When you tell anyone you are going to Orlando, they automatically assume that you will spend your entire vacation in the Theme Parks. Who can blame them when there are more theme parks than you can visit in one week in Orlando. However, we have been to Orlando countless times and I start to feel Disney-burnout.. Surprise surprise!
Our recent trip down to Orlando for a 5 day vacation trip, we had decided to choose only 1 Disney park and 1 Disney’s Water park. The rest of the time there we enjoyed spending with our friend and another non-theme park favorite location – Downtown Disney.
Downtown Disney is a destination within itself that I think a family with kids will truly enjoy without breaking a bank. It’s very conveniently located right off from I-4. There are plenty of parking and the best of all it’s FREE.
It has various shops and restaurants situated around a lake in the outdoor setting. We loved to go there and enjoy a nice day out in Orlando. A few of our favorite spots are:
1. Once Upon A Toy – A fabulous and unique toy store that offers fun for the whole family for hours. We enjoyed our visit to this store and couldn’t get enough of them.
2. Lego Store – It might be not Lego Land but it is a perfect fun place for lego fan alike. There are plenty of stations that allow kids to explore and play with lego. The creations are also amazing to see.
3. Disney Store – It won’t be Downtown Disney Market without a Disney Store. A mega Disney Store has sections for the whole family from baby, girl, boy, man, woman, and home goods. I think the most popular one is the Disney Princess Salon. Girl will be transformed to a princess with all the pamper from Disney staff.
4. Waterfront Theater – This open-air waterfront theater has events throughout the year. Last year we caught the magic show. This year it was raining. It was right in front of the Ghirardelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop. Grab an ice cream for kids and a cup of coffee for yourself and enjoy people watching.
5. T-Rex Restaurant – Ok.. We didn’t get a chance to go but it looks so cool that we will have to try. It’s the concept restaurant that similar to Rain Forest Cafe. When we went there, the restaurant just recently opened so the line just to get your name on the waiting list was already longer than some of the ride in Blizzard Beach. So maybe next time…