Orlando’s Best Quiet Spots – Where to Escape the Tourist Traps

For this trip to Orlando, I want to see more than just the big tourist places. While the big parks and hotels probably have lots going on, I also hope to find some spots without tons of people. This city must have areas for folks to relax without huge crowds. I stayed there for a week and spent a lot of time driving from one spot to another just for the sake of writing this article. But I’ll be honest, I had a great time.

Now I share a few places that are worth checking out. Especially for people like me who are only here for a little bit.

Canaveral National Seashore

Canaveral National Seashore - Florida

Canaveral National Seashore is about a half-hour drive east of Orlando in Titusville. This area owned by the government has nice beaches with clear water lagoons filled with different plants and critters. Since they ain’t no hotels or shops hoggin’ up space, the place keeps it real nature-like.

That natural setup is why crowds don’t tend to pile on. With ain’t much else to do besides beachin’ or seein’ wildlife, seems most folks pick somewhere else. But for gettin’ away from everyone, Canaveral is prime. You can walk the beaches or hike trails for miles without runnin’ into hardly anyone even on nice days. It doesn’t get packed full. Just beaches, lagoons, and wildlife – no annoying hordes of people to deal with.

New Smyrna Beach

New Smyrna Beach - Florida

New Smyrna Beach lies about an hour south of Orlando in, you guessed it, New Smyrna Beach. This town is known for having an artsy vibe downtown where they kept the old look. It’s got a really laidback feel with beaches that are clear and not too packed even though they’re really nice.

What with it bein’ less commercialized than beaches up the coast, New Smyrna doesn’t have as many buildings hoggin’ up space. There are fewer shops and hotels crammed together so it keeps things chill. Seems like they care more about keeping it relaxed over rakin’ in tourist dollars. So there’s room to breathe on them beaches without getting lost in swarms of people like up north.

Playalinda Beach

Payalinda Beach, Florida

Playalinda Beach is out past Titusville inside that Canaveral National Seashore area we already talked about. Like that whole preserve, this here beach is known for its natural beauty and being really zen-like.

Access to Playalinda ain’t the easiest since they clamp down on commercial nonsense. And there ain’t no shops, food stands or nothin’ built up non-natural polluting the place. Seems they aimed to keep it just beach and dunes and turn back all the crowds and hullabaloo. So if peace and quiet with just nature’s sights is your speed, this is more your style than beaches you need maps and signs to navigate.

Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art

Charles Hosmer Morse Museum

The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum is located in Winter Park, just north of Orlando. This museum has one of the largest collections anywhere of pieces by artist Louis Comfort Tiffany, who was renowned for his color stained glass designs.

Since the museum’s focus is predominantly on Tiffany’s works, it tends to get less crowded than larger art galleries with diverse exhibits. Visitors often come to learn about and appreciate Tiffany’s unique style through the museum’s displays. It provides a more serene environment compared to busier attractions in the area. Sometimes being able to view beautiful artworks in a quiet, uncrowded setting is appealing without having to jostle through large groups of people. For a relaxing cultural experience away from the congestion of top tourist spots, the Morse Museum is worth checking out.

Leu Gardens

Leu Gardens, Orlando, Florida

Leu Gardens is located in Orlando, not too far from all the main tourist areas. Spread out over 50 acres, it’s basically a huge park filled with different landscaped areas, lakes, and an old mansion you can tour.

Kinda nice to wander through all the greenery and scenic spots without packed sidewalks squeezing you in like the theme parks. Since this place has so much open space with gardens, paths, and lawns, it never gets too crowded no matter how many people stop by. You can stroll around relaxed checking out the plant life and views without being squeezed in with crowds.

Winter Park

Winter Park Shopping District

Winter Park is a small town right next to Orlando. They’re known for their downtown area filled with funky little shops and cafes, plus a nice scenic lake system winding through.

You can stroll around checking out the lake views, boutiques, and restaurants at a more relaxed pace than the tourist spots. Seems the locals care more about their local scene than crushing it with huge attractions. Because of that laidback vibe, it never gets too insanely busy even with visitors.

Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower Gardens is a drive southwest of Orlando in Lake Wales. This spot’s got a huge 205-foot tall tower that plays music which is pretty cool, and lush gardens all over.

Being a ways away from the thick of the theme park action, it stays more on the mellow side. They built the whole place focusing on zen vibes with all the plant life and scenery instead of packed attractions. So while you see gardens and greenery and check out the big musical tower, you can breathe easy not dealing with crowds.

Lake Eola Park

Lake Eola - Orlando

There’s a cool spot in central Orlando called Lake Eola Park. It’s right off the main drag downtown but a world away from the chaos. They have a pretty lake where you can paddle around on boats shaped like swans which is a kick. Also, paths wrap around the parkwide and on Sundays, they do a farmer’s market thing.

Even though it’s smack in the center of downtown, they left the space wide open so it never feels crammed in like some parks. Because of all that elbow room, you get your quiet time no matter how many locals are chilling out that day.

Wekiwa Springs State Park

Wekiwa Springs State Park, Florida

Wekiwa Springs State Park is located near Apopka, not too far outside Orlando. The park’s got natural springs you can see bubbling up, along with trails through the woods and opportunities to paddle around the rivers in canoes.

Because the park covers a big area with lots of trails and water to explore, you aren’t going to be tripping over crowds no matter how many people show up. There’s plenty of space on the paths and waterways to find your own quiet spot away from everyone else if you want nature time alone. Even when the place gets busy, it feels roomy rather than packed-in wall to wall.

Tibet-Butler Nature Preserve

Tibet Butler Nature Preserve in Orlando, Florida

They got trails through 440 acres of woods and fields. Also a garden for butterflies and chances to look for birds.

Since the place is all about protecting land and teaching people, it doesn’t get as many loud tourists as spots that just care about numbers. With the huge space they’re workin’ with too, you won’t be bunched up with others no matter who shows up.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to Orlando, people usually just think of it as busy theme parks and congested streets. But if you take some time to look past all the chaos, you’ll find there are actually plenty of chill spots worth checking out too for a more relaxed scene.

Even right near downtown where everything’s always crazy packed, you can find places at the beach or parks where all the tourists disappear and it’s peaceful. It’s nice to get away from the madness sometimes.