College Park Neighborhood Guide
Though the name might be a bit misleading because there are no colleges nearby, Orlando’s College Park neighborhood — which derives its name from the numerous streets named after colleges and universities (i.e., Princeton, Yale, Dartmouth) — has a plethora of hidden gems for people of all ages. From fine restaurants to one-of-a-kind historic spots, this guide will help you make lasting memories in College Park.
Restaurants and Bars
There’s no reason to settle for chain restaurants in College Park, where you have an assortment of fine to casual options. Best of all, because of the neighborhood’s proximity to downtown Orlando, you’ll be able to take advantage of the lack of Orlando tourist crowds and dine at any of these locations before a performance or event.
Designed by an Orlando native in 2010 and located on W Smith St, you’ll find Downtown CREDO, the first of the principled company’s four locations. Not only do they serve excellent coffee, but they have space for backroom meetings and regularly rent their space for evening events.
Just a 10-minute walk down the street, you’ll find an upscale restaurant beloved by locals, K Restaurant & Wine Bar. K serves both American and Italian cuisines in a cozy setting. With its garden wine tastings and four course fine dinners, there’s always a reason to stop by.
College Park’s hit gastropub, RusTeak Restaurant & Wine Bar, serves up an assortment of unique menu items from lamb crab over kale or bistro fries. Come for the food, but stay for their happy hour, which features $5 wines and cocktails.
Complimenting the eccentricity of RusTeak are the burgers of Graffiti Junktion. From their Little Angus Burger to the Sin City burger (Stuffed w/ Jalapeños & Brie Cheese topped w/ Pepper Jack & Bacon served on a Flour Bun) and award-winning Macho Nachos, you’re sure to find a menu item that fits your mood in this casual neighborhood restaurant and bar.
In the mood for baked goods? There’s no bakery more French than Les Petit Pleasures. In addition to their sweet, fruit-filled crepes and flaky almond croissants, the rich flavors of their café au lait will leave you with a thirst for more of their Parisian delights.
Strictly in the mood for drinks? Ollie’s Public House has a drink menu with more variety than their food menu, a half-dozen delicious shots, and a DIY s’mores option, all waiting for you to indulge in.
Spaces and Events
There’s more to College Park than just eating. While the neighborhood might lack any big stadiums or any huge cultural attractions (aside from Jack Kerouac’s cottage, which now hosts a writer-in residence project), there’s still a lively art and culture scene for residents and visitors to take part in.
Interested in supporting local artists or seeing a body painting art show? You’ll be delighted by College Park Arts Center, the neighborhood’s local venue for multi-media art and theater performances. Beyond their shows, they offer summer programs, workshops, and classes produced and supported by the community.
College Park also has an annual JazzFest , which features ten bands on three stages on a single night. Thousands of people both from and outside the community come to enjoy the festivities, which include pop-up shops and street-food vendors. The festival is right on Edgewater Drive, so you’ll be able to pop into all the local businesses and restaurants.
The other notable annual festival is the Taste of College Park Food and Wine Festival, sponsored by the area’s Rotary Club. The event features wine pairings and food from local restaurants, as well as a silent auction. Profits from the event are given to local schools and charities.
College Park may not have colleges, but it has parks! All of the community’s parks are easily accessible and have a variety of amenities associated with them.
Golfers will be fans of the Dubsdread Golf Course, a community centerpiece that is nearly a century old. Dubsdread has played host to greats include Sam Snead, Babe Zaharias and Tiger Woods, and has a nonrestrictive membership policy.
Whether you’re looking for a spot for picnicking, enjoy bird watching or just love to sit by a lake, you’re in luck. College Park has four lakes for you to choose from: Lakes Adair, Ivanhoe, Concord and Silver. There’s also Albert Park a half-acre respite in the heart of College Park that’s perfect for coffee breaks.
And how could you spend time in Florida without diving into a pool? College Park Pool has a number of amenities including a fitness center, playground, rentable kitchen, and recreational programs for kids, teens, and adults.
Looking for some more gems, dives, and adventures to have in College Park and Orlando overall? Checking out these great deals in Orlando so you can make the most of your time here, whether you’re swinging by for a visit, or are looking to settle down.