In Tampa, which was formerly well-known for its theme parks and zoos, the old is being combined with the modern. Retrofitted historical structures now host cutting-edge eateries, stores, and activities. The innovators have kept up with all the urban renovation, and the city now has one of Florida’s top gourmet scenes.
There are various enjoyable activities in Tampa, especially for families. Families can experience both the excitement of an amusement park and a zoo in one location at Busch Gardens. A zoo, aquarium, and public manatee viewing area are just a few of the other well-liked animal and wildlife-themed attractions in the region. With all of this, as well as a fantastic science museum and children’s museum, Tampa is the perfect destination for family vacations.
High-rise office buildings dominate the downtown area of Tampa, but there are still charming ancient neighborhoods like Ybor City and ancient Hyde Park. The pedestrian hub of downtown Tampa is Franklin Street, where you can find a wide variety of stores, eateries, and activities.
Best Places to Visit Near Tampa Florida
The following list of intriguing destinations around Tampa, Florida can help you with your summer travel plans. All of these fun activities for kids are generally inexpensive. This list has something for everyone, regardless of whether you live in Tampa Bay or are simply visiting.
1. Island of Anna Maria
One of my all-time favorite beach locations in Florida is Anna Maria Island. The island has a charming gulf shore and an Old Florida beach town vibe. There are numerous activities that are walking and miles of beaches to discover. Tampa is only around an hour’s drive from Anna Maria Island.
2. State Park near Egmont Key
Off the coast of St. Petersburg, on a particularly unusual island called Egmont Key State Park, only boats can get there. Only a few ships leave Fort de Soto Park each day, giving you the impression of being on a private island.
Three forts’ ruins and a ghost town’s ruins can be explored, or you can just enjoy the stunning beaches and go shelling.
3. Pier in St. Pete
The St. Pete Pier has undergone a thorough renovation and will reopen in the summer of 2020. Fishing, motorcycling, and a splash pad are just a few of the available activities.
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There are other dining options available as well. The pier offers breathtaking views of Tampa Bay and the setting sun.
4. Tropical Gardens of Sarasota
The chance to engage in this unusual, distinctly Florida activity is available at Sarasota Jungle Gardens if you’ve ever wanted to hand-feed a flamingo. Besides the flamingos, there are many other animals to observe and beautiful jungle-like gardens to explore.
Enjoy going back in time to a small portion of Old Roadside Florida at one of the state’s oldest continuously operational attractions. A playground, petting zoo, gift store, animal performances, and other activities are available.
5. At the Weedon Island Preserve, kayaking through mangroves
Weedon Island Preserve is an expansive park located on the western shore of Tampa Bay. You can rent kayaks (or bring your own) and explore the gorgeous paddling trail through mangrove forests and the shore of Tampa Bay.
There are also boardwalk trails through multiple ecosystems and a cool observation tower overlooking the preserve.
6. Beach Pass-a-Grille
Beautiful Pass-a-Grille Beach is located near the southern tip of the Pinellas County peninsula. It’s typically less congested because it’s a little further away from the major tourist route. Our preferred activity is to watch the sunset from the famous Hurricane Restaurant’s rooftop bar!
7. Park at Myakka River State
One of the biggest state parks in Florida is this untamed one. The Canopy Walk, a suspension bridge that allows visitors to walk among the trees, is one of the park’s main attractions.
You may also obtain a bird’s eye view of the area from a 74-foot-tall observation tower that rises over the tree tops. Around the park, visitors can frequently see alligators, birds, deer, and other animals. There are also other activities including tram and boat tours, camping, and biking.
8. Springs Tarpon
Tarpon Springs, which is in northern Pinellas County, is well-known for its Greek community and sponge diving business. The largest Greek community in the United States is near Tarpon Springs, one of the most prosperous natural sponge marketplaces in the world.
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This seaside village is brimming with rich Greek culture, mouthwatering cuisine, and a ton of gift shops and locally manufactured handicrafts.
9. Ca’ d’Zan and the Ringling Museum
For those who enjoy art, history, architecture, and gardens, The Ringling is a must-see attraction in Sarasota. The stunning mansion, which was once owned by circus magnate John Ringling and his wife Mabel, is now accessible to the general public.
The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, the Circus Museum, the Ca’ d’Zan Mansion, and lovely grounds to stroll around are just a few of the things to do at the Ringling Grounds.
10. Park near Hillsborough River State
The only Class II rapids in the state are found in Hillsborough River State Park, which is within a short distance from Tampa. Over seven miles of paths wind through pine flatwoods and oak hammocks in the park, with the majority offering stunning views of the Hillsborough River.
With its lovely beaches and crystal-clear waters as well as intriguing cultural sites like Busch Gardens and the Florida Aquarium, the lovely city of Tampa is a much-liked vacation spot.
Nevertheless, if you’re searching for a quiet retreat, consider visiting one of these great destinations close to Tampa, which will still provide lots of opportunities for outdoor recreation. You’ll find a ton of stunning beaches and thrilling things to visit, arranged according to distance from the city.