Polk County in Central Florida is known as ‘Florida’s sweetest spot’ and families love it for laid-back holidays that are low on crowds but packed with everything from thrilling theme parks to some of the freshest outdoor adventures in the entire state.
Central Florida’s Polk County sits between Orlando and Tampa, so it’s perfect for Gulf and Atlantic coast beaches, as well as Orlando's world famous theme parks. But families who know Central Florida don’t ever think of it as just a convenient holiday base. If you want theme parks, you don’t need to travel out of Polk County. It’s also the area for no less than three State Parks and a State Forest, as well as hundreds of accessible lakes and wetlands; historic landmarks; gorgeous gardens and acre after acre of citrus groves. The biggest dude ranch east of the Mississippi is in Polk County too, as well as no fewer than 13 Frank Lloyd Wright designs.
With over 390 miles of scenic hiking trails, you can understand why outdoor adventures are big in Central Florida. There’s also an exciting food scene and fresh and local ingredients feature high in family-friendly restaurants all over the area, from lively downtown districts to lakeside on some Florida’s loveliest stretches of water. And as far as family holiday accommodation goes, Polk County is not only home to North America’s first ever LEGOLAND Pirate Island Hotel, it also offers families 1000s of great value holiday homes to choose from. It’s probably already clear why Polk County in Central Florida is known as 'Florida's Sweetest Spot’, but here are a few more reasons to plan a family holiday here as soon as you can.
Warm and sunny Polk County actively encourages you to make the most of the weather on family holidays in Central Florida. The great outdoors doesn’t come much greater than it does here – an astonishing 25,000 acres of Polk County are protected and preserved just for adventuring around.
If you want to get out on the water, you’ve a pick of more than 550 freshwater lakes and not just for admiring: you can do just about anything on these waters from air boating and kayaking to world-class fishing. Polk County also contains three state parks and each is a true individual – proof, if you need it, that you’re on holiday in one of Florida’s most environmentally diverse areas.
Lake Wales Ridge State Forest is another local hiking legend and part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail. And speaking of wildlife, Polk County is also home to Circle B Bar Reserve which USA Today named as one of the country’s ’51 Great Places to See Wildlife’.
Polk County’s LEGOLAND Florida Resort covers a mammoth 150 acres in Winter Haven with more than 50 rides and attractions, an amazingly colourful waterpark and all those irresistible kids-and-bricks experiences that make LEGO the globally recognised symbol of fun.
This is also the very first LEGOLAND resort in North America with a LEGO Pirate Island Hotel. So if a day out isn’t quite exciting enough for kids, you can book a night (or more) in five storeys worth of thrills ranging from character meet-n-greets to in-room treasure hunts, a LEGO-centric swimming pool, family entertainment, themed bedrooms and LEGO play areas. And not content with the first LEGO Pirate Island Hotel in North America, LEGOLAND Florida Resort is going for a world first with its brand new Peppa Pig theme park, set to open in 2022.
LEGOLAND Hotel is an unforgettable experience for kids and it’s just one of many excellent, family-friendly hotels in Central Florida. But this area’s also the heartland of affordable holiday homes with around 7000 rental properties available across Polk County, ranging from cute cottages to enormous six-bedroom villas. The quality of accommodation is exceptionally high. All holiday homes are fully furnished with well-equipped kitchens, spacious living rooms and laundry facilities. Towels and bedlinen are normally included as standard, plus many homes have private swimming pools – a few even have private cinemas. And you can expect every single holiday rental to be in a great location: not just for Central Florida, but also for Orlando’s theme parks and stunning beaches on both the Gulf and Atlantic coast.