Get our guide to spring break 2024 in Orlando for college students — straight from an actual college student (ICON Park® pictured).

Are you ready for a memorable spring break? Grab a group of friends and start planning your getaway to Orlando. This city has so much to offer, especially for those in search of a fun time filled with festivities and relaxation. From theme parks to nightlife, Orlando has it all. Speaking as a current college student and Visit Orlando intern, here are some spots that you can’t miss on your upcoming spring break trip.

Save on discount tickets: Orlando Theme Parks, Attractions & Experiences

Orlando vacation planning made easy — and free. Make a complimentary appointment with Visit Orlando’s Vacation Planners at a time and date of your choosing for the latest insider advice, special offers and more ahead of your next visit.

Orlando Spring Break Events for College Students

As spring rolls in, so do new events, including concerts, food festivals, live sports, art shows, theme park celebrations and more. Check some of them out here, all of which are included with theme park admission or even free to attend.

Discover: Spring Events in Orlando

Food, Art & Fun

Park Avenue in Winter Park
Park Avenue in Winter Park

65th Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival (March 15 – 17, 2024)

Any art fans in your group will love the 65th Winter Park Sidewalk Festival which is one of the most prestigious outdoor art festivals in the country. Located just north of Orlando, Winter Park is a perfect stop on your spring break trip with a picturesque shopping and dining district. Best of all, festival admission is free.

Discover: Spring Art Festivals in Orlando

EPCOT® International Flower & Garden Festival at Walt Disney World® Resort (Through May 27, 2024)

If you are interested in gardening and excited for the rise of springtime flowers, you can take it all in at the EPCOT® International Flower & Garden Festival. Enjoy garden exhibits, flavorful foods and live entertainment at Walt Disney World® Resort.

Discover: Spring Foodie Festivals in Orlando

Seven Seas Food Festival at SeaWorld® Orlando (Through May 19, 2024)

Looking to discover an ocean of flavors? You’ll find it at SeaWorld® Orlando’s Seven Seas Food Festival, along with live music. If you are a foodie and want to taste global cuisine delights, set sail on this delicious adventure.

Universal Mardi Gras: International Flavors of Carnaval at Universal Orlando Resort (Through April 7, 2024)

New Orleans isn’t the only place to celebrate Mardi Gras. Universal Orlando Resort is hosting their very own party, and it’s a time for people to gather and carry on the tradition of music, parades, floats and excitement.

Where to Spend St. Patrick’s Day

City Works Eatery & Pour House St. Patrick's Day Dining
Courtesy City Works Eatery & Pour House at DISNEY SPRINGS®, Part of WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort

Not only can you celebrate time off from class, but you can also celebrate St. Patrick’s Day here in Orlando. Here are two events perfect to get you in the holiday spirit.

Discover: St. Patrick’s Day in Orlando

St. Patrick’s Day Party at Boxi Park (March 15 – 17, 2024)

Boxi Park is hosting a special St. Patrick’s Day Party featuring delicious food and an exciting lineup of authentic entertainment. It takes place in Lake Nona close to Orlando International Airport. Pricing: Free

Discover: Things to Do in Lake Nona

St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl (March 17, 2024)

Dress up in your best green outfit and grab your group as you stop by some of downtown Orlando’s best bars during the St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl. Make sure to sign up so that you don’t miss out on all of the festivities. Pricing: $14 – $29.

Best Spring Break Hotel Stays for College Students

AC Hotel by Marriott Orlando Downtown

Hotels in Downtown Orlando

For those who enjoy venturing out into the night and exploring the city, staying in downtown Orlando is a great option for an unforgettable trip. In this area of town, there are multiple shops, cafes, clubs and bars.

Discover: Places to Stay in Downtown Orlando

Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando

Hotels in Orlando’s International Drive Area

If you’re looking to stay closer to the theme parks and attractions, then plan your stay near International Drive, aka I-Drive. Along our main strip are multiple dining and entertainment options for you and your friends. Indulge your need for speed at Andretti Indoor Karting & Games or stop for a drink at ICEBAR Orlando, among other adventures. These unique experiences will for sure make for highlights of your trip.

Discover: Places to Stay in the I-Drive Entertainment District

Shopping For College Students at Malls, Outlets & Boutiques

The Florida Mall®

Looking to do some shopping while on vacation? The Florida Mall® and The Mall at Millenia have you covered with a large variety of stores. And though it’s not technically a mall, Disney Springs® at Walt Disney World is a must-visit for serious shoppers.

Discover: Orlando Malls

If you’re after discounts, check out our world-famous outlet malls, including Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores, Orlando International Premium Outlets® and Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets®. Like our premier malls, they’re located close to downtown Orlando and our other attractions.

Discover: Orlando Outlets

You can also support local businesses and shop at hidden-gem boutique shops in Orlando’s charming neighborhoods and nearby Winter Park. It’s a great way to score some rare finds for your friends and family back home while exploring the city’s authentic side.

Discover: Neighborhood Shopping

Nightlife For College Students

1-Up in Orlando

For groups looking to explore Orlando’s nightlife, many bars and clubs are located in downtown Orlando. Most are located relatively close to each other or are within walking distance. Favorites include 1-Up, an ‘80s- and ‘90s-themed bar featuring free arcade games and a life-size Barbie Dreamhouse; Aero, a rooftop bar and lounge; Aloha Beautiful Tropical Karaoke Bar; and historic speakeasy Mathers Social Gathering. Find even more fun in store at Chillers (aka “Frozen Drink Bar”), Cahoots (aka “Arcade Bar”) and Latitudes (aka “Rooftop Tiki Bar”), which share a 3-story building in downtown Orlando.

Discover: Orlando Nightlife

You might also want to check out Wall Street Plaza, which is a mainstay of downtown’s nightlife scene. It features six bars connected by a central courtyard, including Wall Street Cantina, The Hen House, Hooch, Monkey Bar, Shine, and WaiTiki.

Restaurants for College Students

Maria & Enzo’s Ristorante at DISNEY SPRINGS®, Part of WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort in Orlando

Brunch Spots

Orlando is filled with trendy and fun brunch spots that provide a perfect way for you to start your day off with a mimosa in hand. In the downtown area, you can find Ember, an indoor/outdoor bar with a Mediterranean feel, and Elixir, which has a rustic-hip feel to it, with DJs playing on weekends. There are also even more options located outside of downtown, with great brunch spots in Winter Park and Walt Disney World.

Discover: Great Orlando Brunch Spots

Dancers on staircase at Mango's Tropical Cafe Orlando
Mango’s Tropical Cafe Orlando

Dinner & Entertainment

If you’re looking for a unique and memorable dining experience, there are many dining and entertainment possibilities to choose from. One popular option is Mango’s Tropical Cafe, a vibrant and lively place on I-Drive that showcases a premier dinner and show. And from Thursday through Sunday, the restaurant turns into a nightclub after dinner.

Discover: Eat & Drink in Orlando

Taverna Opa at Pointe Orlando

Part of Pointe Orlando on I-Drive, the Greek-themed Taverna Opa has live entertainment almost round the clock. Be prepared to get up on the table and follow along with the belly dancing performers. And get ready to throw your napkins in the air.

Discover: Things to Do at Pointe Orlando

And in downtown Orlando, Taco Kat serves authentic Mexican food and plays amazing Latin music. Hidden within is a speakeasy that opens later in the night for those looking for a late-night adventure.

Theme Parks & Water Parks for College Students

Two couples laughing in the water at Universal's Volcano Bay
Universal Volcano Bay at Universal Orlando Resort

Orlando is the Theme Park Capital of the World — and we have plenty of water parks, too. Between Walt Disney World® Resort, Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld® Orlando, Orlando has it all.

Walt Disney World® Resort

Walt Disney World is made up of multiple parks, including Magic Kingdom® Park, Disney’s Hollywood Studios®, EPCOT® and Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park. Each contains rides, food and entertainment for all ages. Walt Disney World also has Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, along with Disney Springs and lots more to explore.

SeaWorld® Orlando

For a twist in your usual theme parks, SeaWorld® Orlando theme park offers both coasters and animal experiences. If you are an adrenaline seeker, try out these famously known coasters: Mako, Kraken and Manta, along with newcomers Ice Breaker and Pipeline: The Surf Coaster. When you’re ready to make a splash, Aquatica® Orlando features waterslides, marine life, and aquariums.

Universal Orlando Resort

At Universal Orlando Resort, Universal Studios Florida and Universal Islands of Adventure have rides varying from slow and steady to high-speed roller coasters. Food stands and restaurants are located within the parks as well as in their entertainment and dining district, Universal CityWalk. Universal Volcano Bay has water rides, a wave pool, and menu offerings and specialty cocktails inspired by the South Pacific islands.

Discovery Cove®

At Discovery Cove, you can interact with marine mammals while spending time under the sun. Some activities that you can do at this all-inclusive day resort include swimming with dolphins, snorkeling with fish and rays, and hand-feeding tropical birds. You can also stay in a cabana for the day or purchase an upgraded food and drink package. (All-day snacks and basic drinks are included.)

Island H2O Live!

Island H2O Live! is Orlando’s newest water park. Here, you will appreciate the variety of water rides, waterslides, and food and dining options in an immersive, technologically advanced setting. It’s part of Margaritaville Resort Orlando near Walt Disney World.

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