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Tampa is Set in a State that is one of the biggest destinations for Holidays and Vacations, in the world with Florida. There’s naturally many things to visit and do. Being such a big destination there is a variety of places to see and attend, From zoos to Museums, Waterparks to the Bush, it can cater for the whole family. There are many fun things to be enjoyed in Tampa and listed below are ten attractions to consider when visiting the city.
Things To Do In Tampa
Tampa is a major city on the Gulf Coast of the U.S. state of Florida. The city’s borders include the north shore of Tampa Bay and the east shore of Old Tampa Bay. Tampa is the largest city in the Tampa Bay area and the seat of Hillsborough County. With a population of 384,959 according to the 2020 census, Tampa is the third-most populated city in Florida after Jacksonville and Miami and is the 52nd most populated city in the United States.
Hillsborough State Park
For a great way to spend the day picnicking, hiking, swimming, canoeing, wildlife viewing or for an overnight camping adventure, Hillsborough State Park is the place to go. Opened in 1938, this 3,000+ acre park has everything you need to spend the day, or night, enjoying Florida flora and fauna. Also located within the park is Fort Foster where you can observe personnel doing their duties as they might have been done in 1837.
Lowry Park Zoo
Lowry Park Zoo, established in the early 1930s on the banks of the Hillsborough River with only a small contingent of animals, today has more than 1600 residents. Over the years the 41-acre park was taken over and managed by the Zoological society. Today, Lowry Park is recognized as one of the top three mid-sized zoos in the country. Well known for its Manatee rescue and rehabilitation facility, the natural habitat zoo is also home to endangered species, great cats, an extensive aviary enclosure and reptiles. Rides, shops and restaurants are located within the park.
At Adventure Island, plan on spending the day tubing and rafting at this fantastic water park. Take a ride on the Calypso Coaster as you cascade down the flume on an inner tube. At Endless Surf, ride the 5-foot high waves in this 17,000 sq. foot pool. For a little relaxation, grab a tube and meander down the Rambling Bayou for a half-mile trip through the Rain Forest and waterfalls.
Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) offers a full schedule of activities. There are ongoing exhibits including the flight simulator and the Gulf Coast Hurricane, both interactive rides, a bio-works butterfly garden, hands-on science projects, a planetarium where you use the telescopes to search the sky and the IMAX theatre. At the Galaxy Cafe and Shop, you’ll find video games, large screen tv with sci-fi videos, an internet cafe and great food selections.
Tampa Museum of Art
Located along the Hillsborough River in downtown Tampa is the Tampa Museum of Art. The museum’s permanent collection contains 4,500 objects. Featured pieces are Greek and Roman antiquities along with modern contemporary pieces including sculpture, paintings, decorative arts and photography. Closed Monday.
Henry B. Plant Museum
Housed in the 1891 Tampa Bay Hotel, a National Historic Landmark is the Henry B. Plant Museum. The hotel is now the University of Tampa and is a splendid example of Moorish architecture. The museum has on display numerous antiquities, European furniture, and art treasures from the Gilded Age that were brought in by rail to decorate the hotel. You will take a step back to Victorian times and see what life was like and the opulence afforded to tourists near the turn of the century.
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is a true adventure for the gambling enthusiast. This 90,000 sq. ft. casino features more than 1,800 gaming machines and 50 tables of live-action poker, Texas Hold’em and more. Take a break and visit the hotel restaurant and bar. Enjoy live entertainment, revues and the total nightclub experience at this all-in-one-stop Tampa attraction.
A major attraction in Tampa is Busch Gardens. A full day is needed to experience all the park has to offer. Visit the great apes up close and personal, observe the infamous white lions, and take a ride out on the Serengeti plain to view wildlife in natural surroundings. Be entertained by the numerous shows, both wildlife and human, and be prepared to ride the rides! The newest roller coaster, SheiKra, is opening in May and promises to be exhilarating and is touted as the tallest Florida coaster. There are plenty of souvenir shops and twenty restaurants that reside inside the park from fine-dining to casual.
For aquatic adventure, a visit to the Florida Aquarium will fill the bill. Located in the Channelside district near downtown Tampa, the aquarium has many interactive things to do including diving with the sharks (must be certified), swimming with the fishes or taking an eco-tour aboard a 64-foot catamaran, Bay Spirit. More than 10,000 aquatic plants and animals reside at the aquarium and including species from around the world. Visit the Wetlands and coral reef and the No Bone Zone designed especially for the younger folks. Cafe Ray offers casual waterside dining.
Famous for its authentic Spanish restaurants and culture, Ybor City is rich in history. Originally the cigar centre, today the historic city offers a thriving business venue for nightclubs, restaurants, and businesses. Historic buildings house many restaurants and museums. Cafes and speciality shops offer everything from handmade cigars to Cuban coffee. The Ybor City Museum covers the history of Ybor and offers a walking tour (90 minutes) of the city. You’ll be able to find more restaurants, shopping, and retailers and is anchored by Movico 20 for the best in movie entertainment.
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