Florida's Gulf Coast hides unexpected volatility under its usually sunny demeanor. From St. Pete’s wacky architecture to Sarasota's circus past to Tampa's ever-changing landscape, the coastal region offers farfetched sights and unexpected experiences. Check out these Tampa Bay destinations below to get an idea of the area's romantically eccentric charm.
Towles Court Artist Colony
Hours: 11 AM - 4 PM
1943 Morrill St, Sarasota, FL 34236
Stroll through the line-up of picturesque pastel-hued bungalows in this artist community, where works range from tropical to irreverent.
Tampa, FL 33602
This culturally-inclined pedestrian trail moves riverside by Tampa Arts District locales including the Curtis Hixon Park, Macdill Park, Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children's Museum, Rivergate Tower and more.
Tampa, FL 33605
Known for its turn-of-the-century cigar factories and vibrant immigrant community, this historic district charms with its eclectic shops, restaurants, museums and more.
Cruise back in time on Tampa's heritage streetcar line, which travels 2.7 miles from the downtown area to Ybor City.
Hours: 11 AM - 10 PM
2025 E. 7th Ave, Tampa, FL 33605
This 110-year-old family-owned Ybor institution still mixes up sangria table-side, exudes old-World glamour, blasts rock music and serves incredible delicacies.
Hours: 10 AM - 5 PM
5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota, FL 34243
This carnivalesque Sarasota campus, originally home to the Ringling Brothers, includes the famous mansion Cà d'Zana, a renowned art museum, circus museum, the historic Asolo Theater, and acres of gorgeous grounds.
3400 Gulf Blvd, St Pete Beach, FL 33706
This pink St. Pete palace dials up the old Florida charm with Jazz Age decor and opulent luxuries.
Hours: 10 AM - 5:30 PM
1 Dali Blvd, St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Primely placed on the St. Pete waterfront, this staggering museum encloses the largest collection of Dalí work outside of Europe. The museum's 75-feet-tall kaleidoscope entryway, called “Enigma," mesmerizes with mosaic glass and a spiral staircase.
Hours: 10 AM - 4:30 PM
1825 4th St N, St. Petersburg, FL 33704
Considered St. Pete's oldest living museum, these majestic 100-year-old gardens showcase some of the oldest and rarest tropical plants in the gulf region.