Polk County is located in the central portion of the U.S. state of Florida. It is nestled between Orlando and Tampa and is packed with plenty of things to see and do.
Polk Museum of Art
The Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College is a teaching museum that enhances lives through inspirational and engaging art experiences for all. The Polk Museum of Art and Florida Southern College will collaboratively create and sustain one of the nation’s leading academic fine art museums. Open to the public free-of-charge year-round thanks to the generosity of our Museum Members and Partners who support our diverse schedule of exhibitions, public programs, education programs, internships and Permanent Collections.
Learn more about the museum: polkmuseumofart.org
Florida Air Museum
Florida’s offical “aviation museum and education center” features a dynamic display of unique designs, classics, ultra-lights, antiques, and war birds. More than a collection of airplanes: it stands as a tribute to the history and joy of flight.
Take to the skies at: floridaairmuseum.org
Circle Bar Reserve
Circle B is home to some of the most impressive bird activity, and a great place to hike, bike, picnic and fish. The discovery center is filled with many hands-on exhibits that your children will enjoy.
The Wonder House
The Wonder House was built by Conrad Schuck, a visionary inventor and builder. The house stands four stories tall, with an additional two stories underground. The house features many time-saving devices like delayed light switches, a laundry chute and even air conditioning in the 1920’s.
Explore the house: wonderhousebartow.com
Hollis Garden is a public botanical garden in Lakeland, Florida in the United States. It is divided into 16 themed sections or “rooms” with plantings being rotated throughout the year.
Explore the garden: lakelandgov.net
Polk County Historical Museum
The museum collection includes natural and cultural objects related to Polk and the greater Central Florida area that represent our history from pre-Columbian to present day eras. The artifacts on display at the museum represent individuals, cultural groups, and events significant to the region.
Check out the museum: polk-county.net/history-center
African American Heritage Museum
The African American Heritage Museum, located in Bartow, FL, is a place where visitors can learn about the rich and diverse experiences of Black Americans.
Visit the museum: facebook.com/African-American-Heritage-Museum
Central Florida’s Waterways are a Paleontologists’ DREAM! Due to the natural geology of our landscape and the changing movements of landmasses coupled with the rise and fall of Sea Levels during Florida’s “short” history….it is a HAVEN for fossil lovers and scientists the World over. There are MANY locations scattered around Florida where important SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERIES have been made from our fossil record. FOSSIL FUNATICS tours focus on an every changing area, BONE VALLEY. This is an Area of Florida that provides 80%+ of the worlds supply of Phosphorous, and had yielded DOZENS of fossil specimens NEW to science. Currents and Erosion are constantly replenishing the river and creek beds with new specimens for US TO FIND!
Check out the fossils: fossilfunatics.com
Central Florida Welcome Center
Get your Central Florida vacation off to the right start with assistance from Visitor Services. Our friendly staff loves to share knowledge of Polk County’s attractions, accommodations, special events, unique restaurants, outdoor fun, shopping and more. The Welcome Center is also the home of the USA Water Ski and Wake Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. Try a sample of Fresh FL orange juice while enjoying interactive exhibits about numerous attractions throughout Central Florida.
Visit the welcome center: visitcentralflorida.org/visitor-services/
Lake Wales History Museum
We provide educational opportunities that connect all ages to local history, and we are the repository of almost 20,000 objects, documents, photos, textiles, and books about Lake Wales.
Check out the museum: lakewaleshistory.org
Bok Tower Gardens
Enjoy strolling thru the ground to see the gardens, Listen to the clarrion bells (A Carillon is an instrument of at least 23 tuned bells in chromatic series. Cast from bronze, which is composed mainly of copper and tin, and then specially tuned. The bells are “hung dead” meaning that the bells do not swing, only the clappers move. The instrument is fully mechanical (there are no electronics). A nice relaxing way to spend your day.
Explore the tower: boktowergardens.org