Located in central Florida’s Lake County just west of Orlando, Clermont is a city of about 30,000 residents. Surrounded by dozens of lakes of varying sizes, it offers residents and guests a variety of recreation options.
Compared with many of its smalltown neighbors, Clermont is home to a variety of natural, cultural, and historical attractions, and has one of the most extensive park systems in the area.
Conveniently situated at the midway point between the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, visitors have ample opportunity to partake in a day-trips to some amazing beaches.
Below are 15 things to do in Clermont, Florida.
1. Clermont Performing Arts Center
Located on South Highway 27 near downtown, the Clermont Performing Arts Center has recently unveiled its current year schedule, which consists of nearly 20 shows and performances that’ll be presented in their Main Hall and Black Box Theater.
The theme for the 2019-2020 season is ‘Impressions in Time,’ and events will include a unique array of traditional classics and contemporary pop culture icons that should tempt those with a variety of tastes.
The center’s state of the art Main Hall seats more than 1,000 and the season gets kicked off in early fall when the Florida weather is just about perfect.
2. Legends Golf and Country Club
Featuring more than 1,000 courses, Florida is a unique golf destination unlike any other in the country. For those who find themselves in the Clermont area with a set of clubs and a few hours to kill, hitting the links at The Legends Golf and Country Club would be a great way to spend a morning or afternoon.
The par-72 18-hole course plays just shy of 7,000 yards from the gold tees and is scenic and challenging but appropriate for players of most ages and skill levels.
Many of the course’s holes are within view of scenic Lake Louisa and feature distinct changes in elevation.
3. Downtown Clermont
Unlike much of notoriously flat Florida, Clermont boasts more than a few rolling hills. The downtown area is not only scenic, but rich in history and culture and full of quaint shops, historic buildings, and a number of eateries serving everything from coffee and baked goods to burgers and seafood.
The downtown area is near the corner of West Avenue and Osceola Street and has undergone a transformation in recent years thanks to the local historical society and forward-thinking business organizations.
It’s an excellent place for a leisurely walk, especially in the cooler morning and afternoon hours.
4. Palatlakaha River Park
The city of Clermont has 22 distinct parks within its borders, and boaters, anglers, and all-around outdoor enthusiasts are particularly fond of Palatlakaha River Park because of its convenient location, ease of access, and varied natural habitats.
The park features a boat ramp, and the Palatlakaha River is interconnected with other rivers and lakes making it a fascinating place to explore, especially by canoe or kayak.
Like all the city’s parks, Palatlakaha River Park is free to enjoy. In addition to water-centered activities, it offers guests shaded nature trails, treed areas, and wide open spaces perfect for hikers, sunbathers, and picnickers.
5. The Crooked Spoon Gastropub
The chef-owner of The Crooked Spoon Gastropub on Citrus Tower Boulevard Clermont is a Florida transplant who originally hails from New Jersey.
He’s a true believer that dining should be a memorable experience and that food lovers shouldn’t have to put up with outrageous prices and ultra-exclusive restaurants just to get a great meal.
With a full menu featuring a variety of traditional classics and several contemporary offerings as well, The Crooked Spoon is the perfect place for lunch, dinner, or just a drink and appetizer with friends and family.
Consider their seafood entrees for a Florida twist, or meatloaf and mac ‘n cheese if heartier fare is in order.
6. Presidents Hall of Fame
Clermont’s Presidents Hall of Fame was once called a national treasure by Ronald Regan and has been around for nearly 60 years.
The Hall of Fame was a wax museum dedicated to the country’s presidents for much of its existence. Though it still includes wax replicas, its collection now features a wide range of presidential memorabilia, such as an ever-popular robotic version of Abraham Lincoln.
Many of the museum’s exhibits include original documents and artifacts from former White House residents. There are lots of historical plaques that give interesting and educational insights into many little-known tidbits of American history.
7. The Citrus Tower
Clermont’s Citrus Tower looms more than 200 feet over the surrounding landscape and has been a noticeable icon on the town’s skyline since 1956.
It was built as a monument to Florida’s citrus industry, which has always been a large part of the state’s total economy, and provides oranges, grapefruits, and other citrus fruits to the US and world year-round.
Most visitors don’t spend more than an hour or so on site, but in addition to its unique photo-ops, the tower provides some unique and interesting historical context into the economy and development of the Sunshine State.
8. Lake Louisa State Park
At more than 4,000 acres, Lake Louisa State Park is a natural wonderland for sportsmen, nature lovers, and bird watchers, and is much closer than many of the state’s larger and more well-known parks.
Comprised mainly of lakes, swamps, and stands of cypress and palmetto trees, the park is a favorite destination for hikers and backpackers looking to get away from the crowds and anglers interested in landing a lunker largemouth bass or two.
Though the park can get crowded during peak times, it’s common to see a variety of wildlife, like foxes, snakes, turtles, and rare birds, especially for those willing to venture off the beaten path.
9. Skeletons: Museum of Osteology
Featuring over 500 actual skeletons from both extinct prehistoric dinosaurs and animals that still roam, swim, and fly around the world, the Museum of Osteology in Orlando is a truly one-of-a-kind attraction that’s been open since 2015.
The company that operates the museum was founded in Oklahoma City and also provides skeletons to schools and research facilities around the world.
Visitors will get a unique insight into the inner workings of animal’s bodies that they won’t find elsewhere, so not only is it an entertaining attraction but an educational one as well.
The museum is located near the Orlando Eye Ferris wheel, so consider seeing them both on the same day.
10. Orlando Cat Café
For diehard cat lovers who had to leave their feline friends at home during their visit to Florida, there’s a place in Clermont that gives guests a chance to hang out with cats. The good news is that unlike at home, at the Orlando Cat Café, it’s the staff’s responsibility to clean the litter boxes.
In addition to its furry residents, the café is known to have tasty food and reasonable prices – all in a relaxed and sanitary setting.
For those in the area long-term, there’s an adoption center on site where you can spend a little time with possible candidates before committing to taking them home.
11. Sky Zone Trampoline Park
Located on South Highway 27 in Clermont, Sky Zone Trampoline Park is an exhilarating and calorie burning entertainment option that’s been known to keep families with children occupied for hours on end.
In addition to its assortment of trampolines that are appropriate for most ages, the park includes other safe and fun activities, like dodge ball, free-style bouncing, and instructional programs for people interested in using trampoline exercises to trim their bulging figures.
The park can get mobbed, especially during peak times and when the weather isn’t conducive to being outside, so consider a weekday or morning visit to avoid the crowds.
12. Champions Splash Park
For savvy travelers whose heart skips a beat when they hear the words ‘convenient and affordable,’ spending some precious vacation time at Clermont’s Champions Water Park would be the perfect way to beat the summer heat at its own game.
Full of all the activities and amenities you’d expect from a splash park, there are even designated areas for little ones who aren’t old enough to frolic with the older kids.
Parents will appreciate the covered seating areas that are far enough away from the action to afford a little relief while close enough to keep an eye on things.
13. Showcase of Citrus
Another free local attraction that’s been known to draw crowds is the Showcase of Citrus, which combines a large variety of entertainment and recreation options into one location. It’s both convenient and easy on the wallet.
Many guests choose to tour the facility on the mammoth 4×4 vehicles which it’s famous for; along the way, visitors will see some amazing sights and learn about the citrus industry, which has always been one of Florida’s main economic drivers.
Showcase of Citrus boasts its own market too, which is stocked with locally grown and produced items like salsa, jams, and more Vitamin C packed juices than you’re ever likely to see in one place.
14. Withers-Maguire House
Located just an easy drive from Clermont, the Withers-Maguire House is on East Oakland Avenue in Winter Garden and is one of the area’s most well-preserved historic homes. It’s full of period art, furniture, and housewares that give guests unique insight into the lives of those who lived in the area more than a century ago when it was largely undeveloped.
The home was originally built in the 1880s and was later bought by the city. It’s now open to the public every Saturday and Sunday from 2 until 4 PM.
It’s free to visit too, so swing by for an hour or so.
15. Crooked Can Brewing Company
Cold beers go well with blue skies and long days, and for weary vacationers in need of an adult beverage or two, there’s no better place to check out than Crooked Can Brewing Company in Winter Garden.
Though it’s primarily known for its huge selection of craft-brewed beers, it sports a tasty selection of food as well; some of the favorites are burgers, sushi, and wings.
For those who’ve sworn off animal protein, there are a number of vegetarian options.
Plant tours are offered at various times, so check out their website for their hours and schedule.