Flying in and out of Tampa is a breeze as Tampa International Airport continually ranks among the top in the country. And on your way to and from the airport, you can swing by International Plaza, which houses some of the area’s top retail stores and restaurants. And many strip malls are woven throughout the communities of West Tampa.
Check out a Tampa Bay Buccaneers or University of South Florida Bulls football game or megastar musicians at Raymond James Stadium. Catch a foul ball during the New York Yankees’ Spring Training or the Tampa Tarpons’ regular baseball season at Steinbrenner Field.
Must See: Upper Tampa Bay Park
The nature trails and boardwalks showcase exotic animals and plants, while the shoreline attracts otters, bottle-nosed dolphins, and manatees. Enjoy lunch at the picnic shelters, bring the kids to the playground and nature center or take a canoe or kayak to access the creek and bay, excellent areas for fishing.
Must Do: Big Cat Rescue
See lions, tigers, leopards, jaguars, and more at this 67-acre facility billed as "the largest accredited sanctuary in the world dedicated entirely to abused and abandoned big cats." Take a guided walking day tour to see more than 70 exotic animals.
Must Have: Oystercatcher’s
This secluded spot is a favorite among locals. Enveloped in a lush landscape just 150 yards from the Grand Hyatt, Oystercatchers offers fresh, local seafood. Don’t miss their popular Sunday brunch, where can enjoy an endless buffet, bottomless mimosas, and stunning views of the bay.