31 BEST Things to do in Tampa [2022!]

Updated - May 16th 2022

Tampa is a city that lies along the coast of Tampa Bay. They’re famous for their wonderful collection of museums and a variety of other cultural offerings, including an incredible amusement park.

Tampa Florida’s weather is another one of its great drawing cards, with warm weather all year round, there is no off-season. So no matter when you decide to visit this wonderful city, you’re sure to find an eclectic mix of things to do in Tampa, FL.

The area where Tampa is now built used to belong to Spain and the US had to buy the territory from them. Because of this, there’s a wide variety of culture that makes Tampa a great vacation destination!

Our Favorite Places to Stay in Tampa!

The accommodation can make or break your vacation experience! The location of the hostel or hotel you choose makes a huge difference to your holiday schedule. Be sure to pick somewhere that’s close to the Tampa attractions you’re most interested in.

Grams Place Hostel

The Coolest Hostel in Tampa

Grams Place Hostel
Grams Place Hostel is our pick for the coolest hostel in Tampa
  • All rooms have air-conditioning
  • Free WiFi

If you’re looking to have loads of fun during your time in Tampa, this sociable hostel will help you do just that. This musically themed hostel is sure to have tunes playing on their deck 24 hours a day, so if you’re up for a party, you better get booking!

Check for Best Price

 

Ramada Hotel

A Great Budget Hotel in Tampa

Ramada Hotel
Ramada Hotel is our pick for a great budget hotel in Tampa
  • Refrigerator and ironing facilities in every room
  • 6km from Tampa Airport

The Ramada Hotel is the perfect budget hotel for those looking for a convenient location in Tampa. Guests have access to a gym, meeting facility, and an outdoor pool!

Check for Best Price

 

Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay Hotel

Our Favorite Splurge Hotel in Tampa

Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay Hotel
Our favorite splurge hotel in Tampa is Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay Hotel
  • Two outdoor pools
  • Three restaurants

Enjoy a spa day at the hotel or simply spend the day soaking in the hot tub. Then indulge in a scrumptious Italian dinner, or choose one of the other two restaurants in this luxurious hotel!

Check for Best Price

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We are obsessed with backpacks – we’ve tried them all! And our favourite carry on backpack in the WORLD is the Nomatic Travel Backpack. This backpack has revolutionized the backpack industry and will change the way you travel forever :) Check it out here!

• The 31 Best Things to Do in Tampa •

#1 – Learn About Aquatic Life at SeaWorld

Learn About Aquatic Life at SeaWorld
Things to do in Tampa this weekend
  • Interactive park
  • Learn about marine animal conservation efforts
  • Pet a stingray

At SeaWorld Orlando, you’ll get the chance to learn about aquatic life, and what’s being done to preserve these wonderful creatures.

Make your trip a little more exciting by petting a stingray, watching killer-whales leap out of the water, and seeing turtles slowly and gracefully gliding through the water! This could easily be considered one of the best things to do in Tampa, Florida.

Guaranteed BEST Tour Price

 

#2 – Grab a Cold One at the Tampa Bay Brewing Company

  • Most successful microbrewery in Tampa
  • Local favorite
  • Started in 1995

Choose between 8 different beers that are consistent crowd favorites! Visiting Tampa Bay Brewing Company is a great way to mingle with the locals!

There are two watering holes under the Tampa Bay Brewing Company name, one in Ybor City, the other in Westchase.

 

#3 – Ride a Speedboat Around the Bay

Ride a Speedboat Around the Bay
One of the best fun things to do in Tampa
  • Spend 2 hours on a high-powered speedboat
  • Become your own captain
  • Thrill-seeking adventure

If you’re looking for fun things to do in Tampa – this should be high on your list! See the gorgeous Florida coastline from a completely different perspective as you whizz through the water at crazy speeds.

You’ll even get the chance to be the captain of the speedboat for a while, as your skipper lets you take the wheel!

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Will you also visit Fort Lauderdale? Check out where we like to stay in Fort Lauderdale!

#4 – Learn About the Past at The Tampa Bay History Center

One of the best free things to do in Tampa!

  • See the Permanent exhibits
  • Discover the Channelside District
  • Learn about Tampa’s past

Unravel Tampa’s interesting past at the Tampa Bay History Museum! You’ll learn how Tampa became the city it is today.

This is one of the best free things to do in Tampa!

 

#5 – Indulge in Water Park Fun at Aquatica

Indulge in Water Park Fun at Aquatica
Great thing in Tampa to do with kids!
  • High-speed water slides
  • Exhilarating wave pools
  • Tranquil man-made beaches

If you’re still wondering what to do in Tampa, why not get the adrenaline pumping by taking a ride down a high-speed water slide.

If you’d like a change of pace during the day, spend some time in the wave pool or simply bask in the sun as you lie on a tranquil man-made beach.

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Don’t stop the party! Read up on Miami’s best party hostels too!

#6 – Stroll Along the Tampa River Walk

  • Find exciting play parks
  • See beautiful Fountains
  • Discover stunning rolling lawns

This scenic promenade winds its way through the downtown Tampa area and passes a series of fountains, play parks, and lawns that are perfect for a picnic.

Taking a stroll along the promenade is a refreshing way to start your day, and gives you picturesque views of the city and sea.

 

#7 – Spend the Day at Busch Gardens

Spend the Day at Busch Gardens
A very cool thing to do in Tampa
  • World’s most beautiful theme park
  • Exciting rides
  • Enjoy a show from world-class performers

Busch Gardens is widely considered the most beautiful amusement park in the world. It’s home to an astonishing number of exciting rides, and hosts performances from world-class acts.

This is one of the most exciting things to do in Tampa Bay for those ready to get their heart racing and their adrenaline pumping.

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#8 – Visit Ybor City

  • Old cigar factory
  • Now a happening district
  • Chic buildings

Ybor City is built in place of a cigar factory that used to make cigars for the entire country. It’s now filled with restaurants, bars, nightclubs, microbreweries, and art galleries.

If you’re looking for a cultural experience, this is the place to explore in Tampa!

 

#9 – Explore Adventure Island

Explore Adventure Island
Fun for the whole family!
  • 30-acre water park
  • High-speed thrills
  • Tropical and tranquil surrounds

This is one of those Tampa, Florida attractions that you simply must do while you’re in town. You can make the day as exciting or relaxing as you want by picking your activities wisely.

Vanish down an epic free-fall, or race your friends down a four-lane water slide. If you’d like a trip that’s a little more relaxing, bob along down the Rambling Bayou while enjoying the views of the tropical landscapes and tranquil waterfalls.

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#10 – Tour the University of South Florida Tampa Campus

  • Home to 30 000 students
  • 160 buildings to explore
  • Daily free tours are offered

The University of South Florida Tampa boasts a huge campus that is home to over 30 000 students.

They offer student-guided tours every day of the week that are completely free! Be sure to join in on the fun!

 

#11 – Keep Your Eyes Peeled on a Dolphin Sightseeing Cruise

Keep Your Eyes Peeled on a Dolphin Sightseeing Cruise
A ‘cool’ thing to do in Tampa in winter
  • 5-hour cruise
  • Look for local marine wildlife
  • A chance to see dolphins, manatees and more

If you’re looking for things to do in Tampa, FL for adults, taking a dolphin sightseeing cruise is the perfect activity.

You’ll get the chance to see dolphins, manatees, turtles and a wide variety of fish. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled, as marine wildlife could surface at any moment!

Guaranteed BEST Tour Price

 

#12 – Whizz Through The Air on a Ziplining Adventure

Whizz Through The Air on a Ziplining Adventure
One of the more unique things to do in Tampa
  • Located just outside of the city
  • Mobbly Bayou Wilderness Reserve
  • Series of ziplines

If you’re looking for the perfect adventurous things to do near Tampa, then ziplining is surely the answer! Go whizzing over the treetops on a series of five zip lines, the last of which will see you flying over a lake.

If you’re looking for fantastic views while being out in nature, ziplining is an activity for the books!

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#13 – Get a Birds Eye View of Tampa From a Helicopter

Get a Birds Eye View of Tampa From a Helicopter
A very cool thing to do in Tampa
  • Enjoy a 10-minute helicopter ride
  • Fly over Downtown Tampa
  • See the biggest and best attractions

If you’re wondering what to see in Tampa, the answer is everything! Take a 10-minute helicopter ride that will see you fly over some of Tampa’s most popular attractions.

You’ll fly over downtown Tampa, as well as the mansions of Davis Island!

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#14 – Explore the Tampa Museum of Art

  • State-of-the-art museum
  • Amazing antiques on display
  • See modern contemporary art

The Tampa Museum of Art was founded in 1979, and aims to provide a creative space for Tampa art to be appreciated.

The museum is focused on antiques as well as modern contemporary art.

 

#15 – Taste Your Way Through the City on a Food Tour

Taste Your Way Through the City on a Food Tour
Great experience for foodies in Tampa
  • Introduction to Tampa cuisine
  • Taste up to six different dishes
  • Learn about the culinary history of Tampa

Taking a food tour is the perfect way to introduce yourself to Tampa cuisine. We recommend taking the tour shortly after arriving, this way you can revisit eateries you liked later on in your trip.

You’ll sample up to six different dishes from different eateries and restaurants, allowing you to experience a great variety.

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#16 – Visit the Florida Museum of Photographic Art

  • Waterfront District museum
  • Housed in the cube building
  • Founded in 2001

The museum is dedicated to exhibiting important photographic art and features a range of historical and contemporary works.

There are a variety of permanent and temporary exhibits to be explored so be sure to check what’s showing during your visit to Tampa.

 

#17 – Learn About Tampa From a Cruise Ship

Learn About Tampa From a Cruise Ship
Very romantic for Couples!
  • 5-hour cruise
  • Explore Tampa’s most picturesque harbor
  • Sea Tampa sites from the sea

Take a history cruise around Tampa’s most beautiful harbor while learning about the history of the area. You’ll get to see a real-life pirate ship named Gabrielle up close, and hear its gruesome tale.

Learn about other aspects of Tampa’s rich history as you take in the wonderful scenery.

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#18 – Explore the Museum of Science and Industry

  • Dedicated to inspiring interest in science and industry
  • Largest science center in the Southeastern US
  • 450 hands-on activities

The Museum of Science and Industry is the largest of its kind in the Southeastern US. It’s dedicated to inspiring interest in science and industry.

The museum features 450 hands-on interactive exhibits, so be sure to make enough time to make your way through the whole museum!

 

#19 – Feel True Weightlessness While Indoor Skydiving

Feel True Weightlessness While Indoor Skydiving
Adrenaline junkie? This is for you!
  • No experience required
  • Enjoy a safe 60-second “free-fall”
  • Receive a certificate after completion

If you want to experience the feeling of true weightlessness without having to risk your life jumping from a plane, then indoor skydiving is the way to go.

No previous experience is required, making it a simple activity that will give you memories to last a lifetime! Be sure to book well in advance as spaces fill up quickly!

Guaranteed BEST Tour Price

 

#20 – Discover Your Knack for Fishing

Discover Your Knack for Fishing

  • 4-8 hour fishing charter
  • Exclusive use of premium fishing equipment
  • Private tour

Do you have a knack for fishing? You’ll never know unless you try! Hire a fishing charter to take you out to the best fishing locations in Tampa.

They’ll also give you exclusive access to their best fishing equipment, and give you a few secrets of the trade!

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#21 – Upgrade Your Instagram Feed with Great New Tampa Content

Upgrade Your Instagram Feed with Great New Tampa Content
Great activity for photo lovers
  • Private photo session
  • Professional photographer
  • 30-minutes or more

Would you like to give your Instagram content an upgrade while on holiday in Tampa? Let a professional photographer take your pics to the next level!

Photoshoots can range from 30-minutes to an entire day. The best part is, you can choose your favorite shooting locations around the city!

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#22 – Ride a Pedal Waterbike in Tampa Bay

All ages will love this activity

  • Family-friendly activity
  • Pedal-driven waterbike
  • Suitable for all fitness levels

Hire a pedal-driven waterbike into Tampa Bay. Explore the waters from the comfort of a bike and see a variety of beautiful marine life.

The best part is that you don’t need to be fit to ride a waterbike, so all fitness levels are welcome!

 

#23 – Choose Your Favorite Way to Maneuver on the Water

Choose Your Favorite Way to Maneuver on the Water

  • 1-8 hours
  • Choose to SUP, kayak, or jet ski
  • Admire the sea life

Choose between a great variety of ways to get around the water. Jet skiing, SUPing (or stand up paddle-boarding), and kayaking are all great options!

Choose between spending just a few hours on the water, or an entire day. You’ll also see plenty of marine wildlife and sea life that gets you better acquainted with Tampa’s unique ecosystem.

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If you are traveling you should ALWAYS have emergency cash hidden on you! Security belts are great because they are affordable and can fit a ton of stuff in them (great for peace of mind!). Check out our favorite travel belt!

#24 – Visit the Tampa Eclectic Manatee Viewing Center

One of the best cheap things to do in Tampa

  • Protected environment for manatees
  • Variety of colorful displays
  • Learn about these big creatures

The Tampa Eclectic Manatee Viewing Center gives visitors a great place to see how these big creatures interact with each other in their natural environment.

You’ll learn about these wonderful creatures, and see what’s being done to protect and preserve them.

 

#25 – Meet Tampa’s Wildest Cats at night

Meet Tampa’s Wildest Cats at night

  • Interact with rehabilitated wild cats
  • Dine at a Brazilian steakhouse
  • Learn about big rescue cats

You’ll start off your evening by dining at a beautiful Brazilian Steakhouse, before heading to the Big Cat Rescue Center. There you’ll interact with these animals and learn about their individual stories!

This is by far one of the best places to visit in Tampa if you’re looking to meet unique wildlife face to face!

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#26 – Tour the City on a Segway

A must-do activity for history lovers!

  • Explore Tampa in a unique way
  • Find hidden gems
  • See Tampa landmarks

Hire a segway and explore the wonderful city of Tampa. If you ride around the downtown area, you’ll get a chance to see the majority of Tampa landmarks.

Conserve your energy by using the nifty segway instead of walking the area on foot.

 

#27 – Discover Cuba’s Handmade Cigars at the Cigar Factory

Discover Cuba’s Handmade Cigars at the Cigar Factory
A great activity for cigar connoisseurs
  • 50-minute tour
  • Tour the factory
  • Learn about the history of cigars

While touring the cigar factory, you’ll get the chance to watch Cuban cigar artisans at work, making the finest cigars Tampa has to offer.

You’ll learn about the history of cigar making in Tampa, and what making these fine pieces of art actually entails. After the tour, sample one of their smooth cigars, or take one home as a souvenir!

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#28 – Explore Henry B. Plant Museum

  • Formerly known as Tampa Bay Hotel
  • Showcases elite lifestyles
  • 500+ rooms

The Henry B. Plant Museum used to be a luxury hotel but is now a museum dedicated to showing off the elite luxury of its former patrons.

Visitors can explore the hotel and its magnificent grounds which feature a golf course, racetrack, casino, bowling alley, and indoor heated pool!

 

#29 – Pedal Your Way Around The City

Pedal Your Way Around The City
Great way to keep active in Tampa
  • 3-hour tour
  • Easy-to-ride bicycle
  • Learn about the surrounding area

Take a tour that allows you to pedal your way through the city. You can take in all the best sights in Tampa while educating yourself on the area!

Enjoy a decent amount of breaks in which you’ll be able to take photos and take in the scenic surrounds.

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#30 – Paint with a Twist

Great activity for creatives

  • Step-by-step art classes
  • Relaxed environment
  • Create a masterpiece

Painting with a Twist is a company dedicated to providing art classes by professional artists. They’ll give you step-by-step instructions and help you every step of the way!

Do all this while sipping on your favorite beverage in a laid-back environment.

 

#31 – Spend the Day at Lettuce Lake Regional Park

  • 240-acre parkland
  • Range of recreational outdoor activities
  • Founded in 1982

Spend the day at Lettuce Lake Regional Park and indulge in a variety of outdoor recreational activities. Be sure to take a picnic and enjoy it in the wooded picnic area.

Or get active and make use of the cycling and walking paths that wind their way through the scenic parkland!

 

Final Thoughts

Now that you know all the very best things to do in Tampa, you can start planning your trip in a lot more detail. Being a coastal town, you’re sure to spend plenty of time on the beach, basking in the beautiful sun. But if that isn’t your thing, then exploring historical sights and museums are also great things to do in Tampa this weekend.

Start planning your Tampa itinerary now, so that you’re all prepared for your upcoming trip! With so many wonderful Tampa things to do to choose from, you’re absolutely spoilt for choice. SO what are you waiting for? Start planning your own things to do in Tampa today!

***Disclaimer*** Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This 20means that if you book your accommodation through the site, One Weird Globe will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support helps me keep the site going :)

Aaron Radcliffe
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