The Traveling Steve's

Saturday in the Park

Had a nice and relaxing day in Winter Park today.  Although only half an hour from the house, we rarely get down there due to our busy schedules.  Winter Park is a gorgeous, older and upscale part of Orlando that dates back ‘before Disneyworld’.  There are beautiful mansions along the chain of lakes, Rollins College, IMG_2932trendy outdoor cafes and shops, a quaint train stop, IMG_2956and on Saturdays, a Farmer’s Market full of veggies, plants, and crafts.

It was a beautiful May day, and the summer humidity hasn’t set in yet in Orlando, so it was a great day to walk around.  Although I had often driven by Rollins College, I had never taken the opportunity to walk thru its grounds, which we did.  What a gorgeous and peaceful campus!  Bordering Virginia Lake, it was like taking a nature walk thru the campus, spotting the various wildlife and beautiful landscaping. IMG_2934 IMG_2930IMG_2938

After walking thru the Rollins campus and strolling back thru Winter Park, we were getting hungry and had to decide between a couple dozen outdoor cafes, all of which were still busy at 2pm.  Winter Park just recently announced a voluntary outdoor restaurant ban on smoking, which I highly applaud.  Already about 20 restaurants have stated they will comply with the voluntary ban, which makes for such a nicer environment while eating.  That’s one thing we do not like about Paris, and the European cafes in general, in that they allow smoking, and it appears every table has at least one smoker.

We went to a nice restaurant off the busy Park Avenue row, called Nopa Grill. IMG_2952 IMG_2954 IMG_2951

It’s a take-off on the Napa Valley name, and they indeed did have a nice wine selection, as well as meals.  We both had a tasty skirt luncheon steak, which came with salad and bread for $12.50; quite a good value as well as quality.  We did not have any wine with lunch, although I did have one brewski, as Dos was driving.

This made for a relaxing day, and we headed back home after the late lunch.  We both agreed to visit Winter Park more often, and next time do the boat ride thru the chain of lakes.


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