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Reasons to visit Tampa Bay this Holiday Season

The biggest holiday season of the year is not far away and most of you may have already completed your vacation planning. If you are still yet to finalize the destination, you simply don’t need to look beyond Tampa Bay. This urban heart of Florida has everything for a memorable vacation, regardless of what your preferences are. A sparkling waterfront, blue skies and sunshine, a century of Cuban culture, and world-class chefs make Tampa Bay one of the most diverse vacation destinations in the United States. In addition to plenty to do, eat, and drink, your stay at Tampa Bay will be different, too. Apart from cozy motels and lavish resorts, now you have the option of staying at the state-of-the-art recreation rentals at Epperson.

The Tampa Bay area is particularly popular for water sports and other outdoor recreational opportunities. However, don’t worry if water sports aren’t your thing. Mentioned below are just a few of many attractions for you in Tampa Bay.

Theme Parks: Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is a must-visit destination for anyone visiting Tampa. Just about fifteen minutes away from the city, this adventure park is home to the largest zoo in Tampa with more than twelve thousand animals. The park also has plenty of family-friendly entertainment and spine-chilling thrill rides for you.

Don’t forget to visit Adventure Island, the only water park in Tampa. With 30 acres of sunny tropical surroundings, this park is known for its 17,000 square-foot wave pool and ten tube slides. Vanish Point, the latest addition to the park is a 70-foot drop slide that will surely have your adrenaline flowing.

Aquarium and Zoo: Recognized as America’s most family friendly zoo, Tampa's Lowry Park has more than two thousand animals in seven exhibit areas. The best part about this zoo is that the animals can be seen in their natural habitat. If you have an interest in marine life, the Florida Aquarium is for you. In addition to seeing penguins, otters, alligators, and sharks, Swim & Dive tours are also available for visitors that want to experience the thrill of swimming with the fishes and sharks.

Museum of Science & Industry: Spend a lazy afternoon at Tampa’s MOSI or Museum of Science & Industry. This is the largest science center in the southeastern part of America. MOSI also features the only IMAX Dome Theatre in Florida and a planetarium.

Beach: Your Tampa Bay vacation will remain incomplete without spending some quality time enjoying 35 miles of white sand beaches at St. Petersburg-Clearwater barrier islands. Fort DeSoto Park, Caladesi Island and some other beaches in this area have been frequently voted amongst the best in the US. These untouched beaches often make visitors feel like being in a deserted island.

Dinosaur World: This park is located about twenty minutes drive from Tampa, in Plant City. One can spend some nice time searching for life-size dinosaur skeletons or authentic Dinosaur fossils at this park.

Shopping: If you love shopping during vacations, Tampa Bay has a lot to offer to you. International Plaza and Bay Street are two of the best places in this area for an upscale shopping experience. However, Madeira Beach, a small fishing town in the outskirts of the city, offers a different type of shopping experience with numerous eclectic antique dealers and unique craft shops. Fresh seafood restaurants are also an attraction here.

Eating out: Tampa is home to the historic Columbia Restaurant. This is the largest Spanish restaurant all over the world and the oldest restaurant in Florida. During your visit to Tampa Bay, don’t forget to pamper your taste buds with the award-winning Spanish/Cuban cuisine and award-winning wines here. Spanish Flamenco dance performances are also held every day, Monday through Saturday.

This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes.

By Sheena Jordan
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