Orlando is a tourism hub known globally for its world-class theme parks, expansive resort options, and thriving food scene, but those are not the only dimensions in its playbook. Orlando, which was recognized as the No. 1 Sports Business City for Attracting Events by Sports Business Journal, is increasingly becoming known as a premier sports destination drawing top-notch events, venues and recreational activities.  

Orlando is also one of the country’s top recreation destinations, delivering incredible opportunities for active visitors. Between the temperate weather of Central Florida and the steady influx of domestic and international visitors, Orlando welcomes fans of all kinds to get hyped over their favorite players and teams or join in and play themselves.  

According to Wallethub.com, Orlando consistently ranks among the top five cities for soccer fans, thanks to its affordability, passionate fan base and ample stadium capacity. The city is home to two professional soccer clubs: Orlando City SC of Major League Soccer (MLS) and Orlando Pride of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL). Orlando City’s regular season runs from March to October with 17 home matches, while Orlando Pride plays from April to October with 13 home matches, both held at the 25,5000-capacity Inter&Co Stadium in downtown Orlando.  

Orlando is also a hub for major international soccer events. This summer, the city will host a series of high-profile matches. Notably, on June 12, the 65,000-seat Camping World Stadium will see the U.S. Men's National Team face the Brazil Men’s National Team, and five-time World Cup champions, in the second edition of the Allstate Continental Clásico

Further enhancing its global soccer appeal, Orlando will welcome three-time reigning Premier League champions Manchester City and Spanish giants Barcelona to Camping World Stadium on July 30 for an FC Series friendly, formally known as the Florida Cup.  

In addition to these events, Orlando is one of 14 U.S. cities selected to host the 2024 CONMEBOL Copa América, the oldest international tournament in the world and the largest soccer tournament in South America outside of the FIFA World CUP. On June 29, Chile will face Canada, and on July 1, Bolivia will play against Panama, both​ at Inter&Co Stadium.   

To round out Orlando’s summer of soccer this year, Inter&Co Stadium will host two opening-round matches of the 2024 Leagues Cup, a unique soccer tournament featuring teams from MLS and Liga MC, designed to strengthen the sporting rivalry and collaboration between the U.S. and Mexico. Orlando City SC will face MLS’s CF Montreal on July 26, and Liga MX's Atlético de San Luis on August 4.  

For football enthusiasts, the 75,000-seat Camping World Stadium in downtown Orlando also offers an exceptional spectator experience. This iconic venue hosts several major events throughout the year, including January's Citrus Bowl, November's Florida Blue Florida Classic and December's Pop-Tarts Bowl, all played to capacity crowds, while the December Cure Bowl is held at Inter&Co Stadium.  

In addition, the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World® Resort  hosts over 60 sports and thousands of events for athletes of all ages and abilities. 

BASKETBALL                                                                                              The NBA’s Orlando Magic is celebrating its 35th anniversary. Fans can find them at home games from October through April in the amenity-loaded Kia Center, an 18,846-seat venue, and one of the most technologically advanced in the world. Offering VIP appointments like mid-level luxury and club seating, a stunning art collection, massive scoreboard and several restaurants and bars, the flexible venue is an inviting space for diehard fans and celebrities alike to cheer for Orlando teams. 

In addition to the Magic, Kia Center is home to the Orlando Solar Bears, an affiliate of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning and members of the ECHL, the premier “AA” hockey league in North America. The team has qualified for the Kelly Cup Playoffs five times in eleven seasons of operation. The regular season runs from November through April.

Orlando has a long history of golf lovers choosing the area for their retreats, vacations and retirement homes. Arnold Palmer – one of the world’s most beloved golfers – not only started his own resort and golf course in Orlando but founded the Golf Channel here. Arnold Palmer’s Bay Hill Club & Lodge is just one of numerous golf courses in the Orlando area, many from celebrated course designers, and some featuring academies helmed by nationally recognized instructors. Major tournaments call Orlando home, including the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament, which benefits the Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital in Orlando, and The Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions, an official LPGA event held at Tranquilo Golf Course at Four Seasons Golf and Sports Club Orlando. 

Both casual and competitive golfers will love Orlando’s variety of golf entertainment venues.  Centrally located on International Drive, Top Golf Orlando is a state-of-the-art golf range facility, with three levels and 102 climate-controlled hitting bays for up to six players each. Near Orlando International Airport, Drive Shack Orlando in Lake Nona offers 90 full-service, all-weather bays and unlimited golf balls. PopStroke, an all-new golf entertainment venue created in partnership with Tiger Woods, will open this summer, offering a menu of handhelds and pizzas to enjoy from the indoor-outdoor dining room overlooking two 18-hole miniature golf courses.  

Orlando has embraced the international pickleball craze, offering enthusiasts of all ages and abilities a multitude of opportunities to learn and play this popular sport. With over 50 locations across the city, Orlando provides ample space for both seasoned players and newcomers to hone their skills and enjoy the game year-round. From state-of-the-art facilities like the United States Tennis Association (USTA) National Campus to expert-led courses at ClearOne Sports Centre and the Central Florida Pickleball Academy, players have access to top-notch instruction and equipment. 

In addition to top-tier facilities, Orlando boasts a variety of indoor and outdoor venues where players can gather to paddle, play and socialize. From the newest courts at East Lake Park at Lake Nona to the historic Cady Way courts in Winter Park and the expansive Veteran’s Memorial Park, there's a court for every skill level and playing preference. Additionally, several resorts in the area, including Walt Disney World Resorts and Grand Oaks Resort, cater to pickleball enthusiasts by offering complimentary equipment and exclusive court access for guests, ensuring that pickleball enthusiasts can enjoy their passion even while on vacation in Orlando. 

In 2017, Orlando became the new home of American tennis, when the United States Tennis Association (USTA) opened a campus in the Lake Nona area of Orlando. The 63-acre complex encompasses more than 100 courts (hard and clay) and a multi-use building with a pro shop, pickleball courts, fitness center, locker rooms, cafeteria and players’ lounge.   In addition to hosting professional and collegiate matches throughout the year, this world-class facility offers numerous opportunities for visitors of all ages and skill sets to learn and play — including professional-grade courts that are free to use with a reservation in the Nemours Family Zone.

For intercollegiate sports enthusiasts, the University of Central Florida, members of the American Athletic Conference, and Rollins College, an NCAA Division II school in Winter Park, offer a full slate of athletic event spectator opportunities at top-notch arenas and stadiums.                            

In 2019, Orlando’s Full Sail University opened the largest on-campus collegiate esports arena in the U.S. The arena, known as The Fortress, accommodates 100 esport athletes playing simultaneously, with over 500 spectators watching live. 

Racing through a theme park gains new meaning through participating in unique running events at Walt Disney World Resort. With castle views and character, a medal has never been so rewarding. 

runDisney hosts four race weekends throughout the year that include 5ks, 10ks, half and full marathon options. Race participants run through the Disney parks and can celebrate at the end by enjoying a Disney vacation. runDisney is one of the most popular race organizers in the United States, with more than 188,000 runners participating in events throughout the year. 

Find more sports events on the Visit Orlando Events Calendar




About Visit Orlando

Visit Orlando is The Official Tourism Association® for Orlando, the most visited destination in the United States, Theme Park Capital of the World® and No. 1 meeting destination in the country. A not-for-profit trade association that brands, markets and sells the Orlando destination globally, we represent more than 1,400 member companies comprising every segment of Central Florida’s tourism community.

Visit Orlando connects consumers and business groups with all facets of Orlando’s travel community, whether for a vacation or meeting. Home to seven of the world’s top theme parks — as well as refreshing water parks, activities to connect with nature, vibrant neighborhoods, a dynamic dining scene with Michelin recognized restaurants, and a robust calendar of entertainment and sports events — Orlando is a diverse, welcoming and inclusive community for all travelers. Find more information at VisitOrlando.com or OrlandoMeeting.com.


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