From the outside, Professor Wonder?s WonderWorks laboratory appears to have flipped completely on its head. When visitors enter the upside-down edifice, they must first pass through the psychedelic, spinning lights of the Inversion Tunnel, which turns the building right-side up for families to embark on a full day of entertaining, educational activities. More than 100 interactive exhibits spark excitement around natural phenomenon, including replica mercury capsules that visitors can climb into, a gallery of mind-bending illusions.
Some of WonderWorks Orlando?s hands-on displays allow guests to experience the aftershocks of the San Francisco earthquake of 1989, throw a strike against Derek Jeter, and lie down on a bed of 3,500 sharp nails without so much as a scratch. Additional activities include the Indoor Ropes Challenge Course, which exercises bodies and minds as challengers navigate three stories of swinging beams and suspension bridges, and the XD Theater 4D.
The experienced trainers at University Equestrian Center, which opened its doors more than 50 years ago, equip riders with basic and advanced riding skills in a stress-free atmosphere. Aspiring horse-whisperers greet their mounts in the spacious barn and receive all the necessary equipment, such as a saddle, helmet, and carrot on a stick. Outside, lush greenery overhangs smooth riding trails on the sprawling grounds, where horses stand peacefully in grassy pastures.
Instructors tailor lessons to riding skills, helping pupils soar over hurdles or spur horses forward at a slow, steady gait. While equestrians enjoy their lessons, rides, or summer camps, guests can take advantage of the facility’s free WiFi or take dictation from horses that never learned to type.
Magical Midway’s neon-lit towers jut into the night sky as visitors scream with excitement from the amusement park’s go-kart tracks, thrill rides, and fully stocked arcade. The Space Blast Tower shoots passengers 180 feet in the air at a g-force greater than 3. Drivers cruise go-karts along two elevated tracks or whip around corkscrew turns on the Audubon-inspired fast track, as nearby bumper cars collide as harmlessly as two marshmallows doing a chest bump. Pucks float across the air-hockey table in the arcade, which also houses racing simulations and dancing games. Hungry thrill seekers refuel with sundry meals and snacks, such as hand-tossed New York–style pizza and ice cream.
Aloma Bowling Centers promotes friendly competition and pin-scattering fun with three locations that encompass at least 32 lanes apiece. The largest of the three strike-and-spare hotbeds, Boardwalk Bowl Entertainment Center, sports 80 lanes inside a massive facility that hosts more than 100 arcade games, a mini golf course, and a comedy club that features up-and-coming comedians. At all three locations, guests can salute closed frames and lament gutter balls over a dish from the onsite grill or a beverage from the full-service bar.
AirHeads Trampoline Arena's wall-to-wall green and blue trampolines abound with bouncers of all ages. Its lively atmosphere and attentive staff even earned it a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence a 2014. In addition to open-jump sessions, the facility's extra-large trampoline hosts pickup dodgeball matches and basketball games. The concessions area sates appetites with snacks such as pizza, hot dogs, and chicken wraps, and the full arcade reacquaints jumpers and astronauts with gravity's awkwardly relentless grip.