Orlando is a city in the central region of the U.S. state of Florida. It is the county seat of Orange County and the center of the Greater Orlando metropolitan area. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the city had a population of 238,300, making Orlando the 79th largest city in the United States. The Greater Orlando metropolitan area has a population of 2,134,411, making it the 26th largest metro area in the United States, the sixth-largest metro area in the Southeastern United States, and the third-largest metro area in the state of Florida. Orlando is the fifth-largest city in Florida and the state’s largest inland city.
Orlando is nicknamed “The City Beautiful,” and its symbol is the fountain at Lake Eola. The current mayor is Buddy Dyer. The city is also sometimes nicknamed “The Theme Park Capital of the World” as it is best known for the Walt Disney World Resort (located approximately 21 miles (34 km) southwest of Downtown Orlando in Lake Buena Vista), founded by the Walt Disney Company in 1971, the Universal Orlando Resort (which consists of two parks, Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure, as well as other attractions, including City Walk), SeaWorld, Gatorland, and Wet ‘n Wild Water Park. Except for Walt Disney World, most major attractions are located along International Drive. The city’s famous attractions form Orlando’s tourism industry’s backbone, making the city the most visited American city in 2009. The city is also one of the busiest American cities for conferences and conventions. Like other major cities in the Sun Belt, Orlando multiplied during the 1980s and well into the 21st century. Orlando is also home to the University of Central Florida, the second-largest university campus in the United States in terms of enrollment (as of 2012).
Orlando attracts over 51 million tourists a year (3.6 million of them are international tourists). Its airport, the Orlando International Airport (MCO), is the thirteenth busiest airport in the United States and the 29th busiest in the world.
In 2010, Orlando was listed as a Gamma− world-city in the World Cities Study Group’s inventory by Loughborough University. According to Loughborough, Orlando ranks alongside other cities such as Belfast, Milwaukee, and Islamabad.
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