Sitting in the sunshine state of Florida, Tampahasgrown in leaps and bounds in terms of popularity. Heart warming shopping, exhilarating theme parks, endless culinary delights, and an electrifying nightlife all go full blast to leave an indelible impression upon the visitor. The snaking Hillsborough River and the mesmerising waterfront alone make for an unforgettable visual appeal. There are quite a few districts in Tampa, each with its own share of abundant charms, with Channelside, Hyde Park, and Ybor City to name just a few. The Channelside is highly acclaimed for its shopping precincts and cuisines, while Hyde Park is a window to the city’s enchanting historic buildings as well as shopping. Ybor Distict, or ‘Tampa’s Little Havana’ is packed with restaurants, nightclubs, and bars. The area also hosts plenty of colourful Latin festivals. In fact, this is just a small glimpse of the destination, and the place is just indescribably full of attractions.
Tourist Spots in Tampa
Tampa has a wide plethora of tourist attractions. While the Bay area is a veritable paradise for beach birds, the Ybor City is the perfect nesting spot for night owls. However, the St. Petersburg area is perhaps the most dynamic tourist haunt with scores of enticing museums and entertainment parks. One of the most favoured tourist activities in Tampa is to follow the Pinellas Trail, which takes one along an enchanting landscape of mesmerising coastal areas, verdant parks, and restless tidal streams. Here are some of the most powerful tourist magnets from the destination that prompt countless visitors to catch flights to Tampa year after year.
- Tampa Museum of Art
- Florida Museum
- Lowry Park Zoo
- Museum of Science and Industry
- Sant’Yago Knight Parade
- Ybor City State Museum
- Centro Ybor
Shopping Attractions in Tampa
‘You name it and Tampa has it’, is perhaps the only way to describe the destination’s shopping scene. Be it handmade jewellery, crafts, and vintage clothes and other antique memorabilia, or sophisticated modern electronic gadgets, Tampa sure takes care of every shopping requirement. Besides, there are a variety of ways of indulging this shopping fetish with malls, outdoor markets, and retail outlets, and specialised stores to name just a few. In terms of shopping, Tampa also offers excellent prospects for picking up tremendous bargain deals and other cheap shopping goodies. Here is just a small list to get you started on your Tampa shopping escapade.
- International Plaza Mall
- Westshore Plaza Mall
- University Mall
- Citrus Park Town Center
- Prime Outlets Ellenton
Eating Out in Tampa
Tampa caters to virtually every kind of taste bud but the emphasis is somewhat more upon Latin cuisines. For fresh seafood and lip smacking Latin American treats, the Ybor City offers plenty of options, while the Hyde Park neighbourhood is famed for its delightful plethora of choices spanning diversified cuisines served in classy chic restaurants. Whether it is some cheap eating joint or top of the line restaurant, be rest assured that Tampa will spoil you for choice. Here are some of the eating places to consider if you are visiting Tampa.
- Hugo’s Spanish Restaurant
- Mema’s Alaskan Tacos
- Tampa Bay Brewing Company
- The NoHo Bistro
- Bern’s Steak House
- Café Don Jose
- The Columbia Restaurant
There is a world of accommodation facilities in Tampa to choose from that match virtually every taste, requirement, and budget. Whether you are a business traveller or simply want to unwind yourself, Tampa hotels provide the perfect ambience to suit your mood and set the tone of your stay. Ask your travel agent to book you a package holiday that clubs your accommodation facility along with your airfares.
- Best Western Brandon Hotel & Conference Center
- Suburban Extended Stay Hotel Airport
- Embassy Suites Hotel Tampa-USF Busch Gardens
- Holiday Inn Tampa Busch Gardens Hotel
- Emerald Greens Golf Resort and Country Club
- Renaissance Tampa Hotel International Plaza
- Westin Tampa Harbour Island Hotel
Find the latest airfares and discounted offers on flights to Tampa operating from UK.
Preferred Airlines to Tampa from UK
Airports in Tampa
Tampa International Airport is located about 11 km from the central business district of Tampa. It serves as the hub for Continental Connection and hosts domestic, regional, and international cargo services for more than 15 airlines. Plenty of direct flights from UK to Tampa land at this airport. A couple of other airports near Tampa are Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport and St. Petersburgh-Clearwater International Airport. The latter serves as the destination airport for plenty of low cost flights.
Best Time to Visit Tampa
Tampa has a humid subtropical climate. Although, the destination may be visited throughout the year, people normally plan their trip during January to April. In fact, the winter month of January is the preferred time for most visitors. During winters, there are plenty of events to ensure a gala time for tourists. Some of the main events are Outback Bowl football game, Gasparilla Pirate Fest, Florida State Fair, Florida Strawberry Festival, and Apollo Beach Manatee Arts Festival. However, those looking for cheap holidays in Tampa should visit during summers as there are plenty of cheap hotels, discount airline tickets, and special holiday offers doled out at this time of the year.
Getting Around in Tampa
The main ways of traversing through Tampa are car hire, bus, streetcar, and trolley facilities. Car hire offered by the local companies proves to be quite cheap. The bus route network is also pretty comprehensive in Tampa. The tram or streetcar facility proves very useful for sightseeing as the line covers plenty of local sightseeing attractions, restaurants, and shops. Another option is to use the two-line trolley system, which serves the Central Business District.
Tampa Travel Tips
Once you bag your cheap airline tickets to Tampa, it would be a good idea to remember the following tips at the start of your journey.
Like many other cities, Tampa has certain rough neighbourhoods. One such area is the Ybor City outskirts and it is prudent not to venture out alone after dark here.
Tampa’s drivers and pedestrians may not seem to be the most ardent followers of traffic rules. So, be very careful when you are on the street.
Tampa is known as the lightning capital of the world. Although, it is unlikely to be struck by lightning, but common sense dictates that one should stay away from beaches, trees, or tall structures during a thunderstorm.
If you are heading out during dusk, be prepared to face insects. So, follow steps like wearing light colours, adequately covering yourself, and using insect repellent cream.
As with any other destination, if you have not planned your travel well in advance, then do adequate research to find if there are any special last minute deals available for the destination.
Steer clear of beaches if there are warnings of jellyfish sightings. In case you get stung, rinse the affected area with seawater pull out the stings as soon as possible with tweezers.
(Note: This destination guide is based on information gathered from reliable resources available on the internet and provides only general information about the destination. Southall Travel holds no responsibility for any misrepresentation of facts and will not be in any way liable for any kind of eventuality arising from the use of information given in this guide)