In many ways, Orlando is one of the best cities for families. The obvious reasons include the many theme parks that we're blessed to have in our city. There are less than obvious reasons as well, and one of those reasons are the lesser-known entertainment options that we have in town. For those of us that live here, the "other" entertainment venues directly relate to our everyday lives. As a parent, planning a birthday party can be a lot of work - that's why I'm compiling this list of birthday party places in Orlando and will continue to update it as I come across new venues.
I am the dad of two boys, so this list is mostly geared toward birthday parties for boys. We love our birthday party celebrations and between my almost 15 year old and my 7 year old, we've had birthday parties all over the city, from our front yard to various local venues. I thought it was long overdue that I provide a list of the best birthday party venues in Orlando. While my list may skew toward boys just a bit for now, most of these locations are great for both boys and girls.
Orlando's Top 7 Best Birthday Party Places List
Dadtography did a full review on Hard Knocks Orlando, so be sure to check out that post for an in-depth review of our experience.
Hard Knocks is a great birthday party option for older party-goers. My 13 year old absolutely loves Hard Knocks, and for a while, we lived just around the corner from the original Oviedo Hard Knocks location.
Hard Knocks is an indoor laser tag style venue, but don't let that fool you. Hard Knocks offers advanced and realistic weapons and environments that will make you feel like you're living your own first person shooter!
I wouldn't recommend Hard Knocks for kids under about 10 years old, due to the realistic nature of the venue and the weight of the weapons. It's really best for tweens and teens.
Hard Knocks Teaser Video
Hard Knocks - Fun Factor
Hard Knocks indoor combat arena is an entertainment venue like nothing I've ever experienced before. Remember back in the day when you and your friends would play laser tag? Yeah, well this is like that only on twelve shots of adrenaline. You can't get any closer to being inside a first-person shooter than the experience Hard Knocks provides!"
Hard Knocks - Realism
Many of the HK 'missions' were developed by those experienced in tactical strategy around real-life situations we see on the 11 o'clock news all the time. Not convinced? Law enforcement agencies use Hard Knocks' facilities for their own training! If that doesn't testify to the realism of the Hard Knocks experience, I don't know what does.
Hard Knocks - Value
Hard Knocks can get a bit pricey when compared to other entertainment options. A movie might set you back $35 for 2 people, with a few refreshments for a 2-hour show. Two hours of combat for two people would run you between $60 - 75, per person (for adults), but you'd be IN the movie and not just watching it. There's no comparison if you ask me.
Full disclosure: I helped Hard Knocks build their website, however, this in no way influences my opinion on them as a birthday party venue.
In keeping with the theme of active birthday party options in Orlando, I'd like to introduce you to Air Heads indoor trampoline arena. We hosted our 13 year old's birthday here a few years ago and absolutely loved it.
Air Heads offers most of the options common to birthday party venues - food, activities, party favors and games. The active nature of this venue is a bit different from that of a more sedentary movie birthday or similar. The kids are up, moving and having a great time and it's great exercise for them!
Rebounderz really caters to birthday parties, with five themed rooms, for both boy and girl parties. We attended a party in the Special Ops room, which was decorated Call of Duty style and included two large flat screens to play XBOX games.
Similar to Airheads, Rebounderz is a trampoline arena located just outside of Orlando in the suburb of Apopka, FL. Rebounderz in Apopka has lots of activities for all ages, including multiple trampoline areas, a very popular dodgeball game, trampoline basketball, a giant foam pit (that you can jump right into), a food court, a photo booth, and multiple birthday party rooms of varying themes.
Birthdays at Rebounderz
The birthday themes include:
- Special Ops Room
- Rock N Roll Room
- Diva Boutique Room
- Beach Luau Room
- Extreme Sports Room
Rebounderz Birthday Party Rates
- Monday – Thursday: $275.00
- Friday – Sunday & Holidays: $295.00
- Each Additional Guest: $18.00
- Xbox Available in Special Ops Room: $50.00
Rebounderz Birthday Party Features
- 12 participants
- 2 hour use of one of our festively decorated, private party rooms.
- 60 minutes of Jump Time.
- Dedicated party hostess for set up, serving, and clean up.
- Color coordinated paper goods.
- 2 XL Cheese Pizzas.
- 12 bottles of water.
- Rebounderz T-shirt for the Guest of Honor.
- A gift from us including a FREE jump pass for a future visit for the Guest of Honor.
Birthday Party Food Options
- Extra Large Cheese Pizzas – $15 per pie.
- Fruit OR Veggie Tray – $20.
- Extra Large Nacho Platter – $15.
Birthday Party Beverage Options
- Drink Stand – $18 (3 gallon stand containing choice of Pink or Yellow Lemonade or Fruit Punch).
- Bottled Water – 5 for $10.
Birthday Add-ons and Extras
- Goody Bags: 15 for $30.00.
- Balloons: $12.00 per dozen and will be color coordinated to your room unless otherwise requested.
- Additional guests – $18.00 per person (includes jump time, socks, bottle of water).
A few years ago, my family decided to do what a lot of families do for spring break (especially in Florida). We did a stay-cation at the Nickelodeon Hotel in Orlando. We stayed for nearly a week and absolutely loved our experience at the "Nick" Hotel. We were somewhat surprised to hear it had been sold and was being re-branded and re-modeled as a Holiday Inn not long after our stay.
Be sure to read my full review on the Nickelodeon Hotel for more details on what they offer. Even though it's no longer the Nickelodeon Hotel, this resort is still a great option if you're looking for that extra special slumber party birthday option!
WonderWorks on International Drive
WonderWorks has been a staple of Orlando's Internal Drive for many years. Most people know WonderWorks as the "upside-down" building on i-Drive. WonderWorks is a great venue for birthday parties as well, and is a departure from your average, ordinary pizza party birthday.
If you haven't tried a birthday party at WonderWorks yet, you really should give them a try!
Okay, so it's time to geek out just a bit with this Orlando birthday party option. STEM (science, technology, engineering & math) is all the buzz right now and what better place to have a birthday party than at a science center?
The venue at the Orlando Science Center is absolutely awesome and in a choice like this to host a birthday party you can also "sneak" in some education without your children even realizing it! Below is a huge gallery of the birthday party rooms available at the Science Center. There are two rooms that each seat around 12 - 15 children. Of course, much of the time spent during the birthday party would be outside of these rooms, and there is definitely a lot to see here!
Orlando Science Center Birthday Party Photo Gallery
Click any photo to view a larger version.
Fun Spot America on International Drive & Kissimmee
Fun Spot is a smaller-scale theme park located in Orlando. Fun Spot provides a theme park or carnival atmosphere without the costs of the larger theme park venues. Fun Spot has two locations - in Orlando on Internal Drive and in Kissimmee and is a great "big idea" birthday party without the huge budget.
My sons have attended birthday parties at Fun Spot and had a great time on each visit!