14 Sensory-Friendly Places in Orlando, Events and Acitivites

In recent years, awareness and acceptance of neurodivergent diagnoses—such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and sensory processing disorder—have increased. To better serve customers of all abilities, with and without disabilities, many businesses are promoting inclusive, family-oriented environments. Here’s a round-up of sensory-friendly activities and destinations in Orlando for families and visitors.

Many of our readers as well as members of our team are learning to navigate experiences for neurodivergent family members. While each person has their own unique needs, these sensory-friendly activities can be helpful. And remember, it is important to take breaks and rest.

Orlando Destinations with Sensory-Friendly Days

1. Wonderworks

9067 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

Hosted on select days throughout the year, usually on a Sunday, Sensory Days at WonderWorks provides a calmer alternative. Exhibits are altered to provide limited stimulation for children with special needs. The music in the facility is lowered, any loud exhibit is not operational and we stop our inversion tunnel, creating a safe environment for kids to enjoy the facility without feeling overwhelmed.

WonderWorks Orlando Sensory Days Graphic

And during all hours of operation each day, WonderWorks offers loaner noise-canceling headphones for any guests who may need them. Availability is on a first come, first serve basis and a valid ID is needed to hold at the time of use.

2. AMC Dine-In Disney Springs 24

1500 E. Buena Vista Dr., Orlando, FL 32830

In partnership with the Autism Society, AMC hosts Sensory Friendly Films, which began thanks to one awesome special needs mama. Held on the second and fourth Saturday (family-friendly) and Wednesday evenings (mature audiences) every month, the theater turns lights up and sound down. And guests aren’t required to maintain whisper voices.

More Sensory Friendly Movies…

Similarly, Regal My Way Matinee is held on Saturdays each month at Regal The Loop in Kissimmee. Studio Movie Grill at Promenade at Sunset Walk hosts FREE sensory-friendly Special Needs Screenings on select Saturdays – tickets are available at the box office only.

It is suggested that you arrive at least 20 minutes ahead of the showtime.

3. Build-A-Bear

Multiple Orlando locations

Yes, the toy box is already stuffed with stuffies, but Build-A-Bear allows kids to design their very own creation. And another comfort companion couldn’t hurt, right? Every Tuesday, for the first 60 minutes of store hours, Build-A-Bear locations dial back stimulants to better serve customers with neurodivergence. 

4. Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens

3755 W. Seminole Blvd., Sanford, FL 32771

Studies show that all people, and especially neurodivergent individuals, benefit from being in nature. For added comfort within the outdoor environment, the zoo offers sensory bags, useful signage and a guide app to aid people with sensory disorders.

The Zoo’s Admissions Window and are equipped with noise-canceling headphones, cue cards, fidget tools, and other resources. These bags are available to borrow, free of charge, for guests with sensory needs. All bags and items will be properly disinfected after each use.

Visiting during a weekday can be especially helpful as the Zoo is generally much quieter.

young boy admires the reptile house exhibit at central florida zoo
Central Florida Zoo image by Dani Meyering

5. Chuck E. Cheese

Multiple Orlando locations

If you’re seeking a locale as quiet as a mouse, Sensory-Friendly Sundays at Chuck E. Cheese may work. Well, there’s still noise during this session but this popular dining and gaming venue takes sensory measures when opening early just for families with special needs.  

6. Crayola Experience

8001 S. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando, FL 32809

Artsy kiddos with sensory sensitivities will be tickled pink during Crayola’s Sensory Sundays. Held on select dates in 2024 (April 21, August 18, September 22, November 17), lights are dimmed, music is off and there’s a quiet room option.

Visit Crayola Orlando Sensory Sundays Graphic

One of our favorite details? Paper towels are stocked in the restroom to forgo loud hand blowers. Before you head there, take a look at the fun that’s in store at Crayola Experience.

Crayola Experience 3

7. Kasheta Farms

841 Votaw Rd., Apopka, FL 32703

This family-owned farm hosts Autism Awareness & Appreciation Day (aka “A-Days”) once a month. As part of its mission to empower everyone to live life to the fullest, Kasheta Farms presents these interactive agricultural experiences within its all-inclusive, family-oriented atmosphere.

Parents, definitely take the apple of your eye to his working fruit and vegetable farm for interactions with farm animals and more. 

8. Kidiverse

7149 N. Frontage Rd., Orlando, FL 32812

In addition to open play, Kidiverse hosts a Sensory Class on Mondays at 10am. For those with school-aged children that can’t make that timeframe, note that Kidiverse’s Ninja Warrior Course is a fun physical and mental challenge for neurodiverse and neurotypical children to try at any time. Kids can strengthen problem-solving, coordination skills, neuroplasticity, etc.

a child climbs ropes at Kidiverse Indoor play area near Orlando International Airport
Kidiverse Indoor Play image by Dani Meyering

Keep in mind, however, that Kidiverse can be quite overstimulating during regular operation. Loud music and noises from games, as well as lots of bright colors and activities can be rough on sensitive folks. The snack options tend to be limited to sugary and artificial items.

Other indoor gyms and trampoline places offer sensory-friendly days too, such as:

9. iFLY

8969 International Dr., Orlando, FL 32819

This indoor skydiving facility takes inclusion to new heights during All Abilities Nights. These sessions are intended to provide safe modifications for individuals of differing abilities, including neurodiversity.

10. Orlando Museum of Art

2416 N. Mills Ave., Orlando, FL 32803

Held on select Sundays, Creative Connections is a free program designed to unlock the creativity of visitors with developmental disabilities and ASD. Families participate in hands-on activities.

Year-Round Sensory Friendly Places

11. SENSES Park

2296 Camelia Dr., Kissimmee, FL 34743

Featuring adaptive equipment and an inclusive layout, this outdoor playground was specifically developed with neurodivergent children in mind. The fenced-in space features climbers, hills, musical instruments and soundscapes, a sandbox, slides, and a wheelchair-accessible merry-go-round. 

12. We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym

244 SR 436, Casselberry, FL 32707

Recently celebrating its first anniversary, the Orlando-area We Rock the Spectrum gym earns five stars on TripAdvisor. Parents just rave about the “comfortable” atmosphere! This kid’s gym offers open play in the gym, plus classes and parties

Local families, like our own Editor, Dani Meyering, enjoy the calm atmosphere that is still full of fun. Additional locations include Jacksonville, Clearwater, and Tampa.

We Rock the Spectrum North Orlando climbing area
We Rock the Spectrum North Orlando image by Dani Meyering

You may also want to consider visiting our favorite outdoor places. Many neurodivergent folks find that time outside is very helpful.

Sensory-Friendly Programs in Orlando

13. Arts with Heart

11184 S. Apopka Vineland Rd., Orlando, FL 32836

This performing arts studio presents a sensory-friendly space designed for neurodiverse (as well as neurotypical) students. Arts with Heart offers single and ongoing dance, theatre and creative classes.

14. Freedom Ride

3919 Bay Lake Rd., Orlando, FL 32808

Equine-assisted therapy, therapeutic riding or equine psychotherapy centers on activities that engage with horses (and sometimes under the supervision of a medical professional). Psychology Today reports that equine therapy may help with anxiety, ADHD, depression and many other mental and physical health conditions, by helping patients build confidence, self-awareness and empathy. Freedom Ride offers several therapeutic riding options.

Additional Activities

  • Arena amenities: Home to several professional teams, Orlando sporting venues—like Kia Center, Inter&Co Stadium, and Camping World Stadium—offer sensory-friendly bags.
  • Central Florida Dreamplex: Providing adaptive sports, disability-friendly swim lessons and more.
  • Digital Arts for Autism: Offering in classroom and virtual training classes intended for neurodivergent learners.
  • Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts: One of just a few performing arts Certified Autism Centers nationwide, DPC offers sensory-friendly shows, classes and camps throughout the year.
  • Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Lanyard: Orlando International Airport (MCO), in partnership with TSA Cares, offers this service for travelers with hidden disabilities.
  • Joyful Music Therapy: Music therapy uses evidence-based music interventions to accomplish physical and cognitive goals.
  • Orlando Ballet’s Come Dance With Us: Programming is geared toward tiny dancers (under 3 years) with special needs.
  • Orlando Family Stage: The theatre occasionally offers sensory-friendly shows so families of all abilities can experience the magic of performing arts.
  • Surfers for Autism: Make a splash at upcoming beach events in Cocoa Beach and Flagler Beach.

Also Try:

  • Altitude Trampoline Park: Select locations offer sensory friendly days.
  • Brevard Zoo: Sensory bags and lanyards are available to borrow. Both items can be checked out at Guest Services and the Cape to Cairo Express ticket booth on a first-come, first-serve basis. Each bag includes a weighted lap pad, noise-canceling headphones, fidget toys and other items that may help guests with unique sensory-processing needs.

Orlando Sensory-Friendly Theme Parks & Attractions

Legoland Florida is one of our team’s favorite sensory-friendly theme parks, and Peppa Pig Theme Park too. Check out this Reel with info on Legoland’s Quiet Rooms.

Accommodations vary from park to park. Orlando Parenting recommends visiting the accessibility sections of each theme park destination for the latest information.

author avatar
Nancy DeVault
Nancy DeVault is a fitness enthusiast, news junkie, shoe lover, adult beverage fan and travel addict. She works as a Florida-based freelance writer and editor. As mom to two super silly boys, Nancy is always on the hunt for family fun!