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Guide To Tampa Bay Events and Activities

Aside from the many things to see and do year-round, Tampa Bay's annual hometown events are  among the most memorable ways to see Tampa Bay.  The Gasparilla irate Fest, a tradition since 1904, is one of the country's largest and most unique outdoor celebrations.  Every January, the mayor of Tampa gives up the key to the city to friendly pirate invaders as the celebration continues down Tampa's famed Bayshore Boulevard on festive parade floats.

Each February, the Florida State Fair arrives, a century-old annual showcase of the region's fascinating agricultural industry, presenting music, exhibits, rides and games to entertain those of all ages.  Another taste of the area's history is the Florida Strawberry Festival, a March celebration filled with gala events and competitions, music and midway rides, and abundance of strawberry delicacies dating back to 1930.

For thrilling sports action, get wrapped up in the big hits of Tampa Bay Buccaneers football, or get thunderstruck by Tamp Bay's own Lightning for excitement on the ice. Get up close with the Yankees during spring training, or get in some playtime of your own on one of Tampa Bay's acclaimed golf courses.

There area variety of spirited or relaxing pursuits to create your ideal vacation getaway.  Get out on Tampa Bay for boating, fishing and water sports.  Experience the sate-of-the-art exhibits at MOSI.  Hold on tight for the thrilling theme park rides of Busch Gardens, or explore the wild at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo.

Tampa Trio Pass - Florida Aquarium, Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo and MOSI

General admission to The Florida Aquarium, Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo and the Museum of Science and Information (MOSI). Visit for details.

By evening, experience the character of the historic Latin Quarter.  Take the streetcar to Channelside for delectable waterfront dining and specialty retailers, then relax on a moonlit dinner cruise.  To find out more about where to stay, dine, unwind and have fun on your Tampa Bay vacation , as well as comprehensive information about the area, local events and attractions, see below:

Mapping Your Activities While Vacationing in the Tampa Bay area:

Caladesi Island Adventure

This boat departs from the Honeymoon Island Recreation Area at the west end of the Dunedin Causeway, State Road 586, (727) 734-5263.  Here you can enjoy three miles of uncrowded white sandy beach with good shelling, tree-shaded picnic areas, a three-mile nature trail and many other amenities.  Escorted island tours are available.  The boat departs every half hour beginning at 10am (seasonally adjusted).

Clearwater Marine Aquarium

249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, (727)441-1790.  The Clearwater Marine Aquarium is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of marine animals, as well as the environmental education of the public.  They offer "see, touch and learn" classes and exhibits, in addition to marine biology summer camps.  The stingray, beach and mangrove sea grass exhibits are open daily.

Florida Aquarium

701 Channelside Drive, Tampa (813)273-4000.  The area's largest aquarium with sections focusing focusing on wetlands, bays and beaches, invertebrates, coral reefs and general ocean life plus Explore A Shore water play area.

Pier Aquarium

800 Second Ave., downtown St. Petersburg.  A not-for-profit marine education center located on the second floor of the The Pier, the Aquarium provides exciting exhibits, guided tours, educational activities and information relating to the marine environment.  It is staffed by marine scientists from University of South Florida (USF), Eckerd College and St. Petersburg College.

Sunken Gardens

1825 4th Street North, St. Petersburg.  The four-acre tropical garden features cascading waterfalls, flowing ponds, lush tropical displays and exotic birds.  They also have a great gift shop for purchasing unique gifts.

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