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World Travel Guide > Guides > North America > United States of America > Florida > Orlando

Orlando Weather

32°C

Local time Orlando

Currency

US$

Travel to Orlando

Flying to Orlando

Airlines offering flights to Orlando from the UK include British Airways and Virgin Atlantic. As it's a year-round destination, it can be tricky to bag cheap flights, but if you travel during the off-peak months, and especially outside school holidays, you may be able to find a bargain. All the major US airlines offer domestic flights to Orlando from other cities within the country. 

Flight times

From London - 9 hours 10 minutes; New York - 2 hours 40 minutes; Los Angeles - 4 hours 45 minutes; Toronto - 2 hours 50 minutes; Sydney - 21 hours (including stopover).

Travel by road

In Florida, the minimum age for driving is 16 years and cars drive on the right. Local speed limits vary from 55-70mph (88-112kph) on the motorways to as low as 15mph (24kph) in built-up areas (notably near schools).

Florida has strict laws against drinking and driving, and open containers of alcoholic beverages are not permitted in vehicles. Drivers may turn right at a red light, after a complete stop, if the way is clear. A flashing red traffic light is the same as a stop sign, which means that it is necessary to come to a full stop and proceed when safe.

All valid national licences are acceptable; however car hire companies may prefer an International Driving Permit if your licence isn't in English. US insurance is mandatory and is available from car hire companies.

The American Automobile Association (AAA) (tel: +1 800 222 1134; www.aaa.com) can provide information, and may offer reciprocal benefits to members of automobile clubs in other countries.

Emergency breakdown services

AAA (tel: +1 800 222 4357).

Routes

I-4 connects Orlando with Daytona Beach to the northeast and Tampa to the southwest of the city. US 441 connects Orlando with Miami to the south.

Coaches

Greyhound (tel: +1 800 231 2222; www.greyhound.com) offers daily services from Jacksonville and points north, as well as from Miami.

Megabus (tel: +1 877 462 6342; www.megabus.com) runs coaches from Orlando to several other Florida cities, as well as to Atlanta, Mobile and New Orleans.

Time to city

From Jacksonville - 2 hours; Miami - 3 hours 30 minutes; New York - 16 hours; Los Angeles< - 36 hours.

Travel by Rail

Services

Trains in Orlando arrive and depart from the Orlando Amtrak station, 1400 Sligh Boulevard.

Amtrak is the USA's national rail operator and provides a comfortable, if reliably unpunctual, service.

Operators

Amtrak (tel: +1 800 872 7245; www.amtrak.com) provides the main rail link to Orlando, with a direct service to downtown Orlando, plus Winter Park, 16km (10 miles) to the north, and Kissimmee.

The Silver Service connects Orlando with  New York  and Washington, DC. After stopping in Orlando, it continues to Tampa or Miami.

Journey times

From Miami - 5 hours; New York - 23 hours.

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Featured Hotels

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Portofino Bay Hotel

This re-creation of an Italian fishing village is in the heart of Universal Orlando Resort, complete with fine restaurants and shops. The guest rooms are decorated with a Mediterranean theme and there’s a lively piazza with vintage Italian sports cars and scooters.

Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld

This beautiful resort-style hotel is right opposite SeaWorld, and has an impressive lobby atrium and a spectacular indoor courtyard. For the price, this hotel has great rooms and the restaurant choice is reassuringly diverse. All in all, this property offers superb value in this price range.

Sheraton Safari Hotel and Suites

With larger than average rooms, a great pool and an ideal location just outside Walt Disney World Resort, this make this a good family choice. As you can imagine, the décor is largely animal prints and exotic details. There’s been attention paid to the outdoor areas, including a 24m (80ft) water slide in the pool. The hotel is currently undergoing a US$25 million renovation, due for completion this spring.

Walt Disney World Swan and Walt Disney World Dolphin

The former operated by Westin and the latter by Sheraton, these are the archetypal fancy Disney hotels with all the attendant allures. Between the two hotels, there are 2,267 luxury rooms and 254,000 sq ft of meeting and exhibition space. They share 17 restaurants and lounges, four swimming pools, two health clubs, and a wide array of recreational activities.

Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort

An 18-storey atrium welcomes honeymooners and families, screeching parrots and all. It’s hard to imagine a more replete resort hotel, and there’s a whole world to explore, from one of the best pools in the country to the comprehensive sports on offer to the destination restaurants.

Galleria Palms Hotel & Suites

One of the best-located budget hotel options you’re only a mile and a half from Disney but you can stay at a fraction of the price of similarly placed hotels. The rooms aren’t the largest you’ll ever stay in but they are clean and modern and there’s even a free breakfast.