There are so many reasons why people want to move to Winter Park, Florida. First of all, the weather! And once you get here, you will actually see why Moving to Winter Park is an easy choice!
Winter Park Florida Train Station
Often, the first experience people have with Winter Park Florida is when they arrive at the Winter Park Train Station abord an AMTRAK train. The station is right in the center of Downtown Winter Park, adjacent to Central Park and across the street from Park Avenue, the town’s premier shopping and dining district. Also arriving and departing from the Winter Park Train Station is Sunrail, a regional commuter system that covers 49 miles through four of Central Florida’s counties.
Often people will end up moving to Winter Park because they took a train ride, got off at Central Park, enjoyed the ambience along Park Avenue and decided that Moving to Winter Park was what they never knew they wanted to do.
Winter Park Population and Demographics
As of 2019, the population of Winter Park is just over 32,000 and growing. It is part of the Orlando–Kissimmee–Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area . And enjoys the benefits of many vibrant surrounding neighborhoods in Orlando and Maitland. It is mostly populated by homeowners made of up many young professionals and retirees. There are two zip codes attributed to Winter Park, 32789 and 32792, but not all properties in those zips are actually within the boundries of the city. 32789 is considered the prime zipcode for the City of Winter Park. Houses in 32792 are on the Eastern edge of Winter Park with some actually in Orange County jurisdiction.
Winter Park Weather
When Winter Park was found in the 1880s, many people moved here because of its wonderful climate. That is the same today as it was then. There are seven mild months in Winter Park and Central Florida, from November through the end of May. The most pleasant months, temperature-wise are November, March and April with temperatures in the 70-85 degrees during the day, cooling off at night and dipping into the 50s-60s. Of course there are some very cold days. The spring is the driest time of the year. In the summer the temperatures rise as does the humidity, with July being the hottest month with an average temperature of 92 degrees. It is in the late summer that it rains almost every afternoon, bringing about a cooler evening thus replenishing the lakes, ponds and auqifer.
Winter Park Companies
Full Sail University
Full Sail University calls Winter Park its home. It is a for profit university offering associates, masters and graduate degrees for students interested in careers in entertainment, media, arts and technology. Full Sail offers on-line and in-person classes offering an environment that is as close to the real world experience as possible in its 210 acre campus in the eastern edge of Winter Park.
Rifle Paper Company
Rifle Paper Company, founded in 2009 by a husband and wife team, is headquartered in the Hanibal Square neighborhood of Winter Park. This lifestyle brand has grown from and company of 2 to over 150 and features the whimsical designs of Anna Bond, the wife half of the original team. It started as a stationery company and has grown in to a brand that offers decorator items like rugs, pillows, fabric and artwork to everything to brighten up a desk or work area. Rifle designs even grace cellphone covers, pencils and pens and Corckcicle beverage containers. Corckcicle, while not a Winter Park company is located just a few miles away in Orlando.
Fitness in Winter Park
Winter Park “Y”
If you’re into physical fitness, Winter Park is the place for you. The YMCA on Lakemont Avenue offers a wide range of family services. With two pools, indoors and outside, swim lessons are offered as well as youth programs a workout center and group exercise.
Crosby Wellness Center
The Crosby Wellness Center opened its doors in 2019 boasting 30,000 square feet of state of the art equipment, certified wellness professionals, classes, pools and an indoor track.
Outdoor Sports and Activities
Winter Park Golf course
The Winter Park Golf course, also known as WP9, is a beautiful, newly renovated public 9-hole course in the middle of Downtown Winter Park. This course has been described as one of America’s most flexible golf courses, offering patrons the opportunity to enjoy golf in a variety of ways in a user friendly environment. This 40 acre course winds through Winter Park’s lovely neighborhoods, crossing its charming brick streets.
Winter Pines Golf Course
On the Eastern edge of Winter Park is Winter Pines Golf Club. This is an 18 hole public course with a full practice facility with a driving range and areas for chipping and putting. It was opened in 1968 and maintains its classic design with challenging 200 yard par 3s, a 400 yard par 4 anda #1 handicap hole. It is cart friendly and caters to golfers of all abilities.
Interlachen Country Club
This 18 hole championship course was redesigned in 2007 by Steve Smyers. It is considered one of the best and most challenging courses in Florida. The grounds include beautiful lakes, strategically placed bunkers and beautifully maintained greens and fairways. This is a place for golfers of all skill levels.
Winter Park Tennis Center
For almost a century, the Winter Park Tennis Center has offered the community a place to play, compete and enjoy the game of tennis. The newly renovated center offers 8 hard courts and 6 clay courts, providing a great place for players of all skill levels. The Winter Park Tennis Center is maintained by the Winter Park Parks and Recreation Department.
Winter Park Raquet Club
Winter Park Raquet Club was founded in 1953 on the Eastern shore of Lake Maitland. It is a full service club with tennis courts, lessons and competition, a club house and pool. The tennis programs include lessons for people of all ages, tournaments, summer camp for kids and private lessons.
This being Florida, swimming pools are ubiquitous. For those who swim for exercise the possibilities are many. The YMCA, Crosby Wellness Center, Winter Park Raquet Club and Interlachen Country Club all have large competition sized pools.
Cady Way Pool
Cady Way pool is at 2525 Cady Way (hence the name) the East side of Winter Park right next to the Cady Way Park and the Cady Way Trail. The pool is run jointly by the City of Winter Park and the YMCA and with its 50 meter size offers opportunities for both recreation and serious swimming plus swim lessons and is open to the public.
Winter Park Community Center Pool
The Community Center Pool , which is heated from November through April, is open year round. It features two 25 yard lap lanes as well as a zero depth entry pool. The Community Center itself had a state of the art fitness center, 2 regulation basketball courts, a media center and banquet space, along with an amphitheater and playground. The Winter Park Community Center is located at 721 W. New England and was opened in 2011 to serve as a hub for the community for all ages, with special programs, activities and space for meetings.
Where ever you are in town, you don’t need to go very far to get that swim in.
Parks in Winter Park
In a town named Winter Park one would think that parks would be a huge deal. One would be correct! If you don’t count the small parks that almost every neighborhood has, the city claims eleven parks and most are wheelchair accessible! The crown jewel park is Central Park, that flanks Park Avenue and anchors the downtown. This eleven acre park offers respite to residents, and hosts numerous events throughout the year including two nationally know art festivals, one in the Spring and one in the Fall. Among the most notable others are these:
Cady Way Park has a lot going for it. It offers the Cady Way pool, a playground , rental softball fields and tennis courts.
Dinky Dock Park is on the shores of Lake Virginia and offers swimming, boating, boat launching and a fishing pier.
Kraft Azalea Garden encompases over 5 acres of pure beauty. This “secret garden” is on Lake Maitland and is a favorite place for weddings and bird watchers.
Phelps Park has something for all ages. It is a great playground, a popular site for childrens’ birthday parties, basketball courts, tennis courts and a pavilion that can be rented for special events.
Ward Park is Winter Park’s largest and is totally dedicated to competitive sports. There are baseball fields, soccer fields, a track and football stadium. It is in that stadium that the Winter Park High School Wildcats play.
Mead Botanical Garden encompasses 47.6 acres offering an amphitheater, butterfly garden, board walk and bike trail.
Lake Baldwin Park is Winter Park Florida’s dog park that allows your pet to roam off leash. At 23 acres, there is plenty of roam for Rover to roam.
Museums and Arts in Winter Park and Orlando
Tiffany Chapel at the Morse Museum
Winter Park Museums
The Albin Polasek Museum and Sulpture Garden
The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Garden holds an art collection focused on American representational sculpture with over 200 works by Czech-born American sculptor Albin Polasek. The museum and sculpture gardens are on the south shore of Lake Osceola. The museum is the home of Albin Polasek which houses over 200 of his scuptures inside and outside of this expansive property.
In 2013, the Polasek became home to the Capen House, a historic home built in 1885, which was moved across Lake Osceola, having been saved from the wrecking ball by the Winter Park Preservation board. The Capen House was cut in half, so it would fit on the barge that carried it across the lake from its old home on Interlachen Avenue to its new one. This new addition to the Polasek provides a wonderful venue for special events, receptions and weddings.
Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art
Offering the world’s most comprehensive collection of of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany, the Morse is home to Tiffany’s famous stained glass windows, his jewelry designs, architectural artifacts and furniture from Laurelton Manor, Tiffany’s Long Island estate. The most intricate, and exquisite exhibit in the Morse is the Tiffany Chapel, with a room designed specifically to house this extraordinary body of work.
Originally designed as a marketing effort for the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, the Chapel had a checkered life until it was meticulously resurrected and installed in its new permanent home in Winter Park, Florida. This remarkable museum is a must-see!
Cornell Fine Arts Museum
Holding more than 5,000 pieces from antiquity to contemporary, the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College is one of the oldest and most distinguished collections in Florida. Entry to the Museum is free.
Hannibal Square Heritage Center
This museum seeks to research and preserve the rich history of Winter Park. Through an award winning collection, The Hannibal Square Heritage Center pays tribute to contibutions of Winter Park’s historic African American Heritage.
The Alfond Inn
The Alfond Inn is not just a world-class hotel, but is also a fully integrated art hotel displaying pieces from the Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art at Rollins College. The first Wednesday of every month, the Inn hosts a Happy Hour Art Tour.
Casa Feliz Historic Home
Built by famed architect, James Gamble Rogers, Casa Feliz was saved from demolition and moved from its original site across Interlachen Avenue to its present home on the southern edge of the Winter Park Golf course. It is a great venue for special events!
Loch Haven Cultural Park
777 East Princeton Street, Orlando
- Orlando Shakespeare Theater
- Orlando Museum of Art
- Orlando Repertory Theatre
- Orlando Fire Museum
- Mennello Museum of American Art
- Orlando Ballet
- Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival
- Ivanhoe Village Mainstreet District
- Orlando Science Center
Winter Park and Orlando Theaters
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts
The Dr. Phillips center occupies two city blocks in downtown Orlando and is dedicated to being a hub for the best international, national and local artists, for community outreach and for arts education. Performing at the Dr. Phillips is the Orlando Ballet, Broadway, Comedy , kids shows and much more.
Bob Carr Performing Arts Center
The Bob Carr has been a fixture in Orlando since 1926, it is the home of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and the Florida Youth Symphony Orchestra. It is also a venue for other musical events throughout the year.
Annie Russell Theatre at Rollins College
Named after the english-born actress, Annie Russell, the theater serves as the home of the thriving theater and dance program at Rollins College.
Fred Stone Theatre at Rollins College
Proudly hosting the student-produced second stage series, performances are free and open to the public. Seating is limited and available first come, first serve.
The Enzian is charmingly sited in a tree-shaded piece of land in Maitland. It is known as a venue for art films. It is a single-screen cinema café offering primarily independent and foreign films.
Winter Park Playhouse
A non-profit, professional music theatre, that produces a variety of musical comedies, revues and cabarets.
Regal Theater in Winter Park Village
Movie theater with reclining seating, cafe, full bar, listening devices, stadium seating and wheelchair accessible.
Winter Park and Orange County Schools
Public schools are in the Orange County PublicSchool System.
These schools are considered to be Winter Park Schools:
- Winter Park High School
- Winter Park 9th Grade Center – (Freshman Campus of Winter Park High School)
- St. Margaret Mary Catholic School K-8
- Geneva School -Classical Christian School
- Morning Star School – for Special Needs children
- Bishop Moore Catholic High School
- Trinity Preperatory School 6-12
- Park Maitland Pre K-6
- Lake Highland Preparatory School
- parkmaitland.org(opens in a new tab)
Winter Park Hotels
Luxurious and perfectly situated in Downtown Winter Park. This hotel is owned by Rollins Collge and the proceeds to the the scholarship fund at the school. The offers fine dining, is an art museum in its own right and is dog-friendly!
The Park Plaza is the only hotel on Winter Park’s Main street, Park Avenue. European styled, with it’s wrap-around balcony festooned with vines, flowers and ferns that overlooks the Avenue, this hotel offers the charm of a bygone era. It’s located in the heart of Downtown, and just steps away from the best that this beautiful Central Florida town has to offer.
Hilton Garden Inn
Winter Park’s newest hotel is the Hilton Garden Inn, located at the corner of North Orlando Avenue and Lee Roads. It is just off I-4 in the Ravaudage Develpment. This hotel is close to everything in Winter Park, shopping, dining, museums and the arts.
Winter Park Florida’s Best Restaurants
Winter Park is just filled with wonderful restaurants that would make any foodie’s heart sing. We have everything from classic American dishes to Turkish, French, Italian, Indian, Thai, Seafood, Barbeque, and everything in between. If we just concentrate on what is on Park Avenue, it would seem as if we had taken a trip around the world. But there are so many more all wonderful restaurants throughout the city.
Here are some of the best!
- Blu on the Avenue – Seafood
- 310 Park South – New American Cuisine
- Cafe de France – Inspired French Cuisine
- Cocina 214 – Mexican Cuisine
- Pannullo’s – Italian
- Bosphorous – Turkish Cuisine
- Rome’s Flavours – Italian
- Proper & Wild – Vegan and vegetarian
- Garp & Fuss – American
- Orchid Thai Restaurant – Thai
- Boca – Farm to Table
- Hillstone – American – lakeside dining
- Mynt – Fine India Cuisine
- Chez Vincent – Traditional French Cuisine
- Armando’s – Pizzas & Authentic Italian
- Briarpatch – Breakfast and Lunch
- 4 Rivers – Barbeque
- Reel Fish – Seafood
- Bovine – Steakhouse
- The Bridge – New York Style
- George’s Cafe Winter Park – Gourmet Deli
- Financier – French Patisserie
- Croissant Gourmet – French Bakery
- Umi Japanese Restaurant – Japanese Fusion
- The Glass Knife – Comfort food and desserts
- Armando’s – Italian
- Pepe’s Cantina – Mexican
- Sixty Vines – California Wine Country Style
- Chez Vincent – Traditional Frech Cuisine
- Vinia Wine Bar – Wine and dinner
- The Wine Room – Mostly wine, but light bites, too!
- First Watch – Breakfast, brunch and lunch!
- Agave Azul Cantina – Mexican Restaurant
For more information!
Things To Do In Winter Park
Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour
Located at the East end of Morse Avenue in Downtown Winter Park, this one-hour boat tour will take you through three of the 5 lakes in The Winter Park Chain of Lakes, showing a side of this city that can not be seen otherwise. Along the way you will get a taste Winter Park History and architecture plus information about the flora and fauna indigenous to the area, with a bit of humor thrown in for fun!
Stroll The Fred Rogers Walking Tour at Rollins College
This is a self-guided tour honoring the college’s most famous alum. Mr. Rogers, as he is know to millions of children young and old, came back to Winter Park for years after graduating to spend the cold winter months in this beautiful place. Enjoy the beautiful campus he called home during his college years.
The Rollins College Campus is one of the most beautiful in the United States. Not only are the buildings beautiful and evocative of historic Florida, but there is a beautiful walk along the shore of Lake Virginia on the south edge of the campus. There you will be able to see all kinds of birds native to the area, plus turtles, fish and maybe even an alligator.
Winter Park Farmers Market
At the corner of W. New England and S. New York Avenues, this former train depot is the scene of the Winter Park Farmers Market every Saturday from 7am to 1pm. Venders offer plants, vegetables, breads, and foods of all kinds. One can even pick up something delicious for breakfast. And, in true Winter Park Fashion, the Farmers Market is dog-friendly!