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flickr/Christian Benseler

Travel Tips Orlando is as renowned for its warm weather as for its theme parks. The winter months especially are a relief from colder climates, with lows generally in the 50s and highs in the 70s. Sudden cold snaps lend a certain unpredictability to central Florida winters, but these usually are short-lived. No matter what time of year you travel, you won’t have a problem finding things to do in Orlando, even if the weather isn’t ideal. There are outdoor and indoor travel sites that will keep you active and entertained.

Summer months tend to be hot and muggy, with temperatures routinely in the 90s. For this reason, water-themed travel sites and beaches are especially popular during the summer. The intense humidity is alleviated many afternoons by brief thunderstorms. These sudden storms are the worst facet of Orlando's weather. (Note: Seek shelter indoors to wait out storms, as lightning strikes and pounding rain pose serious hazards, especially to the uninitiated driver. If you can't pull over safely, turn on your headlights and proceed with extreme caution.)

It is always a good idea to wear sunblock if you will be outdoors for any length of time, as the strong Florida sun can burn unprotected skin even on cool or overcast days. Many of the fun things to do with friends involve lots of sun, so make sure you’re prepared.

Clothing Tips

Comfort is the driving fashion force in Florida, and Orlando is a typically casual city. Shorts and sandals are acceptable in all but the most exclusive restaurants. Winters are fairly mild, but cold snaps necessitate sweaters, jackets or light coats from December through February. If you arrive and find that you didn’t bring the right clothing, just stop by one of the many shopping centers in the area. Shopping for new clothing is one of the top things to do in Orlando, anyway.

A word to the wise: Warm temperatures outside often make for cold temperatures inside, as air conditioners are turned full blast against the summer heat. Bring a light jacket with you if you’re concerned about what to do if you get chilly indoors.

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Orlando, FL

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Marriott Orlando Downtown

400 W Livingston St. Orlando, FL 32801

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Best Western Orlando West

2014 W Colonial Dr. Orlando, FL 32804

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Sheraton Suites Orlando Airport

7550 Augusta National Dr. Orlando, FL 32822

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Travel Information

City Population

238,300

Elevation

111 ft.

Sales Tax

In Orange County the sales tax is 6.5 percent; in Lake and Seminole counties it is 7 percent; Osceola sales tax is 7.5 percent. Orange and Osceola counties levy a 6 percent resort tax, while Seminole County imposes a 5 percent tax and Lake County 4 percent.

Emergency

911

Police (non-emergency)

(321) 235-5300; Sheriff (407) 836-4357

Fire (non-emergency)

(407) 246-3473

Time and Temperature

(407) 646-3131

Hospitals

Dr. P. Phillips Hospital, (407) 351-8500; AdventHealth East Orlando, (407) 303-8110; AdventHealth Orlando, (407) 303-5600; Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical Center, (321) 841-5111.

Visitor Information

301 E. Pine St. Suite 900 Orlando, FL 32801. Phone:(407)425-1234

Air Travel

The Orlando area is served by two airports: Orlando International Airport (MCO), at SR 436 and the Beachline Expressway, and Orlando-Sanford International Airport (SFB) in Sanford, which serves commercial and private aircraft.

Rental Cars

Orlando is served by several major rental car agencies. Arrangements should be made before you depart, especially during peak seasons. Your local AAA club can provide this service or additional information. Hertz, (407) 859-8400 or (800) 654-3080, offers discounts to AAA members.

Rail Service

Amtrak provides train service to four stations in the metro area. Passenger-only trains stop at the stations at 1400 Sligh Blvd. in downtown Orlando and 148 W. Morse Blvd. in downtown Winter Park; Kissimmee's passenger station is at 111 E. Dakin Ave. The Auto Train, which runs round-trip from Lorton, Va., stops at the Sanford station at 600 S. Persimmon Ave. Phone (800) 872-7245 for both rail services.

Buses

A Greyhound Lines Inc. terminal, (407) 292-3422 for customer service, (407) 292-3424 for tickets or (800) 531-5332 for Spanish-speaking persons, is off West SR 50 (Colonial Drive) at 555 N. John Young Pkwy.

Taxis

Local taxis are metered and charge $4.20-$5.40 for the first mile and $2.65 for each additional mile plus 60c for each 80 seconds of waiting time. Major cab companies are Ace Metro, (407) 855-1111; Diamond Cab Co., (407) 523-3333; Quick Cab, (407) 447-1444; Town & Country, (407) 828-3036; and Orlando Taxi, (407) 422-2222.

Public Transportation

Transportation by bus, trolley or rail is available in Orlando.

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