Best tours of Orlando

In the city famous for its incredible theme parks, there are many tours you can take, to fully experience all that this city has to offer.

Lorena Morales

Lorena Morales

10 min read

Best tours of Orlando

Florida Vacation Lake Eola |©Jared625

Orlando is a cosmopolitan city where technology, nature and magical worlds combine in such a way that you will always want to return to this South Florida metropolis. There are many things to see and do in Orlando, and tours for all tastes, in which fantasy will never cease to be present.

From a streetcar tour to visit the emblematic sites of the city, visit museums with unusual themes that awaken the imagination, and even helicopter flights, there are many tours you can take, to take away the best experiences of this unique city.

1. Take a tour of Orlando's most emblematic sites

Lake Eola Park|©Cédric Bonhomme
Lake Eola Park|©Cédric Bonhomme

A must if you visit the city, is to take a tour around Orlando to know its most representative attractions. In addition, with a guided tour you can learn a lot about the culture and history of this city that has much to offer in addition to its theme parks. The tour includes the must-see sites during your 3-day stay in Orlando.

These tours are organized for small groups and are usually done by bus and boat, since the tours are both by land and water. They last approximately 7-8 hours, so they start early in the morning. Some also include transfer from your hotel or a nearby meeting point. They are tours that can be done by the whole family, including children, all year round.

Some of the sites included in this tour are Lake Eola Park, a park with a 1.5 km artificial lake where you can take a boat ride and admire the sculptures of See Art Tour; Winter Park, where you can navigate through canals and lakes surrounded by trees; or Park Avenue, a place full of stores and restaurants where you can taste the best of Orlando's gastronomy. Some tours also include a visit to the city' s great outlets.

Details of interest

  • Price: about 60 € per person.
  • Duration: about 7-8 hours in total.
  • Means of transportation: bus and boat.
  • Advantages of this option: it is a comfortable way to visit the most representative sites of Orlando.
  • Disadvantages of this option: food and beverages are not usually included.

Join the best tours in Orlando

2. Fly over the city of Orlando by helicopter

Helicopter in the air|©Gary
Helicopter in the air|©Gary

Flying in a helicopter is one of those unique experiences that allow you to get to know the places you visit from another perspective. And in this city full of magical little worlds such as its theme parks, and also its wetlands, forests and swamps, getting on a helicopter to fly over Orlando is without a doubt an unforgettable experience.

Helicopter flights usually last between 8 and 60 minutes, depending on the route you decide to take. Both children and adults can participate, and even babies, who can travel free of charge on their mother's or father's lap. The number of people per flight is up to 4 participants. Without a doubt, this is an experience not to be missed, whether you are in Orlando for one or 5 days.

The most popular helicopter tours are the 8-10 minute Old Town tour, which flies over the Fun Spot Kissimmee park and the Disney complex, among others; and the Downtown Orlando tour, which flies over downtown Orlando and the theme parks SeaWorld, Universal Studios, Orlando Eye, Disney World, Old Town Kissimmee and Gatorland.

You can also take this tour at a discount if you purchase one of the Orlando Tourist Cards, and take advantage of all its benefits. Please note that this tour does not include the transfer to the take-off area, which is usually from Kissimmee, where you can arrive by train in about 20 minutes from the Orlando station.

Details of interest

  • Price: from 65 € for adults and children. Children under 3 years old travel for free.
  • Duration: from 8 to 60 minutes approximately depending on the route.
  • Means of transportation: helicopter for 4 people.
  • Advantages of this option: it is a unique way to get to know Orlando and its parks from the air.
  • Disadvantages of this option: it does not usually include the transfer to Kissimmee.

Fly over Orlando by helicopter

3. Take a sightseeing streetcar ride around Orlando

Green Tram|©.Martin.
Green Tram|©.Martin.

If you prefer to tour Orlando at your own pace, you can take a tour on a tourist streetcar, which makes stops at the main attractions of the city. You can hire it for the duration of your stay, from 1 to 7 days in Orlando, and up to 14 days. You can hop on and off unlimited days, just like a Hop On - Hop Off bus.

These cheerful tourist streetcars make two different routes, red and green, which you can even combine at no additional cost. Both routes take you comfortably to Orlando's main theme parks, such as SeaWorld, IconPark and Aquatica, and also to the city's main Outlets.

Taking these streetcars is one of the most economical ways to tour Orlando, and they even offer promotional prices if you hire them for a longer number of days. They operate from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. approximately, and run every half hour.

Details of interest

  • Price: from 8 € per day per person, being about 10 € the pass for 3 days. Children under 3 years old travel free.
  • Duration: from 10.30 a.m. to 10 p.m. approximately.
  • Means of transport: tourist streetcar.
  • Advantages of this option: you can tour the city comfortably at your own pace. It is a means of transport adapted for wheelchairs.
  • Disadvantages of this option: you may have to wait a bit at each stop after visiting each attraction.

Experience the best theme parks in Orlando

4. Taste the best gastronomy in South Florida

food on the table|©eventodegustar
food on the table|©eventodegustar

Orlando is a cosmopolitan city where you can sample gourmet dishes from all over the world, but it also has its own Southern cuisine, and has received a lot of influence from Latin American cuisine, especially from the Caribbean. The seafood, fish and tropical fruits of the area coexist with the most popular hot dogs, fried chicken and macaroni and cheese.

These gastronomic tours take you to the best restaurants in the city to try typical local dishes, and many include a full lunch or dinner, as well as tastings. Not only will you sample the local dishes, but also traditional drinks and desserts such as key lime pie. The duration of these tours is about 3 hours.

As for the means of transportation, these excursions are usually done on foot and in small groups of people. Some companies may require a minimum age requirement, especially those offering pub tours. Another excellent option is to go to see some of the best shows in Orlando, since many include a dinner with typical dishes of the region.

As for the schedule, these tours usually take place a little before noon or at dusk, and can be done every day of the year. It is always highly recommended to know the gastronomy of the city, especially from December onwards in Orlando, when winter begins and the weather is more conducive to taste hot dishes.

Details of interest

  • Price: about 50 € per person with tastings.
  • Duration: about 3-4 hours approximately.
  • Means of transport: on foot.
  • Advantages of this option: you will taste the typical dishes of the area in the best restaurants.
  • Disadvantages of this option: may have an age limit. Some do not include tastings.

Book your ticket for the best shows in Orlando

5. Get sweetened in the world of Chocolate Kingdom Factory.

chocolate strawberries|©Jessica Johnston
chocolate strawberries|©Jessica Johnston

Visiting a chocolate factory is always a good idea, especially for lovers of this special sweet. At Chocolate Kingdom Factory you can take this guided tour to learn all about its elaboration, from the cocoa bean to the chocolate bar or chocolate bonbon, in an environment full of fantasy.

It is one of the best activities to do with children in Orlando, since the tour takes place in an environment full of elements that awaken the imagination as old chocolate making machines, a chocolate river, and a Chocolate Museum in the style of Willy Wonka.

The tour lasts about 45 minutes and is conducted by a professional guide, every day between 11 am and 4 pm approximately. It includes tastings throughout the visit, and you can even create your own chocolate bar for a small additional cost.

This factory belongs to a family of chocolatiers who emigrated from Germany to Argentina, where they established the successful Chocolate Bariloche factory, and then opened their Schakolad factory in Orlando in 1999. They have toured factories and cocoa plantations all over the world to be able to present this interesting tour in Chocolate Kingdom Factory.

Details of interest

  • Price: about 20 € per person including tastings.
  • Duration: about 45 minutes approximately.
  • Means of transportation: transfer not included.
  • Advantages of this option: you will learn how chocolate is made from cocoa beans, while tasting the richest chocolates.
  • Disadvantages of this option: you must get to the factory on your own.

6. Relive your favorite movies at Universal Orlando

Universal Studios Florida|©Janice Dressley
Universal Studios Florida|©Janice Dressley

Although it's not really a tour, Universal Orlando Resort is so big that inside you can take different tours related to the world of movies, both at Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure. If you are a fan of Harry Potter, The Simpsons or Jurassic Park, you can't miss it.

Universal Orlando Resort offers you the opportunity to relive your favorite movies in an interactive way, recreating their most memorable scenes. You can spend all day enjoying the attractions, or even two days, depending on your interest. There are also special attractions for young children, such as the Caro-Seuss-el.

For example, you will see a dragon casting fire on the castles of Hogwarts or travel in its subway express, you can even interact with your favorite characters from Transformers, Minions or SpongeBob SquarePants. Meanwhile, at Universal's Islands of Adventure, you can relive the most exciting moments of Jurassic Park on a roller coaster that travels at full speed.

Keep in mind that you can not enter these parks with food or drinks, but inside there are a variety of dining options to choose from. Without a doubt, Universal Orlando Resort is one of the best theme parks in Orlando, where you will enjoy incredible scenery and thrilling adventures.

Interesting details

  • Price: from 197 €.
  • Duration: at least 3 hours per park approximately, depending on your interest.
  • Means of transportation: transportation is not included.
  • Advantages of this option: you will live exciting adventures in the scenes of your favorite movies.
  • Disadvantages of this option: you cannot bring food or drinks into the park.

Visit Universal Studios Orlando

7. Take a tour of the most extravagant museums.

Cornell Fine Arts Museum|©R Keith Lambert
Cornell Fine Arts Museum|©R Keith Lambert

The city of Orlando also has its own interesting museums to visit, in addition to its incredible theme parks. Many of these museums are related to movies and celebrities, but there are also museums of art, culture and history.

Some of them are the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, which houses works of art from antiquity to the 21st century; or the Orlando Museum of History, which covers some 12,000 years of history of the Florida region.

But the most outstanding museums in Orlando are those with more unusual themes such as Ripley's Believe It or Not! Odditorium, where you can see strange objects, collections, arts and artifacts in a building that looks like it is sinking. Another very interesting museum is Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition, where you can see life-size recreations of rooms and artifacts from the ship, and talk to characters in period costume.

Another of the city's most popular museums is Madame Tussauds Orlando, where you'll see wax figures representing celebrities and movie characters with a truly amazing level of detail. And very close to this is the Museum of Illusions, where you can marvel at more than 50 optical illusions that test your senses. Without a doubt, visiting these museums is one of the most fun activities in Orlando.

Details of interest

  • Price: about $30 per person per museum. Some have free admission.
  • Duration: between 1 and 2 hours each museum approximately.
  • Means of transportation: transportation is not included.
  • Advantages of this option: you will get to know the extravagant museums, and others where you will learn about art, culture and history of Orlando and Florida.
  • Disadvantages of this option: you must get to the theme parks on your own.

Join Orlando's most entertaining activities

What are the advantages of taking a guided tour vs. visiting Orlando on my own?

Jurassic Park River Adventure|©Frank DiBona
Jurassic Park River Adventure|©Frank DiBona

Taking a guided tour has many advantages, since it gives you the chance to see the main attractions of a city in a more comfortable way and in less time. They are highly recommended if you are only spending a day in a big city like Orlando, where distances are long and there is usually a lot of traffic.

For the same reason, it is also the best way to know the surrounding tourist attractions, that is, the excursions that are made from Orlando.

If you hire a tour, you will not waste time in transfers or in finding out what are the best things to do in Orlando, since the companies that offer these excursions have years of experience offering this service to travelers from all over the world. Having all the tour details covered, all you have to do is enjoy.

Another important advantage of taking a guided tour is that they provide you with complete information about the sites you visit, thanks to the fact that they are conducted by expert guides. If you have arrived at a city or tourist attraction, and you have not had time to find out much about its history, culture or significance, taking a guided tour will allow you to get to know it more deeply, and in a much more practical and comfortable way.

Join a guided tour in Orlando