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Barberville Yard Art Emporium

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4 Fun, Funky, Not-Too-Far Places You Absolutely Want To Explore!

Each just an hour's drive or less from Winter Park, these unique adventures are worth the trip

When people think of the Orlando area, they immediately think of Disney and Universal.
But there's more to life than roller coasters, character costumes, and corn dogs. Those of us who live here, know that there is a lot more fun to be had if you just look around.
We did some real digging and found four really cool places that even most locals had never heard of. So get out there and experience the “real” Central Florida!


Showcase of Citrus
Clermont


Long before Orlando became the theme-park capital of the world, people were traveling to Florida, first by train and later by automobile. As more highways crisscrossed the nation, families started driving here for the warmth, sunshine, and beaches. This
created a business opportunity that quickly took off: the roadside tourist stand.


At Showcase of Citrus, located on U.S. Hwy. 27 south of Clermont, they have re-created that nostalgic look and feel and even combined it with a few modern touches.
Billed as “Florida’s Fresh Air Attraction,” this family-owned business is located on a large citrus grove where you can pick your own oranges, lemons, limes, and other citrus fruit right from the tree, depending on the season.


Even in the off-season, there's plenty to do here. One of the more popular activities is their Monster Truck Adventure. Climb aboard this tiger-striped monster truck and enjoy the sights as Park Rangers drive you into the vast Florida wild. Guests will explore
native woodlands, citrus groves, and even Bigfoot territory.


Finally, if you just want a place to kick back and relax with friends over a few beers, they've got you covered. There are always food trucks on-site if you get hungry, and you can even shop for souvenirs, as well as jars of locally produced honey, jams, and other treats. There's even a petting zoo that kids will love!


Showcase of Citrus is located at 15051 Frank Jarrell Road in Clermont and is about a 35-minute drive from Winter Garden.

Reptile World Serpentarium
St. Cloud


Avert your eyes if you're squeamish about snakes. On the other hand, if you find them absolutely fascinating, you'll love this place! At Reptile World Serpentarium, which opened in 1972, you’ll find an extraordinary collection of snakes from around the world,
from species that are fairly common, harmless, and even beneficial to some of the most exotic and deadly snakes on the planet.


If you’ve never seen a 13-foot king cobra, one of the deadliest snakes in the world, or a beautiful black mamba, your opportunity is only a short drive away! The exhibits include six species of cobra and 11 kinds of rattlesnakes. There are also several species of
lizards – including a passel of iguanas – turtles, tortoises, and a Nile crocodile, as well as a 14-foot male alligator named “Pete.”


Reptile World Serpentarium is more than just a fun (or perhaps, terrifying) place to visit. They also provide a valuable, even lifesaving service. With more than 35 species of venomous snakes on site, they have supplied venom to over 300 universities and 40
companies for research and the production of anti-venom. By the way, there’s also a gift shop!


Reptile World Serpentarium is located at 5705 East Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway in St. Cloud and is about an hour’s drive from Winter Garden.


Barberville Yard Art Emporium
Barberville


The best way to describe the Barberville Yard Art Emporium is that it is an explosion of color, kitsch, and creativity spread out over three whimsical acres. Located north of Winter Park near the Ocala National Forest, you can browse among hundreds of thousands of locally produced chainsaw art, recycled cast aluminum statues, Haitian reclaimed oil drum figurines, rustic teakwood furniture, and a whole lot more.

One of the biggest draws at the Emporium is the collection of colorful and fun yard art – crafted into a wide variety of shapes – which numbers in the thousands. Most of these items are made from recycled materials, including aluminum, steel, and wrought iron. The figures range from smaller items like animals or sun figures to a 20-foot-tall giraffe and “life-sized” Sasquatch. There’s also a wide range of souvenirs and trinkets available, just in case you don't need a giant statue of a space alien.


The Barberville Yard Art Emporium is located at 140 West S.R. 40 in Barberville and is about an hour’s drive from Winter Garden.


Orlando Wetlands Park
Christmas


The Orlando Wetlands Park is a man-made wetland that at one time was part of the St. John’s River floodplain before settlers started moving into the area nearly 200 years ago. After the Civil War, much of the area was drained for agriculture and most of the
trees were harvested for manufacturing and general construction.


In the 1980s, the City of Orlando purchased 1,650 acres to provide advanced treatment for reclaimed water, which once released into the wetlands slowly drains to the St. Johns River, a journey that takes 30 to 40 days. Today, the park features miles of trails
for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. A favorite destination for photographers and wildlife enthusiasts, the park is open daily from sunrise and sunset. And if you'd ever like to see alligators in their natural habitat, this is the place!


The Orlando Wetlands Park is located at 25155 Wheeler Road in Christmas and is about an hour’s drive from Winter Garden.

  • Orlando Wetlands Park
  • Orlando Wetlands Park
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Showcase of Citrusont
  • Showcase of Citrus
  • Reptile World Serpentarium
  • Reptile World Serpentarium
  • Reptile World Serpentarium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium
  • Barberville Yard Art Emporium