Cypress Gardens Adventure Park, known as Cypress Gardens in its past, is located about 64 kilometers southwest of Orlando in Winter Haven, Florida. It's less than an hour drive from Disney World. Dick and Julie Pope turned 200 acres of Lake Eloise shoreline into a lush botanical garden. Cypress Gardens opened in 1936, and so it has become Florida's first theme park that joined in itself world-famous water skiing shows and beautiful botanical gardens. Then, Cypress Gardens was a top filming location for episodes that featured water skiing. Unfortunately, Cypress Gardens was forced to get closed due to financial problems in 2003.
Under its new name, Cypress Gardens Adventure Park reopened in 2004 with new rides and new attractions. The park has continued to grow and expand since then. Look for these highlights: Chrysanthemum Festival; Over 8000 varieties of plants from 90 countries, including Cypress, one of the greatest trees of America; Butterfly conservatory; Sightseeing tours on a paddle wheel boat. They put on beautiful water skiing and ice skating shows, as well as 'Pirates of Cypress Cove', a parody. An aerial view of the whole park can be obtained by riding the 'Kodak Island in the Sky', a 47 meters high revolving platform. On selected nights you will also be welcome at a laser and fireworks show on the shore of Lake Eloise - a perfect way to have a great day.
You will see something truly special near the garden's fountain, when the fountain springs as a beautiful sculptured statue comes to life sprouting water from her fingertips. Plant festivals held at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park include an annual Chrysanthemum Festival held in November, which is the largest display in America. Cypress Gardens Adventure Park is a true wildlife haven, where visitors can explore trails, a large aviary, and a forest area that nurtures threatened and endangered wildlife. There's also a big climate-controlled glass conservatory, which houses more than 50 species of butterflies from around the world. The park also holds America's most elaborate model railway, with 335 meters of track, 400 buildings, and 4800 miniature animal and human figures. The model shows a typical American town in various seasonal settings.
It is interesting to discover that there is no Cypress Garden Hotel close to the park. Though, to tell the truth, there is Cypress Garden Hotel in Nagoya, Japan. Still, Cypress Gardens Adventure Park is situated in immediate proximity to a number of other hotels: The Days Inn (2 stars), Quality Inn Dundee (2 stars), Best Western Admirals Inn (3 stars), to name a few. Cypress Gardens Adventure Park is open 362 days a year. It is only closed on Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Thursday and Christmas Day. Cypress Gardens Adventure Park has got even more shows and attractions than the original park - Cypress Gardens - ever did. With more than 30 rides, screams of joy are now as common as flower blossoms in the park. From thrilling roller-coasters to kid rides that delight a child's heart, the park serves up striking action for the whole family.