When most people think of Orlando, they immediately think of Walt Disney World, or Universal Orlando or SeaWorld. But there is an entire (and very large) area of attractions, restaurants and shopping surrounding those theme parks that can give a family a great vacation.
International Drive, Orlando is commonly referred to as I-Drive and is a stretch well over 10 miles long full of attractions and restaurants. The I-Ride Trolley bus system is operated (mainly for tourist) to take you from one end to the other. To help you explore I-Drive, hop on the Trolley! The I-Ride Trolley Service will give you an affordable and convenient way to move between attractions, restaurants and accommodations in the area. The trolley offers a low, single ride fare of around $2; unlimited ride pass (around $5 for the day); 3 day passes 5 day passes, weekly passes and senior rate passes are available. You can move around the area for days for a fraction of the cost of a rental car.
The I-Drive area is home to the Orange County Convention Center complex, the Pointe Orlando entertainment complex, major hotels, SeaWorld Orlando, the Wet ‘n Wild Orlando water park, the Orlando Eye Ferris wheel, the I-Drive 360 entertainment complex, museums, restaurants, bars, and outlet malls.
At many locations, you can pick up an International Drive Official Visitors Guide that will n ot only give you information on all that the area offers but is also filled with discount coupons that will add up to some great savings.
Take a ride on the Orlando Eye! This 400-foot-tall observation wheel will give you a stunning view of Central Florida in all directions inside fully enclosed, air-conditioned cars.
Take a guided tour at Titanic – The Artifact Exhibition, where you will see full-scale recreations of Titanic’s most famous locales ~ the grand staircase, first class parlor suite, veranda cafe and promenade deck. Historians in period costume portray famous Titanic notables, sharing stories of the passengers and crew.
Newly opened this month ~ I-Drive welcomed one of South Beach’s hottest dance clubs, Mango’s Tropical Cafe. With 55,000 square feet of entertainment space, the massive restaurant and nightclub is sure to become one of the most popular spots in Orlando.
Madame Tussauds Orlando – offers wax figures of your favorite celebrities! Get in the picture with one!
There are over 200 restaurants along International Drive including some favorites like:
- Dave & Buster’s
- Authentic Greek food at Taverna Opa – where you can learn to belly dance!
- Cafe Tu Tu Tango is fun with a bohemian flair and supports local artists with a selection of their work scattered throughout and non-stop eclectic entertainment
- Have a cheeseburger in paradise at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville
- Be Scottish for a few hours at the Tilted Kilt Pub and Eatery
- Let your PIRATE out at the Pirate’s Dinner Adventure
- Solve the murder at Sleuths Mystery Dinner Theater
- Outback Steakhouse
- Carrabba’s Italian Grill
- Yard House
- Buffalo Wild Wings
- Eat 24 hours a day at the B-Line Diner at Hyatt Regency Orlando
- Highly acclaimed Capital Grille
International Drive offers a long list of fun events, 42,000 hotel rooms, 22 great and different attractions, 3 entertainment complexes, 200+ restaurants and 550 shops all in close proximity to the major theme parks. What more could a family ask for when planning a vacation?