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A Local's Guide to Orlando, USA

Describe who you are in 3 sentences:
My name is Claudia Rios, I am a freelance web developer to pay bills, and founder of Free-Silence, a ngo that offers support for teens who struggle with emotional health. Was that 3 sentences?

What is your relation to this city?
Orlando Fl, has been my home for the past 8 years, I hardly use my GPS, that’s when I knew it was home.

Best experience?
There was a meet up group that had bicycle riding through all of downtown Orlando and would have pit stops across local bars.

Weirdest experience?
Hmm.. I don’t really have one. Except for Halloween in Downtown Orlando. That..That is something.

Your top 3 hangout spots?
"The Guesthouse" on Mills, "Washburn Imports", "Foxtail Coffee"

Favorite restaurants?
Best tacos ever, "Black Rooster"
Best sushi ever, "Kabooki"
Best Greek food ever, "The greek corner". Def an underrated spot.

Best date place?
I would say "Kabooki", its intimate, delicious and perfect first date lighting. If you don’t like sushi, I would suggest any restaurant in Disney Springs, my favorite is "Morimoto", their decor is breathtaking. And after dinner its a cute place to walk and if you time it right you can see the Disney World fireworks that go off every night at 9pm!

Best Sunday spot?
"Santiago's Bodega", they have amazing brunch and bottomless mimosas.. need I say more? BUT "Lake Eola’s farmers market" is a reason to wake up early. The amount of food trucks and cute dogs make it tolerable to be outside with the heat. Plus it’s the only place in Orlando to drink coconut water out of a coconut.

If you were to live in another place, where would that be and why?
I would love to live in London for sometime, living abroad just seems like a whole new version of earth to me.

Where is your escape place from this city?
I like to drive an hour head to clearwater beach and just enjoy the always hot climate of this state.

Best 5 local advices?
1. DO NOT get on I4 between 3:30-6:30pm.
2. I-Drive is a mini Vegas without the casinos. It offers the Orlando Eye, the Swing of Orlando (that swings you 450ft over the city) and the Funspot slingshot that throws you up in the air 300ft so if you’re in the need for some adrenaline there ya go.
3. Universal CityWalk charges for parking until 6pm then it goes down to half the cost.
4. If you drive 35 min north towards Clermont you will run into "Citrus Showcase" which offers fresh squeezed orange juice and they have a little petting zoo, with kangaroos, donkeys, emo’s, pigs and ostriches. there's no charge just buy their food for $1 and feed them!
5. Last piece of local advice, Ivanhoe Village is my favorite area, underrated breweries, great pop up food joints and its all walking distance so park on the side of mills and walk down.
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