If you’re looking to expand your cultural horizons on your next Central Florida vacation or just take a time-out from the hustle and bustle of the theme parks, look no further than these artistic escapes. Here are our recommendations for the best art attractions close to the Orlando resort area.
Orlando Museum of Art
The Orlando Museum of Art is less than a half-hour from the major theme parks and features 10 – 12 exhibits annually. The museum was founded in 1924 and continues to serve its mission of presenting art to a diverse public audience. Past exhibitions include a focus on floral works, abstract art, and site-specific installations and sculptures. Throughout the year there are a variety of special programming and events such as family art tours, sketching in the galleries, film screenings, and book signings. Check the calendar to see what will be going on when you visit. The museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., and admission is $20 for adults, $12 for seniors, $8 for children, and free for ages 5 and under.
The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art
Located about 30 minutes from the Disney complex, in Winter Park, the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art is a surprising jewel tucked away north of the theme park area. The museum houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of the works of Louis Comfort Tiffany, including jewelry, pottery, and his iconic glassworks. Gallery exhibits rotate periodically to fully showcase the huge collection of art and objects. There are also lectures, films, and tours available, just call ahead to see what’s happening during your visit. Admission is an affordable $6 for adults and children under 12 are free. Hours vary throughout the week and the museum is closed each Monday and on most major holidays, so be sure to consult the calendar before heading out for your visit.
Appleton Museum of Art
If you’re willing to make a day of it, the Appleton Museum of Art in Ocala, Florida is worth the one-and-a-half-hour drive. Affiliated and governed by the College of Central Florida, the Appleton is home to more than 24,000 objects. The museum is an impressive 81,610 square feet large and hosts a permanent collection that features Florida artists, equine art, European works, and an outstanding array of pre-Columbian and Asian holdings. As you tour the galleries, there are several opportunities to self-tour using QR codes, as well as docent-led talks. The museum and gift shop are open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. until 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for kids, and tots under 5 are free.
After an art-filled day, rest up at a comfortable resort close to the attractions. On International Drive, check out Aloft Orlando International Drive, Comfort Inn International, Element Orlando International Drive, or Best Western International Drive. Marriott Orlando also offers many choices throughout the area, including Residence Inn by Marriott Orlando at SeaWorld, TownePlace Suites by Marriott Orlando Lake Buena Vista, and the Fairfield Inn Orlando Lake Buena Vista. Or book your stay at Wyndham Orlando Resort & Conference Center/Celebration, Staybridge Suites Orlando Royale Parc, or Fairfield Inn Orlando Airport.Image By <a href=”//commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Ebyabe” title=”User:Ebyabe”>Ebyabe</a> – <span class=”int-own-work” lang=”en”>Own work</span>, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link