Orlando City Guides

Historic Sanford- A Hidden Gem in an Unexpected Place

Orlando, Florida - Review Experience

Experience Sanford like never before

Just outside the main hub of Orlando are the surrounding areas of Altamonte Springs, Longwood, Casselberry, and others. Among these is the city of Sanford. You would think to yourself, "What the heck is there to do in Sanford?" But hidden away in the sleepy town is the historic district of Sanford. You can find many things to do and see on that tiny strip on East 1st Street.

First Street is filled with quaint antique shops, small bookstores, and cozy coffee shops. You might find some spots that have closed down, but new businesses are constantly opening up on their places. Historic Sanford is a nice place to walk around and get some fresh air for a few hours, if nothing else. If coffee is not your thing, there are also bars and pubs in which to enjoy happy hour.

Aside from just going at any time on a weekend, there are also events happening on select weeknights and weekends. For example, on March 14 you are welcome to celebrate St. Patrick's Day with the Sanford locals. After 5 pm visitors can pay a $7 admission fee and enjoy food, drinks, and entertainment. It's pretty much a street party on St. Patty's Day.

Perhaps you don't want a once a year thing. Another option is Alive After 5. This one is practically the same as the St. Patrick's celebration, but it's recurring every second Thursday of each month from 5 pm till 8 pm. I imagine this is probably not as loud as the St. Patty's Day party, but just as fun. It's also the $7 admission fee (with free parking). Aside from food, you can enjoy music, art, and check out the shops that are open at that hour.

Besides the Alive After 5 event, Historic Sanford hosts select nights every few months as well, for example, they'll be hosting a Cinco de Mayo event in May. It's actually scheduled for May 9th, but hey, at least you can extend your Cinco de Mayo party, right?

Of course, a town's historic district wouldn't be complete without a welcome center or museum. The Historic Sanford Welcome Center provides information to its visitors. It's also meant to educate visitors about the town of Sanford. The Welcome Center is open Mondays from 11am till 2:30 pm, Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am till 5 pm, and Sundays from 12 to 5 pm.

There's also a celebration on 4th of July. Downtown Sanford features a Riverwalk along Lake Monroe. There's usually a nice turnout to watch fireworks.

So, if you ever happen to be in the area, try stopping by downtown Sanford for a while. You won't be disappointed.

*Fun fact- parts of the movie My Girl were filmed in Sanford. Just FYI if you love that movie like I do. :)

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