Sunday, May 19, 2024

39 Activities for Cruise Passengers to Enjoy in Tampa, Florida


Exploring the Best Things to Do in Tampa, Florida Before or After Your Cruise Vacation

Discover the Best Things to Do in Tampa, Florida Before or After Your Cruise Vacation

Are you planning to embark on a Caribbean cruise from Tampa, Florida? Make the most of your visit by exploring some of the local attractions in this vibrant city. Whether you’re looking for fun activities, delicious dining options, or cultural experiences, Tampa has something for everyone, right near the cruise port.

From historic districts like Ybor City to world-class museums, theme parks, and stunning waterfront views, Tampa offers a diverse range of attractions for cruise passengers to enjoy. And if you’re looking to relax on the beach or indulge in some outdoor adventures, Tampa’s barrier islands and natural parks have got you covered.

Explore Tampa’s Historic Attractions

1. Tour Historic Ybor City

Take a walking tour of Ybor City with Lonnie and discover the rich history of this former cigar-making district. Learn about the Cuban workers who once populated the area and explore the original homes and factories that shaped the city’s heritage.

2. Haunted Tours in Tampa

Dare to embark on a ghost tour of Ybor City and uncover the chilling tales of haunted locations and ghostly legends. This spine-chilling experience is not for the faint of heart but promises an unforgettable journey into Tampa’s supernatural side.

3. Learn About the Seminole Wars at Fort Foster

History buffs will appreciate a visit to Fort Foster State Historic Site, where you can delve into the history of the Seminole Wars. Explore the artifacts and re-enactments that bring this pivotal period to life.

4. Visit a Touching Memorial to the Heroes of 9/11

Pay your respects at the 9/11 Fallen Heroes Memorial in Ybor City, where you can see a salvaged beam from the World Trade Center and honor the brave individuals who lost their lives on that fateful day.

5. Ready to Dive Into 12,000 Years of Florida History?

Immerse yourself in Florida’s rich history at the Tampa Bay History Center, where you can explore a vast collection of artifacts and exhibits that showcase the state’s heritage. Don’t miss the Touchton Map Library and Columbia Café for a complete cultural experience.

6. Learn More About the Heritage of Tampa’s Fire Department

Visit the Tampa Firefighters Museum and discover the fascinating history of the city’s fire service. Explore the museum’s exhibits and vehicles, housed in a former fire station that offers a glimpse into Tampa’s past.

Things to Do With Kids in Tampa

7. Get Acquainted With Marine Life at the Florida Aquarium

Embark on a journey through the Florida Aquarium and marvel at the diverse marine life on display. From giant turtles to sand tiger sharks, the aquarium offers a captivating experience for visitors of all ages.

8. Explore Lowry Park Zoo

Spend a day at Lowry Park Zoo and get up close and personal with elephants, giraffes, and zebras. Enjoy fun rides, interactive encounters, and educational experiences that make this zoo a must-visit for families.

9. Seek Out Some Thrills

Head to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay for a thrilling adventure in a 335-acre animal theme park. From exciting rides to fascinating animal exhibits, this park offers something for every member of the family.

10. Cool Off While Having Some Fun

Beat the heat at Adventure Island, Tampa’s largest water park with a variety of water rides and attractions. From lazy rivers to water slides, this park is the perfect place to cool off and have a blast with your loved ones.

11. Invest in a Tampa CityPass

Make the most of your time in Tampa with a CityPass that grants you access to top attractions like ZooTampa at Lowry Park, the Florida Aquarium, and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. With additional options to choose from, this pass offers great value for money.

12. Go Dolphin Spotting

Embark on a scenic boat cruise with Tampa Bay Fun Boat Cruises and witness the beauty of dolphins in their natural habitat. Enjoy a leisurely cruise around Tampa Bay and soak in the sights of barrier islands and waterfront homes.

13. Stretch the Imagination!

Let your child’s imagination run wild at the Glazer Children’s Museum, where interactive exhibits and play areas await. From art workshops to hands-on activities, this museum offers endless opportunities for creative play.

14. Meet at the Intersection of Science and Technology

Explore the Museum of Science and Industry and engage in over 100 hands-on activities that showcase the wonders of science and technology. From rope courses to optical illusions, this museum promises a fun and educational experience for the whole family.

15. Dive Into Marine Life

Visit the Clearwater Marine Aquarium and get up close with rescued dolphins, sea turtles, and other marine animals. Take a boat tour around Clearwater Bay for an immersive experience that will leave you in awe of the ocean’s wonders.

Cultural Things to Do in Tampa

16. Visit the Theatre

Immerse yourself in the arts at the historic Tampa Theatre and catch a show or film in this architectural gem. Take a backstage tour to learn more about the theater’s rich history and cultural significance.

17. Transport Yourself Through Time

Step back in time at the Henry B Plant Museum and explore the exhibits that showcase the city’s past. Take a self-guided audio tour and discover the museum’s fascinating collection of artifacts.

18. Go to a Drive-In Movie

Experience the nostalgia of a drive-in movie at the Silver Moon Drive-in Theater in Lakeland. Enjoy a classic movie under the stars and indulge in your favorite snacks at this family-friendly venue.

19. Experience Abstract Impressionism

Discover contemporary art at the Tampa Museum of Art and explore the diverse collection of works on display. Visit on Friday nights for a donation-based entry and immerse yourself in the world of abstract impressionism.

20. Open-Air Shopping in Hyde Park

Shop till you drop at Hyde Park Village, where upscale boutiques and restaurants await. Indulge in a luxury dinner and movie experience at CineBistro and explore the vibrant shopping scene in this historic district.

21. Get Yourself Some Cruise Wear

Pick up some cruise wear at International Plaza and browse through high-end shops like Gucci, Tiffany, and Kate Spade. Treat yourself to some new deck sandals or costume jewelry before setting sail on your cruise.

22. Attend a Sporting Event

Catch a game at one of Tampa’s top sports clubs, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Tampa Bay Rays. Immerse yourself in the excitement of a live sporting event and cheer on your favorite team.

23. Roll the Dice

Test your luck at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino and enjoy a night of gaming and entertainment. With a wide range of slots, table games, and dining options, this casino offers a thrilling experience for visitors looking to roll the dice.

24. Smoke a Genuine Cuban Cigar!

Indulge in a true Tampa experience at Tabanero Cigars and sample a genuine Cuban cigar. Pair it with a cup of coffee and enjoy live demonstrations at this iconic cigar shop in Ybor City.

25. Sample Tampa Nightlife

Experience the vibrant nightlife of Ybor City and explore the district’s bars and clubs. Ride the TECO Trolley and discover the historic charm of this lively area near the cruise port.

Food and Drink Activities in Tampa

26. Lunch on the Sidewalk

Enjoy a meal at one of the sidewalk cafes near International Plaza and savor your favorite dishes in a charming outdoor setting. From Bar Louie to the Cheesecake Factory, there’s something for every palate in this bustling dining area.

27. Sample a Tampa Roll

Treat yourself to a Tampa Roll, a unique sushi dish featuring fried grouper, scallions, and mayo. Head to a local sushi restaurant and indulge in this delicious specialty that can only be found in Tampa.

28. Spanish Paella or Cuban Sandwich?

Dine at Columbia, Florida’s oldest Spanish restaurant, and savor a mouthwatering selection of seafood dishes and paellas. Explore the culinary delights of Ybor City and indulge in the flavors of Spanish and Cuban cuisine.

29. Enjoy Classic Bar Food and Seasonal Selections

Relax at the Tampa Bay Brewing Company and unwind with classic bar food and seasonal selections. Kick back and enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of this brewery, located in the heart of Central Ybor.

Outdoor Adventures in Tampa’s Backyard

30. Stroll the Riverwalk

Take a leisurely stroll along the Tampa Riverwalk and enjoy scenic views of the waterfront. Explore the nearby attractions like the Florida Aquarium and Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park for a relaxing day out.

31. Walk the World’s Longest Continuous Sidewalk

Challenge yourself to walk the 4.5-mile-long Bayshore Boulevard and soak in the sights of Tampa’s palm-lined waterfront. Keep an eye out for dolphins and manatees as you explore this picturesque pedestrian path.

32. Ride the TECO Trolley

Hop on the historic TECO Trolley and embark on a free tour of Tampa’s port and hotel district. Discover the city’s top attractions and hop on and off at your leisure to explore the area at your own pace.

33. Yoga in the Park

Join a free yoga class at Curtis Hixon Park and unwind in a serene outdoor setting. Embrace the tranquility of the park and rejuvenate your mind and body with a relaxing yoga session.

34. Spot Gators at Hillsborough River State Park

Embark on a gator-spotting adventure at Hillsborough River State Park and witness the beauty of Florida’s wildlife. Explore the park’s trails and keep an eye out for alligators and birds in their natural habitat.

35. Go Cycling, Kayaking and Hiking

Explore the natural beauty of Hillsborough River State Park on foot or by bike and discover the diverse ecosystems of the area. Rent a kayak and paddle along the river for a unique outdoor experience.

36. Walk the Boardwalk

Escape the urban hustle and bustle at Flatwoods Regional Park and stroll along the boardwalks that offer a glimpse of Florida’s native flora and fauna. Enjoy a peaceful walk in this green wilderness area and connect with nature.

37. Go Rollerblading on the Upper Tampa Bay Trail

Get active and go rollerblading on the Upper Tampa Bay Trail, a paved path that winds through shady trees and offers a scenic route for outdoor enthusiasts. Enjoy a leisurely skate or bike ride along this picturesque trail.

38. Visit the Beach

Take a day trip to the nearby barrier islands and explore some of the best beaches in the US. From St Petersburg Beach to Clearwater, these sandy shores offer a perfect escape for sun-seekers and beach lovers.

39. Explore a Place to Remember

Discover the natural beauty of Weedon Island Preserve and immerse yourself in the coastal ecosystems of Tampa Bay. Explore the native plants and animals that call this preserve home and enjoy a peaceful retreat in nature.

Things to Do in Tampa, Florida: FAQs

When is the best time to visit Tampa, Florida?

The best time to visit Tampa is from November to April when the weather is dry and sunny, making it ideal for outdoor activities and sightseeing. However, if you’re looking for budget-friendly options, consider visiting from May to September when prices are lower due to the hotter and more humid weather.

How’s the weather in Tampa, FL?

Tampa has a humid subtropical climate with warm winters and hot, humid summers. Winter temperatures range from 70-80°F, while summer temperatures can reach 86-90°F with occasional thunderstorms. Be prepared for varying weather conditions depending on the season.

How far is Tampa from Miami?

Tampa is located 275 miles northwest of Miami, and the drive between the two cities takes approximately 4 hours and 15 minutes. Plan your travel time accordingly if you’re looking to explore both destinations during your trip.

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