The City of Mount Dora was established in 1880 when it was originally named Royellou, a combination of the children's names of one of the City's pioneers. Later taking the name of it's famous lake, and adding the "mount" because it is elevated higher than most of the Central Florida area, 266 feet above sea level.
Sailing along the 6 mile Lake Dora, antiquing in the captivating shops and sightseeing are among the charms of this 19th century town. Though, an entire day could be spent visiting Mount Dora's many parks. Parks for sports, fishing, picnicking and even a friendly game of lawn bowling are available.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the turn-of-the century Lakeside Inn is Mount Dora's oldest structure, build in 1883. Here you can still sip icy lemonade from a colonial rocker on the front porch or take a tour of the historic residence.
On day trips from the Mount Dora Railway, you can experience the comfort and heyday of an authentic railroad passenger car, The Mount Dora Limited. The Mount Dora excursion train makes a round-trip run from Mount Dora to Travares then back again, offering lovely views of Lake Dora, tropical foliage and wildlife from it's open window coaches.
The Annual Mount Dora Art Festival, held the first full weekend in February features over 200 artists from all across the nation and brings in several hundred thousand visitors for the show. October is a busy month as the annual events include the Mount Dora Bicycle Festival and the Craft Festival. The annual Sailing Regatta is in late April.
December brings the annual Christmas Walk, for those looking for a traditional holiday feel (without the snow, of course). Where visitors can walk the coblestone streets, visit the local shops and even take a horse and buggy ride.
Other annual events include the Antique Boat and Car Festivals. The Renningers Antique Extravaganza, held the 3rd weekend in November, January and February displays the wares of over 1000 topnotch antiques dealers from all over the country. Open on weekends, Renninger's Twin Markets, antique center and farmers & flea market has been ranked in the Top 10 Flea Markets by Family Money magazine.