15 Fun Things to do in Tampa for Adults
September 20th 2022
You’ll find fun around every corner in sunny Tampa. This charming city, nestled in the heart of Florida, is teeming with culture and personality that it serves with a side of southern charm. Here are 15 of the best things to do in Tampa for adults!
Table of Contents
- Sightseeing Tours & Dolphin Cruises
- Water Activities (Paddleboard, Jet Ski & More)
- Tampa Museum of Art
- Busch Gardens
- Explore the City
- Animal Encounters
- Catch a Game
- Dining & Dinner Cruises
- Get Romantic
- Experience Tampa Parks
- Spend a Day at the Beach
- Brewery Hop
- Helicopter Tours
1. Sightseeing Tours & Dolphin Cruises
Image from Riverwalk Place
Strike out and go explore the sights. It’s true what they say, if you have the time, it’s best to explore a new city on foot. A good place to start for sightseeing and fun things to do in Tampa for adults is the Tampa Riverwalk. This 2.6-mile stroll follows the Hillsborough River. Here you can view stunning vistas, take in the sights, and gain some inspiration for your next adventure.
Tampa is full of incredible adult-friendly sightseeing tours and they are loved by many. In a relatively short time, you can learn about what’s unique about the city. These tours are a great way to learn real facts from actual locals. We’ve even put together a perfect Tampa Travel Bag with all you need for a trip to this popular Florida destination.
If you’re looking to get out on the water, a Tampa dolphin cruise is the perfect sightseeing adventure. Catch a glimpse of dolphins in their natural habitat aboard a relaxing boat cruise through the Tampa waters. Along with dolphins, you’ll also see sharks, sea birds, stingrays, sea turtles, and the stunning sights of coastal Tampa.
2. Water Activities (Paddleboard, Jet Ski & More)
Paddleboarding is just one of the many watersports in Tampa, FL.
Get out on the water and have a great time. When it comes to water activities, you certainly have a wide array of options. You can paddleboard, kayak, windsurf, jet ski, and that’s just to name a few. So, whether you want to stay in the city and kayak around Tampa Bay and the Hillsborough River, or you’d prefer to drive a little out of the city for a more rural experience in nearby St. Pete, water activities offer serious adult fun!
3. Tampa Museum of Art
*Pictured above is the Tampa Museum of Art. Image by Tampa Museum of Art Facebook page. *
A museum is anything but boring and a visit to the Tampa Museum of Art is a great way to spend your day. This modern museum is one of the most popular attractions in the city and boasts stunning temporary and permanent collections and exhibitions. The museum also hosts educational programs, workshops, and lectures year-round.
4. Busch Gardens
Courtesy of Busch Gardens Tampa
If you’re a thrill-seeker, then look no further than Busch Gardens in Tampa. With 9 of the most intense roller coasters in Florida, you can scare yourself silly for hours. If, however, being thrown around at over 60mph isn’t your cup of tea then you can check out the African-themed zoo. It’s one of the largest in North America! For more information about this incredible theme park, visit the Busch Gardens website.
5. Explore the City
City tours are a great way to get out and see a different side of Tampa, including lots of local art and murals, as pictured above
Tampa is a city steeped in culture. It is rich. It is vibrant. It is alive. There’s Ybor City with its cobblestone streets dating back all the way to the late 1800s. The downtown area is hopping with great restaurants, museums, and excellent parks. There’s downtown St. Petersburg with its incredible mural art. Did we mention there are so many things to do in Tampa for adults? So get out and experience all of Tampa’s glorious diversity!
6. Animal Encounters
Pictured above is an adorable animal encounter with one of the many special creatures that call ZooTampa at Lowry Park home
Getting close to exotic animals is always a fun experience (when it’s safe), and it’s one that you can definitely find in Tampa. The Tampa Zoo at Lowry Park offers many animal encounters. You can get up close and personal with penguins, rhinos, elephants, and one adorable koala bear.
Another great local gem is the Florida Aquarium. This place is top-notch and allows you to travel the globe without leaving the city. Check out the aquarium’s diverse habitats: the Wetlands, Bays and Beaches, and Madagascar-themed ecosystem. If you’re up for it, you can even have a shark experience!
Courtesy of free-images.com
Tampa has a rich nightlife that culminates in an area called Soho. This district, located in the Tampa city limits, is the epicenter of fun when the sun goes down. Standing for South Howard, Soho is the place to go to eat, drink, shop, and dance the night away.
Soho has top-notch bars, nightclubs, and restaurants, with a wide variety of music on every corner. So, whether you choose a low-key pub with an acoustic performer, an original band, or a DJ, you’re sure to find lots of fun things to do for adults in Soho!
8. Catch a Game
Photo courtesy of ResetEra
If you’re into hockey, baseball, or football, you’re in luck in this sunshine city. Tampa is home to 3 professional major league teams: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Tampa Bay Rays, and the Tampa Bay Lightning, making it a hub for the sporting enthusiast. Catch a game on your next trip and experience the exhilaration of a live sporting event first-hand.
If a live game isn’t in the cards for you there are many amazing bars in the area that offer an excellent atmosphere for watching the game. One place that always has the game on and offers multiple wide-screen televisions is the Fermented Reality Biergarten at Sparkman Wharf.
9. Dining & Dinner Cruises
Photo by Adrienn at Pexels
Food may, or may not, be what comes to mind when you think of fun, but if you like to try new things, Tampa has a hot food scene. If you’re a foodie, check out the open-air courtyard at Heights Public Market. Or, try roof-top dining. Just remember that everything’s better with a view! While visiting the coast, atmosphere is everything. Why not take your restaurant past the “beachfront” and go out on the water? Dinner Cruises are an unforgettable way to enjoy a meal, especially if you add drinks, dancing, and entertainment.
10. Get Romantic
Pictured above is a romantic Tampa, FL, dinner and sunset cruise
If it’s romance that you seek, Tampa has got you covered. From roof-top dining to sunset cruises you’re get-away can serve to spark and ignite the passion in your relationship or life. Treat yourself to the special things, that we seem to get too busy for somehow. So pack that little black dress and make the reservation, you’ll be glad you did!
11. Experience Tampa Parks
With lush greenery, blue skies, and beautiful beaches, checking out the area’s natural beauty is a must
Tampa has so many lovely parks where you can sightsee, picnic, take in an outdoor concert...the possibilities are endless. The Curtis-Hixon Waterfront Park provides ample space for an in-the-city picnic, whereas Al Lopez Park, Cypress Point Park, and Rowlett Park offer hiking trails. Many parks, like Ballast Point, have beautiful piers for you to enjoy a picnic on.
12. A Day at the Beach
With white sand and beautiful water, you’ll want to be sure you make time for the beach on this vacation
Tampa is a mere 30-minute drive from popular Clearwater Beach. Voted the 5th most beautiful beach in the United States, by the Travel Channel, this stretch of pristine sand is the perfect place for a dip in the Gulf. You can also enjoy a wide variety of water activities or just bronze yourself in the sun. Leave early to avoid traffic and don’t forget your sunscreen!
13. Brewery Hop
Picture courtesy of pexels
If you are a craft beer enthusiast you’ll feel right at home in Tampa. This merits some time to experience it all. Why not spend an afternoon hopping around to some of these top-rated breweries? Sample everything from meads and ales, to IPAs, sours, and stouts.
Some breweries have great music, like Rock Brothers Brewing. Some highlight Tampa’s rich Cigar history, like Cigar City. Whatever your pleasure you’re sure to enjoy a hop around Tampa’s breweries.
14. Take a Helicopter Ride
Helicopter tours are one of the best things to do in Tampa for adults if you’re looking for stunning views and an amazing experience
A sky-high view of Tampa is a fabulously fun way to see the city. This is best done on a helicopter tour. Most helicopter tours are customizable, where you can pick specific areas and times. One of the most romantic things to do for couples in Tampa, sunset tours are often the most pricy for a reason since you’re getting a breathtaking bird’s-eye-view.
Not only will you capture stunning images on a helicopter ride, but you’ll also have a thrilling and unforgettable experience!
Photo from rawpixel.com
Chances are if you’re female, and you’re being honest, shopping is a beloved pastime. Allow me to help you satisfy your needs. If it’s luxury brands you’re after check out the International Plaza located near the airport.
For more vintage boutiques stroll through Ybor City. Hyde Park offers more open-air shopping and blends your big brands with trendy boutiques. If it’s a Tampa trinket you’re after look no further than the Tampa City Center, which features creations from local artisans.
I know you work hard, now go play hard with these 15 Fun Things to do in Tampa for Adults, and make sure you check out Tampa activities and attractions on TripShock for the latest and best activities, tours, and attractions in Tampa, FL!
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