Discover some of Orlando’s coolest outdoor attractions and activities this fall and winter, including kayaking at Rock Springs Run State Reserve (pictured, courtesy Get Up & Go Kayaking).

Updated Dec. 5, 2023

Make the most of Orlando’s balmy winter weather with unique outdoor experiences by land, sea and air. Here are more than 15 ways to get outdoors in Orlando this fall and winter (and even spring) from high-octane thrills such as zip-lining and hang-gliding, to mellower pursuits like camping and horseback riding.

Discover: Orlando Ecotourism

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Fly High at Wallaby Ranch Hang Gliding Flight Park

Wallaby Ranch Featured on The Wanderer, presented by TripAdvisor, Available to Stream on Amazon Prime Video

Soar closer to the sun on a tandem discovery flight at Wallaby Ranch, the largest hang-gliding flight park in the world. The exhilarating adventure features 15 minutes of guided free flying over lakes and woodlands, just minutes from Walt Disney World® Resort. They also offer plenty of outdoor fun on the ground, from camping and swimming to 15 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails.

Discover: Wallaby Ranch Hang Gliding Flight Park

Tour the West Orange Trail

You can also cycle, skate, jog and even go horseback riding along the West Orange Trail, a 22-mile paved trail with multiple points of interest along the way. The fully paved trail runs from Killarney in the south to Apopka in the north. Explore the boardwalk trail to Lake Apopka at Oakland Nature Preserve, explore a butterfly garden and coast beneath a canopy of ancient live oaks in Oakland, and cool off with locally crafted brews, shopping and attractions in historic Winter Garden. Want to bike the trail but didn’t bring one with you? West Orange Trail Bikes & Blades Co. in Winter Garden can hook you up.

Discover: Things to Do in Winter Garden

Soak Up the Sights on the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour

Scenic Boat Tour - Winter Park canal
Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour

Relax aboard the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour, a one-hour narrated cruise through the lakes and canals of historic Winter Park. Float past abundant flora and fauna, including cranes, cypress trees, swaying palms and more, and drink in the view of beautiful homes and lakefront estates glittering along the shore.

Discover: Things to Do in Winter Park

Take a Self-Guided Outdoor Art Tour

When the weather cools down, heat things up on a self-guided tour of Orlando’s vibrant murals, sculpture gardens and public art installations. Start with a lively stroll around Lake Eola Park in downtown Orlando, or head to Luminary Green Park in the Parramore district. Then, use our handy public art guide to discover nearly 50 murals throughout surrounding neighborhoods and districts like Mills 50, College Park, The Milk District and Thornton Park.

Discover: Orlando Murals

You’ll also find plenty of open-air sculpture gardens throughout the destination, from the Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Garden (ticket required) in Winter Park to the free-to-visit Lake Nona Sculpture Garden in Lake Nona.

Discover: Inside Orlando’s Lake Nona Sculpture Garden

Stroll Through Gorgeous Gardens

Statue at Harry P. Leu Gardens
Harry P. Leu Gardens in the Audubon Park Garden District

If you prefer to be surrounded by natural works of art, spend the day exploring one of Orlando’s beautiful gardens. Along with the Albin Polasek Sculpture Garden, Harry P. Leu Gardens in the Audubon Park Garden District is a popular choice, with over 40 diverse plant collections spread across 50 acres. Mead Botanical Garden and Kraft Azalea Garden, both in Winter Park, are also prime for relaxation, while Bok Tower Gardens is well worth the one-hour drive from our main tourism districts.

Discover: Orlando’s Gorgeous Gardens

Float Through Natural Springs Near Orlando

A couple kayaking through King's Landing at Wekiva River
Kayak Through Stunning Natural Springs Near Orlando

Florida’s natural springs remain warm year-round, so you can swim, snorkel, join a guided eco-tour or simply enjoy the region’s beautiful flora and fauna. Explore on your own, or let the pros handle the details with guided tours or rental options from Epic Paddle Adventures, Get Up and Go Kayaking, Gray Line of Orlando Sightseeing Tours, Crystal River Watersports, and Real Florida Adventures.

Discover: Natural Springs Near Orlando

You might even have some unexpected company: manatees, who flock to the springs in search of warm winter waters. Peak manatee season is from mid-November through March, making the cooler months the perfect time to see some of Florida’s most beloved mammals.

Discover: Where to See Manatees in Orlando

Discover Orlando’s Lush Nature Preserves

If you prefer adventures by land, hit the trails at one of Orlando’s many nature preserves. Explore cypress swamp, oak hammock and other native Florida ecosystems while keeping an eye out for protected species like bald eagles, gopher tortoises and wood storks. Tibet-Butler Preserve and Oakland Nature Preserve are both great for families, with kid-friendly interpretive trails, hands-on learning centers and a serene lakeside setting within 30 minutes of Walt Disney World.

If the weather gets too cold for your liking, hop in the car and explore Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive instead. Available on weekends and select holidays, this self-guided journey covers 11 miles along Lake Apopka, the fourth-largest lake in the state of Florida. Download the free audio guide online to learn about the area’s rich history, and keep an eye out for ospreys, red-shouldered hawks and over 360 additional bird species as you drive.

Go Glamping

While you’re exploring the great outdoors, why not add an overnight stay at one of Orlando’s unconventional “glamp” sites? You’ll find several unique options throughout the area, from spacious cabins, eco-tents and luxury bell tents at Lake Louisa State Park to luxury tents, wagons, teepees and more at Westgate River Ranch & Rodeo.

Discover: Places to Stay in Orlando

Embark on a Thrilling Airboat Tour

Spirit of the Swamp Airboat Rides mom and kids on airboat posing for camera
Spirit of the Swamp Airboat Rides

Speed through the headwaters of the wild Florida Everglades on a guided airboat tour. This thrilling adventure is perfect for everyone, whether you prefer to lean into the action or sit back and enjoy the sights. See native Florida wildlife like blue herons, bald eagles and even alligators, then enjoy amenities back on land to complete your wild day out. Try Spirit of the Swamp Airboat Rides for private swamp tours lasting up to two hours, Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures (get discount tickets) for dazzling sunset tours, or Wild Florida (get discount tickets) for a full day of fun — admission to their onsite Gator Park is included with every airboat tour.

Discover: Orlando Tours

Sailing & Private Boat Rentals

Sailing Orlando sunset sail
Sailing Orlando

If you prefer to be the one at the helm, look into private boat rentals from Luxe Jet Ski Rentals or Walt Disney World® Marinas, or learn to sail with Sailing Orlando, which offers sailing lessons and private tours near Orlando’s College Park district. Cooler weather is also perfect for sightseeing tours, fireworks cruises, catamaran tours and more scenic fun on the water.

Discover: Unique Experiences on the Water in Orlando

Discover Seasonal Festivals & Events in Orlando

Head outside to enjoy seasonal festivals aplenty throughout the holiday season and well into the new year. From u-picks and pumpkin patches to the twinkling lights of Oh, What Fun!® Holiday Festival in Lake Nona, you’ll find plenty of cool-weather fun during your next Orlando visit. Plus, enjoy outdoor art festivals, theme park events, cultural extravaganzas and more in the leadup to spring.

Discover: Upcoming Orlando Events &

Go Ice Skating in Orlando

Ice skating in Orlando? You got it! Ice skating is available year-round at indoor rinks like Orlando Ice Den, and you can even find a few festive outdoor rinks throughout the holiday season. Skate alongside the SeaWorld® Orlando Central Lagoon during SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration (park admission required), or lace up your skates at annual holiday celebrations like Now Snowing in the town of Celebration near Walt Disney World. You can even enjoy outdoor ice skating at Meliá Orlando Celebration, available for a limited time throughout the holiday season.

Get Wild at Orlando’s Outdoor Adventure Parks

Swing through the trees at Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park, an aerial adventure with six courses, 97 games and two massive zip lines. It’s in Kissimmee, just 15 minutes from Walt Disney World.

Save on discount tickets: Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park

Or, gear up for a full day of high-octane thrills at aquatic adventure parks like Nona Adventure Park, where you can conquer a 1,000-foot-long inflatable obstacle course and learn to wakeboard at speeds up to 36 MPH.

Go Fishing

Father and son fishing at Caribe Royale Orlando
Caribe Royale Orlando

Reel in an unforgettable day out at Orlando’s top fishing spots. Many of our amenity-packed hotels and resorts offer catch-and-release fishing, equipment rentals, knowledgeable guides, and excursions to help you score a big catch. You can also settle in at one of Orlando’s many public parks and trails or unwind on a guided excursion with Revolution Adventures. For up-to-date information about fishing licensing and regulations in Florida, visit the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Discover: Unbelievably Reel Fishing in Orlando

Horseback Riding in Orlando

Horseback riding with Epic Paddle Adventures
Epic Paddle Adventures

Slow down on a guided horseback ride through tree-lined floodplains and idyllic Central Florida woodlands. Tri-Circle-D Ranch is a convenient option located at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground at Walt Disney World, offering scenic trail rides for adults and old-fashioned pony rides for the younger set. You can even book a festive sleigh ride through the woods during the holiday season.

For true untouched Florida wilderness, venture out to Hidden Palms Ranch in Sanford, about 40 minutes north of our main tourism districts, or Lake Louisa State Park, located about 30 minutes from Walt Disney World. And though they’re best known for fun on the water, Epic Paddle Adventures offers horseback riding as well.

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