete without a visit to the Florida's Natural Growers Grove House in Lake Wales. Through exhibits and historical videos, you can explore the history of the orange and learn exactly how orange juice is made. Open seasonally from October through May, this free attraction will spark the interest, and taste buds, of your entire family. Sitting in a relaxing porch rocking chair and enjoying free samples of orange juice is bound to be a highlight of your trip.
Search For Fossils At The Mulberry Phosphate Museum
Who says a Central Florida vacation can't be both fun and educational? The Mulberry Phosphate Museum ranks among the top Central Florida attractions for kids - and you'll easily see why! Designed specifically with children in mind, this innovative museum will take you on a journey through the history of phosphate and its importance to business development in Florida. The museum is even housed in a series of historic train boxcars, and includes an outdoor exhibit consisting of a 44 yard Dragline bucket that was formerly used to excavate phosphate rock. Here, your budding archeologist can search for shark's teeth and other prehistoric fossils. Even better, admission to this academic treasure is completely free.
Experience World-Renowned Architecture
You don't have to be an architect to appreciate the striking beauty of the largest single site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright works in the world. The Florida Southern College Campus in Lakeland, is home to 12 Wright structures, collectively known as the Child of the Sun. Frank Lloyd Wright is often considered the greatest American architect of all time, making it no surprise that this collection of his work is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and draws visitors from all around the world. If you're looking for unique things to do in Central Florida, a self-guided tour of the Child of the Sun is well worth your time - and it won't cost you a penny.
Whatever your interests may be, you can find an endless array of free Central Florida attractions to suit every member of your family. From the natural beauty of Hollis Garden to the scientific playground of the Mulberry Phosphate Museum, you are sure to enjoy an experience that is both memorable and within your budget.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A Central Florida vacation doesn't have to cost a fortune. There are endless options of free and fun things to do in Central Florida. To view or order a vacation guide with a complete list of Central Florida attractions, visit the Central Florida Visitors and Convention Bureau at http://www.visitcentralflorida.org.