Zoo in Kissimmee
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With no fancy roller coasters or drenching water rides, this mom-and-pop park harkens back to Old Florida. It's small, it's silly and it's kitschy with, you guessed it, plenty of gators. A splintery wooden boardwalk winds past the hundreds of alligators in the breeding marsh and you can buy hot dogs to feed them. The rather tongue-in-cheek shows are charmingly free of special effects, dramatic music and spectacular light design. But note: they involve animal interaction some might find disturbing.

At the Jumparoo Show 10ft-long alligators leap almost entirely out of the water to grab whole chickens from the trainer. Up-Close Encounters involves mysterious boxes holding animals the public has sent to the park. The trainers are too scared to open them, so they drag audience members down to help. The Screamin' Gator Zip Line (per two hours $70, including park admission) features various ziplines over the park. Note: Lonely Planet does not condone the practice of having your photo sitting on a gator. Parking is free.