Tampa Guide

Forbes magazine ranked Tampa the fifth best US city for enjoying the outdoors. Much credit goes to the beaches, not to mention weather that’s sunny more often than not. Abundant green spaces and year-round opportunities for fishing, surfing, and golfing along the waterfront offer a laid-back, family-friendly vibe during the day—though things can pick up considerably at night.

Go Outside

  • Lettuce Lake Park: Wooden boardwalks alongside centuries-old cypress trees and 240 acres of natural splendor. An observation tower overlooks a beautifully unspoiled stretch of the Hillsborough River. Keep an eye out for alligators and herons on a free guided nature tour, or rent a canoe and go it alone.
  • Clearwater Beach: Located on a barrier island 30 minutes from Tampa (but worth the drive), this award-winning beach is known for its white sugary sands, which stretch for miles along the Gulf.
  • Big Cat Rescue: The country’s largest sanctuary for exotic cats. Take a tour to see leopards, lions, tigers, and more.

Family Fun

  • Busch Gardens Tampa: Ride roller coasters and get up close and personal with more than 2,000 animals at this famous theme park and zoo. One of the newer thrill rides, the Cheetah Hunt, reaches speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.
  • Channelside: This entertainment complex near the Port of Tampa boasts an IMAX movie theater, a bowling alley, and kid-friendly chain restaurants, as well as upscale diversions for grownups.
  • Florida Aquarium houses 20,000 marine animals, including penguins, sharks, and dolphins. Kids can explore interactive exhibits and enjoy live shows.

Culture and Nightlife

  • Soho District: Tampa’s nightlife and dining hub, filled with high-end clubs, shops, dessert cafes, and historic architecture
  • Ybor City: When this historic neighborhood was home to cigar manufacturers, thousands of Spanish, Cuban, and Italian immigrants lived here. Today, you’ll find an array of restaurants, bars, and galleries, as well as a museum chronicling Ybor City’s past. Be sure to try a Cuban sandwich while you’re in the neighborhood.
  • Tampa Theatre: A beautifully preserved movie palace built in 1926. The Wurlitzer organ is still played before screenings.

Where to Stay

  • Emerald Greens Condo Resort: Located near Busch Gardens, this upscale hotel sits on the grounds of Carrollwood Country Club, giving guests easy access to the 27-hole championship golf course.
  • Palmer House Bed and Breakfast: Award-winning B&B offering hearty cuisine, comfortable rooms, and lots of hospitality
  • Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina: This downtown hotel is set on the waterfront, near streetcar stops and restaurants.
See More

Market PicksHotels Selected for Top Ratings and Value

Get a 5% Groupon Bucks credit when you book a Market Pick hotel here.
image placeholder image for The Don CeSar
The Don CeSar
St. Pete Beach, Florida
From $231/nt
image placeholder image for Quality Inn & Suites St. Petersburg - Clearwater Airport
Quality Inn & Suites St. Petersburg - Clearwater Airport
Clearwater, Florida
From $59/nt
image placeholder image for Sheraton Tampa Brandon Hotel
Sheraton Tampa Brandon Hotel
Tampa, Florida
From $114/nt
image placeholder image for Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina
Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina
Tampa, Florida
From $159/nt
image placeholder image for DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Tampa Airport - Westshore
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Tampa Airport - Westshore
Tampa, Florida
From $87/nt
image placeholder image for Vista Hotel on Lake Tarpon
Vista Hotel on Lake Tarpon
Palm Harbor, Florida
From $79/nt
image placeholder image for Harborside Suites at Little Harbor
Harborside Suites at Little Harbor
Ruskin, Florida
From $199/nt
image placeholder image for Sheraton Sand Key Resort
Sheraton Sand Key Resort
Clearwater Beach, Florida
From $191/nt
image placeholder image for Wingate by Wyndham - Tampa USF
Wingate by Wyndham - Tampa USF
Tampa, Florida
From $101/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard by Marriott Lakeland
Courtyard by Marriott Lakeland
Lakeland, Florida
From $109/nt
image placeholder image for Hilton Garden Inn Tampa/Riverview/Brandon
Hilton Garden Inn Tampa/Riverview/Brandon
Riverview, Florida
From $50/nt
image placeholder image for Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa USF Near Busch Gardens
Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa USF Near Busch Gardens
Tampa, Florida
From $119/nt
image placeholder image for Shoreline Island Resort - Exclusively Adult
Shoreline Island Resort - Exclusively Adult
Madeira Beach, Florida
From $245/nt
image placeholder image for Tampa Marriott Westshore
Tampa Marriott Westshore
Tampa, Florida
From $140/nt
image placeholder image for Howard Johnson St Petersburg Beach Resort
Howard Johnson St Petersburg Beach Resort
St. Pete Beach, Florida
From $289/nt
image placeholder image for Hyatt Place Lakeland Center
Hyatt Place Lakeland Center
Lakeland, Florida
From $94/nt
image placeholder image for Homewood Suites by Hilton Tampa-Brandon
Homewood Suites by Hilton Tampa-Brandon
Tampa, Florida
From $243/nt
image placeholder image for Hilton Tampa Downtown
Hilton Tampa Downtown
Tampa, Florida
From $95/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Westshore
Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Westshore
Tampa, Florida
From $99/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard by Marriott St. Petersburg Downtown
Courtyard by Marriott St. Petersburg Downtown
St. Petersburg, Florida
From $174/nt
image placeholder image for Bilmar Beach Resort
Bilmar Beach Resort
Treasure Island, Florida
From $169/nt
image placeholder image for Residence Inn by Marriott Tampa Sabal Park/Brandon
Residence Inn by Marriott Tampa Sabal Park/Brandon
Tampa, Florida
From $109/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Oldsmar
Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Oldsmar
Oldsmar, Florida
From $93/nt
image placeholder image for Magnuson Hotel Waterfront Marina New Port Richey
Magnuson Hotel Waterfront Marina New Port Richey
New Port Richey, Florida
From $75/nt
image placeholder image for Hilton Tampa Airport Westshore
Hilton Tampa Airport Westshore
Tampa, Florida
From $143/nt
image placeholder image for Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa Brandon
Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa Brandon
Tampa, Florida
From $117/nt
image placeholder image for Residence Inn by Marriott Lakeland
Residence Inn by Marriott Lakeland
Lakeland, Florida
From $139/nt
image placeholder image for Homewood Suites by Hilton St. Petersburg Clearwater
Homewood Suites by Hilton St. Petersburg Clearwater
Clearwater, Florida
From $114/nt
image placeholder image for The Barrymore Hotel Tampa Riverwalk
The Barrymore Hotel Tampa Riverwalk
Tampa, Florida
From $118/nt
image placeholder image for The Flamingo Resort - Gay Adult Resort
The Flamingo Resort - Gay Adult Resort
St. Petersburg, Florida
From $80/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard St. Petersburg Clearwater
Courtyard St. Petersburg Clearwater
Clearwater, Florida
From $110/nt
image placeholder image for Sirata Beach Resort
Sirata Beach Resort
St. Pete Beach, Florida
From $169/nt
image placeholder image for Westin Tampa Bay Hotel
Westin Tampa Bay Hotel
Tampa, Florida
From $139/nt
image placeholder image for Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Clearwater Beach S-Harbourside
Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Clearwater Beach S-Harbourside
Indian Rocks Beach, Florida
From $187/nt
image placeholder image for Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites on Sand Key
Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites on Sand Key
Clearwater Beach, Florida
From $215/nt
image placeholder image for Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront
Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront
St. Petersburg, Florida
From $169/nt
image placeholder image for Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Downtown
Courtyard by Marriott Tampa Downtown
Tampa, Florida
From $219/nt
image placeholder image for Alden Suites - A Beachfront Resort
Alden Suites - A Beachfront Resort
St. Pete Beach, Florida
From $259/nt
image placeholder image for St. Petersburg Marriott Clearwater
St. Petersburg Marriott Clearwater
St. Petersburg, Florida
From $199/nt
image placeholder image for Red Roof Inn Clearwater Airport
Red Roof Inn Clearwater Airport
Clearwater, Florida
From $57/nt
image placeholder image for Grand Plaza Beachfront Resort Hotel
Grand Plaza Beachfront Resort Hotel
St. Pete Beach, Florida
From $117/nt
image placeholder image for Residence Inn By Marriott St Petersburg Clearwater
Residence Inn By Marriott St Petersburg Clearwater
Clearwater, Florida
From $169/nt
image placeholder image for Holiday Inn St Petersburg N - Clearwater
Holiday Inn St Petersburg N - Clearwater
Clearwater, Florida
From $89/nt
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