Vegan MoFo: 30 Days of Vegan Travel – Day Four – Orlando, FL – The City Beautiful – In honor of the shuttle launch

Ares I-X: Sunrise on the Launch Pad (NASA, 10/27/09)
Well, the Space Shuttle Discovery Mission STS 133 was going to launch today from Kennedy Space Center, but was pushed back to Friday due to weather conditions. I’ve always wanted to see a shuttle launch, but I haven’t had the opportunity, so in fantasy internet vacation land I’m pretending to be there.

"Greetings from Orlando, Florida, the City Beautiful~" - Project 366 2008 - June 28, 2008 ~ Explored!
Orlando, FL is reasonably close to the Kennedy Space Center so seems to be the best destination, especially since while I am an unabashed nerd, I’ve also always wanted to visit Walt Disney World and EPCOT Center. It’s one of those things I’ve never outgrown. I blame watching Mickey Mouse Club as a child.

Of course, when in Orlando… there are also a bunch of other silly/fun/random things to do in addition to those two.


Transit Information

The Central Florida Transit system is called LYNX. They have a trip planner, so that’ll make getting around easy. It’s 4.50 for a single day pass. or $2 one way.

Where to stay

I’m partial to these two, but they both have separate things going for them:

  • Orlando’s Palm Lakefront Hostel (4840 W. Irlo Bronson Hwy 192 – Kissimmee, Florida)
    • (19$/person for a dorm room or 36$ for a private room for 2)
    • they have wifi
    • Buses (for about 2$) out to places I’d want to see
    • inexpensive.
    • is a hostel
  • Imperial Swan Hotel (7050 South Kirkman Road Orlando, FL)
    • Has a decent location.
    • Is not a hostel, but is still inexpensive
    • Free shuttle service to theme parks
    • con: Doesn’t have free wifi

Food Stuff

Things that really excited me about going to Orlando is there is quite a selection of places to go that are vegan.
Here are a few I really wanted to try:

  • Ethos Vegan Kitchen (1235 N Orange Ave, Orlando, FL).

    Ethos Vegan Kitchen

    They seem to have a very comfort food vibe, which I’m very into. The Pecan Encrusted Eggplant and What’s the Dilly, Philly? (philly cheesesteak) are dishes that I’m very into.Ethos-Pecan Encrusted Eggplant
  • CafĂ© 118 Degrees (153 E Morse Rd, Winter Park, FL) Their entire menu is organic, vegan and also prepared completely raw.
  • I read on someone’s blog they had a veganized meal from Norman’s (4012 Central Florida Pkwy, Grande Lakes, FL) at The Ritz. That was in 2007, but I’m hopeful that this could still happen.
  • While in the Magical World of Disney, I’m going to take advantage of Brown Derby at MGM Studios.
    Hollywood Brown Derby

    It does not have a huge selection of vegan options, but it does have something marked vegan right on the menu (that isn’t a salad), the coconut-encrusted tofu with thai noodles and vegetables. It also serves one vegan dessert every day.

Coffee / Cafe


I was excited to hear about the Raphsodic Cooperative Company Bakery & Store (710 N Mills Ave, Orlando, FL). They are entirely vegan, and sound like they have a great variety of yummy baked treats, plus there is wifi! Definitely a must visit.

Another coffee shop that sounded interesting was Drunken Monkey Coffee
(444 N Bumby Ave, Orlando, FL). It’s not entirely vegan but they do have vegan baked goods, and a variety of nondairy milks. They would be another spot for wifi.

Fun (for me) Activities

Kennedy Space Center
(SR 405, Kennedy Space Center, FL, directions)

I’m not sure how I could spent a lifetime not visiting this place.

Admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex: is $41 adult/$31 child (ages 3-11) plus tax

But, since I’d want to take it to the next level… how does one do that? Why… with a half-day program of astronaut training of course. It’s pricy (no surprise there) $145 (plus tax)

ATX focuses on hands-on aspects of astronaut training, including a mission simulation and training simulators. During this exciting half-day of astronaut training, you will hear from veteran NASA astronauts and progress through a mission simulation as you experience what it takes to become a NASA astronaut.

Then there is the whole… Disney Experience.

It looks like a day pass to Disney would be $71, by the time I go, I’m sure it will change

  • EPCOT Center, I’d want to check out Mission to Mars, and the Illuminations show (a combination of laser, lights and fireworks synchronized with classical music)
  • MGM Studios. I’d have to go on the The Tower of Terror, see the Muppets 3D and Fantasmic( the fireworks show).

Then the other stuff…

  • Universal Studio’s Orlando: has a special Harry Potter thing going on right now. I’m going to pretend I’m seeing it now.
  • Then my usual art gallery visit, which in this case would be the Orlando Museum of Art
  • Daytona 500: A park for race car enthusiasts featuring a museum, interactive exhibits, simulators, an IMAX theater and Speedway tours. I would have to check out whether there was a race going on while I was there, because it might actually be kind of fun to be there while it’s happening.

Why are you posting so much MeShell?
Pictures used, are not mine, they are ones I found on Flickr and are used under creative commons license. If you took these images, and don’t want them on my blog, let me know (and update you image settings)! Thank you.

1 Response

  1. Thanks for this, I'm visiting Orlando in a couple of weeks and will definitely use your suggestions.