Florida Guide > Miscellaneous
Professional Sport in Central Florida
Many visitors to the Orlando area are attracted by the more obvious attractions - Disney, Universal, SeaWorld, and, of course, the wonderful weather.
Whilst there is no doubt these attractions on their own are enough to fill even the most demanding of vacations, there is so much more to do. Many of the options are described elsewhere in this Guide, and help make Central Florida the 'vacation capital of the world'.
But many visitors also choose to catch up on the professional sport on offer - why not take a day away from the parks, relax in the comfort of your own private pool (well, having visited this site and found out about 'Orlando Villas', you weren't thinking of staying in a hotel room, were you?) - and take a couple of hours to watch the professionals. Some of the sport on offer is at the highest level - here are just a few ideas.Baseball
The all American game - sometimes a mystery to visitors from Europe, but well worth a visit to see the action. Spring Training is the time to see the world's top players in action, as many teams take advantage of the great Florida climate for their spring training. The Atlanta Braves are regular visitors to Disney's Wide World of Sports (at the time of writing, they are scheduled for their ninth consecutive year of spring training in March 2006). But there is so much more than training - there are full scale matches against other top teams, played out in front of a packed stadium. And the competition is of the highest level, as players seek to prove they are worth a contract for the coming season.Basketball
Central Florida also plays host to top level basketball - the Orlando Magic play their home games between October and April at the TD Waterhouse Centre, just north of Downtown Orlando adjacent to the I-4 Interstate. There are often several matches a week, but tickets sell out quickly.Ice Hockey
A little further afield to see top notch ice hockey. The Tampa Bay Lightning can be seen at The St Pete Times Forum in Tampa, a little more than an hours drive from the Disney area. The season runs from October to April, and the excitement of an ice hockey fixture is a great way to finish a day relaxing on the wonderful Gulf Coast beaches. Again, sort out your match tickets in advance, as these matches often play to sell out crowds.
So there's a few thoughts - but there's many more! Sport in Central Florida is big business.
Author: Guy and Karen Gore
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