Jesse’s Guidebook to Orlando and surrounding areas

Jesse
Jesse’s Guidebook to Orlando and surrounding areas

Amusement Parks

Orlando is the number one tourist attraction in the United States - particularly for families! But there are tons of affordable options as well!
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Walt Disney World Resort
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Universal Studios Florida
6000 Universal Blvd
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SeaWorld Orlando
7007 Sea World Dr
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Welcome to Wekiwa Springs State Park! With emerald springs feeding the Wekiwa River and lush tropical hammocks, this unique park just minutes from downtown Orlando is perfect for observing abundant wildlife or cooling off on a summer day. Miles of trails beg to be explored on foot, bike or horseback, and canoes and kayaks are available on-site. It’s easy to see why visitors have been flocking to beautiful Wekiwa Springs since the mid-19th century. Wekiwa Springs has a special place in the hearts of those lucky folks who have grown up nearby, spending weekends exploring the spring vent and paddling canoes past the purple blooms of pickerelweed. The azure waters of Wekiwa Springs have made it Orange County’s longest-running tourist attraction. From the dense, almost tropical hammocks near where the springs feed into the Wekiva River to the scenic sandhill uplands, the park offers ample opportunities to see many kinds of animals. Very affordable! https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/wekiwa-springs-state-park
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Wekiwa Springs State Park
1800 Wekiwa Cir
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Welcome to Wekiwa Springs State Park! With emerald springs feeding the Wekiwa River and lush tropical hammocks, this unique park just minutes from downtown Orlando is perfect for observing abundant wildlife or cooling off on a summer day. Miles of trails beg to be explored on foot, bike or horseback, and canoes and kayaks are available on-site. It’s easy to see why visitors have been flocking to beautiful Wekiwa Springs since the mid-19th century. Wekiwa Springs has a special place in the hearts of those lucky folks who have grown up nearby, spending weekends exploring the spring vent and paddling canoes past the purple blooms of pickerelweed. The azure waters of Wekiwa Springs have made it Orange County’s longest-running tourist attraction. From the dense, almost tropical hammocks near where the springs feed into the Wekiva River to the scenic sandhill uplands, the park offers ample opportunities to see many kinds of animals. Very affordable! https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/wekiwa-springs-state-park
Fun Spot America Theme Parks is a family-owned business with a long history in our industry. Our Founder, John Arie, Sr has been a part of the entertainment park industry since 1969. John operated and ran several small tracks from 1969 through 1978. In 1979, John opened Fun N Wheels on International Drive, which was and still is the heart of the tourist corridor in Orlando, Florida. Fun N Wheels in Orlando was the first themed action park with multiple tracks, family rides, and an open-air arcade. It featured the world’s second slick track and central Florida’s first figure 8 bridge tracks. The concept was well-received by locals and tourists alike. In 1988 John opened his second Fun N Wheels in Kissimmee, Florida, just minutes from Disney World. Both locations became a staple in the community and proved to be very successful. John sold the Fun N Wheels properties in 1988 and continued to manage the parks until 1991. In 1990 John opened the first Fun Spot in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and shortly after opened the Virginia Beach location. In 1994, John created the world’s first sprint track, delivering the best side-by-side racing excitement in a concession kart environment. John also developed aviation-inspired guardrails that provide the safest, most efficient, visually pleasing guardrail system in the industry. In 1997 he moved the Fun Spot brand to Orlando and began construction of the Orlando park on the North end of International Drive, close to his original Fun N Wheels location. The Orlando park opened on December 24th, 1997, and introduced our patented design of multi-level tracks that became our signature. In 2004 we purchased the world’s tallest Skycoaster, and in 2007 we expanded that attraction to the 9 acres of tracks, family/thrill rides, and an arcade at the Kissimmee location. In June 2013, Fun Spot Action Park underwent a 15‐acre renovation and expansion including a name change to Fun Spot America! The Orlando location now boasts Orlando’s first wooden roller coaster along with the second-tallest SkyCoaster in the world, the tallest being at our Kissimmee location. In 2017 the Mine Blower wooden roller coaster opened at Kissimmee Park and features the only wooden roller coaster that goes upside down in the Southeast United States. The year 2017 also brought expansion outside of Florida when Fun Spot America acquired an existing park in Fayetteville, Georgia, and renamed it Fun Spot America Atlanta. The Atlanta location boasts our largest four-story go-kart track, The Samson. Standing at 40 feet tall and 1,800 feet long the track is Georgia’s first and only multi-level go-kart-track. Atlanta is also home to a new Ferris Wheel, Batting Cages, and more fun for the whole family. With the continued support of our local community and a strong belief in the practicing of “The Golden Rule”, we hope to continue to grow and provide Safe-Clean-Fun for all https://fun-spot.com/about/
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Fun Spot America
5700 Fun Spot Way
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Fun Spot America Theme Parks is a family-owned business with a long history in our industry. Our Founder, John Arie, Sr has been a part of the entertainment park industry since 1969. John operated and ran several small tracks from 1969 through 1978. In 1979, John opened Fun N Wheels on International Drive, which was and still is the heart of the tourist corridor in Orlando, Florida. Fun N Wheels in Orlando was the first themed action park with multiple tracks, family rides, and an open-air arcade. It featured the world’s second slick track and central Florida’s first figure 8 bridge tracks. The concept was well-received by locals and tourists alike. In 1988 John opened his second Fun N Wheels in Kissimmee, Florida, just minutes from Disney World. Both locations became a staple in the community and proved to be very successful. John sold the Fun N Wheels properties in 1988 and continued to manage the parks until 1991. In 1990 John opened the first Fun Spot in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and shortly after opened the Virginia Beach location. In 1994, John created the world’s first sprint track, delivering the best side-by-side racing excitement in a concession kart environment. John also developed aviation-inspired guardrails that provide the safest, most efficient, visually pleasing guardrail system in the industry. In 1997 he moved the Fun Spot brand to Orlando and began construction of the Orlando park on the North end of International Drive, close to his original Fun N Wheels location. The Orlando park opened on December 24th, 1997, and introduced our patented design of multi-level tracks that became our signature. In 2004 we purchased the world’s tallest Skycoaster, and in 2007 we expanded that attraction to the 9 acres of tracks, family/thrill rides, and an arcade at the Kissimmee location. In June 2013, Fun Spot Action Park underwent a 15‐acre renovation and expansion including a name change to Fun Spot America! The Orlando location now boasts Orlando’s first wooden roller coaster along with the second-tallest SkyCoaster in the world, the tallest being at our Kissimmee location. In 2017 the Mine Blower wooden roller coaster opened at Kissimmee Park and features the only wooden roller coaster that goes upside down in the Southeast United States. The year 2017 also brought expansion outside of Florida when Fun Spot America acquired an existing park in Fayetteville, Georgia, and renamed it Fun Spot America Atlanta. The Atlanta location boasts our largest four-story go-kart track, The Samson. Standing at 40 feet tall and 1,800 feet long the track is Georgia’s first and only multi-level go-kart-track. Atlanta is also home to a new Ferris Wheel, Batting Cages, and more fun for the whole family. With the continued support of our local community and a strong belief in the practicing of “The Golden Rule”, we hope to continue to grow and provide Safe-Clean-Fun for all https://fun-spot.com/about/

Food scene

We love independent restaurant owners and encourage you to try some of the best food in Orlando that you might not hear about above the theme park noise.
Sandwich shop is close by and available for pick up or delivery. Wide variety of subs to choose from. Best sandwiches in Orlando but you are free to argue with the owner about whether your pressed. Cuban should have mustard (miami style) or mayo (tampa style)! Tell them Jesse sent you!
Sub Shack
3781 Ocoee Apopka Road
Sandwich shop is close by and available for pick up or delivery. Wide variety of subs to choose from. Best sandwiches in Orlando but you are free to argue with the owner about whether your pressed. Cuban should have mustard (miami style) or mayo (tampa style)! Tell them Jesse sent you!
Rays fish and chips is a family owned fish and seafood restaurant that will exceed your expectations. Fish and seafood hand selected by chef daily. Don’t see something that makes your mouth water? Let the chef know and he will happily craft something special! And don’t leave without having the key lime pie! Dine in, take out and delivery. https://g.co/kgs/GVbvJ9
Adrian's Fish & Chips Restaurant
526 South Hunt Club Boulevard
Rays fish and chips is a family owned fish and seafood restaurant that will exceed your expectations. Fish and seafood hand selected by chef daily. Don’t see something that makes your mouth water? Let the chef know and he will happily craft something special! And don’t leave without having the key lime pie! Dine in, take out and delivery. https://g.co/kgs/GVbvJ9
Vines Grille & Wine Bar is a modern upscale experience built on the fierce idea that food and wine hold the key to forming enduring connections. We marry quality ingredients, a passionate team, and a vibrant environment for the ultimate dining experience. Our passion for great food is rivaled only by our obsession with great wine. With an unbeatable selection, our ever-evolving list represents current trends, unique finds, and certifiable classics. Our focus is selecting quality wines from boutique wineries and top producers from around the globe. There is a perfect wine for every dish, person, and moment. Our passion is helping you find it! Absolutely perfect experiences for special occasions! Definitely pricey but worth every penny! https://vinesgrille.com/
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Vines Grille & Wine Bar
7533 W Sand Lake Rd
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Vines Grille & Wine Bar is a modern upscale experience built on the fierce idea that food and wine hold the key to forming enduring connections. We marry quality ingredients, a passionate team, and a vibrant environment for the ultimate dining experience. Our passion for great food is rivaled only by our obsession with great wine. With an unbeatable selection, our ever-evolving list represents current trends, unique finds, and certifiable classics. Our focus is selecting quality wines from boutique wineries and top producers from around the globe. There is a perfect wine for every dish, person, and moment. Our passion is helping you find it! Absolutely perfect experiences for special occasions! Definitely pricey but worth every penny! https://vinesgrille.com/

Sightseeing

Southern Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp Meeting Association is a community of spiritually-minded people established in 1894. We invite you to learn about our history and the religion of Spiritualism. Seekers are welcome and self-exploration is encouraged. Be sure to include us on your next visit to the Orlando/Daytona Beach area. We open at 10 and close at 5 monday through friday and 10-4 on saturday. Open 7 days a week. Lots of gift shops with handmade talismans and tokens. Walkins welcome but appointments for healers or medium readings are recommended. Lots of group sessions and beautiful parks and media rations spaces. https://www.cassadaga.org/who-we-are.html
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Cassadaga
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Southern Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp Meeting Association is a community of spiritually-minded people established in 1894. We invite you to learn about our history and the religion of Spiritualism. Seekers are welcome and self-exploration is encouraged. Be sure to include us on your next visit to the Orlando/Daytona Beach area. We open at 10 and close at 5 monday through friday and 10-4 on saturday. Open 7 days a week. Lots of gift shops with handmade talismans and tokens. Walkins welcome but appointments for healers or medium readings are recommended. Lots of group sessions and beautiful parks and media rations spaces. https://www.cassadaga.org/who-we-are.html

Neighborhoods

The history of Apopka Florida begins in 7500 B.C., when Native Americans first lived on the shores of Lake Apopka. In the early 19th century there was a Seminole village on Lake Apopka. Apopka comes from the Seminole word Ahapopka meaning “potato eating place”. In 1842, the Armed Occupation Act brought new settlers to the Apopka area. The climate and the agricultural opportunities in Apopka attracted developers and settlers, and the town became an important trading center in Northwest Orange County in the 1850s. Among those new settlers were the Masons. In 1857, the Masons organized the Orange Lodge No. 36 and The Lodge building was completed in 1859. It was around this building that the town became known as the “The Lodge” as the town grew in the 1860s and 1870s. Today, the Orange Lodge No. 36 is still the oldest running lodge in the State of Florida and is located on its original site at Alabama Avenue and Highway 441. The City of Apopka was later incorporated in 1882 as the “Town of Apopka City” which it remained until its official name change in the early 1900s. For the next 100 years, Apopka was referred to as the “Indoor Foliage Capital of the World” due to the extensive greenhouse nurseries located within the city. Many of these nurseries remain today. The City of Apopka became a rapidly growing community and began to expand in all directions. Due to access to railroad and aviation located in Apopka, this area has become a sought after location for many industries, to include, manufacturing, healthcare, tech, construction, and industrial distribution. With 27,000 acres of beautiful parks and recreation, and 394 miles of bike and walking trails, people of all ages love to visit and take advantage of Apopka’s natural resources and eco-tourism. The community is located only a few miles from popular travel destinations, such as Disney World, Universal Studios, and Gatorland. Making it a wonderful place to visit and live. Much of the new growth in Apopka can be attributed to The John Land Apopka Expressway (Toll 414) which opened on May 15, 2009.
Apopka
The history of Apopka Florida begins in 7500 B.C., when Native Americans first lived on the shores of Lake Apopka. In the early 19th century there was a Seminole village on Lake Apopka. Apopka comes from the Seminole word Ahapopka meaning “potato eating place”. In 1842, the Armed Occupation Act brought new settlers to the Apopka area. The climate and the agricultural opportunities in Apopka attracted developers and settlers, and the town became an important trading center in Northwest Orange County in the 1850s. Among those new settlers were the Masons. In 1857, the Masons organized the Orange Lodge No. 36 and The Lodge building was completed in 1859. It was around this building that the town became known as the “The Lodge” as the town grew in the 1860s and 1870s. Today, the Orange Lodge No. 36 is still the oldest running lodge in the State of Florida and is located on its original site at Alabama Avenue and Highway 441. The City of Apopka was later incorporated in 1882 as the “Town of Apopka City” which it remained until its official name change in the early 1900s. For the next 100 years, Apopka was referred to as the “Indoor Foliage Capital of the World” due to the extensive greenhouse nurseries located within the city. Many of these nurseries remain today. The City of Apopka became a rapidly growing community and began to expand in all directions. Due to access to railroad and aviation located in Apopka, this area has become a sought after location for many industries, to include, manufacturing, healthcare, tech, construction, and industrial distribution. With 27,000 acres of beautiful parks and recreation, and 394 miles of bike and walking trails, people of all ages love to visit and take advantage of Apopka’s natural resources and eco-tourism. The community is located only a few miles from popular travel destinations, such as Disney World, Universal Studios, and Gatorland. Making it a wonderful place to visit and live. Much of the new growth in Apopka can be attributed to The John Land Apopka Expressway (Toll 414) which opened on May 15, 2009.

City/town information

Drive on the beach in nearby Daytona! Daytona Beach is dubbed the “World’s Most Famous Beach” for a variety of reasons, but mainly for its 23 miles of wide, hard-packed white-sand beaches that welcomed the first automobile and motorcycle races in 1902. Today, while professional drivers stick to the track at the ‘World Center of Racing’, Daytona International Speedway, visitors still enjoy driving very slowly (10 mph) along Daytona Beach in designated areas, tide permitting. Beach driving is one of the most popular and iconic activities beachgoers have come to enjoy as part of their Daytona Beach vacation tradition. Take a scenic ride or put your car in park to enjoy a beach day with everything you need just a stone’s throw from your beach towel. Cars aren’t the only mode of transportation worthy of our breathtaking beaches. You can rent golf carts in Daytona Beach and those traveling on two wheels can have just as much fun. Our white-sand beaches are perfect for an early morning pedal, a relaxing afternoon cruise, or a romantic ride at dusk before a night on the town. Beach driving is a selective activity that can only be enjoyed in a few areas around the United States and in Florida is limited to the spectacular beaches right here in the Daytona Beach and New Smyrna Beach areas on Florida’s East Coast. Beach access points can be found along Florida’s Atlantic Highway, otherwise known as A1A, in the heart of Daytona Beach. Cars are permitted in designated areas of the beach from sunrise to sunset, tidal conditions permitting.
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Daytona Beach
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Drive on the beach in nearby Daytona! Daytona Beach is dubbed the “World’s Most Famous Beach” for a variety of reasons, but mainly for its 23 miles of wide, hard-packed white-sand beaches that welcomed the first automobile and motorcycle races in 1902. Today, while professional drivers stick to the track at the ‘World Center of Racing’, Daytona International Speedway, visitors still enjoy driving very slowly (10 mph) along Daytona Beach in designated areas, tide permitting. Beach driving is one of the most popular and iconic activities beachgoers have come to enjoy as part of their Daytona Beach vacation tradition. Take a scenic ride or put your car in park to enjoy a beach day with everything you need just a stone’s throw from your beach towel. Cars aren’t the only mode of transportation worthy of our breathtaking beaches. You can rent golf carts in Daytona Beach and those traveling on two wheels can have just as much fun. Our white-sand beaches are perfect for an early morning pedal, a relaxing afternoon cruise, or a romantic ride at dusk before a night on the town. Beach driving is a selective activity that can only be enjoyed in a few areas around the United States and in Florida is limited to the spectacular beaches right here in the Daytona Beach and New Smyrna Beach areas on Florida’s East Coast. Beach access points can be found along Florida’s Atlantic Highway, otherwise known as A1A, in the heart of Daytona Beach. Cars are permitted in designated areas of the beach from sunrise to sunset, tidal conditions permitting.