The City of Tampa is located in west central Florida and is considered one of the most popular tourist destinations in the state.
This coastal city has a rich history and offers plenty of things to see and do, including world-class museums, theaters, family-friendly activities, outdoor adventures, beaches, and sporting venues.
Tampa, FL also features a beautiful waterfront area with plenty of parks and restaurants. Ready to explore? Here are 41 things to do in Tampa that you don’t want to miss.
Downtown Tampa is the heart of the city and is home to many businesses, cultural attractions, restaurants and shops. The area is also a popular destination for tourists, thanks to its array of restaurants, hotels, and nightlife options.
Recently, downtown Tampa has undergone a revitalization effort, which has seen the construction of new residential buildings and the redevelopment of historic districts. As a result, downtown Tampa is now a bustling, vibrant community that offers something for everyone.
Details: Tampa, Florida 33602 | Website
TAMPA BAY HISTORY CENTER
The Tampa Bay History Center is a museum in the heart of downtown Tampa that tells the story of the Tampa Bay region. The center has exhibits on everything from Native American culture to modern-day life, and there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
One of the center’s most popular exhibits is the replica of Ybor City’s cigar factory. This exhibit gives visitors a glimpse into how life was in Tampa’s cigar-making heyday. You can see how the cigars were made, and even taste some of the different types of tobacco that were used.
Details: 801 Water St, Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
THE FLORIDA AQUARIUM
The Florida Aquarium is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Tampa. It’s home to thousands of aquatic animals, including fish, turtles, and dolphins. Visitors can explore the aquarium’s many exhibits, which showcase different types of marine life from around the world. The aquarium also offers interactive programs for kids and adults.
One of the most popular attractions at the Florida Aquarium is the dolphin encounter. Visitors can get up close and personal with dolphins in a lagoon pool. There are also several other exhibits at the aquarium that showcase these beautiful creatures, including the Wild Dolphin Cruise. This cruise takes visitors out into Tampa Bay to see dolphins in their natural habitat. It’s an amazing experience that you won’t want to miss.
Details: 701 Channelside Dr., Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
GLAZER CHILDREN’S MUSEUM
The Glazer Children’s Museum is located in Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. The museum has three floors of exhibits, including a water play area, an art studio, and a theater.
The Glazer Children’s Museum is a great place to visit for a fun day out with the family. Admission is free for children under 2 years old and discounted for children aged 2-12 years old.
Details: 110 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
HENRY B. PLANT MUSEUM
Located in the 1891 Tampa Bay Hotel, the Henry B. Plant Museum is a museum that contains actual furnishings that were enjoyed by the first guests here. The building was a former Victorian railroad resort, and is now a National Historic Landmark.
At this museum, you’ll find exhibits and artifacts that reflect what life was like at the hotel during turn-of-the-century America. Plant was an American transportation pioneer, and he was responsible for a network of railroads and steamship lines throughout Florida.
In addition to furniture and artwork that was featured in the hotel, you’ll also see a collection of rare books, including a copy of the Gutenberg Bible.
Details: 401 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33606 | Website
One of the best things to do in Tampa is to get out on the water and enjoy the city from a different perspective. Enter: eBOATS Tampa. The “e” in eBOATS stands for “easy,” because you’ll be able to easily captain your own boat in no time.
Rent one of their 21- or 22-foot long boats — they offer both standard and premium boats — and explore Tampa’s downtown channels, some of the Hillsborough River, and/or a one hour section of Tampa Bay.
The boats seat between 10 and 12 people, so there’s more than enough room for your whole crew. They include a cooler on the boat for your use, and you can bring your own food and drinks on board to enjoy. Choose from 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-hour rentals, and have a great day on the water.
Details: 333 S Franklin St, Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
Sparkman Wharf is a newly developed mixed-use waterfront destination in downtown Tampa. It offers residents and visitors a place to live, work, and play right on the water. The wharf features luxury apartments, office space, restaurants, a marina, and more.
The wharf has been praised for its stunning architecture and waterfront views. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon or evening. There are plenty of things to do at Sparkman Wharf, from dining and shopping to taking a boat ride or visiting the aquarium.
Details: 615 Channelside Dr., Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
TAMPA MUSEUM OF ART
The Tampa Museum of Art is located in the restored David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts and showcases sculptures, paintings, and other artwork from around the world. The Tampa Museum of Art also offers educational programs for adults and children, as well as special events throughout the year.
Some of the most popular exhibits at the Tampa Museum of Art include “American Indian Art from the Collection of Karen and J. Dennis Hobson” and “Tampa Collects: Recent Acquisitions.” The museum is also home to a variety of sculptures, including a large metal sculpture by artist Tom Otterness that is located in the center’s courtyard.
Details: 120 W Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
THE TAMPA RIVERWALK
The Tampa Riverwalk is a beautiful 2.5-mile long pedestrian walkway that follows the Hillsborough River in Downtown Tampa. It’s a popular spot for locals and visitors to enjoy a peaceful stroll, take in the scenic views, and enjoy some outdoor exercise.
The Riverwalk is also home to a number of restaurants, bars, and shops, making it the perfect spot to spend a day or evening out. Stop by Armature Works, where you’ll find plenty of delicious food options — like Astro Ice Cream or Hemingway’s Cuban Cuisine. Or make a pit stop at the Florida Aquarium, or Sparkman Wharf.
There’s always something going on along the Riverwalk, from concerts and festivals to movie screenings and holiday events.
Details: Tampa, FL 33602 | Website
BAYSHORE BOULEVARD GREENWAY
The Bayshore Boulevard Greenway is one of the longest continuous sidewalks in the United States. With 4.5 miles of scenic views, it’s a popular spot for runners, cyclists, and pedestrians.
While on the greenway, you’ll pass by some of Tampa’s most amazing homes in Old Hyde Park, many of which are on the National Historic Register.
There are plenty of restaurants and bars along the boulevard, as well as beautiful views of the bay. If you’re looking for a scenic and fun place to spend an afternoon or evening, Bayshore Boulevard is definitely worth checking out.
Details: 3402 W. Columbus Drive Tampa, Florida 33607 | Website
ST PETERSBURG / CLEARWATER
Just an hour’s drive from Tampa, St Petersburg / Clearwater is a vibrant and exciting destination for a vacation – or even just a weekend getaway.
There’s something for everyone here, whether you’re looking for sandy beaches, world-class museums, art galleries, or lively nightlife. Plus, the area is surrounded by natural beauty, with lush forests and sparkling waterways.
EMPOWER ADVENTURES TAMPA BAY
Empower Adventures Tampa Bay is a new and exciting adventure company that is quickly gaining a reputation for being the best in the area. If you’re looking to see Tampa from up above, this is the place for you!
At Empower Adventures, you’ll enjoy a 2-hour guided zipline experience. With over 3,000-feet of zip lines taking you over the waters of Mobbly Bayou Wilderness Preserve, and aerial challenges along the way, this is one high-zooming adventure you don’t want to miss.
In addition to their daytime ziplining adventures, they also offer sunset and moonlight ziplining too.
Details: 423 Lafayette Blvd, Oldsmar, FL 34677 | Website
CALADESI ISLAND STATE PARK
Caladesi Island State Park is a Florida state park located on Caladesi Island, off the coast of Dunedin and Clearwater, in Pinellas County. It is open from 8 a.m. to sundown every day of the year.
The park features a three-mile beach, nature trails, a kayak launch, and a picnic area. Visitors can reach the island by ferry or private boat.
Details: 1 Causeway Blvd, Dunedin, FL 34698 | Website
Clearwater Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in Florida. It’s a great place to visit if you’re looking for some peace and quiet, as it’s not as crowded as some of the other beaches in the state. T
he white sand and clear water make for a perfect combination, and there are plenty of restaurants and bars nearby if you need a break from the sun.
CLEARWATER MARINE AQUARIUM
The Clearwater Marine Aquarium is a unique and special place, not only because it is former home to Winter the dolphin (star of the movie, Dolphin Tale), but also because it strives to educate visitors about the marine life that resides in the Gulf of Mexico.
The aquarium offers both self-guided and guided tours, and there are plenty of activities for kids (and adults) of all ages. Some of the highlights of a visit to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium include learning about the sea turtles that inhabit the area, experiencing the touch tank, and watching the sea otters play.
Details: 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, FL 33767 | Website
MOREAN ARTS CENTER
The Morean Arts Center is a nonprofit art center in Saint Petersburg, Florida. It was founded in 1917 as the Chitwood-Morean Art Club. The original purpose of the club was to provide exhibition and educational opportunities for local artists. In 1970, the club renamed itself the Morean Arts Center and began to offer classes to the public.
The Morean Arts Center has a wide variety of classes for all ages and skill levels. They offer classes in painting, drawing, sculpture, ceramics, glassblowing, jewelry making, and more. They also offer summer camps for kids and after-school programs for teenagers.
The Morean Arts Center is home to several art galleries. The main gallery is the Chitwood Gallery, which features exhibitions of local, regional, and national artists. The center also has two resident artist studios, which are open to the public.
Details: 719 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 | Website
ST. PETE BEACH
Saint Petersburg Beach, more commonly known as St. Pete Beach, is a world-famous destination located on the Gulf Coast of Florida. This barrier island is well-known for its sparkling white sand beaches and lush tropical vegetation. Visitors can enjoy many different activities here, including swimming, sunbathing, fishing, boating, and golfing. There are also a number of restaurants and shops, making it the perfect spot for a relaxing beach vacation.
One of the main attractions of St. Pete Beach is its clear turquoise waters. The gentle waves and miles of white sand beaches make it a popular spot for vacationers!
THE DALI MUSEUM
Located in the heart of downtown St. Petersburg, the Dali Museum is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Florida. The museum is home to the world’s largest collection of Salvador Dali art, with more than 2,000 pieces on display.
The museum is housed in a stunning building that was designed by architect Yann Weymouth. The facade features a series of tilted, mirrored panels that create an optical illusion. The museum’s interior is just as impressive, with a grand atrium and winding staircases.
Details: 1 Dali Blvd, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 | Website
If you’re looking for a laid-back tiki bar that feels like a vacation, look no further than The Getaway in St. Petersburg, Florida. This bar is the perfect place to escape the everyday grind and relax with a drink in hand.
The Getaway has an extensive menu of cocktails and tropical drinks, all of which are served in tiki mugs and glasses. The bartenders are knowledgeable about the drinks and will be happy to make a recommendation based on your taste.
In addition to the drinks, The Getaway also has a great food menu. You can choose from items like burgers, tacos, and salads, or you can opt for one of the bar’s specialty dishes, like the Tiki Burger or Polynesian Poke.
The atmosphere at The Getaway is what really sets it apart from other tiki bars. It’s a bit more upscale than some of the other options, with dim lighting and Hawaiian music playing in the background. This makes it the perfect place to escape for a few hours and pretend you’re on a tropical island.
Details: 13090 Gandy Blvd N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702 | Website
WEEDON ISLAND PRESERVE
Weedon Island Preserve is a place where you can experience nature at its finest. There are numerous hiking trails that will take you through different ecosystems, each one with its own unique beauty.
You might see alligators sunning themselves on the banks of a river, hawks soaring overhead, or wildflowers blooming in the meadows. Whatever you encounter, it’s sure to be an unforgettable experience.
Details: 1800 Weedon dr. NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33702 | Website
ZOOTAMPA AT LOWRY PARK
ZooTampa at Lowry Park offers Tampa residents and visitors a unique opportunity to view and learn about animals from around the world. The zoo is home to more than 2,000 animals, representing more than 500 species.
Right when you enter ZooTampa, you know you’re in for fun. Let the kids splash around in the Manatee Fountains, and make sure to visit the Main Free-Flight Aviary, just inside the entrance. (Tip: The sloths are most active in the mornings!)
With five realms to explore, an on-site restaurant, upgraded signature encounters (you can feed an Indian Rhino!), an African Safari ride, and even a splashdown boat adventure — there is something for everyone here.
Details: 1101 W Sligh Ave, Tampa, FL 33604 | Website
The MOSI Museum is one of the most popular museums in the state. The museum contains over 450,000 square feet of exhibits, which cover a variety of topics, such as history, science, space, and aviation.
Some of the highlights of the museum include a full-size replica of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, the nation’s largest air and space exhibition, and a 4D theater. The museum is also home to the Florida Hospital Medical Simulation Center, which allows visitors to experience real-world medical emergencies without any risk.
Details: 4801 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33617 | Website
BUSCH GARDENS TAMPA BAY
A visit to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is a must for anyone visiting the Tampa Bay area. This world-class theme park has something for everyone, from roller coasters and water rides to animal exhibits and shows.
The Roller Coaster Capital of the World has more than just coasters though. Busch Gardens also offers plenty of family-friendly rides, including the Falcon’s Fury, which takes riders face-first down a 335-foot drop. Other popular rides include the Kumba and Montu roller coasters, as well as the Gwazi wooden coaster.
Details: 10165 McKinley Dr., Tampa, FL 33612 | Website
Epperson Lagoon in Wesley Chapel is a 7.5-acre pool that will make you feel you’ve been transported to an island paradise. With water activities, water slides, a swim up bar, cabanas for rent, kayaking, paddleboarding, a water obstacle course, and even its own island — this place was made for both fun and relaxation.
Choose from a day pass or a late day pass (which means, you can’t get there until after 3 p.m.), and enjoy the water and beach area, the 30-foot waterslide, games, beach volleyball, and access to the swim-up bar. All other activities are an extra charge.
You can truly spend all day or evening here. There’s plenty of on-site eateries, and so much fun to be had.
Details: 31885 Overpass Rd, Wesley Chapel, FL 33545 | Website
If you’re looking for an exciting and unique day trip destination, look no further than Giraffe Ranch in Tampa! This is the only place in the world where you can get up close and personal with giraffes.
Giraffe Ranch offers guided tours of their facility, as well as hands-on experiences with the giraffes. You can even feed them!
Details: 38650 Mickler Rd, Dade City, FL 33523 | Website
BIG CAT RESCUE
Big Cat Rescue is a sanctuary for big cats. The sanctuary was founded in 1992 by former exotic animal dealer Carole Baskin (yes, from Tiger King), and her husband, Jack.
The sanctuary is home to over 100 big cats, including lions, tigers, leopards, jaguars, and cougars.
Details: 12802 Easy St, Tampa, FL 33625 | Website
FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL
The Florida Strawberry Festival is a 10-day event in March that celebrates the strawberry harvest in Plant City, Florida. The festival features food contests, live entertainment, carnival rides, and of course, strawberries!
Visitors can purchase fresh strawberries by the pound or enjoy them in one of the many dishes that are served at the festival.
Details: 926 NW 27th Ave, Ocala, FL 34475 | Website
CRACKER COUNTRY LIVING HISTORY MUSEUM
Cracker Country Living History Museum is a museum located in the heart of Florida’s cattle country. The museum celebrates the history and culture of the cracker people, pioneers who have lived in Florida for centuries.
The museum features a variety of exhibits that tell the story of Florida’s pioneers, from their origins to their current way of life. Visitors can learn about their unique culture, their folk art and crafts, and their traditional foods.
Special events are held here throughout the year, including the Florida State Fair, Tall Tales of Old Florida, and Christmas in the Country.
Details: 4800 US-301, Tampa, FL 33610 | Website
MANATEE VIEWING CENTER
The Manatee Viewing Center is a great place to view manatees in their natural habitat. The center is located on the banks of the Hillsborough River near Tampa, Florida. The center has a viewing deck that overlooks the river, and there are also several telescopes for visitors to use.
While here, make sure to visit the newly remodeled education center, to learn more about these “gentle giants.” Grab a bite to eat at the Southshore Cafe on site.
Details: 6990 Dickman Rd, Apollo Beach, FL 33572 | Website
ROBERT W. WILLAFORD RAILROAD MUSEUM
The Robert W. Willaford Railroad Museum is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Plant City. It is home to a large collection of historical railroad equipment and memorabilia.
The highlight of the museum is its collection of locomotives and rail cars. There is also a gift shop and a cafe on site.
You’ll find a train viewing platform, adjacent to the museum, so you and your family can watch the trains go by.
Details: 102 N Palmer St, Plant City, FL 33563 | Website
SEMINOLE HARD ROCK HOTEL AND CASINO TAMPA
When it comes to live music, the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tampa is definitely one of the best places to be. The casino regularly books some of the biggest names in music, and its state-of-the-art concert venue, the Hard Rock Live, is a major draw for both locals and tourists.
The Seminole Hard Rock brings in some pretty big names, like Paul McCartney and Garth Brooks.
Details: 5223 Orient Rd, Tampa, FL 33610 | Website
YBOR CITY HISTORIC DISTRICT
The cigar industry has a long and rich history in Tampa. Many of the cigar factories were located in Ybor City, an historic district located just east of downtown Tampa. Cigar production in Ybor City began in the late 1800s, and the district grew to become one of the most important cigar-producing areas in the world.
Today, Ybor City is a popular tourist destination, and the Cigar Industry Museum is one of the most popular attractions in the district. The museum showcases the history of cigar production in Ybor City, as well as the impact that the cigar industry has had on Tampa and the surrounding area.
CEREALHOLIC CAFE AND BAR
Cerealholic Cafe and Bar is a great place to go for a quick bite or a relaxing drink. The food is affordable and the staff is friendly. I always enjoy stopping by for a sandwich or a bowl of soup.
The cafe also has a wide selection of beers and wines, which makes it the perfect spot to unwind after a long day.
Details: 1909 N 15th St, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
CIGAR CITY CIDER AND MEAD
Cigar City Cider and Mead is a brewery in Tampa, Florida. It was founded in 2010 by Joey Redner, and they make — you guessed it — cider and mead.
The cider is made from apples, pears, and other fruits. The mead is made from honey, water, and yeast.
The brewery has won many awards for its cider and mead. These awards include the Gold Medal at the Great American Beer Festival for its Barrel Aged Cider, the Silver Medal at the Great American Beer Festival for its Wood Aged Mead, and the Bronze Medal at the Great American Beer Festival for its Cranberry Mead.
Details: 1812 N 15th St, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
JC NEWMAN CIGAR COMPANY
JC Newman Cigar Company is a family-owned and operated business, founded in 1895 by Julius Caeser Newman. Located in Tampa, Florida, JC Newman Cigar Company is the oldest premium cigar manufacturer in the United States.
The company produces handcrafted cigars that are enjoyed by aficionados throughout the world. JC Newman Cigar Company is dedicated to quality and consistency, and its cigars are made with the finest tobaccos available.
Details: 2701 N 16th St, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
TABANERO CIGAR FACTORY
Tabanero Cigar Factory has been in business for many years and has a reputation for producing some of the best cigars in the area. If you’re looking for a great cigar to smoke, be sure to check this place out.
Details: 1601 E 7th Ave, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
YBOR CITY FOOD TOURS
The Ybor City district in Tampa is famous for its food, and there are many great restaurants to choose from. If you want to sample the best of what Ybor City has to offer, then a food tour is the perfect way to do it!
There are several food tours available in the area, and each one offers a different experience. Some tours focus on sampling traditional Cuban cuisine, while others explore the many different types of food available in Ybor City.
Details: 1600 E. 7th Avenue, Center of Ybor, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
YBOR CITY HISTORIC WALKING TOURS
The Ybor City Historic Walking Tours are a great way to learn about the history of this Tampa neighborhood. You can choose from several different tours, each of which focuses on different aspects of Ybor City’s history.
The “Original” tour is a great place to start. This tour covers the founding of Ybor City and the early cigar-making industry. It’s a great way to learn about the neighborhood’s origins and how it developed over time.
If you’re interested in the city’s Cuban heritage, be sure to check out the “Cuban Heritage” tour. This tour covers Ybor City’s history from its Cuban roots all the way up to the present day. It’s a great way to learn more about the unique culture that has shaped Ybor City over the years.
Details: 600 E. 7th Avenue, Center of, Tampa, FL 33605 | Website
DAY TRIPS FROM TAMPA
Sarasota is situated on the Gulf Coast of Florida. The city is known for its white sand beaches, which attracts tourists from all over the country.
In addition, Sarasota is home to a number of art museums and galleries, which draw visitors from all over the world. The city is also known for its high-end shopping and restaurants.
Details: Sarasota, FL 34236 | Website
Central Florida is home to many popular tourist attractions, including Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort, and SeaWorld Orlando. These three destinations are among the most visited theme parks in the world.
Other major attractions include Gatorland and Legoland Florida. Central Florida also offers a wealth of natural beauty, with its many lakes and state parks.
Disney World is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Located near Orlando, Florida, the Walt Disney World Resort covers nearly 47 square miles and includes four theme parks: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom.
It also has two water parks: Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach, a shopping and entertainment district called Disney Springs.
CAPTIVA AND SANIBEL ISLANDS
If you’re looking for a quiet, relaxing escape, Captiva Island is the place for you. This small island off the coast of Florida offers plenty of beaches, nature trails, and restaurants to keep you busy.
Sanibel Island is a beautiful place to visit with plenty of things to do. There are several great beaches to enjoy, as well as bike trails, nature preserves, and restaurants. The island also has a number of shops and galleries where visitors can find unique gifts and souvenirs. Sanibel Island is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of Florida.
ANNA MARIA ISLAND
Anna Maria Island is a small town located on Florida’s Gulf Coast. It is known for its white sand beaches, crystal clear waters, and laid-back atmosphere.
Visitors can enjoy fishing, swimming, sunbathing, and kayaking. There are also several restaurants and shops in the area.
MORE INFORMATION FOR YOUR TRIP TO TAMPA
- FLORIDA’S WEST COAST: 23+ Memorable Stops On The Florida West Coast
- SARASOTA: 40+ Memorable Things To Do In Sarasota For A Weekend Of Fun
- FORT MYERS: 19 Things To Do In Fort Myers For Fun In The Sun
- VERO BEACH: 17 Awesome Things To Do In Vero Beach, Florida
- ST. PETE: 23 Outstanding Things To Do In St. Petersburg, FL
WHERE TO STAY IN TAMPA
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