Florida Guide > Other Activities
See Mount Dora by Segway
Each time we visit Florida we try to do something or go somewhere new. This year, although we have ridden Segways at Epcot, we decided to head for Mount Dora, a town which we had not visited before. I had booked our Segway Tour via the internet and had planned to get back from an early morning watching football in a local bar, have a bit of lunch and then set off. Unfortunately the weather forecast for the afternoon was not promising and on my return to our villa found my wife had everything ready and the message – could we make it for 12 o’clock instead of our scheduled 2 pm slot? After a quick change, and a phone call to confirm that I should be able to get there on time, we were on our way.
We made good time to Mount Dora and, despite missing the Segway store the first time, but getting directions from a local sheriff, we made it to the car park behind the store with about a minute to spare. However it soon became clear that even if we had arrived late we would not have been holding anybody up as we were the only riders on the 12 o’clock trip!
Having completed our waiver forms we were introduced to our guide, Doyle, and asked if we had ridden a Segway before. On advising the staff that we had – twice in fact – our pre-ride instruction involved us showing the staff that we could mount the Segway, move forwards, backwards, through 360 degrees left and right and do an emergency stop. Having already been issued with a crash helmet and a bottle of water we were ready to roll. Far less formal than the pre – ride instructions at Disney, but I’m sure that if we had not demonstrated our capabilities so adeptly then the instruction would have been more rigorous.
We exited the shop via the front door and immediately joined the pedestrians on the sidewalk and had hardly gone 50 feet when we stopped to chat to some passers-by who were intrigued by our mode of transport! The next thing we knew we were on the road (literally) and heading down to the lakefront. Here Doyle pointed out Mount Dora’s famous lighthouse – not that they get much shipping in these parts, and then he guided us through the sandy woodland area beside the lake, being careful to avoid the cypress knees, and out onto the boardwalk. For anybody who has been to Disney’s Boardwalk near Epcot let me assure you that the Mount Dora version is nothing like the Disney one! It is narrow, only a few inches clearance at the side of the Segway in places and with tight 90 degree turns. Having safely negotiated the boardwalk Doyle then let us have our heads and ‘play’ in the empty car park nearby. Figure of eights and ‘formation Segway’ were the order of the day for us. Then it was a short tour of some of the more notable houses, already decorated for Christmas, and a few more stops to chat to people who were interested in having a go themselves one day. By the time we returned to the shop we had been out for over an hour and a quarter and Doyle confessed that he had been using us as advertising as we were so good on the Segways!
All in all a great experience and maybe next time he will take us on a different tour of the town – at least that was his promise!
More information about the Mount Dora Segway Tours can be found at www. segwayofcentralflorida. com
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Page added on: 4 January 2010
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