We are so fortunate to call Tampa Bay home where the entire area is essentially a backyard to explore and play! From the beaches, to the rivers and treetops, travel blogger/influencer Lauren Gay of the OutdoorsyDiva.com is sharing her 8 picks to explore with the family this summer!
Ride Waterbikes on the Hillsborough River
This unique watercraft is part surfboard and part bicycle. providing amazing views of the Downtown Tampa waterfront.Rent waterbikes and biyaks at the marina from Tampa Bay Water Bike Company near the Tampa Convention Center.
Hike at Hillsborough River State Park
Hillsborough River State Park is a scenic park in Thonotosassa with the only natural class II rapids in the state of Florida. There are fun suspension bridges, places to fish and kayaks and canoes to rent.
Walk in a Treetop Canopy at Myakka River State Park
Myakka River State Park is 58 square miles of gorgeous scenery, known for its lakes, wetlands and meandering waterways. Its true claim to fame is the 25-foot-high Myakka Canopy Walkway, the first public treetop trail in North America. The park also offers camping and kayaking rentals.
Visit Three Sisters Springs
Three Sisters Springs is a paradise in the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge system and only an hour and half drive north of Tampa. The amazing turquoise lagoon can be explored from above via the boardwalk or by kayak via the King’s Bay inlet.
Explore Egmont Key State Park
Egmont Key is an island just off the coast from Fort DeSoto State Park that can be accessed by ferry or private boat. The beautiful and pristine turquoise waters off the western shore of the island will have you thinking you have run away to a Caribbean Island! Aside from the amazing beach, there are old forts to explore, a lighthouse and nature trails.
Hunt for Shells at Shell Key Nature Preserve
Shell Key is a small barrier island just off Tierra Verde. It is only accessible by private boat or ferry from the Fort DeSoto boat ramp. This small island is a shell lover’s dream. It is kid-friendly too, with clear water and countless whole unbroken shells to collect.
Zip Line Through the Trees
TreeHoppers Aerial Adventure park is the largest zip line aerial adventure park in Central Florida. It’s a great place for views from the trees and fresh air.
Visit Weedon Island Preserve
Take a guided hike or a stroll on your own through preserve trails and boardwalks to see shorebirds and aquatic life of Tampa Bay. Kayaks may be rented to explore the mangrove tunnels and see dolphins and manatees.
About the Author: Lauren Gay is the creator of Misadventures of an Outdoorsy Diva Blog, host/producer of the Outdoorsy Diva Podcast, published photographer, speaker and CEO of Lauren R. Gay Consulting where she offers professional consulting services for blogs and podcasts, courses, and curated group adventure trips
She is a travel writer and social media influencer who is passionate about inspiring and empowering black women to step out of their comfort zones for new experiences in travel and adventure and embracing nature as therapy. Lauren is also a dedicated long-time advocate for racial diversity and inclusion in outdoor recreation and adventure travel.
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