Florida is a great place to visit for families; after all it’s home of the happiest place on earth right? But the happiest place on earth can be pretty darn expensive. Here are some other fun family activities that won’t break the bank:

Mermaids: You know what’s way cooler than a picture with Ariel? A whole underwater mermaid extravaganza. A visit to Weeki Wachee Springs State Park will take you over to the West Coast of Florida (about an hour north of the famous and family friendly Clearwater Beach)  and get your family up close and personal with a troop of performing mermaids! The best part? A family of 4 can get in for less than $50.

Zipline at the Zoo: Traveling to Florida and staying on the East Coast? If your kids are 8+ and love adventure and animals, a trip to Brevard Zoo in Melbourne won’t go amiss! With a large array of animals from all over the world and multiple zip-line/obstacle course options there is plenty of activity for a full day of adventure.

Indoor Skydiving: This is great for families with older kids in the 12 + range who might be a little too ‘cool’ for Disney. Indoor skydiving is available in Orlando and is right down the road from Universal. It is a bit steep in price- flights start at about $60. Despite the price, this is a really unique and fun way to spend an afternoon in Florida that doesn’t involve getting ‘It’s a Small World’ stuck in your head. Bonus: You can buy a DVD of your experience as a souvenir and enjoy the horrific faces your family makes during their ‘flight’ for years to come.

Watersports : While a nice, relaxing day sipping daiquiris sound like a great day for mom; kiddos will love the chance to try tubing, wake-boarding, and waterskiing. Water-sports centers are abundant on both Florida coasts and in the Keys; additionally the large lakes in Orlando host a number of these companies too. Prices vary depending where you are and which sports your kids are into.

Lion Country Safari: Drive through safaris are few and far between across the US- in fact they’re found in only 13 states! If you are visiting near West Palm Beach think of taking a trip to Lion Country Safari. You and your family can get up close and personal with giraffes, ostriches and of course lions – all from the comfort of your rental car!