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How to spend your evenings in Orlando

Planet Hollywood Orlando

Days in Orlando are packed with just about as much fun as you can handle, but make sure you save a little energy for the evenings! Guest blogger Scarlett tells us what you just can’t miss when the sun goes down.

Whether you’re heading to Downtown Disney, hitting up City Walk at Universal Studios or just exploring what International Drive has to offer, you’ll never be short of ways to spend your evenings in Orlando.

But with so much to choose from, finding your perfect Orlando evening can be a little overwhelming – so Im taking a look at my top five evenings in Orlando that are perfect for big groups, families with kids and couples alike.

Pirates Dinner Adventure


If you want a show that pulls out all the stops, you cant go wrong with the Pirates Dinner Adventure; set on an amazing full-scale ship, the show drags you into a world of swash-buckling pirates, damsels in distress and wars at sea… before you know it you’ll be singing along to sea shanties and swinging your pitcher back and forth. Expect a whole host of entertainment including gymnasts flying around the room and even the waiters taking on the character of gold-loving shipmates!

What to expect:

Atmosphere: A real pirates knees-up. Imagine the port of Tortuga in The Pirates of the Caribbean films and you’re halfway there!

Food: 3 course meal included in your admission, including a main of beef or chicken. Vegetarian options available

Drinks: One round of Yeungling beer or two rounds of soda included in your admission and a full cash bar that includes some swashbuckling rum cocktails.

Sleuths Murder Mystery

From the moment you walk into Sleuth’s youll find yourself immersed into a world of mystery, intrigue and, most importantly, full-blown scandal. What separates Sleuths from a lot of the other dinner shows on offer, is that you’re given the opportunity to interrogate the cast of suspects and form your own conclusion about whodunit. With a fabulous mix of eclectic comedy and Sleuths will make you feel more like a guest at a fabulous dinner party rather than a customer.

What to expect:

Atmosphere: Depending on your party size you’ll be seated on large circular tables along with other guests, giving a real dinner party feel to the evening.

Food: Hot and cold hors d’oeuvres prior to the show and a two course meal, (options include Cornish game hen and meat/vegetarian lasagne) served during the show – all included in your admission.

Drinks: Unlimited draft beer and wine as well as soft drinks included in the price.

Hard Rock Cafe

With rocknroll memorabilia adorning every inch of wall, the Hard Rock Cafe at Universal Studios is a must for any music fan. With a huge range of menu items and a chilled out atmosphere, the Hard Rock is perfect for a quiet lunch or a rowdy dinner.

What to expect:

Atmosphere: The Hard Rock is famous for its relaxing atmosphere – and as the biggest one in the world there’s a perfect place to sit whether you’re on a date night or visiting with a big group of friends.

Food: Everything from burgers to smokehouse classics, (just like momma used to make) – and some of the best sides and starters you’ll find in Orlando!

Drinks: A full service bar, including draft beers, spirits and soft drinks – make sure you try the legendary Ben n Jerry’s Thick Shakes, you wont regret it!

La Nouba

If you’re after a truly unique experience, then Cirque du Soleils La Nouba in Downtown Disney is an absolute must-see. Complete with clowns, arial performers and incredible trapeze and trampoline artists that don’t cease to amaze, there are plenty of ‘ooh and aah’ moments for young and old alike.

What to expect:

Atmosphere: There are almost no bad seats for this show – just be sure to arrive on time to avoid missing any of the action.

Food and Drink: There is a concession stand available to purchase food and drink to take into the show.

Planet Hollywood

Planet Hollywood Orlando

If dinner shows aren’t your thing, but you still want an evening of good food and a great atmosphere, then make sure you pay a visit to Planet Hollywood in Downtown Disney. The menu is huge so there’s something on offer for everyone’s tastes and with the restaurant and bars spread over 3 floors there’s never an evening where it isn’t lively – so its the perfect places to celebrate an special occasion with a group of friends or family. Just beware of the huge portions, especially if you’re wearing your tightest figure-hugging outfit!

What to expect:

Atmosphere: Depending on your party size you’ll be seated on large circular tables along with other guests, giving a real dinner party feel to the evening.

Food: An extensive menu covering everything from salads to steaks.

Drinks: A full service bar, including draft beers, spirits, soft drinks, milkshakes and (fabulous) speciality cocktails.

About the author:

Ever since her first trip to Walt Disney World aged 10, the sunshine state has been Scarlett's destination of choice. With 5 Orlando visits under her belt in the last 7 years, she's well-versed on the must-dos of Orlando. She's also the author of Scarlet Wonderland, a lifestyle blog for people who are fabulously imperfect and don't take themselves too seriously.

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