Local Area Information

Well firstly I would expect everyone considering our villa for there vacation in Florida to want to know how far it is from Disneyland and Universal Studios. 

Disneyland. Out of Highgrove on to the US27 South and you immediately turn off for the 192 and follow that till you see the turn off for Disney. It is approximately 9 miles and a 15-20 minute drive.

Universal Studios. Again out of Highgrove on to the US27 South and again immediately turn off for the 192 again and folly past turn off for Disney and then take the interstate 4 north for Orlando and take the turn off for Universal witch is sign posted. This trip is about 20 miles and can take from 40 minutes to one hour, it is very dependent on the amount of traffic on the interstate 4 to be honest.

Water Parks are also a big attraction and again Orlando is spoilt for choice, we have only visited Typhoon Lagoon at Disney which we thoroughly enjoyed. Blizzard beach is also at Disney then you have Volcano Bay close to Universal. Another new one that has just opened and only a 10 minute drive from the villa is island h2o live which is along the 192.

Of course Florida has so many attractions and its not all about the parks, there are so many other places, activities and sights to see. If you love shopping there at least two great shopping malls. Mall of Millenia (our favourite ) and The Florida Mall, they are probably only half an hour drive from each other. Both have department stores, food halls and various other shops. We have links here to each of the Malls and to the designer outlets. Again these are no more than 30 minutes from each other.

www.simon.com/mall/the-florida-mall

www.premiumoutlets.com/outlet/orlando-vineland

www.premiumoutlets.com/outlet/orlando-international

www.mallatmillenia.com  

Personally we love Mall at Millenia to Florida Mall. There is a Cheesecake factory restaurant there or though one has opened up close by to Premium Outlet Vineland. There is also a Bath & Bodyworks store. As far as the two outlet malls we prefer Vineland as its also closer to the villa but both are equally good and worth a visit if you enjoy a good shop. A little tip would be to sign up at these websites above to get discount emails. Also with some of these you can sign up at the information centres at each mall, pay $10 and enjoy 10% extra off at all the stores.

Outside markets are another favourite of ours. The sunday market at Celebration is about a 20 minute drive from the villa along the 192. Celebration was built by Disney with alot of the architecture in the Colonial style, beautiful to drive through and admire. In the centre of Celebration is the market, Its not huge, perhaps only 20-30 stalls but some cafes and shops also, we love Market Diner which does a fantastic breakfast Burrito. You can walk it off with a pleasant walk round the lake. Its a very relaxing way to spend a sunday morning and we do it often when we visit. Another market we have visited is the Lake Eola sunday market in Downtown Orlando, a longer drive with again some gorgeous Colonial style homes close by. Again not a large market but you can also walk round the lake with the skyscrapers of Orlando casting their reflection in the lake, definately worth it.

If you are a fan of markets/ car boot sale/ flea markets then why not have a drive to Webster, its about an hour drive through countryside and Webster flea market is the largest in Florida and off the tourist trail and makes an interesting change lots of old curios/american antiques to browse. Careful what you buy as obviously you have to get it back to where you live.

When it comes to Gator Parks and and air boat tours we can recommend Wild Florida which is about one hours drive from the villa, we had a brilliant airboat tour of Cypress Lake, it also has a mini zoo with sloths, alligators and many more wild animals of Florida. You can even feed the alligators. We left at 8.30am in the morning and were back by 4pm so its not a long day trip at all.