Endless sunshine, pristine beaches, and thrilling theme parks make Tampa an idyllic vacation destination for all ages. Perched on an inlet on Florida's Gulf Coast, Tampa's metro area is home to over three million people and includes beautiful vacation spots like Sarasota, St Petersburg, and Clearwater. Looking to travel to Tampa from abroad? The Tampa International Airport connects the "Lightning Capital of the World" with destinations worldwide, including London, Ottawa, and Amsterdam.
Before heading to explore one of the most popular vacation spots in the Sunshine State, consider stopping off at a Tampa luggage storage service. This way, your heavy bags don't weigh you down while you soak up the sun or get your adrenaline pumping at the city's numerous theme parks.
A weekend in Tampa
A weekend retreat in Tampa is perfect, whether you're looking to top up your tan or take your little ones on an adventure. Keep your bags safe at a Tampa luggage locker, and then pay a visit to one of these top attractions.
- Go on America's wildest safari at Busch Gardens. This world-renowned theme park/ zoo boasts dozens of hair-raising rollercoasters, as well as 200 species of animals from around the world, including rhinos, cheetahs, and kangaroos.
- Try out some fun experiments at the Museum of Science & Industry. One of the top museums on the Gulf Coast, the Museum of Science & Industry features dozens of interactive exhibits and a butterfly garden home to over 30 species.
- Get your grub on at one of the top restaurants in Tampa. Tampa is home to dozens of decadent diners, with popular picks such as Wright's Gourmet House, Happy Fish, and Bern's Steak House.
While Tampa is a beautiful city, it has above-average crime rates, which may make you think twice about carrying your valuables around with you. If you don't feel like lugging your heavy bags in the humid Floridian heat, book a Tampa luggage locker. Bounce offers the best luggage storage services in Tampa, with several easy-to-locate facilities across the metro area. Just book online via the Bounce app, and before you know it, you'll have a convenient and safe space to drop off your bags while you discover Florida's Gulf Coast.
Off the beaten path in Tampa
If you've been to Tampa several times or just fancy getting away from the crowds, you may be searching for some hidden gems in and around the city. From lesser-known attractions to peaceful parks, here are a few ways to get off the beaten path in Tampa.
- Plan a waterside stroll along the Tampa Riverwalk. This 2.6-mile trail runs along the serene Hillsborough River and links together many of Tampa's top attractions, providing a peaceful way to get around the city.
- Go on an outdoor adventure at the Hillsborough River State Park. Encompassing over 2,000 acres of riverside swamps and forests just outside Tampa, this state park is ideal for kayaking, hiking, and fishing.
- Step back in time at Cracker Country. A living open-air museum, Cracker Country boasts over a dozen pioneer log cabins dating back to the late 19th century and is an entertaining way to learn about local history.
What to do alone in Tampa
Whether you're road-tripping up Florida's Gulf Coast or you're just looking to kill some time on a layover, you'll find plenty to keep you entertained while alone in Tampa. Keep your belongings safe by booking a spot at a Tampa luggage storage service, and check out some of these activities for solo explorers.
- Unlock your artistic side at the Tampa Museum of Art. From primitive sculptures dating back over 4,000 years to contemporary artworks by the likes of Alma Thomas, there's something for everyone at this art museum.
- Spend the day nature watching at the Manatee Viewing Center. As well as being the perfect place to spot one of Florida's most revered aquatic residents, the Manatee Viewing Center is also great for seeing a variety of bird and ray species.
- Step aboard a piece of naval history at the American Victory Ship & Museum. The SS American Victory operated during World War II, the Vietnam War, and the Korean War. Visitors can tour the ship and see what life was like for troops during some of the most famous wars in U.S. history.
The best souvenirs in Tampa
Once you've finished sunning it on Florida's Gulf Coast, you'll probably be looking for a souvenir to remember your trip. While touring the Manatee Visitors Center, stop by the gift shop and pick up a manatee plushie or fridge magnet. Alternatively, any sports fans may want to grab a jersey from a Tampa team, like the Buccaneers or the Rays. If you'd prefer to pick up some food and drink to bring back from your trip, you'll find local wines and craft beers from around Tampa, which your friends back home are sure to love.