Starting off as a modest production house and staging two of the Bard's plays around two decades ago, the Orlando Shakespeare Theater today has a permanent house to feature an entire catalog of Shakespeare's works. The 50,000 square foot complex houses various theaters. Aside from staging the works of the Bard through 29 in-house productions, adaptations of prominent books are also undertaken such as Robinson Crusoe, A Christmas Carol, Dracula and Frankenstein.
If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life, Lake Eola is an ideal escape without having to leave the city. The lake is a part of a park complex that includes a lovely walkway, which encircles the lake and serves as a running track. The park is a whopping 43.2 acres (17.48 hectares), which makes it easy to feel like you really have left the city. Visitors can use the picnic facilities located throughout the park, or rent a boat to take out onto the lake.
Orlando Science Center is a glistening structure that looks like the product of a meeting between Greek-Roman architects and Star Trek engineers. The analogy applies to the activities inside as well. The museum strives to teach kids (and adults) about classical science using modern, hands-on, sometimes high-tech activities. The museum houses themed exhibit halls where patrons can explore the human body, modern technology, the solar system and other topics. The exhibits often change, so you can always learn something new. Its eight-story CineDome is billed as one of the world's largest movie theaters where they show large-format nature/technology films.
This lovely 50-acre botanical garden is situated on Lake Rowena and promises to offer visitors a chance to escape into Old Florida. Wander miles of paved paths through forests of giant camphor, oaks and palms. The formal Rose Garden is one of the largest in the South, but don't pass up the opportunity to visit the herb, butterfly, palm and bamboo gardens as well. Towering over all this natural wonder is the Leu House. Built-in 1888, it now serves as a decorative arts museum.
Opened on 9th October, 2003, the Orlando Repertory Theatre is meant for the young crowd as well as families. It holds many plays, classes, camps, and offers performance opportunities for young artists. ThisLearn place promotes reading, literacy, and verbal skills through the use of books and plays as literature.
The Orange County Regional History Center allows visitors to explore 12,000 years worth of Central Florida history. The detailed exhibits go as far back as the Seminole Wars, and cover everything from natural disasters to the arraignment of Ted Bundy. You can even find out what Orlando was like before the establishment of Walt Disney World. Be sure to explore the gift shop for some excellent souvenirs.
The 250-odd seat Mad Cow Theatre is a prime venue in Orlando to host plays, music concerts, dances or musicals. The annual Orlando Cabaret Festival finds itself a permanent venue at the Mad Cow Theatre. Before the popular movie Sweeney Todd lit the big screen, one of the places it ran as a successful musical was the Mad Cow. Adding to the list of popular musicals featured often is the Fantasticks. Comedies such as Present Laughter or analysis of human nature in A Number have been other features to earn standing ovations.
The CityArts Factory is situated in the Downtown Arts District and displays one of the largest art collections in Orlando. This is not your typical art gallery, since there are astounding presentations of visual and performing arts. The CityArts Factory building contains six independent art galleries on the first level, with the SAK Comedy Lab located on the second level. Special events are held every third Thursday of each month.
SAK Comedy Lab is out to tickle your funny bone but not shock your sensibilities. Snack food is served, and beverages are available here. Adhering strictly to a "no obscenities" rule, the club lures both local folks and visitors, who flock here for an evening of fun, free of the concern that the amusement will rely on shock value. Be warned though, if you wear socks with sandals or hang a touristy camera around your neck, chances are you will be heckled. Apart from putting up a range of shows that are appropriate for the whole family, SAK also organises improv classes and can even organize entertainment for private parties.
A haven for house music on Saturday nights, the Attic is a high-energy club with mass appeal. This club is comprised of two rooms, and features a dance floor in the middle plus VIP booths lined up along the walls. The modern decor and EDM music make this a standout among the college crowd, but the Attic offers something for everyone looking to party.
Amway Center is a prominent sports and entertainment venue in downtown. Orlando The facade and interiors of the center were designed by ace architects and are very eclectically built. The center boasts a variety of facilities, including a concourse, locker rooms, rest rooms, concert stage and more. Events here include Orlando Magic basketball games, other local tournaments, the famed NBA championship, WWE events, concerts, and performing arts shows.