The Five-Point Checklist for the Ultimate Outdoor Vacation in Tampa
Taking a trip to the Sunshine State oftentimes means spending some serious time outdoors.
But if you’re looking to soak up the Florida sunshine and see the state beyond busier tourist spots like Orlando and Miami, consider everything that Tampa has to offer. Between tons of adventure activities, outdoor sights and landmarks such as Ybor City, Tampa is the perfect place for active families who don’t mind doing a bit of exploring.
But what exactly does the ultimate trip to Tampa look like, anyway?
Setting Up Camp
Rest assured: there’s no shortage of campgrounds in the metro area. From the numerous RV rentals in Tampa from services like Outdoorsy to tent-friendly sites, there’s something for everyone regardless of how much you’re willing to “rough it.” Nearby campgrounds may take you outside of the city proper, but also allow you to explore the likes of beautiful St. Petersburg.
Getting on the Water
You can’t see Tampa right without hitting up the Bay. There are numerous ferries and tours to take you throughout the harbor, including dolphin and water-bike tours which are perfect for traveling with kids. If nothing else, enjoying Tampa’s beaches with your family is always an option for those who want to take it easy.
Frequent fishing charters are likewise available for those looking to catch some tarpon and grouper. As an added bonus, many nearby restaurants offer up a “hook and cook” deal where you can grill up your catch of the day.
Up Close with Local Wildlife
While dolphin tours in the Bay are an absolute joy, they aren’t the only opportunity for you and your family to catch a glimpse of some local wildlife. Tampa’s Big Cat Rescue is an absolute must-see if you’re in the area, offering up-close encounters and feeding tours jaguars, cougars, leopards that are larger than life. Manatee tours are also available in the city if you happen to stop by between the months of November and April.
Trekking Tampa’s Trails
Out-of-towners might not equate Tampa with its trails, but hiking enthusiasts know the city’s one-of-a-kind spots to go exploring. Among the top of our list would be the trails by Hillsborough River State Park, peppered with ancient live oaks. The nearby Morris Bridge Park likewise puts you in the middle of the swamp, with a clear walking path through Florida’s famed cypress trees.
See the City Proper
Finally, take some time to brave the city before you leave! The Riverwalk and Bayshore Boulevard are the perfect places to catch a glimpse of Tampa in all of its glory, meanwhile enjoying area restaurants and a beautiful view of the Bay.
Oh, and don’t freak out if you’re not a fan of seafood! Ybor City is a foodie’s dream come true, including hotspots such the original Colombia restaurant which is a staple of Spanish cuisine in the state of Florida.
Don’t leave Tampa out of your travel plans next time you’re passing through Florida. Whether you’re setting up a tent or visiting via RV, the city contains so many hidden gems that you can come back time and time again.