|With around 2 million residents, Orlando is Florida's third largest metropolitan area, behind Miami and Tampa. 52 million tourists visit Orlando each year making it the most popular destination in Florida. The city is well known for the many tourist attractions, in particular the Walt Disney World Resort, located in Lake Buena Vista about 32 km. (20 miles) south of Orlando, Sea World and the Universal Orlando Resort. Orlando has more to offer than the three world known theme-parks. The city is also known for its many beaches, lakes and bodies of water that are perfect for surfing, swimming and boating. For golf enthusiasts there are many beautiful and challenging golf courses in the area. There are also several lesser known theme-parks around the city, and Kennedy Space Center is just a 50-minute drive east of Orlando.
Each of the big three theme park resorts offers something different, and all are worth visiting - but you will need at least a week to go to all three. If you are short on time, a visit to the Disney parks, such as Magic Kingdom or Epcot will give you a taste of the classics. The Universal Studios are more action packed, and would probably suite older children and adults better. Sea World is for all age groups, but if you are an animal lover you might consider making this your first priority.
Orlando's metropolitan area is home to one of the largest and most rapidly growing Hispanic communities in the US. You will therefore find a lot of Hispanic-themed restaurants in the area, hear a lot of Hispanic inspired music and be able to experience Hispanic culture.
Orlando is a year-round destination, but the number of visitors varies seasonally depending on school vacation schedules, local events and the weather. The high season where most tourists visit Orlando is March - April and mid-June - mid-August. The best times to visit are when there are fewer tourists, it is not so crowded, the availability at hotels and restaurants is better and it is less expensive. Ironically, one of the less busy times for tourism (May - mid-June) correspond to the best weather in the Orlando area, so this may be a period to consider when planning your visit.