Archive | Spotlight Orlando Attraction

A New Place to Chill: Minus5 Ice Bar

How soon we all forget about one of the coldest winters experienced this year. The warmth of Spring should be the attraction in Orlando, however, it is a cold experience that is creating all the buzz. The new Minus5 Ice Bar is now open on International Drive.

Minus 5 Ice Bar You no longer have to travel to the desert of Las Vegas, or the city of New York to experience a bar made completely out of ice. The chain has opened an Orlando version of this chilly place to meet. Each location features décor made from famous attractions in the city of its location. Las Vegas has the famous “Welcom to Las Vegas” sign and many casino references in its Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino location; New York has “Lady Liberty” featured in its bar. Orlando’s icy version includes references to the major theme parks as well as palm trees, surf and other Florida attractions.

Everything is made from ice, and I mean everything (except the floor)! From the bar at which you sit, to the seat you sit on and the glass containing the drink in your hand – all made of ice. Even the walls are made of (or covered with) ice! At a chilly 23 degrees Fahrenheit, you’ll need to bundle up to spend much time here.

Go surfin' at the new Minus5 Ice Bar in Orlando

Since many of us Floridians don’t own a heavy coat, use of a parka and gloves are included in the admission price. Regular admission is $17 for adults 16 & over, and $10 for children (yes, children are allowed). If you want a couple cocktails included in your admission, the price is $37. You may upgrade your package to $55 and have the use of a fur coat, one drink and a souvenir hat. If you want a 5” X 7” photo and 2 drinks, the upgrade costs $75.

Minus5 Ice Bar is located downstairs at Pointe Orlando (9101 International Drive) and is currently open Sunday – Thursday from 3pm to midnight, and Friday and Saturday from 1pm to 2am. Private events can be scheduled by contacting the new bar at 407-704-6959. For more information visit their web site at

I’m not sure I’ll be visiting this new attraction in Orlando very soon. I’m a warm-weather person all the way. How about you? Are you ready to chill out at this new bar? Leave a reply (below) on Al’s blog.

Gatorland: Combining Gators and Thrills

When people think of Florida they usually think of two things, Walt Disney World and Florida Alligators. With this being said, their Orlando attraction planning without Gatorland would be a big regret. Built in 1949 and still owned by the same family, this place has been labeled the “Alligator Capital of The World” with good reason.

Featuring thousands of crocodiles and alligators, Gatorland provides a birds-eye view of the natural alligator breeding marsh from a boardwalk and observation towers. Even though the park can be remembered by entrance through a large alligator head, this Orlando attraction is best known for rescuing and buying troubled alligators from trappers that otherwise would have been slaughtered for skin and meat. Housing them here saves their lives. Between 1981 and 1999, Gatorland was the only place worldwide where alligators were artificially inseminated also promoting the gator’s existence.

Upon opening, this Orlando attraction housed alligators and snakes for visitors to see. It was the first major attraction in central Florida. Since then, it has grown into a popular vacation site for people wanting to have a thrill while seeing alligators in their natural habitat. Keeping up with the major theme parks with its own adventures has kept Gatorland on the map of Orlando attractions to visit.

A nice fact to remember: With all the themed areas evolving, Gatorland has held its own. In 1965, the Iron Horse Theme Engine, a miniature, open-air locomotive, made its maiden run. It transported over 7.5 million visitors on a tour around the park.

Nowadays, visitors to the Orlando attraction can see gator wranglers, at Gatorland, in a unique alligator wrestling show called none other than, “Gator Wrestlin’ Show.” Keeping it “Florida Cracker” style, wranglers catch six to eight foot alligators by hand, while guests watch in a shaded 800 seat stadium. These wranglers climb onto the snapping alligators back and point out survival techniques. After a few stupid stunts the alligator is put to sleep only to be awakened by tickling it.

This Orlando attraction opened its newest adventure, Gator Zip Line, in 2012. Set seven stories in the air, multi-set launch pads run the length of 1200 feet across Cuban and Nile crocodiles. Guests end up soaring at 25 mph in which the thrill is only complete after flying over 130 Florida alligators looking up from their natural breeding marsh. The Zip Line can be experienced in the day or night.

Gatorland Orlando Trainer of the DayIf you or your teen have an extra interest in alligators, why not train them? For reservations, and extra fees, a person twelve years of age or older can experience what it’s like to be an alligator trainer through “Trainer for the Day.” Call ahead for information and reservations.

Gatorland is an Orlando attraction that should be seen by all. Birthday parties are available if plans are made ahead of time. This is the perfect place to enjoy the thrill and excitement of a theme park while viewing the instincts of alligators in their natural environment. Saving this endangered species has been kept in the family from the beginning here in Orlando.



Ripley’s Odditorium: Cure Boredom with Oddities

If looking at unusual and things of oddity is your thing, including Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium in your Orlando attraction planning is a must. Pulling into the parking lot will start the adventure off in a surreal mood due to the building built to give the illusion of its sinking into the ground and tilted. This amazing adventure is affordable to all families. For just twenty dollars per person at the entrance or discount tickets sold online, a different experience can be made.

An up-front warning: Some rooms are not suitable for younger children so planning should account for this. Two rooms which young children should not view are the animals’ room and the medieval collection. Some items in these rooms are classified as being morbidly grotesque. Other than that, other rooms will hold assorted items ranging from the comically whacked-out to plain odd.

Astounding collections of oddities that meet you while walking through the different rooms include candy art, miniature terracotta soldiers, lint art, and wax figures of strange animals and human deformities.

Besides having items of unique weirdness to view, this Orlando attraction has rooms that will mess with your sense of vision and balance. Slanting floors and walls lined with interactive optical illusions await your senses. The end of the tour consists of a tunnel which is available to walk through. This tunnel will make a person feel like they are actually walking sideways. A word of caution: If you have balance issues, vertigo or motion sickness, this tunnel should be avoided.

Ripley's Odditorium

So, let’s review a few oddities one can experience while walking through this Orlando attraction.

The Ripley’s Believe It or Not Legendary African Fertility statue is positioned at the main entrance. It is believed that the person touching this statue becomes fertile and will conceive. It is said over 2500 women claim it has actually helped them become pregnant.

The two-headed shark can be added to its line of “pranks of nature” list. Ripley’s has always dared to present the unbelievable yet the two-headed bull shark tops the list. Legend is told a fisherman caught a shark off the Florida Keys, when opening the shark up the two-headed fetus was inside. Odd or weird, it is available for you to believe it or not.

Interestingly is the area for scientific interaction. With the world performing “organ” transplants to save lives, Ripley’s is now allowing visitors to see scientists’ blog and present results after doing a “fecal” transplant. At this Orlando attraction visitors are able to see how scientists are using donor fecal matter and transplanting it into needed recipients to help cure diseases such as Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and other metabolic and/or gut diseases.

This Orlando attraction will amaze you and have you wondering if it’s real or fake. All in all it’s a great way to spend the afternoon without breaking the bank. Boredom can be cured by asking yourself is it real or not? At Ripley’s Orlando attraction, it is the intended and fascinating purpose.

Wonderworks: Wonder No More, Come Have Fun!

Wonderworks Upside Down Building

Wonderworks should be at the top of everyone’s Orlando attraction planning list. Reasonably priced to take the whole family, it is located right off of International Drive…right down the road from everything! This Orlando attraction is encompassed in an upside-down building. Those that have passed by, and have never stopped, wonder what it really is and what the history behind it is. Well, wonder no more.

With the current rainy days we’ve had, visiting Wonderworks is a fun thing to do in Orlando when it is too wet or hot to enjoy outdoor activities.

Rumor has it that the Orlando attraction, Wonderworks, started out as a scientific experiment in the Bermuda Triangle. It has been said that scientists were given the task to harness the POWER from a man-made tornado that they created. Something went amuck and the building flew into Orlando, landing on its roof; therefore, all the hundred plus interactive exhibits inside the house are upside-down.

When entering this Orlando attraction it sounds like the house is wanting to fall. Stepping inside, you become inverted in order to visit all the sites which are upside-down. Wonderworks is the ultimate place to learn and interact with science. It is perfect for the wanna-be-nerd.

After entering, you will go through a cool inversion tunnel. The rotating multi-colored tunnel contains a walkway which, upon reaching the other side, allows you to defy gravity in order to visit all the exhibits. How cool is that?!

Wonderworks Earthquake ExperienceExperiencing an actual earthquake can be a scary thought. However, when experiencing an earthquake inside Wonderworks, it is scary yet exciting. This Orlando attraction recreates an earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale. This exhibit is based on the 1989 San Francisco earthquake that stopped the World Series. It is very realistic. Visit the Disaster Zone for this experience.

Even though hurricanes can be experienced in Florida, people are usually in safe zones when they do hit. This Orlando attraction allows you to experience what 71 mph winds of an actual hurricane feel like. This is also in the Disaster Zone. These should be experienced by everyone.

In Wonder Coasters, a part of this Orlando attraction, you are able to build your own roller coaster, with twists, turns and loops. Taking the coaster for a spin is the ultimate thrill in the virtual coaster ride.

In the Space Zone visitors put on Astronaut suits and explore the universe. A souvenir picture in a famous exploration environment is available. There are so many interactive exhibits at this Orlando attraction that to name them all, or even a fraction, would be difficult. Visiting is a must for your vacation.

Along with the many exhibits there is a laser tag and rope climbing area available. Dinner and a comedy club dinner show is available with reservations. This is the perfect place to have the young scientist in your families’ birthday party.

Wonderworks is the ultimate scientific Orlando attraction. Seeing and experiencing it all should be on everyone’s bucket list. Make your plans to visit soon. Arrive early to get the best seats, or sites, in the house. Wonderworks is the place to learn all about the world and why things happen, all while having fun…and being upside-down.

CSI: The Experience – Solving Crimes Orlando Style

Editor’s Note: CSI: The Experience closed October 2015.

Orlando attraction planning is not complete without including the “CSI: The Experience” exhibition.  The relatively new Exhibition and Event Center on International Drive houses this traveling exhibition. The location puts it in the perfect spot – right down the road from where all the major Orlando attractions are – Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Theme Parks, to name a couple. It is the perfect spot for visitors to experience the exhibit.

When the television series “CSI: Crime Scene Investigator” was looking to expand, the idea of creating a “CSI: Orlando” was considered. Afterall, “CSI: Miami” is just down the coast. This Orlando attraction brings procedural science to life. If you follow any of the television series, you’ll really enjoy this attraction.

Just adjacent to “Titanic: The Experience”, the “CSI” exhibition is housed in a white building trimmed with lime; crime-scene tape adds just the right accent to the outside. This ingenuity can alarm someone just passing by, if they are unaware of what is actually inside this facility. All in all, a perfect touch.

What can one expect to find at this Orlando attraction? “CSI: The Experience” combines entertainment with real-life investigative and scientific procedures. There are special effects, crime scene recreations, state-of-the-art crime labs to explore and thousands of handmade props. Guests are able to solve several mysteries and also play the part of an actual crime scene investigator.

Crime Scene Investigator scene

This Orlando attraction stems from a CSI-based exhibit that was developed partially by the Ft. Worth, Texas Museum of Science and History. With this fact in mind, be ready to experience an extreme, yet realistic, exhibition. The fact being, the television show is known to produce graphical re-enactments and there are taped appearances from the actors that star in the hit television show; visitors should brace themselves for the unexpected.

Participants at the Orlando attraction are assigned a case in which to investigate. Instructions are given out to examine the crime scene and then to sketch anything deemed as evidence. Some evidence is noticeable while some is not so noticeable. This will definitely make one start focusing more on little things in their everyday surroundings. Not everything is what it seems to be here.

There are three different scenes for visitors to partake in: “A House Collided”, “No Bones about It,” and “Who Got served?” Returning guests are not left trying to solve the same crime time and again. After guests collect evidence from their crime scene, they make their way to a crime lab to run the evidence through scientific tests. Attempting to prove a case, and for many proving the case, is a memorable experience.

Vacationing in Florida does not have to contain just Orlando attractions that contain coasters and other thrill rides, sometimes the thrill can be in solving a case. Based on the famous television series, “CSI: The Experience” actually gives each person an experience to remember. Visit a crime scene today and make memories to last a life time. You never know what mystery awaits you at this house of crime.