Weekend in Tampa in 2023: The Good 2-Day Itinerary

You probably have a free weekend in Tampa, you must plan your time rigorously. There’s a lot to see and do in Tampa, you actually don’t wish to miss any of the good things. Fortunately, you’re in the precise place; this 2-day itinerary will present you the highlights and whet your urge for food for extra.

Many individuals ask if 2 days in Tampa is sufficient, and whereas I believe it’s, you’re not going to see all the pieces. I’ve visited Tampa numerous instances, and I nonetheless don’t consider I’ve exhausted all corners of the town. However, a weekend break in Tampa will present you among the finest bits, and will definitely put a smile in your face.

For a weekend away, you’d wrestle to discover a higher place. You’ll want snug footwear, however you’ll have a digital camera roll and a coronary heart stuffed with reminiscences by the top. You’ll additionally get to attempt among the most scrumptious meals round.

Weekend in Tampa (2-Day Itinerary)

City Skyline at Night Cityscape. The river has lighting with blue.

That can assist you get probably the most out of your time, I’ve devised a 2-day itinerary for Tampa. This may present you a few of my favourite elements of the town with out sporting you out within the course of. Nevertheless, it’s necessary to keep in mind that if you wish to see extra, you’ll merely have to return.

This metropolis is large, and distances between sights could be massive. If you can hire a car, you’ll get to see extra, however I’ve created a bespoke itinerary that offers you the right first glimpse into this excellent vacation spot. The one query is whenever you’ll return.

Day 1 in Tampa

A green field with some threes and buildings in the background.

Your weekend in Tampa is about to start, so get these snug strolling footwear on and put together for a whirlwind day and night time. Let’s begin in Downtown – the guts and soul of the town.

Day 1: Morning

They are saying that breakfast is a very powerful meal of the day, so naturally, that’s the place we’ll begin. One in every of my favourite spots in Downtown is the aptly named Tampa Breakfast. The Portobello mushroom tower is a favourite of mine, however the menu is massive and fairly priced, with improbable espresso, (you’ll want the caffeine for the day forward!).

When you’re fueled up, it’s time to wander down Riverwalk. It is a promenade that goes for two.4 miles, full of views, parks, eateries, and retailers. It’s a good way to get your bearings and absorb the colourful ambiance of the town; in truth, you possibly can’t do Tampa in two days with out beginning right here.

Subsequent, it’s time to discover historical past on the fascinating Tampa Bay History Center. Filled with interactive reveals and occasions all year long, you possibly can study days passed by. By this level, you’ll be hungry and prepared for lunch.

Day 1: Afternoon

cuban sandwich tampa weekend

No weekend in Tampa could be full with out hitting Ybor City and attempting the well-known Cuban sandwich, however earlier than that, it’s time to eat and stroll. The Ybor City Food Walking Tour is one among my favourite issues to do, and for 3 hours, you’ll snack and study on the go. A useful information offers you the low-down on Ybor Metropolis itself and its distinctive historical past.

As soon as your tour has completed, spend a bit extra time exploring the colourful cigar retailers. Your information may have instructed you that this was as soon as the Cigar Capital of the World, and there are nonetheless many retailers to go to and buy your individual Cuban cigars. Even if you happen to aren’t a smoker, it’s an excellent picture alternative and an opportunity to seize a present for somebody again house.

Earlier than you head again to your lodge to dress for the night, there’s one factor you must do: pattern the Cuban sandwich. You should still be full, however you want to do this, it’s a ceremony of passage in Tampa. Your vacation spot is likely one of the finest eating places in Tampa, the well-known Columbia Restaurant. Locals flock right here, so you recognize it’s good.

Day 1: Night

By this level you’re unlikely to be hungry in any respect, so let’s forgo dinner and bounce straight into night leisure. A extremely enjoyable factor to do is the Tampa Terrors Ghost Tour. It takes only one hour, and if you happen to’re spending the weekend in Tampa with buddies, it’s a must-do; I didn’t see any ghosts, however I actually loved it. See extra ghost excursions in Tampa right here.

To complete off the night, head to one among Downtown’s well-known craft beer spots. The Wicked Pour is one among my favourite bars in Tampa, and you’ll even pour your individual beer from an enormous vary. Alternatively, The Pint & Brew is the perfect place for craft beer followers, with an enormous domestically brewed choice, all with slightly amusing names.

After that, it’s time to stumble again to your lodge, as your first day is full. Your ft could also be throbbing, however you’ve lined some critical floor and also you’ll definitely sleep properly.

Day 2 in Tampa

Palm tree on the white sandy beach surrounding Tampa Bay.

It’s now the second day of your weekend away in Tampa, and it’s time to pack much more into your time. In the present day, you’re going to begin with a brief outing, earlier than returning to Downtown to complete off your 2 day break.

Day 2: Morning

First issues first, it’s time to eat. Samaria Cafe in Downtown is one other of my common breakfast haunts, with scrumptious sandwiches constructed from scratch. The home made chocolate croissant is divine, however the Grand Slam breakfast will fill you up till properly into the afternoon. I’d suggest taking among the croissants for later — you don’t wish to miss them.

Subsequent up in your 2-day journey to Tampa, we’re going to leap within the automotive (or taxi) and drive for 40 minutes to St. Pete Beach, among the finest seashores in Tampa. You may both select to spend a couple of hours swimming and sunbathing, or you possibly can take my recommendation and be part of this 2-Hour Speedboat Adventure. You’re certain to get your adrenaline pumping, the view is breathtaking, and also you may even see dolphins.

All of that recent sea air may have made you hungry, so head to Rick’s Reef for a lightweight lunch. I really like the chilled-out really feel of this place, they usually serve nice espresso. The gator bites are additionally scrumptious, in addition to their crab cake sandwich.

Day 2: Afternoon

cat rescue sanctuary tampa weekend

Soar again into the automotive and head again over to Tampa, the place you’re going to go to the Big Cat Rescue Sanctuary. This place actually opened my eyes, and I realized a lot about rescuing and caring for sick and orphaned huge cats. Take a tour with a information and study extra about their improbable rescue and rehabilitation efforts.

You’ve seen quite a bit to date throughout your weekend in Tampa, however we’re not accomplished but. Subsequent up is the Henry B Plant Museum again over in Downtown. The primary time I visited right here, I used to be shocked at how a lot historical past there’s within the native space, in addition to the earliest days of tourism. The constructing dates again to 1891 and is fantastically preserved.

Spend a few hours exploring the museum and the encircling streets, earlier than venturing again to your lodge. Tonight is your final night time, and you must really feel recent for all of the enjoyable you’re about to have.

Day 2: Night

Whether or not it’s a romantic weekend in Tampa otherwise you’re visiting with buddies, it’s going to be a busy one.

I recommend beginning your last night in Tampa aboard a tiki boat! Hop on a tiki boat and luxuriate in some drinks earlier than going for dinner. You can even select to do that later within the night, and even through the day. Find out details here.

For meals, head to Ulele -one of the most well-liked eating places in Tampa. The menu is full of dishes impressed by meals from the native space, all cooked on an enormous grill; I extremely suggest the tocobaga tuna and the fire-roasted rooster.

When you’re full and able to go, make a journey to Tampa Theater. You may catch a present or just discover the constructing, which dates again to 1926. There are various occasions held right here all year long, so verify what’s on earlier than you go to so that you don’t miss out.

Filled with tradition and able to take pleasure in the remainder of the night, CW’s Gin Joint is your last vacation spot. It’s a good suggestion to order a desk beforehand as this spot will get very busy – when you see the opulence inside, you’ll perceive why. It’s not all about gin both, because the cocktails listed here are like nothing you’ve tried earlier than and the stay jazz is unimaginable.

Learn how to Get to Tampa

Ground transportation in Tampa airport, Florida.

The simplest and hottest approach to get to Tampa from anyplace exterior of Florida is to fly. Tampa International Airport is large and serves all main home airways within the US, in addition to internationally.

As soon as on the airport, it’s very straightforward to get to Downtown and past; the Line 30 bus serves the airport and all main neighborhoods recurrently, or you possibly can take a taxi in simply quarter-hour.

Should you’re touring from Orlando, you possibly can both drive through the I-4W, take the Greyhound bus (1 hour 40 minutes), or the prepare, which can take simply over 2 hours. Click here for bus information, and click here for train information. Exploring each Orlando and Tampa is a good thought for my part.

After all, a weekend break in Tampa is a brief period of time, so it’s advisable to hire a car if attainable. You are able to do this from the airport whenever you arrive, or you possibly can go to any main automotive rent retailer within the metropolis, akin to Enterprise, Sixt, or Alamo. You’ll want a full, clear driving license, and a bank card. Click here to search for one of the best worth on rental vehicles.

I take pleasure in strolling round Tampa as a lot as attainable and whereas some points of interest aren’t walkable, Downtown and Channelside are simply related, even so far as Ybor Metropolis. The native bus community can be very straightforward to make use of, or you possibly can alternatively use Uber or Lyft. Click here for bus information.

The place to Keep With 2 Days in Tampa

A busy road, road lights and buildings.

On your two-day journey to Tampa, you’re going to want a central place to remain, and several other neighborhoods match the invoice. Channelside and Downtown are the best locations for a brief weekend break, however Ybor Metropolis can be an excellent possibility. Right here’s the place to remain in Tampa for a weekend away:

Downtown Tampa: For a weekend in Tampa, I’d suggest Downtown. It’s a full of life, busy space nevertheless it’s extraordinarily central and presents nice nightlife with improbable gastronomy. Many of the metropolis’s main sights are very straightforward to succeed in from right here. The Tampa EDITION is a high decide and boasts a improbable restaurant.

Channelside: Should you’d slightly not be surrounded by noise, Channelside is the right place to remain. You may stroll straight onto the Riverwalk and discover parks and eating places very simply. It’s additionally house to many upmarket inns, supplying you with an opportunity at full R&R. I totally loved my keep at Le Meridien Tampa.

Ybor Metropolis: An awesome base for a weekend getaway in Tampa is Ybor Metropolis – a foodie’s dream. There’s nice nightlife right here, though barely much less frenetic than Downtown, and it’s definitely cheaper. Historical past followers will even take pleasure in this a part of the town. Hotel Haya is extremely really helpful.

Suggestions for a Weekend Journey to Tampa

Young couple of backpacker tourist walking together.

With simply two days in Tampa, you’re going to want some insider info to assist your journey go as easily as attainable. I’ve obtained loads of expertise in visiting this metropolis, so let me impart a few of my gems of knowledge to you:

1. Gown for consolation, not fashion: I can’t emphasize this sufficient. Positive, you wish to look good, however you’re solely in Tampa for the weekend, and which means you must transfer rapidly. Even strolling down the Riverwalk entails some mileage, so go along with snug footwear and clothes that will help you benefit from the expertise with out distractions.

2. Rent a automotive if attainable: I discussed this a bit earlier, nevertheless it’s such an necessary level. You’ll see much more within the restricted time you’ve gotten if you happen to rent a car in Tampa.

Driving in Tampa could be very straightforward; the roads are clearly marked, and it’s a relaxed expertise. Whereas public transport is sweet, it might not at all times run to schedule, and it will possibly add pointless stress to your day. Alternatively, go along with Uber/Lyft, or common taxis.

3. Plan your go to on the proper time of yr: Tampa is an all-year-round metropolis, however if you wish to keep away from attainable hurricanes and crowds, it’s a good suggestion to search out out when’s finest so that you can go to. I benefit from the months between January to Might because the climate is delicate, loads is happening, but it’s attainable to get an excellent deal on a lodge.

Should you go to between June to November, there’s the potential for poor climate because of hurricanes, though don’t let that utterly dictate your selection. Discover out extra in our put up on one of the best time to go to Tampa.

4. Bear in mind solar safety: I’m supplying you with this tip from private expertise as a result of I don’t need your weekend journey to Tampa to be ruined by sunburn. Merely strolling round within the solar is sufficient to get burnt, so at all times put on solar safety, carry a bottle of water, and put on a hat. It’s higher to be ready. Protected not sorry and all that!

5. Reserve tables at eating places: A number of the extra laid-back eating places may have walk-in tables obtainable, however if you wish to go to a top-class spot, I like to recommend you name the day earlier than and reserve a desk. You don’t wish to have your coronary heart set on an eatery, solely to have your 48 hours in Tampa ruined by lack of availability.

6. Keep away from public holidays: If you wish to see as a lot as attainable, it’s finest to keep away from public holidays. At these instances, the town is packed, and getting round is extraordinarily troublesome. You’ll additionally see queues for the most well-liked points of interest, which can maintain up your time and trigger you to overlook out.

7. Keep away from the lightning: The primary time I noticed Tampa lightning I used to be shocked; it was someway lovely however terrifying all on the identical time. Lightning storms are frequent throughout the entire of Florida; if you happen to see any, don’t panic, simply go inside a restaurant, bar, or museum, and by the point you come out, it can have gone. Don’t be tempted to say exterior and take photos, particularly if you happen to’re in an open area.

8. Layers are your buddy: It’s by no means that chilly in Tampa, even throughout its so-called ‘winter’, however you’ll want a jacket within the evenings exterior of July and August. Take layers and pack evenly; there are some improbable buying alternatives within the metropolis, and also you’ll wish to save area on your purchases.

9. Buy the Tampa Riverwalk Attraction Go: The Riverwalk Attraction Go permits discounted admission to most of the Riverwalk’s high spots and can prevent loads of cash when you discover. It’s definitely value trying into when you have your coronary heart set on any specific sights whereas decreasing queueing time too. Click here for details.

10. Take guided excursions wherever attainable: Tampa has a number of hidden historical past and tradition, and the easiest way to study all of it is through a educated information. After all, you possibly can discover by yourself steam, however a information will enrich your go to to an entire new stage. Should you loved your expertise, bear in mind to tip: round 20% is at all times rule of thumb. Click here for tours.

FAQs A few Weekend Getaway in Tampa

Listed below are some solutions to incessantly requested questions on a weekend getaway in Tampa, FL:

Are you able to do Tampa in only a weekend?

A weekend in Tampa is a brief period of time, nevertheless it’s attainable to get a style of the town in that point. By basing your self centrally, e.g. in Downtown or Channeside, you’ll have the ability to see extra, together with the well-known Riverwalk.

How do I spend my weekend in Tampa?

A mix of nature, meals, nightlife, historical past, and tradition is one of the best place to begin. A weekend in Tampa will likely be fast-paced and tiring, nevertheless it’s attainable to see quite a bit if you happen to’re organized along with your time.

Is a weekend in Tampa sufficient?

A weekend break in Tampa is okay, however definitely not sufficient to see all the pieces the town has to supply. See it as a taster after which go to once more at a later date.

The place ought to I keep for two days in Tampa?

Downtown or Channelside are one of the best locations to remain if you happen to solely have two days in Tampa. These neighborhoods are central and minimize down on touring time. There are numerous inns in each areas.

How a lot would a weekend in Tampa value?

A rigorously deliberate weekend itinerary in Tampa gained’t break the financial institution. It is dependent upon what you wish to see, however you possibly can tailor your go to to any price range.

What’s one of the best month to go to Tampa?

November is an efficient time to go to Tampa. At this level, the hurricane season is coming to an finish, and the climate is heat, with out being overwhelming. There’s additionally much less humidity to have an effect on your go to. On the flip facet, July is extraordinarily scorching.

Is Tampa Riverwalk value visiting?

Riverwalk is likely one of the finest issues to do whenever you spend the weekend in Tampa. You may stroll, discover, and see quite a bit in a brief period of time, and it doesn’t value something except you go inside an attraction or restaurant.

Is Tampa as enjoyable as Miami?

Each Tampa and Miami are improbable locations to go to in their very own proper, and it is dependent upon what you wish to see and do. Whereas Miami is primarily about nightlife, Tampa presents extra for households and is an all-rounder sort of vacation spot.

What can {couples} do in Tampa?

There’s loads for {couples} to do in Tampa. Meals excursions, the Riverwalk, spending time at a shocking Tampa Bay seaside, having fun with the sundown, and wonderful nightlife are all on provide.

Is Clearwater or Tampa higher?

A weekend break in Tampa will present you quite a lot of days in Clearwater, nevertheless, Clearwater Beach is palms down among the finest in Tampa Bay. Finally, Tampa itself has much more happening and extra number of actions.

Take pleasure in Your Weekend Journey to Tampa

I’m not going to lie, a weekend in Tampa is a brief period of time to discover this vibrant metropolis. There’s a lot to see and do this even per week would problem you to see all the pieces. However a weekend is best than nothing and will certainly present you the highlights of this full of life metropolis.

An excellent tip is to rent a automotive; that method you don’t waste time ready for buses or strolling. Don’t be petrified of driving in Tampa, (if I can do it, anybody can!). And ultimately, you’ll be pleased about how a lot you get to expertise throughout your action-packed weekend.

Whether or not you’re searching for a romantic break, a fun-filled time with buddies, or one thing else totally, you’ll discover it in Tampa. It is a metropolis that regularly surprises me in the absolute best method, even in spite of everything these years.