top of page
  • Writer's pictureGotta Go Orlando

Cheap and Free Things to Do with Kids in Orlando

Updated: Apr 4

Whether you're planning a trip to Orlando with kids, or you're a local looking for fun things to do with the kids, keeping them amused can be an expensive affair, but relax, because not everything is gonna break the bank!


The Best Free Things To Do In Orlando

It might surprise you to know but there really is so many amazing Free or Cheap Things To Do in Orlando with the kids that won't cost the world.


Yes, enjoying the theme parks and hitting the top attractions can put a big dent in your wallet, but because there is so many free and cheap things to do here in Orlando, you can keep yourself on budget and enjoy so many fantastic and memorable experiences as a family.


The Best Free or Cheap Things To Do with Kids in Orlando

Expore Orlando parks and gardens for free

Visit Orlando's beautiful Parks, Gardens, and Nature Trails

Orlando is blessed with an abundance of parks, gardens, and the chance to escape the tourists and enjoy the great outdoors where you'll get the chance to become one with nature.


The kids will love running around the parks, with many including splash pads, playgrounds, and more, or visit a nature trail and the entire family can delight in seeing a ton of birds and animals including a few gators, then everyone can get on their bikes and enjoy Orlando's bike trail, now... get outside and have fun!


Lake Eola Park

Lake Eola Park is a must visit, located in the heart of Downtown Orlando, with a sidewalk that circles the lake 0.9 miles in length, making it easy for visitors to keep track of their walking or running


Relax amid beautiful flower beds and a spectacular view of Orlando’s skyline and the gorgeous Lake Eola, enjoy the swans and other birds inhabiting the park, or you can check out a free concert, movie or a play in the Walt Disney Amphitheater.


Harry P Leu Gardens

Explore an amazing botanical oasis nearly 50-acres minutes from Downtown Orlando. Harry P Leu Gardens features landscaped grounds and lakes, with walking trails all shaded by 200-year-old oaks and forests of camellias. Free entry days at Leu Gardens are offered on select Mondays throughout the year, check the website for details.


The UCF Arboretum

The Arboretum of the University of Central Florida is located on the main campus of the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida, United States. Covering 80 acres, it contains more than 600 species of plants, including more than 100 bromeliads, in cultivated gardens.


Lake Lotus Park

Lake Lotus Park is the City of Altamonte Springs’ nature preserve. The total area is approximately 150 acres, including 120 acres of woods and wetlands. The park is a diverse, natural habitat that provides limitless natural encounters with flora and fauna.


Oakland Nature Preserve

West of Orlando, just 30 minutes from the attractions and nestled between Winter Garden and Clermont in the beautiful Town of Oakland, lies a "hidden gem." Oakland Nature Preserve is a150-acre preserve offering environmental education and ecotourism activities for visitors of all ages.


Mead Botanical Garden

With 47 acres to explore in Winter Park, your senses will come alive with the sights, sounds, and scents of the garden. Mead Botanical Garden offers hiking trails, creek, boardwalk, tall pine trees, greenhouse, butterfly garden, and pond that’s home to turtles, fish and wading birds.


Kraft Azalea Garden

This 5.22-acre public garden is located on the shore of Lake Maitland and is open year round from 8 a.m. until dusk. Kraft Azalea Garden is a beautiful park is shaded by enormous cypress trees that add to the old Florida charm of the 13-acre property


Orlando Urban Trail

The Orlando Urban Trail is located near Downtown Orlando and is considered the spine of Orlando’s trail network.


The trail is approximately three miles long and runs from Lake Highland through Loch Haven Park, to Mead Garden in Winter Park. Highlights include connections to six lakes, Orlando Cultural Park, and the Gaston Edwards Trail.


West Orange Trail

The West Orange Trail is a 22-mile long multi-use rail trail. The paved trail passes through downtown Oakland, Winter Garden, and Apopka with most of its length built on old railroad alignments.


Lake Nona Sculpture Garden

The Lake Nona Sculpture Garden is a 50,000 square-foot outdoor space designed for the exploration and discovery of a distinguished selection of sculptures from one of the world’s largest private art collections, The Lewis Collection.


Orlando Wetlands Park

The Orlando Wetlands Park is a man-made wetland designed to provide advanced treatment for reclaimed water from the City of Orlando and other local cities. The Park is 1650 acres in size and located in Christmas, Florida. Visitors can visit the Park seven days a week, between sunrise and sunset, to enjoy primitive and passive activities including, Photography, Wildlife Viewing, Hiking, Biking, Horseback Riding, and Guided Tours


Cranes Roost Park

Cranes Roost Park is at the heart of Uptown Altamonte surrounding Cranes Roost Lake. The lake is encircled by one mile of continuous walkway with benches and covered seating areas. Within the 45-acre park is a European-style plaza including a choreographed fountain show, a 62-foot picturesque tower and the Eddie Rose Amphitheater which features stadium-style seating and a one-of-a-kind floating stage.


The Seminole Wekiva Trail

The nearly 14 mile Seminole Wekiva Trail is a paved recreational trail that has been designated as one of Seminole County's Showcase Trails because of its length, beauty, and accommodation of many users.


The section of the trail that runs west of the I-4 trail overpass to the County line at the Wekiva River is also a designated part of the Florida National Scenic Trail.


Dr. P. Phillips Community Park

Dr. P. Phillips Community Park provides a range of amenities for the whole family to enjoy, including playgrounds, splash pad, plus sports fields, picnic areas & a dog run


Wekiva Island

Central Florida’s favorite watering hole Wekiva Island. Located just north of Orlando, Wekiva Island offers visitors the chance to experience the incredible natural springs in Florida. Explore the pristine Wekiva River and its fascinating Florida wildlife with more than 2,000 square feet of Island fun.


Orlando Science Center

Educate and Entertain the Kids at the same time

Orlando has a long list of museums that the entire family will find fascinating, museums are a cheap day out, with many offering free admission, while others offer designated free admission days


Rollins Museum of Art

The Rollins Museum of Art features rotating exhibitions, ongoing programs, and an extensive permanent collection that spans centuries, from examples of ancient art and artifacts to contemporary art.


Open to the public free year-round, its holdings include the only European Old Master paintings in the Orlando area, a sizeable American art collection, and a forward-thinking contemporary collection.


Mennello Museum

Paintings of American Impressionism and Realism from the Mennello Museum collection alongside important works from prestigious Florida museums. Every second Sunday of the month, Mennello Museum offers free admission to the galleries during Free Family Funday.


CityArts

Funky gallery collective with monthly, varied exhibitions from local & international artists. CityArts in downtown Orlando is th Downtown Arts District's flagship venue containing six galleries, presentation and events spaces, as well as home to Curate Cafe.


Orange County Regional History Center

The Orange County Regional History Center housed in a historic courthouse in the heart of downtown Orlando, offers four floors of exhibits exploring 12,000 years of Central Florida’s rich heritage. Enjoy free entry the 3rd Thursday of the month, 6 pm to 9 pm.


The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art

The Morse Museum in Winter Park is home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of dazzling works by Louis Comfort Tiffany. A visit is complimentary during Friday Nights at the Morse scheduled November through April from 4 pm to 8 pm.


The museum is also free on Independence Day, Easter weekend, Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival weekend, and Christmas Eve.


Art & History Museums of Maitland

You can enjoy free admission on the last Wednesday of every month to the current exhibition of the Maitland Art Center Gallery.


Open House At The Casa

Casa Feliz, or "Happy House," is the signature work of noted architect James Gamble Rogers II. The Andalusian-style masonry farmhouse has significantly influenced the architectural and cultural aspects of the community and served as a gathering spot for cultural discussion and education. Enjoy an open house on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10 a.m. to noon


The Alfond Inn Art Tours

Meet in The Alfond Inn lobby for a free tour with a Rollins Museum of Art staff member every first Wednesday of the month, which lasts about 60 minutes.


Artlando

Grab a map from the DT Orlando Information Center and go on a self-guided tour of downtown Orlando's streets to discover the contemporary sculptures which are Art Orlando. Not only will you get to know Downtown as you walk around, you’ll be seriously impressed by these stunning works of art.


Old Town Kissimmee

Step back in time at Old Town

Old Town in Kissimmee is a much loved and very popular free entertainment district featuring unique shopping, dining, rides and more with free weekly events, live music, and of course, Old Town's legendary car shows that the kids will love.


Plus, there is cheap rides thanks to Fun Spot America, cheap food, and kids entertainers too!


Check out the regular free weekly events here:


Wednesday:

Wednesday Night Themed Car Show

A unique car show featuring show-quality specific types, models or makes of cars and trucks. As long as you own that type of vehicle, you can be a part of the show. It’s free to participate or attend and features live music. Check here for the latest themes.


Friday:

Friday Muscle Car Show & Cruise

The Friday Muscle Car Show features show-quality muscle and factory-performance cars from 1964 and newer and classics from 1985 and older. Cars will cruise at 8:30 pm and all cars registered can participate.


The Muscle Car Show & Cruise is free for car owners and free for the public to attend.


Saturday:

Saturday Classic Car Show & Cruise

The Old Town Classic Car Show has been a local tradition for over 30 years, it is one of the premier weekly car shows in Central Florida. The Saturday Classic Car Show welcomes show-quality 1985 and older hot rods, street rods, and antiques. Cars will cruise at 8:30 pm and all cars registered can participate.

The Classic Car Show is free for participants and free for the public to attend.


Free Movie Nights Orlando

Watch a Free Movie under the Stars

Living in the sunshine state we are blessed with perfect evening weather to catch an outdoor movie, and there truly is something magical about watching a movie under the stars, therefore it's not surprising that there is a great choice of parks and locations throughout Orlando where the family can snuggle on a blanket, enjoy a picnic and watch a great free movie!


MoviEola at Lake Eola Park

Select Nights

Enjoy free outdoor movies on the East Lawn, Lake Eola Park.


Popcorn Flicks in the Park

Second Thursday Of Each Month

The Enzian Theater presents classic films for the whole family in Central Park, Winter Park.


Sunset Cinema at Crane's Roost Park

Select Saturdays

Bring your chairs and blankets to watch movies in Cranes Roost Park!


Outdoor Movie Monday at À La Cart

Mondays

FREE outdoor movies at th

e social dining experience À La Cart, downtown Orlando.


Movie in the Park Oviedo

Select Evenings

Enjoy free movies at Center Lake Park, Oviedo Amphitheater.

Movie Under the Stars Avalon Park

Select Evenings

Catch a free movie at Town Park, Avalon Park


Movie in the Park Longwood

Select Fridays FREE outdoor movie in Reiter Park.


Movies in the Park, Maitland

Select Saturdays

FREE outdoor movies at Independence Square, downtown Maitlan


Dinky Dock in Winter Park

Mess around at Dinky Dock

Spend a day at the beach in Winter Park. Dinky Dock is a 1.56-acre year-round park and offers a fishing pier and boat ram.


Yes there is a beach and swimming is permitted, the kids are gonna love it here!


Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team

Take the kids to a Free Ski Show

The Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team perform free ski shows throughout the year in Winter Haven, the show is held on the 3rd Saturday of every month on Lake River in Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Winter Haven.


From the pyramid to one ski, to even barefoot, the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team pulls out all the tricks on Lake Silver. A world famous show that started at the old Cypress Gardens theme park in 1943 and continues on in Winter Haven to this day.



Play some Put Put

You can't visit Orlando and not play some put put! It's the law, well not really but still!


Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf, located next to Icon Park is a great choice, featuring over-the-top pirate ships and three different courses. Tickets are $16 for adults and $14 for children age 4 to 12.


Fun Spot America Orlando

Enjoy the thrills of a Huge Amusement Park

Fun Spot America has two locations, Orlando and Kissimmee, both parks offer different levels of thrills for all ages.


At the Orlando park enjoy unique multi-level racing go-kart tracks, roller coasters, kiddie rides and thrill rides. Home to White Lightning, the only wooden coaster in Orlando, and one of the tallest SkyCoasters in the world, standing at 250 ft


Beat the heat at the state of the art Splash Pad in Orlando, and enjoy Gator Spot, a 15,000 square foot oasis at the Orlando park. See over 100 gators as well as exotic reptiles and birds.


At Fun Spot America Kissimmee enjoy wheel-gripping fun on two gigantic, multi-level go-kart tracks! Buckle up for twists, turns and hair-raising fun as you ride upside-down on Mine Blower - Florida’s only wooden rollercoaster with a 360-degree inversion!


Extreme fun awaits as you soar from 300 feet on the world’s tallest Sky Coaster! With over 20 rides to choose from on every level of thrill, everyone in the family will find their fun! An iconic, family-owned theme park, Fun Spot America promises you will always experience the best guest service anywhere. And because they always practice the Golden Rule, when you’re at Fun Spot America, you’re family!


Parking is FREE at Fun Spot America as well as FREE admission. Pay for a day pass in advance or by the ride at the park. A Single Day Fun Pass is only $59.99 per person


Island H20 Water Park Kissimmee

Splash into lots of fun at a Water Park

Island H2O Water Park is Orlando's most immersive and technologically advanced water park is located at Margaritaville Resort Orlando! The water park offers over 20 experiences, including several exhilarating drop slides, a lazy river, a wave pool, and a children’s area to ensure fun for the whole family.


This water park is the first of its kind and themed completely around social media. Streaming and posting your experience is all a part of the fun – simply sync up your wristband with our app and make some waves! $64.99 per person, age 3+


Coco Key Water Resort

Cool off on International Drive

Escape for the day to CoCo Key Water Resort on International Drive, where kids can play on the slides and rides and parents can relax under the Florida sunshine.


Designed with families in mind, the water park offers a 54,000 sq. ft water park containing 14 slides and rides and a 6,500 sq. ft arcade. A single-day weekday pass is only $37.99 for all ages.


 The Wheel at ICON Park

Take the kids for a spin in a giant Ferris Wheel

Not your average Ferris wheel, The Wheel at ICON Park is a stunning 400 foot tall Observation wheel gives you a view of Orlando like no other.


From the top of this spectacular Observation wheel the entire family can take in the sights throughout Orlando, for $34.99 per person.


Gatorland, “The Alligator Capital of the World!”

Get up close to hundreds of Gators

Come on out and enjoy all the alligator awesomeness of a day at Gatorland, “The Alligator Capital of the World!” There isn’t a better place to see alligators and crocodiles of all sizes, from babies, also known as grunts, to the 14-foot monsters that call our Breeding Marsh home. We even have the largest collection of extremely rare white leucistic alligators. But, Gatorland is more than just a gator park! Enjoy the free-flight aviary, petting zoo, one-of-a-kind animal shows, and more. Adult $29.99, Child (3-12) $19.99


Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens

Let's all go to the Zoo

The entire family will love seeing more than 500 animals, including rare and endangered species at Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens, as well as 23 acres of lush natural beauty. $19.95 for adults, $15.95 for seniors, $13.95 for children ages 3-12


Aerophile Balloon Rides Disney Springs

Go up, up and away on a Ballon Ride

Soar sky-high during an 8-minute tethered adventure in the world’s largest hand-painted helium balloon at Disney Springs. Aerophile Balloon Rides will give you a birds eye view of Walt Disney World! Before 10 am each day, $15.00 per person, after 10 am each day, $25 per adult, $20 per child.


The Showcase of Citrus Monster Truck Tour

Ride a massive Monster Truck

At The Showcase of Citrus the little kids, and the big kids will love to ride aboard monster trucks into the vast Florida Outback. Guests will explore Native Woodlands, Citrus Groves, and Bigfoot territory


Be sure to keep a sharp eye out for Giant Bigfoot, Woodfairies, and Friendly Gnomes! $25.00 Adults (13+), $15.00 – Children (4-12)


Free Orlando Splash Pads

Cool Off In An Orlando Splash Pad

When it comes to the hottest months of the year, you just gotta cool off, and one of the best free things to do in Orlando during the sizzling hot days of summer is to cool off in a splash pad!


Many parks in the area have free splash pads, which are an awesome place to have lots of fun. Downey Park Splash Pad in East Orlando is a beautiful park that includes a splash playground, and an inclusive playground for kids with special abilities, Fort Mellon Splash Pad in Sanford is located at First Mellon Park and features a splash pad for anyone to come and cool off, and also has a a playground fit for all ages.


The City of Oviedo Splash Zone in Oviedo is located at the Oviedo Aquatic Center and features a huge outdoor splash zone. There is two spas pads in Winter Springs, The Splash Playgrounds are open each year from April through October and are located at Torcaso and Trotwood Parks.


In Orlando's Bithlo Community Park the kids will love Bithlo Splash Pad, and in Capehart Park, Orlando there is a splash pad, and a tot lot playground.


Another Orlando splash pad is located at Dr. P. Phillips Community Park, Orlando, while over in Kissimmee the kids will love the El Yunque Splash Pad featuring over 30 splash pad elements from bubblers to a 250-gallon dump bucket.


Beaches close to Orlando

Hit The Beach

Of course, when you think of the Sunshine State, two things spring to mind, theme parks and beaches, and thanks to Orlando's central location, you don't have to choose, pretty awesome we think, plus a day or a few days at the beach ain't gonna cost a dime!

Orlando is practically in the middle of both the historic east coast beaches and the stunning gulf coast beaches in the west coast of Central Florida, so whether you want a day at the beach or a weekend away, get ready to soak up the sunshine here in Central Florida this summertime.


East Coast Beaches

The world's most famous beach is just an hour from downtown Orlando, Daytona Beach is all about the cars, a place to catch a NASCAR race and even drive your own car right on the beach.

Free summer concerts with movies and fireworks are offered May through October at the Bandshell, and there's plenty of entertainment and fun at the nearby boardwalk and fishing pier.

For a quieter corner, head to Ponce Inlet and climb to the top of Florida's tallest lighthouse, built in 1835. Plus, for shopping and dining, a visit to Beach Street is a popular choice.

New Smyrna Beach is a hot spot for surfing, quirky shops, and delightful eats, plus you can drive your car onto this beach’s wide, compacted smooth sand! A must do for sure!

Once you’ve gotten your fill with paddle boarding and sunbathing, check out Flagler Avenue with Old Florida shops, local boutiques and casual eateries.

Orlando's closest beach is well known for its surfing culture with Cocoa the home of the world's largest surf shop, Ron Jon Surf Shop at 52,000 square feet.

Open 24 hours a day, the huge store features everything under the sun, from T-shirts and seashells to beach bikes, paddleboards, and of course, surfboards.

The Cocoa Beach Pier area is fun with lot's of beach activities, while many families like the quiet of Lori Wilson Park where you'll find free parking, restrooms and outdoor showers.


West Coast Beaches

America’s number one beach, Clearwater is definitely a renowned hot spot, complete with shopping, dining, live entertainment, and a revitalized downtown area. White sand and clear, shallow waters make this beach a destination that can’t be beaten for families.

Don’t miss the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, and the awesome sunset celebration that is held nightly at the always fun Clearwater Beach Pier. Don't miss it!

At Madeira Beach, the sun, the white sand beaches and emerald turquoise waters invite swimming and sunning, be a beachcomber, or just sit and watch the world go by from the shade of a beach umbrella.

Set sail on a sunset cruise or a daylong fishing excursion or just stroll the wooden boardwalk and check out the waterfront shops and dining options.

The main draw here is three miles of sparkling white, sandy beaches on shores of the Gulf of Mexico.

Go swimming, shelling, sunning, snorkeling, parasailing and more, or simply walk the beach and take in one of the most stunning and memorable sunsets that you will ever see.

Hang out at the world's longest waterfront bar, Gators Cafe & Saloon, to catch the sunset and enjoy the atmosphere at the surrounding beach bars, for live music and dancing.


With miles of beaches, surf shops and boutiques, along with dining and water sports for all ages, it's easy to see why St. Pete Beach is voted one of the best beaches in the U.S.

At the heart of St. Pete Beach is the historic pink palace, the Loews Don Ce Sar Hotel, built in 1928 at the heart of America's Jazz Age. It's worth a visit to soak up the nostalgic, Gatsby-like atmosphere.



Dave & Buster's Orlando

The Kids will love a Huge Arcade!

They say it’s not about winning or losing. But those people obviously haven't been to Dave & Buster’s. Because with hundreds of games to play, everyone leaves feeling like a champion. There is arcade games, tabletop, air hockey, ping pong, billiards and more!


Each game requires chips, minimum purchase $20 for 100 chips


Chocolate Kingdom Orlando

Visit a Chocolate Kingdom

Chocolate Kingdom, the Factory Adventure Tour, is an interactive journey that uncovers how chocolate transforms from the bean into the creamy, dreamy chocolate bar.


Your Personal Chocolate Tour Guide joins forces with a handsome Prince and his Dragon sidekick to take guests through a Cacao Tree Greenhouse, a one-of-a-kind Chocolate Museum, a Mystical River of Chocolate and a Bean-to-the-Bar Factory utilizing old world machinery.


Prices: Adults, $18.95 each, Children (Ages 4-12) $14.95 each


Ice Factory of Central Florida

Too Warm? Head for the Ice!

​It might surprise you to know that right here in the heat and humidity of Central Florida, you can enjoy daily public skating sessions at the Ice Factory, the kids will love it and yes, it's really cool!


The Ice Factory is conveniently located just off of the Florida Turnpike exit 244 in Kissimmee, and it's only $18.00 per person, cool!


Jumpstart Trampoline Park Orlando

Jump around all day!

Jump Start features 20,000 square feet of fun, adventure and excitement with Dodge Ball, Super Slam, Trampoline Courts, and more.


Located at Dezerland Action Park, enjoy unlimited fun, all day for $29.95 at Jump Start. The kids will love you forever! $29.95 per person unlimited all day play


Monkey Joe's Pointe Orlando

Monkey around at Monkey Joe'

An indoor play space where young ones find their happy space with unlimited play on inflatable-filled jumps, obstacle courses, arcade action and a snack shack.


A fun, interactive experience for the whole family. Enjoy unlimited play, affordable pricing and more at Monkey Joe's within Pointe Orlando on I-Drive. $24.99 per child.


The Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner Show

Treat the Kids to Magic and Pizza!

Enjoy Orlando’s longest-running dinner show! Guests can expect to be impressed by this interactive, entertaining, and hilariously funny dinner show.


The Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner how is a one-of-a-kind entertainment experience with non-stop laughter and engaging audience participation. Don’t just watch the show – be a part of it! The dinner includes unlimited fresh, hand-tossed cheese and pepperoni pizza, salad, beer, wine, soda and dessert.


Price: Adults $35.99, Kids (4 - 12) $25.99, Seniors $25.99


Want more?



Or



Tons of free things to do at Walt Disney World!

For the very latest news and information from Orlando and Central Florida, check back often here at Gotta Go Orlando as we keep you informed throughout the day, every day.


You can also keep up to date on our socials, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.


Plus, subscribe to the Gotta Go Orlando YouTube Channel, your free guide to Orlando.



Please Note:

Gotta Go Orlando is your free guide to all the amazing happenings in Orlando. Every day we offer the most up to date news and information on the best of Orlando and Central Florida.


We are supported by our advertisers via digital ads, sponsored content, and affiliate links, articles may be paid for, or contain affiliate links where we could earn money if you purchase products or services via a link our site.

Commenti


Emma Walton News Producer

Emma Walton

  • Instagram

News Producer

Shane Walton News Producer

Shane Walton

  • Instagram

News Producer

Aly Mac News Editor

Alastair Mac

  • Instagram

News Editor

bottom of page