Note: Since writing this story, I have visited Mount Dora again and stayed at the Adora Inn. Read that review.
Oct. 14, 2015
Confessions of a shopaholic: I spent a recent Monday strolling the streets of downtown Mount Dora, with no goal in mind but to enjoy myself – and perhaps bring home an out-of-the-ordinary gift for myself or someone else.
October is a good time to visit the lakefront town, northwest of Orlando. The temperature has dropped just a few degrees and the tourists have yet to descend. The mom-and-pop businesses that line the streets have decorated their windows and doorways with fall leaves and pumpkins.
Right away I found some sea glass earrings I couldn’t resist in Noni at the Olive Branch, on downtown’s main drag, Donnelly Street.
In another wonderful spot, the Modernism Museum Shoppe, I bought a birthday gift for my sister-in-law (that one is a secret). The Shoppe, across the street from the Modernism Museum, appeals to the more imaginative shopper, with artsy shirts, ties and scarfs, beaded purses and fine jewelry.
For lunch, I met up with Tracy Post, Mount Dora’s No. 1 fan, at Cody’s on 4th. She recommended the restaurant and I found out why; I had a delicious broccoli and cheese quiche. Tracy is the creator of AroundMountDora.com, a great source of information about the town’s events, businesses and people.
After my break, I was ready to take on the shops again. My find of the day was a welcome mat emblazoned with a big peacock – I love peacocks – from Home & Garden Treasures. Don’t pass up the shop, on Donnelly, which carries tons of whimsical products, including clever signs, ornaments, flags, and, of course, home and garden décor. I adore my peacock mat – another present for myself.
Before long I needed to eat again. Just in time, I spied a wrought iron balcony on Donnelly and took the stairs up to One Flight Up Café, where I lucked out, ordering the yummiest chicken salad and a frozen lemonade. It was just cool enough to dine outside, overlooking the street.
After all the shopping I was dead on my feet, and would love to have fallen into a four-poster bed, but unhappily, I had no time to B&B on this trip.
Mount Dora, at just over 12,000 residents, may have more bed-and-breakfasts per capita than anywhere else in Florida. So far, I have toured the Mount Dora Historic Inn and stayed twice in the Grandview – and loved it. Read my review of both and click here for a list of historic inns in Mount Dora.
I look forward to the next time I visit Mount Dora, when I’ll definitely be both shopping and B&Bing.
(Note: I accepted no compensation from the businesses featured in this article.)