Best destinations for a road trip from Orlando

Orlando is already one of the most popular vacation destinations in its own right, but it's still nice to get out of town for a while, especially considering that Orlando isn't on the coast. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of destinations available well within driving distance. Learn about the top 10 destinations for road trips from Orlando beyond the drive from Orlando to Tampa.

1. Find fun in the sun at Daytona Beach

Driving time from Orlando: 1 hour Distance from Orlando: 50 miles

Daytona Beach is one of the most convenient road trip destinations from Orlando that offers fun for the whole family. You can enjoy the white, sandy beaches, of course, but that's just the beginning. It's also home to Daytona International Speedway and a historical pier complete with thrill rides and a nearby water park.

2. Enjoy metropolitan culture in Clearwater

Driving time from Orlando: 1.5 hours Distance from Orlando: 100 miles

If you take the drive from Orlando to Tampa, consider going a bit farther west to Clearwater. This metropolitan destination offers the best you can expect from a city and a beach. The Pier 60 area is particularly popular, as it offers beachfront sights and fun by the water in addition to frequent outdoor musical performances and art shows.

3. Explore history with a road trip to Bradenton

Driving time from Orlando: 1.5 hours Distance from Orlando: 110 miles

If you're interested in learning more about the history of Florida, there's nothing quite like Bradenton. Numerous museums and preserves in the area offer insights into both the cultural and natural history of the area. Plus, the downtown and Riverwalk area are known for their art galleries and delicious restaurants specializing in seafood.

4. Find outdoor fun with a road trip to Kissimmee

Driving time from Orlando: 30 minutes Distance from Orlando: 20 miles

One of the best parts about visiting Kissimmee from Orlando is that your road trip won't take you long at all. In just around a half-hour's time, you'll find yourself within this natural wonderland and all the outdoor adventure it has to offer. You'll find vibrant landscapes with numerous hiking and biking trails, while zip lines offer a much more thrilling means of exploring the forests.

5. Embark on an adventure to the Florida Keys

Driving time from Orlando: 4 hours Distance from Orlando: 290 miles

The Florida Keys are among the most popular road trip destinations in all of Florida. Not only do the Keys attract visitors from all over the state, but you'll also see international travelers perusing this island paradise. Located south of mainland Florida, this island chain is packed full of beachfront fun whether you're interested in a simple swim or meeting tropical fish and dolphins on a snorkeling trip.

6. Treat your historical curiosity with a road trip to St. Augustine

Driving time from Orlando: 1.5 hours Distance from Orlando: 100 miles

If you're a history buff, you likely already know the value of St. Augustine. In this coastal town, you'll find numerous historical sites and museums showcasing the multitude of cultural influences on the area including everything from the Spanish to the native people. Officially founded in 1565, this is technically the oldest city in the entire country.

7. Experience the Gulf Coast in Sarasota

Driving time from Orlando: 2 hours Distance from Orlando: 130 miles

Sarasota is one of the most iconic Gulf Coast destinations in the state. Not only will you find pristine white, sandy beaches, but there are also extensive shopping opportunities, even if you're interested in high-end items. This community is also home to the Ringling Bros. Circus, so you can explore old props and items from historical performances at the museum in town.

8. Reach for the stars with a road trip to Cape Canaveral

Driving time from Orlando: 1 hour Distance from Orlando: 50 miles

Cape Canaveral's beachfront can be exciting, but the primary attraction here is the Kennedy Space Center. This area has a long history of space exploration, having been heavily involved in trips to the moon and the construction of the International Space Station. You can learn all about it at the Space Center and even visit some used launch pads.

9. Relax in the tranquility of Cape Coral

Driving time from Orlando: 3 hours Distance from Orlando: 200 miles

If you're looking for relaxation that the whole family can enjoy, the Gulf Coast city of Cape Coralhas much to offer. Not only will you find pristine beaches that feel comfortably isolated, but there are also massive, well-kept golf courses. Kids who want a bit more excitement are sure to be satisfied by the Sun Splash Family Waterpark.

10. Embrace Magic City with a road trip to Miami

Driving time from Orlando: 3.5 hours Distance from Orlando: 230 miles

The city of Miami is known around the world for its extensive offerings that make it a globally appealing vacation destination. When you're in Orlando, everything Miami has to offer is just a short road trip away. You can hit the nightlife in the South Beach area or explore the local Cuban culture in Little Havana. There are even more tranquil areas like Coconut Grove where you can relax.