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Tampa Bay Port of Call
Sunset in Everglades National Park © Esther Lee
Located just an hour away from one of the entertainment capitals of the world, Tampa boasts sandy, white, palm-fringed beaches and a multitude of water activities such as fishing, parasailing, and jet skiing.
Key sights include Busch Gardens and Pier 60 Park for family outings, while the Florida Aquarium is a must for all marine animal lovers. The Tampa Museum of Art exhibits some impressive Greek and Roman classical artefacts and contemporary art, and the Moccasin Lake Nature Park provides some breathtaking walks and scenery for nature lovers.
Ships dock at the Port of Tampa Cruise Terminal located in the Channel District, from where several Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Holland America ships regularly depart.
Metered taxis such as Tampa Bay Cab and United Cab can be easily hailed from the port and car rental agencies such as Avis and Hertz have offices in Tampa Bay. The TECO Line Streetcar System takes visitors from the cruise terminals to surrounding areas on a 2.4-mile (4km) journey round the Tampa Bay area. Shuttle vans, such as Bay Shuttle and Super Shuttle operate from the cruise terminal as well. Visitors can also take advantage of the 1-Day Unlimited Ride Fare card, which costs about $4 for adults and about $2 for youths and seniors.
With so many attractions to see in Tampa, choosing where to begin is the hard part. Busch Gardens is a must, as is the Florida Aquarium, which boasts over 5,000 aquatic animals. Take a stroll through the Sunken Gardens, where more than 50,000 tropical flowers and plants can be seen, or head to Pier 60 Park in Clearwater, where the whole family can enjoy the theme park entertainment. Culture vultures will love the Tampa Museum of Art, while the Florida Holocaust Museum is also a popular attraction.
Bern's Steak House - popular restaurant with delicious cuisine
Seasons 52 Fresh Grill - an ever-changing menu of fresh and healthy food
Roy's Restaurant - upscale restaurant with Hawaiian-inspired cuisine
There is plenty of shopping around the cruise terminals in Tampa Bay. Just across the street from some of the cruise terminals is the Channelside Bay Plaza which houses clothing stores, boutiques and a surf store. The Hyde Park Village shopping area downtown is also great for bargain hunting.
Go on the Captain Memo Pirate Cruise
Enjoy deep-sea fishing
Canoe down the Hillsborough River
Visit St Petersburg