A Guide to Visiting Orlando on a Budget

lake cherokee orlano

One of the main reasons many travelers visit Orlando is to explore the theme parks. Here are some insider tips on how you can visit the city keeping a budget in mind.

Visit the Theme Parks

Photo by Tati via Trover.com

The Walt Disney World Resort featuring Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and Epcot is the most prominent park. Other highlights include Universal Studios, where you can experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter by visiting the Hogwarts castle. At Sea World, you can watch the dolphins and killer whales up-close and personal. Keep in mind most theme parks are brimming with tourists all year round. To avoid the long waits and to avail discounted tickets, book them in advance.

Take Public Transportation

The best way to explore Orlando is by car. However, it is advisable to use the public transportation as the traffic can get congested near the tourist attractions. There are many shuttle services offered if you’re heading to the city center from the airport. The LYNX bus service allows an easy commute within the city as well as the major landmarks for as little as $2 per ride including transfers. Another cheap option is to take the one day pass of the I-Ride trolley that offers unlimited travel to destinations like International Drive.

Best Time to Visit

The most popular time of the year is March when there is a school break. A visit in October is ideal for those who are planning a trip on a budget. During this time, you can also land some great rates at most Orlando hotels.

Make Use of Free Attractions

Cornell Fine Arts Museums located on the Rollins College campus offers free admission to view some of the famous works by artists like Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse. City Arts Factory that exhibits works of local and international artists has free entry on Tuesdays.

As the city experiences sunshine all year-round, you can take full advantage of the theme parks and other outdoor activities. You can check out the Kraft Azalea Gardens and the Harry P. Leu Gardens which have free entry. On Saturdays, you can head to the farmer’s market held in Winter Park where you’ll find local vendors that sell their homemade dishes.

Shopping in Orlando

You could spend an entire day at the Premium Outlets that offer surprising bargains. Florida Mall boasts an array of international stores for all budgets while the Mall at Millenia is for those who are looking for high-end shopping.

Cheap Eats

Since food is expensive in the theme parks, chances are you’ll want to explore cheap restaurants located within the vicinity. There are plenty of cheap eats near International Drive and Lake Buena Vista. Places like Graffiti Junktion and Cafe Tu Tu Tango offer a great menu without breaking your wallet.

Grab drinks for half the price at Santiago’s Bodega during the happy hours held every day. Flemings serve wine and cocktails for $6 while you can even enjoy the food specials for as little as $6.

From museums to cultural activities, there are many things to do on a budget in the city of sunshine. Make sure you book your activities ahead of time to save money and beat the rush. Also, don’t forget to pack some sunscreen!

Featured Image by  Laurel Dubreuil via Trover.com

This post is published as part of the Hipmunk City Love Project

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