May 12th 2023

Ecotourism in Kissimmee

Ideally located in Central Florida, Kissimmee’s carefully preserved natural environment and various outdoor attractions offer visitors a chance to reconnect with nature.

Ideally located in Central Florida, Kissimmee’s carefully preserved natural environment and various outdoor attractions offer visitors a chance to reconnect with nature. Kissimmee offers year-round warm weather and sits right on the headwaters of the Everglades. There’s much to do, including paddling excursions, airboat rides, trails, bird watching, and more.

These activities allow visitors to be physically distant and reap the benefits of being outdoors such as relieving stress and boosting their vitamin D intake.

Fresh Water

Kissimmee has more than 50 named lakes, which means travelers are never too far from fresh water. From Cypress Lake in the north, to Lake Kissimmee in the south, all the way to Lake Tohopekaliga—Lake Toho to the locals— the largest lake in Osceola County and the primary inflow of Shingle Creek.

The water of Kissimmee attracts visitors from across the globe, including professional fishers. For bass anglers, few places compare to the bountiful water in Kissimmee. The lakes around Kissimmee are also home to a healthy population of bluegill, crappie, and catfish.

For those visiting and looking to explore and learn more about Kissimmee and its rich environment, an airboat tour is the way to go. Visitors can get an in-depth look at gators, birds, eagles, trees, and plants with Spirit of the Swamp Airboat Rides, Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures, and Wild Florida.

To take an adventure at your own pace and experience some of the most scenic and remote places in Florida, try The Paddling Center at Shingle Creek. Shingle Creek is the official headwaters of the Everglades. The Paddling Center offers guided tours and rents kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards.


Home to the second largest population of nesting bald eagles in the contiguous 48 states and a re-entry location for the nearly extinct whooping crane, Kissimmee's nature preserves and wildlife refuges benefit from warm climate and an endless assortment of tropical, exotic, rare, and endangered bird species. Birders have a chance to see ibis, hawks, and falcons here, as well as quail and herons of practically every color. Visitors may even catch a glimpse of some of the rarest birds in North America, including the Florida scrub-jay, snail kite, crested caracara, limpkin, and the "Osceola" wild turkey.

Birding enthusiasts alike can observe a diverse species of birds at Gatorland’s Bird Rookery and Wild Florida’s Alligator Park.

Osceola County has seven state-recognized Great Birding Trail sites, including Kissimmee Lake Front Park. The best time for birdwatching in the area is between November and April.


To explore Kissimmee’s nature by land, visitors can explore the city’s many trails. At Twin Oaks Conservation Area, hike through the live oak hammocks, remnant cypress stands and freshwater marshes that dot this peaceful preserve. Plus, visitors can go horseback riding through open prairies at Lazy H Ranch. The Paddling Center at Shingle Creek may be known for their kayak and paddle tours, but guests can also find bike and hiking trails.

Natural runs across the entire city, and travelers can even ride through the quiet streets of the town of Celebration, famous for its classic homes and elegant neighborhood. Celebration Bike Rental offers bike rentals and guided tours, where guests can discover picturesque neighborhoods with world-class architecture, explore the vibrant downtown area, and take in the natural wildlife while on scenic trails and waterfront pathways.

Thrilling Adventures

For guests looking beyond nature contemplation, Kissimmee offers plenty of active outdoor activities. From zip lines to hot air balloon rides, there’s something for every traveler.

Ride into adventure on an ATV at Revolution Adventures. Nestled into the Central Florida countryside this unique experience lets guests drive themselves through mud holes, dry sandy tracks, and grass, with plenty of twists and turns. Or take it slow on a six-wheeled army truck designed to give guests a bird’s-eye view of the park’s lakes, sand dunes, and wildlife.

Take in the best view of Kissimmee, from 1,000-feet above, during a hot air balloon adventure. Visitors can enjoy views of iconic theme park icons, beautiful resorts, and Florida swamps. There are plenty of choices for airborne adventures including Bob’s Balloon Rides, Maverick Balloon Adventures, and Thompson Aire, Inc. For a more hands-on experience, try hang gliding at Wallaby Ranch. The incredible tandem flight experience takes you 2,000 feet in the air for a bird’s-eye view of Central Florida, soaring over natural Florida woodlands.

For the active traveler, Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park offers a tree top obstacle course with Tarzan swings, nets, ropes, and zip lines. This challenge includes 97 obstacles, ascending to 50 feet, for climbers of every level.

If heights alone aren’t thrilling enough, how about a zip line over alligators? Gatorland’s Screamin’ Gator Zip Line allows guests to fly over alligators and crocodiles at speeds near 30 miles per hour. It also features the Gator Gauntlet Zip Line — a 350-foot long, wheelchair accessible zip line soaring above the park and its giant alligator breeding marsh.

For more ways to explore the outdoors, visit

About Experience Kissimmee:

Experience Kissimmee is the official tourism authority for Osceola County, Florida. Located 25 minutes from Orlando International Airport (MCO), Kissimmee offers a perfectly balanced vacation experience with world-famous theme parks and attractions, outdoor activities, and plenty of Florida sunshine. Kissimmee is the Vacation Home Capital of the World®, with options ranging from two-bedroom condos to 15-bedroom mansions. Get inspired at

Media Contact:

Experience Kissimmee Communications Department

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