Central Florida's Summer Guide: Discover the Best Outdoor Activities

Best Outdoor Summer Activities Central Florida
by Vacation Central Florida

Central Florida blooms under the summer sun, inviting you and your family to dive into remarkable outdoor activities. From thrilling water sports to serene nature walks to stargazing in vast state parks, this vibrant region offers everything to make your vacation unforgettable. The soothing natural springs, lush hiking trails, and the unique opportunity to swim alongside wildlife promise an array of experiences that are as diverse as they are accessible to all adventure-seekers.

As you plan your summer getaway, imagine kayaking through serene waters, embarking on airboat tours for adrenaline, and indulging in outdoor movie nights under the stars. Our vacation rentals offer guests exclusive access to private pools or outdoor grilling areas, enhancing the vacation experience. This guide is your passport to discovering the best summer outdoor activities in Central Florida, making every moment of your stay memorable and filled with adventure.

Exploring the Natural Beauty of Springs and Rivers

Dive into the crystal-clear waters of Central Florida's springs and rivers, where adventure and tranquility meet. Here's a glimpse of what awaits:

  1. Blue Spring State Park is a sanctuary for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving enthusiasts. The park is a haven for manatees in winter, offering a unique experience to observe these gentle giants in their natural habitat.
  2. Wekiwa Springs State Park- Perfect for those looking to blend adventure with nature.

The park offers:

Swimming in emerald green waters.

Wildlife observation trails where you can spot turtles, birds, and perhaps even a bald eagle.

Hiking opportunities to explore the lush surroundings.

Kayaking and Tubing Adventures:

  •  SilverSprings KayakingLLC and FloridaSkiSchool provide guided kayaking, river rafting, and tubing tours. These tours offer insightful knowledge about the local wildlife and plant life, making them educational and exhilarating.

Each destination presents unique activities, from serene swims in natural springs to exciting encounters with Florida's diverse wildlife. Whether you want to relax or seek adventure, Central Florida's waterways offer something for everyone.

Hiking and Biking the Trails

Central Florida is a paradise for those who love to hike and bike, offering a diverse range of trails designed to accommodate all skill levels of adventurers. Here's a glimpse into the myriad of paths you can explore:

      Family-Friendly Trails:

  • Outlando Wetlands Park provides hiking trails and tram tours, making it perfect for families with children aged six and older to enjoy wildlife viewing together.
  • Lake Louisa State Park has over 20 miles of trails, including the easy-to-navigate Dixie Lake Trail, a 4.5-mile loop perfect for a family bike ride or a leisurely hike.

    For the More Adventurous:

  • Seminole State Forest offers over 26 miles of trails, including the Chuluota Wilderness Trail, a 9-mile loop that promises a more challenging hike or bike ride through diverse landscapes.
  • The Santos Trails are a haven for mountain biking enthusiasts. With over 80 miles of trails ranging from beginner to advanced levels, they ensure an adrenaline-pumping experience for all skill levels.

These trails not only allow you to immerse yourself in Central Florida's natural beauty but also offer unique opportunities for outdoor activities such as wildlife spotting, photography, and even picnicking, making every outing an adventure to remember.

Adventures in the Sky: Parasailing and Hot Air Ballooning

Elevate your Central Florida adventure with an unforgettable journey into the sky. Experience the exhilaration of defying gravity and the serene beauty of the landscape from a bird's eye view through various aerial activities:

  1. Parasailing and Paragliding with Aviator PPG: Glide above Central Florida's picturesque landscapes with Aviator PPG's parasailing and paragliding experiences. Led by a team of passionate instructors, this adventure promises breathtaking views and an adrenaline rush like no other.
  2. HotAirBallooning: Start your day with a sunrise flight, offering panoramic views of Central Florida. Celebrate your landing with a traditional champagne toast, making it a perfect blend of thrill and tranquility.

●    Bob's Balloons: Specializing in flights over wildlife preserves, Bob's Balloons provides a unique opportunity to observe natural habitats from above. Witness the beauty of orange groves and the thrill of spotting alligators in their natural environment.

Sky Pirates Ballooning: Known for their excellent crew and smooth flights, Sky Pirates offers an exceptional ballooning experience. Enjoy the peace of gliding over forests and lakes, ensuring a memorable adventure.

These adventures offer a unique perspective on Central Florida's natural beauty, making your vacation unforgettable. Whether you're soaring through the air or floating gently above the landscape, each experience promises breathtaking views and exhilarating moments.

Outdoor Wildlife Encounters

Central Florida offers diverse wildlife encounters that promise to enrich your vacation experience. Here are some highlights:


  • Home to the friendly scrub jay, which often interacts with visitors.
  • A 360-acre preserve in Volusia County provides a unique chance to observe these birds in their native environment.

    Aquatic Adventures:

  • SEALIFE Orlando Aquarium: Dive into the underwater world with sharks, sea turtles, and jellyfish. This attraction offers interactive learning and insights into conservation efforts.
  • Gatorland: This is a blend of exhibits, experiences, and a habitat dedicated to alligators. Here, you can learn about Florida's most famous reptiles.

    Safari and Close Encounters:

  • WildFlorida: Offers a drive-thru safari, wildlife park, and giraffe feeding. Participate in daily animal care and feedings, including alligators.
  • Central Florida Zoo: Home to over 350 animals. Engage in unique experiences like feeding giraffes and keeper chats.
  • Safari Wilderness in Lakeland: Experience a drive-thru safari, ATV adventures, and even safari camping.

These encounters bring you closer to nature and offer educational opportunities, making your outdoor adventure in Central Florida both thrilling and informative.

Thrilling Water Sports

Central Florida's summer sun beckons thrill-seekers and water enthusiasts to dive into an array of exhilarating water sports. Whether you're a seasoned pro or looking to try something new, there's an adventure waiting for you:

  1. JetSki and Waterskiing Excitement:

Buena Vista Watersports offers an adrenaline-pumping experience with boat tours, waterskiing, and jet skiing. It ensures safety with life jackets and immediate assistance.

  • Florida Lake Tours invites you to enjoy scenic boat tours and waterskiing, showcasing beautiful views of large homes and estates.
  • Stand-Up Paddleboarding and More:
  • Paddleboard WinterHaven specializes in paddleboarding and is known for its patient and helpful staff.
  • Winter Haven Watersports allows you to learn to water ski, tube with friends, or enjoy a serene paddleboarding session on Winter Haven's southern Chain of Lakes.

    Unique Water Sports Experiences:

  • SoaringH2O introduces the thrill of flyboarding, offering a unique water sports experience.
  • SammyDuvall'sWatersportsCentreprovides parasailing rides over Walt Disney World, offering breathtaking views of the Magic Kingdom.

These activities provide an exhilarating rush and an opportunity to witness Central Florida's stunning landscapes from a different perspective.

Stargazing at Kissimmee PrairiePreserveStatePark

Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park, celebrated as Florida's inaugural Dark Sky Park by the International Dark Sky Association since 2016, offers an unparalleled stargazing experience away from the glare of city lights. Here's how you can immerse yourself in the wonders of the cosmos:

Gaining After-Hours Access:

  • Reserve a family or equestrian campsite for overnight stays.
  • Book an astronomy pad site explicitly designed for stargazers. It features red spectrum lights to preserve night vision and a strict no-campfires policy post-sunset.
  • Florida State Parks Family Annual Pass holders can sign up for an after-hours permit to access common day-use areas beyond standard park hours.

What You'll See:

  • The park's remote location ensures a sky brimming with stars, planets, and other celestial bodies, with Jupiter and Saturn prominently visible to the naked eye.
  • Notable sightings include the International Space Station and the awe-inspiring sight of rocket launches from the nearby East Coast space centers.

Visiting Essentials:

The park is open daily from 8 a.m. until sundown, with an entrance fee of $4 per vehicle. It's at 33104 N.W. 192nd Ave., Okeechobee, FL 34972.

  • The park boasts a 50-foot tall observation tower for stargazing enthusiasts, offering an elevated view of the night sky. Visitors are encouraged to bring their telescopes to enhance their stargazing experience.


Central Florida emerges as a vibrant playground under the summer sun, offering an eclectic mix of outdoor activities that cater to every taste. The immersive encounters with Florida's diverse wildlife, along with adventures through lush hiking trails and serene kayaking spots, not only promise unforgettable moments but also underscore the unique beauty of Central Florida's natural landscape.

As this guide concludes, remember that these experiences only scratch the surface of what Central Florida has to offer. Whether you're longing for the adrenaline rush of parasailing, the tranquility of a sunset by the natural springs, or simply relishing the joy of an outdoor movie night under the stars, Central Florida invites you to create memories that will last a lifetime. Embark on your dream vacation today with VacationCentralFlorida! Explore our rental properties and make memories that last a lifetime.