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Adventure in the Trees at Orlando Tree Trek

It was early morning when our team pulled into the parking lot at Orlando Tree Trek, the fog was still burning off as the sun struggled to break through. We checked in and paired up with another small group for orientation. Walking out back I caught my first glimpse of the aerial courses. A series of rope nets, swings and wooden steps hanging from metal cables extended high above the ground tightly between large wooden poles.
Was I really expected to climb all the way up there? I wasn’t nervous before, but that quickly changed as I thought of walking across those obstacles so far away from the ground. It was at that moment that our guide for our adventure made his appearance.

Michael assured us that he had completed each of the courses many times and confidently walked us through the safety procedures and multiple actions we would be expected to perform on our own using the different clips on our harnesses. Afterwards, he took us over to a small demo course where we tested out our newly fitted harnesses on cables just a few feet off the ground. Having never done this before I thought it would take longer to get used to but after a few times using the magnetic clip system on the cable I quickly got the hang of it.

We approached our first course of the day and made out way to the top of the first platform. Each of the obstacles at Orlando Tree Trek have a provided safety cable above that we hooked onto using our harness. If at any point we made a mistake or lost our footing, the cable would hold us in place until we could continue. We clipped our harnesses to the cable and were presented with our first challenge, a series of wooden planks suspended between two cables. This was a great one to start out with as the planks were spaced fairly close together and walking across was pretty easy. The first few challenges boosted our confidence and slowly introduced us to new skills that we would be expected to use in later courses.

When we reached the end of the first course, we were eager to accept the challenge provided by the next one. Orlando Tree Tree has four adult courses, green, blue, silver and red. Each of the courses is progressively more difficult and as I found out, with platforms spaced further apart. Two kid courses are available as well with lower platforms and obstacles geared towards a younger age range.

We made it through the first three courses and surprising even ourselves, decided to try and conquer the most challenging red course. This last course used all of the skills we had learned from the previous courses and introduced a few new challenges including hoops and barrels. I found that crawling through multiple barrels suspended over twenty feet off the ground wasn’t exactly my favorite thing to do. After almost three hours of intense exercise, I was getting both physically and mentally exhausted. The final zip line signalling the end of the course was a welcome sight. We attached our harness to the cable and pushed off into the air reaching the last platform.

Orlando Tree Trek had pushed me way passed my normal level of exercise and I was happy for the experience. While I was sore for the next few days, I see myself returning in the near future.

Orlando Tree Trek additionally offers zip lining by itself if you’re not up to taking on the courses. Reservations can be made by contacting Orlando Tree Trek through their website at

Thanks to Orlando Tree Trek for providing us with the opportunity to experience these courses.

Attractions Hotels News

ICE! Returns to Gaylord Palms

Gaylord Palm’s annual holiday event, ICE!, made its debut for the 2015 season.

Featuring fantastic ice sculptures detailing the timeless story of Twas the Night Before Christmas, guests walk their way through scenes depicting key parts of the tale.

At 9 degrees, the temperature inside ICE! makes this event a true Winter experience with guests donning blue parkas to keep warm while they make their way from scene to scene.

While inside, make a visit to the Frostbite Factory and see the artisans from Harbin, China sculpting new additions.

In addition to ICE!, visitors to Gaylord Palms can try out their indoor Alpine Rush Snow Tubing featuring actual snow. After 6pm, the snow tubing turns into Cosmic Snow Tubing with holiday themed dubstep music.

ICE! runs from November 24 – January 3. Tickets can be purchased from the Gaylord Palms website.

Attractions News

FunSpot Orlando Partners with Gatorland to Create GatorSpot

FunSpot Orlando has been going through a growth spurt the last few months and has now partnered with one of Central Florida’s most famous attractions, Gatorland, to create GatorSpot.

The 15,000 square foot attraction will provide guests to FunSpot with an up-close look at some of Florida’s most famous reptiles including an albino gator.

The new expansion will open to guests May 11.

Attractions News Video

A Drone’s View of the Orlando Eye

A Reddit user used his Phantom QuadCopter to film the construction of The Orlando Eye.

This is a fantastic look at the Orlando Eye. Hopefully he’ll make a new video once the Eye is complete.

Video filmed by TheGadgetGuy1 on Reddit using the equipment he posted below.

  • Phantom 2 Drone.
  • Zenmuse H3-3D gimbal. (isolates the camera for good steady video)
  • GoPro Hero 3 or 4 camera. (the better the camera, the better the results)
  • Video transmitter. (allows you to view the video in real time as you are filming)
  • iOSD telemetry. (displays vital drone info on the video monitor while you film)
  • Video receiver. (receives the video transmitted from the drone while you fly)
  • Video monitor. (so you can watch the video and telemetry while you fly)
  • Extra batteries. (batteries last around 10-15 minutes per charge)
  • High end antennas. (give you better range)
Attractions First Look News

Joker Taking on the Justice League in Battle For Metropolis at Six Flags

The Joker is expanding his ambitions and taking on the entire Justice League in the new dark ride Justice League: Battle for Metropolis coming to Six Flags next year.

Guests to Six Flags Over Texas and Six Flags St. Louis will get the chance to fight alongside members of the Justice League to defend Metropolis and defeat the Joker when the new ride opens in 2015.

Guests go into battle with one of six electronic guns mounted in the ride vehicle, similar to the Men in Black ride at Universal Studios. Using a combination of 3D and animatronics, the ride puts guests in the middle of the battle.

The Joker animatronic created by Sally Corporation was unveiled today at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions expo taking place in Orlando.

Sally Corporation teamed up with Oceaneering to build the all-new 6-passenger ride vehicle. Oceaneering was responsible for the ride vehicles for SeaWorld’s Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin that opened in 2013.

We got a close-up look at the Joker animatronic. He’s just as creepy and awesome as you would expect Mister J. to be.

Sally Corporation has released a teaser video for the ride.

Attractions News Video

First Ride Capsule for the Orlando Eye is Unveiled

This week, The Orlando Eye unveiled their first ride capsule for the 400 foot observation wheel being built on International Drive.

The wheel will hold 30 air-conditioned ride capsules which can each seat 15 people allowing for 450 guests to ride the wheel at once. The glass enclosed capsules will give guests a full circle view of the Central Florida theme park area from atop the wheel.

To get a feeling for how big the Orlando Eye is, we took a 360 degree video of the current construction.

The Orlando Eye construction has been progressing at a rapid pace with the center section of the wheel already complete and the outer section currently being constructed. The wheel will be ready for guests in early 2015 and is part of the I-Drive 360 entertainment complex.

Attractions News

Oddtoberfest Returns to Ripley’s Orlando

Oddtoberfest is returning to Ripley’s on October 4. This free event held each October, gives guests the chance to explore some of what Ripley’s has to offer.

This year’s even will take place from 12-3pm outside the Ripley’s Odditorium and will feature these activities:

  • Sensei Mike Reeves and his Over the Edge Team displaying their amazing karate skills – 12 pm
  • “Trick Ropin’ Trevor” Dreher will wow the crowd with his Wild West Extravaganza – 1 pm
  • Gatorland puts on a show featuring a live gator, snakes and reptiles – 2 pm
  • Prize wheel featuring free and discount admissions, toys, souvenir books and more
  • Food truck
  • Face painting
  • Bounce house
  • More information can be found on Ripley’s Orlando website.

Attractions First Look Hotels News

Harry’s Poolside Bar and Grill Hits the Spot While Relaxing Near the Pool

The Rosen Centre celebrated the grand opening of Harry’s Poolside Bar and Grill this week with a special dedication ceremony set to live steel drum music.

Harris Rosen, CEO of Rosen Hotels and Resorts, performed the ribbon cutting surrounded by family and other members of the International Drive business community.

The Food

The real star of the afternoon was the food at Harry’s Poolside Bar and Grill. We had the opportunity to sample small portions of some of the items available on the menu.

Harry’s features Caribbean and island style eats including Havana Pork Sliders, Mango Crab Cakes, Cayman Island Calamari and other items perfect for a sunny day on vacation.

Harry’s Poolside Bar and Grill is open for lunch and dinner.

Attractions News

The Orlando Eye Hub is Installed

The Orlando Eye, the city’s 400 foot observation wheel under construction on International Drive, achieved a milestone this week with the installation of the central hub.

With the hub in place, the framework for the wheel is in place allowing for the spokes to be installed.

The Orlando Eye is the centerpiece of the I-Drive 360 entertainment complex currently under construction on International. The new complex will provide local residents and guests with multiple venues including Tussaud’s Wax Attraction and SeaLife Aquarium along with restaurants and shops.