Orlando is one of the most popular family destinations in the USA, and with its fantastic theme parks and family-orientated attractions, it is easy to see why.
Here is a quick guide to Orlando, including some of the best family attractions to visit during your Orlando holiday:
1. The Walt Disney World Resort
The Walt Disney World Resort has enough to keep you entertained for days, so it is a great place to visit as part of an Orlando holiday. There are four theme parks at the resort, all of which have rides, parades, shows and restaurants:
o The Magic Kingdom is packed with rides including thrilling high-speed rollercoasters like Space Mountain, a Haunted Mansion, a Jungle Cruise, Peter Pan Flight and the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. You can also have your photo taken with Winnie the Pooh and other Disney characters.
o Disney Animal Kingdom Park is home to many different animals, including hippos, gorillas, big cats and monkeys, and you can see them by taking a safari trip. You can also enjoy great rides such as Dinosaur, Expedition Everest and the Kali River Rapids, and young children will love rides like the Boneyard and the Tricera Top Spin.
o Epcot allows you to experience the food, architecture and traditions of different parts of the world in its many different pavilions. There are also areas devoted to land, sea, space, the imagination and the wonders of life, shows to see and rides to enjoy.
o Disney-MGM Studios is where Disney meets the movie industry. You can ride on the white-knuckle Rock n Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith, take a out of control journey through the space on Star Tours and then take the Backlot Tour, where you will encounter movie special effects and soundstages, and see some of the different departments that help bring the movies to life. Children will love The Muppets in 3D and the Indiana Jones Stunt Show.
There are also two water parks as well as the Downtown Disney Area, where you can wander around the shops and then stop for a delicious meal. No matter which park you are visiting, you will find plenty of parking spaces available if you are hiring a car.
2. Universal Studios Resort
For more movie themed fun, you can drive your Orlando hire car to the Universal Studios Resort, where you will find two theme parks, the Wet n Wild water park and the Universal City Walk shopping district.
The Universal Studios theme park is divided into six zones: Hollywood; Production Central; New York; San Francisco/Amity; World Expo; and KidZone. Each of these is filled with rides, restaurants and shows to entertain the whole family.
You can feel what it is like to experience a tornado on Twister Ride It Out, ride a flying bike in ET Adventure or scare yourself silly on Revenge of the Mummy The Ride. Kids will love the Animal Actors on Location(TM) show and Shrek 4D.
Universals Islands of Adventure, is divided into five areas: Toon Lagoon; Jurassic Park; The Lost Continent; Seuss Landing; and Marvel Island. There are some great rides to enjoy including the Dueling Dragons inverted rollercoasters, the Jurassic Park River Adventure and rides designed specifically for younger children.
There are plenty of parking spaces available, so you should be able to find somewhere to leave your Orlando hire car.
Florida is famous for its alligators and if you drive your Orlando hire car to Gatorland, you can see some of these wonderful creatures up close.
There are thousands of alligators and crocodiles at Gatorland, including Cuban crocodiles, Nile crocodiles and American crocodiles, and the park has its own Breeding Marsh, where you can see over 100 adult alligators.
You can also visit the Snakes of Florida exhibit, where you can see the venomous Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake, the Very Merry Aviary, where you can feed nectar to lorikeets, and Allies Barnyard, where you can pet farm animals.
You can also take a stroll along the Swamp Walk, see a Gator Jumparoo or Gator Wrestling show, or cool down at the new Gator Gully Splash Park.
This information is part of a USA travel guide series of articles