There is so much to do in Tampa, Florida, that even local residents often feel they need a Tampa guide. Tampa is not just beaches and tourist attractions. There is a wide variety of things to do to keep locals entertained and enriched. The city offers everything from a historic theater to a Buddhist temple, and it is even a great place to see some great big cats.
While it is possible to see big, exotic cats at the Lowry Zoo, Tampa is also home to the renowned Big Cat Rescue sanctuary, the world's largest accredited wildlife sanctuary. This organization specializes in rescuing large felines from circuses, private zoos and irresponsible private owners. The rescued cats live in large enclosures that were created to replicate the natural habitats of these beautiful beasts, and the sanctuary offers tours that allow patrons to watch as staff members feed the cats. The Big Cat Rescue sanctuary is a must-see for cat lovers.
Movie fans who have a soft spot for architecture and history should visit the Tampa Theater. The 1926 Wurlitzer organ has been in this theater since its inception and still plays before each screening. The architectural details of this old building have been faithfully preserved, both inside and outside. Even the lighting evokes memories of the early days of the film industry.
A guide to Tampa is not complete without a mention of the blend of immigrant that make Tampa so special. While Latino culture comes to mind when people think of Tampa, this city is also home to a substantial Asian community. The Wat Mongkolratanaram of Florida, also known as the Thai Temple, is a Buddhist prayer house that also boasts an authentic Thai restaurant. After touring the temple and its grounds, guests can sample authentic Thai cuisine at reasonable prices.