Guide to Living in Tampa Bay – What the Locals Know

Guide to Living in Tampa Bay – What the Locals Know

Tampa, Florida, a popular city, is located in Hillsborough County on the west coast of Florida. It’s just a short drive from St. Petersburg (approx. 30 minutes) and Orlando (just shy over an hour drive without traffic). To many locals, Tampa is a gem. It has an abundance of great elementary schools, things to do, and it’s affordable (especially if you live in one of our apartment rentals), but there’s more.



Tampa weather is often delightful, in my opinion. As noted by, the temperature tends to hover around 61.3 degrees in January and 82.5 degrees in July. We get our fair share of rain (around 50 inches each year), but it often doesn’t last long. Most of the time, you can wear light clothes such as shorts and t-shirts and be comfortable.

Getting Around

There’s public transportation that makes getting around easy. It’s called HART, which stands for Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority. HART is certainly affordable and offers bus, trolley, and park and ride services. A lot of residents ride their bike or walk to get around and use HART for longer trips.

Things to Do

When it comes to having fun locally, there’s always something to do. The Tampa Theatre is pretty popular, as are these other attractions:

  • Bush Gardens Tampa – One of the largest attractions in Tampa. It offers a zoo and amusement park.
  • The David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts
  • Lettuce Lake Park
  • Steinbrenner Field (baseball)
  • Lowry Park Zoo
  • Raymond James Stadium (football)
  • Adventure Island (waterpark)
  • Hyde Park (shops and restaurants)


Places to Eat

I really enjoy heading to Downtown Tampa for a bite to eat. Downtown Tampa offers a variety of great restaurants and bars. But good eats are all over this Florida city. Here are a few restaurants in particular that stand out to me.

Mise En Place – This restaurant has quite the reputation – a great reputation. It’s located in the Hyde Park neighborhood right on Kennedy Blvd. If you’re looking for a place to do date night, us locals know Mise En Place overs a romantic vibe. Check them out.

Shepard’s Beach Resort Restaurant in Clearwater Beach is a popular destination for brunch. This restaurant overlooks the Gulf of Mexico. Talk about a dining with a view! Sunday brunches include more than just your standard bagels and omelets. Try crab legs, prime rib, and eggs benedict.

If you’re looking to grab a bit to eat someplace that is casual, Taco Bus on Franklyn Street delivers fresh, tasty Mexican food. This is a grab-and-go place that is very kind to vegetarians with menu items such as the tofu burrito and vegan tempeh.

Fishing and Other Outdoor Activities

Many people enjoy fishing in Tampa (I can’t say I blame them). There are a lot of piers to fish off. Since the climate is great, residents and tourists don’t need to worry about being cold while fishing or participating in other outdoor activities.


I have worked in Tampa for years now. It’s a great place! Take a trip here and see so for yourself. If you decide you like it and want to stay, check out our Tampa apartment rentals.

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