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Travel Tips for Orlando Nature Lovers: 6 Places to Visit

Image: Travel Tips for Orlando Nature Lovers: 6 Places to Visit
Lake Eola Park in Orlando, Florida. (wikimedia/commons)

By    |   Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 07:13 PM

Travel tips to Orlando often include the city's theme parks, but the popular Florida destination is a diverse city with something for all tastes, including nature lovers.

For those looking to escape the bustle of a crowded amusement park, here are six alternatives that offer the appeal of the great outdoors:

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1. Lake Eola Park: Located in middle of downtown Orlando, Lake Eola Park has fountains, a walking path, playgrounds, and paddle boats contained within 43 acres, most of which offer a view of Orlando's skyline. Swans and other birds are also there to beg for food, while concerts and plays are regularly performed in the Walt Disney Amphitheater. The original Linton E. Allen Memorial Fountain was built in 1957 and comes to life nightly through a choreographed show set to music.

2. Harry P. Leu Gardens: Visitors can spread out across 3 miles and 50 acres of walkways to see rose gardens, a butterfly garden, and old oak trees, among other attractions. According to the website: "Each garden is designed specifically to further our mission: Inspire visitors to appreciate and understand plants." The museum also showcases the turn-of-the century lifestyle for those who stayed there. Admission is free on Mondays.

3. The Orlando Wetlands Park allows travelers to relax and get back to nature. Bird-watching, nature photography, jogging, and bicycling are among the most popular activities, and nature enthusiasts can enjoy 1,650 acres of hammocks and lakes, including more than 20 miles of roads and woodland trails across the park. For planning purposes, note that the park is closed from Nov. 15 through Jan. 31 of each year.

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4. Tibet Butler Preserve: Less than 10 miles from Orlando, this nature and wildlife preserve boasts 4 miles of hiking trails. The terrain isn't rough, and learning materials are available so patrons can get to know their surroundings. The serene atmosphere provides an outlet for families to let their kids experience the outdoors.

5. Green Mountain Scenic Overlook and Trailhead: In nearby Ferndale, Florida, this area is great for bird watchers, nature lovers, and sightseers. Hikers who visit will experience a gravel trail and a 130-foot raised boardwalk that empties into a 20-foot-by-20-foot overlook.

6. Kelly Park: This protected area is located less than 20 miles northwest of Orlando. Trees such as red maple, American sweetgum, and several species of hickory and oak provide shade for the more than 248 acres. A clear spring is a popular attraction, and visitors can go tubing and rock climbing.

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Travel tips to Orlando often include the city's theme parks, but the popular Florida destination is a diverse city with something for all tastes, including nature lovers.
travel, tips, orlando, nature
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2015-13-21
Wednesday, 21 Jan 2015 07:13 PM
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