Golfers will head for the Golfer's Grail, an indoor golf simulator that features more than 60 courses from around the world. Practice those hooks and slices, and watch the results on the screen, or take some lessons, join a league, and have a good time on the green. And what's more, it's in an air-conditioned building! For the more traditional golfer, days on the green outdoors are first-class in Tampa. Bardmoor Golf and Tennis Club, World Woods Pine Barrens Golf Course, and many other private and public clubs offer endless opportunities for fun.
Nature lovers will delight in the Botanical Gardens at the University of South Florida, where nature shamelessly displays her most colorful blooms from regions around the world. Learn and experience beekeeping from the experts at the Gardens, and take a relaxing stroll through the trails to learn about the habitats in the Tampa Bay Area. Touring the Hillsborough River in a kayak or boat, enjoying the serenity of songbirds, fish, and other wildlife, is the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon. The occasional alligator may be sighted, so be prepared for a thrill.
History of Tampa
With the Florida purchase from Spain in 1821 and the subsequent statehood several years later, the Village of Tampa incorporated in January of 1849. The total population of 185 residents, along with nearby military personnel at Fort Brooke, were mostly Native Americans, Cubans, frontiersmen and settlers. When phosphate was discovered and railroad tracks were finally laid to this small outpost, change began rolling into the region.
Today, modern families happily populate the city and enjoy the activities and events around Tampa Bay. The cast and crew of the pirate ship, Jose Gasparilla, invade Hillsborough Bay every year during the Gasparilla Pirate Fest, while residents participate in a parade, devour a hearty brunch, listen to live music, and attend the street festival. The Florida Strawberry Festival, an 11 day annual event where strawberries are prepared in the raw, baked, cooked, preserved, and a multitude of other ways, includes the crowning of the Strawberry Festival Royalty, the Neighborhood Village where crafts and handmade items are available to purchase, live entertainment and music, and a midway for family fun.