There's something about finding tall things that offer amazing views from the top. In my Utah home, it's usually the mountains. For Florida, it's ICON Orlando: a 400-foot tall observation wheel along International Drive in Orlando, Florida.
In fact, ICON Orlando (formerly known as Coca-Cola Orlando Eye) is the tallest observational wheel on the east coast of the United States.
Here's a rundown of what you need to know to get the most out of your visit to ICON Orlando.
Buy Tickets to ICON Orlando Online
Take time to buy your tickets online in advance of your visit to ICON Orlando. You'll save 10% on each ticket by going that route.
- Adults: $26
- Children (ages 3-12): $21
- Seniors (age 65+): $25
You may want to consider purchasing a combo ticket if you want to visit the two other attractions in the ICON Orlando 360 Complex: Madame Tussaud's and SEA Life Aquarium. Purchasing the triple combo ticket can save you about $30 per ticket.
Take a Ride Around the Wheel
When you first check in at ICON Orlando, they'll have your group post for some photos in front of a green screen. You aren't required to do this, and you are under no obligation to purchase the photos (you'll see those after your ride).
Wait in line, and when instructed, step into the capsule. The doors will close as the capsule slowly makes its way across the loading platform.
When the doors do close, you should plan on being inside for about 20 minutes. That's how long it takes to complete one full revolution.
Enjoy the Views of Florida
If you aren't familiar with Orlando, it's hard to know which direction to look to find Disney World, Kennedy Space Center or Universal Studios.
Each capsule is equipped with a screen you can use to identify each of the popular locations throughout the area. It's pretty easy to spot EPCOT in Disney World – it's the giant golf ball to the south west of ICON Orlando.
Cape Canaveral is to the east. If it's clear enough, you'll be able to see the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at the Kennedy Space Center. The building is where the Saturn V rockets were staged before being transported out to the launch pad.
Be sure and take lots of photos of your group while you're at the top. But don't miss out on the views of Florida.
Sunset is a popular time, so you may have long lines if you arrive with plans to see the sun set from 400 feet above Orlando.
Good to Know
Where: 8401 International Drive, Orlando, Florida (it's the tall ferris-wheel thing – you can't miss it)
When: ICON Orlando is open Sunday-Thursday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday-Saturday from 10 a.m. to midnight.
How Much: An adult ticket is currently $26 online. Child tickets are a little less. I recommend you buy online or combine with other Orlando attractions to save money on admission.
How Long: The trip around the wheel is about 20 minutes, but plan on 45 to account for time waiting in line.
Amenities: There is a gift shop in the ICON Orlando Complex, including restrooms. There are numerous restaurants in the area as well.