Crowds flock to Orlando for the theme parks and award-winning beaches, and with good reason. But what happens when you want to try something a little different? What happens when you want to really get your heart pumping without waiting in line?
At Kenwood Travel, we know Orlando well and we know where to go for the ultimate thrill-seeking experiences. Follow our guide to the best activities for the adrenaline junkie in your family to enjoy while on holiday in Orlando.
NASCAR driving experiences
NASCAR is the second most popular spectator sport in the United States, and Daytona is one of the most significant places to catch the action.
Home to the Daytona 500, the Daytona International Speedway is also known as “The World Centre of Racing,” and offers up a formidable 2.5-mile tri-oval track with four demanding turns, 31 degree banking and a 3,800-foot-long straightway.
Experiences can vary from a ride-along — where you are buckled in for a high speed, high octane co-driver experience around the oval circuits — or you can take the wheel of a high powered muscle car, if you fancy yourself as a bit of a race driver.
Skydiving is something on many people’s bucket lists; it is one of the must-do activities for those looking for an adrenaline rush.
Whether you are a first-time jumper or an experienced skydiver, companies like Skydive Sebastian offer you the chance to see Orlando and Florida like never before, they told us what to expect.
“At Skydive Sebastian you will experience your first Tandem Skydive over the Florida Coastline with the Atlantic Ocean for scenery!”
Located on the Florida treasure coast, you will enjoy a breath-taking view of the Florida coastline and the Atlantic Ocean during freefall and during your flight under Canopy.
For anyone who is a bit nervous or apprehensive, the feeling of landing and conquering your fears will stay with you forever, and give you further strength when tackling any future hurdles.
“Skydive Sebastian is the only Skydiving Center in Florida that can offer you this scenery during your Tandem Skydive. Our photographs and video tell the story better than words can. Why experience your 1st Skydive ‘inland’ when the Treasure Coast beckons at Skydive Sebastian?” James told us.
Besides, it is actually a lot safer than you may think – you are more likely to be hurt crossing the road, and you do that every day; so why not do a skydive?
Astronaut Training experience
Florida is famed for its space exploration, thanks to the Kennedy Space Centre, and here you have the opportunity to experience what astronauts go through before being sent into space with the Astronaut Training Experience.
Offering an unforgettable combination of hands-on training and flight simulation designed to prepare candidates for space exploration, this unique experience introduces visitors to veteran NASA astronauts and space exploration educators.
Start your training with a mission briefing held by one of the veteran astronauts, before enjoying a Q&A with people who have ventured beyond our own planet.
Trainers and flight experts will help you execute a high-Earth orbit to rendezvous, dock and perform critical repair works on the International Space Station, all before landing your shuttle at the Kennedy Space Centre.
The Micro-Gravity Wall, Multi-Axis Trainer and other simulators will put your strength and stamina to the test, as you experience what real astronauts go through. While others, like the 1/6th Gravity Chair, will give you the sensation of walking on the moon.
For anyone who saw Jaws when they were younger, the thought of diving with sharks might be something of a nightmare.
Florida is lucky to have the best shark diving in the whole of the United States, with people flocking here from around the world to jump in the water.
Florida Shark Diving gives you the chance to get up close and personal with one of the largest shark populations on the planet and they told us why Florida is a great place for diving.
“Florida Shark Diving is located in Jupiter, FL specializes in bringing people face to face with some of the world’s most impressive sharks. We offer trips for complete beginners all the way up to professional underwater photographers.”
“Here in Florida we dive with many of the world’s most premier shark species: Tiger, Bull, Hammerhead, Dusky, Silky, Lemon, and Reef sharks to name a few.”
But the experience is more than just a thrill ride – it is an education about one of the most misunderstood species on the planet.
“The reason we are taking people out in the ocean to view these animals up close is to promote the importance of the species. By taking people of all backgrounds out to see sharks, our guests get to see and learn about sharks for what they really are. Much of the mainstream media casts a highly negative shadow on sharks which in many ways is completely false.”
“Our goal is to bring people out on the ocean, get them in the water, and safely encounter these incredible and misunderstood animals.”
Flyboarding has taken the world of extreme sports by storm recently, with facilities opening up all over the world offering you the chance to fly through the air like Iron Man.
Your Flyboard is attached to a personal watercraft, like a Jet Ski, waverunner or sea doo, which will provide you with propulsion through a mixture of air and water.
Full Throttle Flyboard offers any active adventurer the chance to give the latest extreme water sport a go, and Dave let us know what to expect.
“Flyboarding has quickly gained popularity in the thrill-seeking and adrenaline-junky communities as well as for those looking to get away on vacation and let “loose”.”
Think of a hover board from Back to the Future, but powered by water which is controlled by the manufacturer-certified instructor. They power the throttle which provides propulsion for you to levitate, giving you the sensation that you are walking on water.
“At Full Throttle Flyboard, we offer a unique experience by matching fliers up with an instructor for a one-on-one training session to make sure they get the most out of their 30 or 60 minute flight time. Orlando is the perfect spot to try Flyboarding because the city offers some of the best weather year-round, as well as so many other things to do while visiting!”
As a beginner you can expect it to take about five minutes to master basic Flyboard steering and manoeuvring, and you’ll be in full control of how to use hand signals to communicate with your instructor
A zip line is an exciting activity at the best of times, but Gatorland has taken the concept to new heights.
Offering almost 1,200 feet of heart-pounding excitement, Gatorland is home to some of the best zip line towers in America, where you will fly through the air on lines over seven stories tall. With multilevel launch pads and staggering views from above the treeline, you’d better keep your feet tucked up.
During your zip line you will fly over some of the park’s best attractions, including the Cuban and Nile crocodiles, but the real excitement is when you sail over the alligator breeding marsh, housing 130 giant alligators licking their lips at you from below.
Reaching speeds of 30 miles an hour, you will be screaming your way over thousands of teeth across five different zip lines reaching 500 feet in length.
But the excitement at Gatorland doesn’t stop there.
You also have the chance to get up close and personal with some of the scariest animals on the planet, with the trainer for a day experience.
Open your eyes to the world of alligators and crocodiles. Your day will start with holding an alligator in your hands… albeit a baby, but you don’t need to tell your friends at home that.
You will have full VIP access across the park with your backstage pass, getting you as up close and personal with these prehistoric animals as you like.
Your hands-on experience with many of the park’s animals continues throughout the day before the big finale, as you step into the Gator Wrestling Arena, where you will come face-to-face with the park’s biggest residents.
Don’t worry, your trainer will keep you safe and in control, as they would do throughout the day.