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Tampa Holiday

Explore the former cigar capital of the world, now a popular destination for its theme parks, wildlife and natural beauty.

The city of Tampa is the commercial hub of Florida’s west coast, with a business district of banks and hi-tech companies, and a busy port for cruise ships and freighters. Commerce is just one part of Tampa’s story: This subtropical city also has a wealth of natural attractions.

Tampa began in the early 16th century when Spanish explorers landed on its shores. But it wasn’t until the 1880s and the arrival of the railroad that the area started to prosper and grow. At this time, Cuban immigrants founded the cigar industry in the Ybor City district, giving rise to Tampa’s reputation as “cigar capital of the world” during its 1920s and 1930s heyday.

Go to the waterfront area, a sub-district of downtown Tampa. Once a commercial seaport, it’s now a lively entertainment and tourist destination with popular attractions such as the Florida Aquarium and the Tampa Museum of Art. In the same area you’ll also find the Tampa Bay History Center.

Disney doesn’t have the monopoly on theme parks and attractions in Florida; Tampa also boasts plenty of wild and imaginative rides. Adventure Island is a huge amusement park of water slides, flumes and waves pools. One of Tampa’s must-see destinations is Busch Gardens. This Africa-themed adventure park has high-speed roller coasters and exotic animals.

Florida is famous for its manatees, marine mammals known as sea cows, which thrive in warm waters. See them close up at the Manatee Viewing Center and at Lowry Park Zoo.

Make time to enjoy some of the lush scenery. Stop by the country parks to spend relax by a river, or walk the nature trails to discover Tampa’s wilderness. Lettuce Lake Park has 240 acres (97 hectares) of open space, wetlands and forested areas. Come to hike, bike or picnic.

Downtown Tampa is easy to navigate, with a range of public transport options, including the In-Town Trolley Network, which services most attractions. The TECO Line Streetcar offers a more nostalgic way to see the sights, while free guided walking tours are a great way to cover the highlights of city center. These walking tours are offered every other Friday. Check Tampa’s Downtown website for details.


Guide to Exploring Tampa


Top Hotel Deals

See all 273 Hotels in Tampa
$95
Ramada Tampa Airport Westshore

Ramada Tampa Airport Westshore

1200 N Westshore Blvd, Tampa
3.0
of 5, from 1,396 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Centrally located near restaurants, bars, and movie theaters, this hotel is within 2 miles of the Tampa airport, and 5 miles from both downtown Tampa and The Florida Aquarium.

Winter Quarters Pasco RV Resort - Campground

Winter Quarters Pasco RV Resort - Campground

21632 State Road 54, Lutz
4.0
of 5, from 1 reviews
1.0 out of 5.0

Situated in Lutz, this caravan park/campground is 3.1 mi (4.9 km) from Plantation Palms Golf Club and within 6 mi (10 km) of Tampa Premium Outlets and Heritage Harbor Golf Course. Tournament Players Club Tampa Bay and Shops at Wiregrass are also within 9 mi (15 km).

$75
Tampa Stadium Hotel

Tampa Stadium Hotel

4750 N Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa
3.3
of 5, from 629 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0

Located in Westshore, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of George M. Steinbrenner Field and Raymond James Stadium. Al Lopez Park and Cigar City Brewery are also within 3 mi (5 km).

$136
Harborside Suites at Little Harbor

Harborside Suites at Little Harbor

536 Bahia Beach Blvd, Ruskin
4.3
of 5, from 391 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

This Ruskin aparthotel is on the beach, 2.5 mi (4 km) from E.G. Simmons Regional Park, and within 9 mi (15 km) of Cypress Golf Club and Camp Bayou Nature Preserve. South Bay Hospital and Sun City Center Library are also within 9 mi (15 km).

$116
Tahitian Inn

Tahitian Inn

601 S Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa
3.5
of 5, from 713 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

This 79-room hotel is 3 miles from Raymond James Stadium and within 6 miles of downtown Tampa, Channelside District, and Tampa airport and cruise terminals by complimentary shuttle.

$113
Chase Suite Hotel Tampa

Chase Suite Hotel Tampa

3075 N Rocky Point Dr, Tampa
3.7
of 5, from 1,136 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Rocky Point, this aparthotel is 2.9 mi (4.7 km) from Cypress Point Park and 3 mi (4.8 km) from Rocky Point Golf Course. Raymond James Stadium and Westshore Plaza Mall are also within 6 mi (10 km).

$83
Vista Inn and Suites Tampa

Vista Inn and Suites Tampa

400 E Bearss Ave, Tampa
2.4
of 5, from 157 reviews
2.0 out of 5.0

This Tampa motel is 3 miles from the University of South Florida and 5 miles from both Busch Garden and Adventure Island.

$109
La Quinta Inn Tampa Bay Airport

La Quinta Inn Tampa Bay Airport

4730 W Spruce St, Tampa
3.6
of 5, from 589 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0

Located less than a mile from the Tampa Airport, this hotel is across the street from the Tampa International Mall and less than 2 miles from Raymond James Stadium.

Top Deals on Flights

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