TAMPA
 
 
Aug 23, 2014

Explore Tampa Bay

Tampa’s large Spanish and Cuban influences can be seen on the streets of Ybor City, known for its cigar factories and now a destination of nightlife and good eating. South Tampa’s affluent Hyde Park is a mix of boutiques, pubs and high-end steakhouses, seafood and tapas restaurants that contrasts to Channelside’s more touristy vibe. (It’s where cruise ships and industry dock before going seaside in the United States’ seventh largest port.) If you’re going to go, try to visit during the last weekend of January, for Gasparilla, the centuries-old pirate invasion festival that is a mix of Mardi Gras and swashbuckling. It’s home to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Lightening, as well as Busch Gardens, a great mix of exotic wildlife, performances and amusement rides, and the New York Yankees’ home during spring training. Over in St. Petersburg, life is a little slower and more relaxed than Tampa. Despite their name that confuse some visitors, the Tampa Bay Rays play on this side of the Bay as well, in St. Petersburg, at Tropicana Field. Not to miss are the elegant pink Don CeSar hotel and the Salvador Dali, which both epitomize Florida’s quirky lifestyle. For beaches, try Pass-a-Grille and Fort DeSoto both south of St. Petersburg’s downtown or head north to the more touristy Clearwater area with the classic kitschy merchandise and eateries that helped stereotype this state. Enjoy great views at Ballast Point Park’s pier, a true hidden gem.

 

 

 

Tampa Bay Map