We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite things to do around town so you can break out of that heart-shaped box this Valentine’s Day or plan a friend date any time of the year.
1. Disney Springs makes it possible to relax, escape and indulge in one-of-a-kind experiences. Whether you compete in a round of bowling at Splitsville, take a ride around the lake in an amphicar or sit down for a decadent meal on the Wine Bar George patio or Paddlefish rooftop, you’re in for a romantic afternoon or evening.
2. Play together at ICON Park, a 20-acre, walkable entertainment destination on International Drive. A perfect place to ride, dine, drink and explore, ICON Park has more than 40 restaurants, funky bars, boutique shops and can’t-miss attractions, all anchored by The Wheel, which stands 400 feet — 40 stories — in the air.
3. Go straight for the sweets at Sugar Factory. Share a specialty sundae for two or take on the one-and-only King Kong Sundae, which includes 16 scoops of ice cream, tasty toppings and lit sparklers to electrify your night.
4. Pedal your way through historic Sanford on a Limo Cycle Tour with 15 of your closest friends or with your honey and some complete strangers. Along the way, you’ll stop for food and drinks at local pubs and meet new friends.
5. Add a twist to the classic sunset by watching it from the middle of the Winter Park Chain of Lakes by kayak. Gain a unique perspective as you take in Florida’s natural beauty while waiting for the moon to rise.
6. Get up close and personal with alligators and crocodiles at Gatorland. There are a variety of experiences that will teach you about these incredible creatures.
7. Give back this Valentine’s Day. With volunteer groups like Give Kids the World Village and Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, you can celebrate the day with friends or your sweetheart while sharing the love.
8. Rent a bike and explore the West Orange Trail, which stretches for 22 miles. You’ll breeze by old Florida communities and will have opportunities to stop for meal and shopping breaks in downtown Winter Garden, Apopka and more.
9. Be a tourist for the day and go theme park hopping through a variety of seasonal festivals. Epcot is hosting the Taste of Epcot International Festival of the Arts until Feb. 22, SeaWorld’s Seven Seas Food Festival is open on Fridays through Sundays (as well as Feb. 15-16), and Universal Studios Florida is celebrating Mardi Gras by offering a variety of international flavors of Carnaval as well as stationary floats with beads.
10. Wild Florida’s drive-through safari, where you can see more than 100 native and exotic animals, offers a date day that is both private and adventurous. While you’re there, there are also opportunities to feed a giraffe, explore the alligator park and take an airboat ride. Be sure to book your drive-through safari experience in advance, as it books up quickly.