There is so much to do in Tamp Florida between the amusement parks and being right near the Gulf of Mexico that you won't lack for things to do. But make sure you give your wallet a break and check out 28 Free Things to do in Tampa Florida, they are some of the areas best-kept secrets.
Top 28 Free Things to do in Tampa Florida
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The Tampa area is huge, and I knew that growing up but I didn't realize how true that was until recently. It includes Tampa, Tampa Bay, St Petersburg, and Pinellas. Many even call the Clearwater Beach area part of Tampa as well. In this area, you can drop a ton of money on attractions, from Bush Gardens to MOSI. If that's your thing, consider a CityPASS for a huge discount.
To help your budget, I have put together the top free things to do in Tampa, Florida and the surrounding area. Everything from Manatee viewings, to train rides!
Pinellas Heritage Villiage – This village holds old historical buildings from all over Pinellas County, everything from a schoolhouse, firehouse, general store, and more. Admission is free. Make sure to stop by the visitor center for a make and more info on the buildings.
You can watch my Pinellas Heritage Village YouTube video on our visit.
Lettuce Lake Regional Park – On Saturdays and Sundays at 8:30 am Lettuce Lake Regional Park features a free guided nature walk. Wildlife seen will vary each time. There is a $2 per car entrance fee if you drive in.
Ybor City Visitor Center – The visitors center holds a small museum plus you can score discount attraction tickets. This is a great place to start exploring this area of Tampa
Fort De Soto Historic Fort – I want to mention there are a few tolls to get out to the island, but if you have SunPass, it's not a big deal. You also have to pay to get into the state park. If you are already there, then make sure to check out this gem!
Florida Cane Distillery – This one if for those 21 and up but you can tour the distillery and even sample products.
Largo Central Railroad Miniature Train – Get free rides the first full weekend of every month.
Tour the Yuengling Brewery (21 and over) – While this tour is for 21 years old and up the tour is free, and you get to see one of America's oldest breweries!
Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park – This is an 8-acre park downtown with interactive fountains and often has live entertainment.
Tampa Museum of Art – You can get into the museum for free on Fridays from 4-8pm.
Manatee Viewing Center – This was by far our family's favorite freebie in Tampa. The manatees are only here in the colder months from November to April. They have stingrays and a nature walk and more here too.
Sulphur Springs Museum – This museum covers the history of the Sulpher Springs neighborhood of Tampa which is known for the hot springs and an alligator farm.
L'Unione Italiana Cemetery Mafia Cemetery – Yes a real mafia cemetery! Did you ever watch Donnie Brasco? Head to the L'Unione Italiana Cemetery in Ybor City to see the real Santo Trafficante Jr grave.
Glazer Children's Museum – Take your kids to the Children's Museum for free on the first Tuesday of each month from 2-7pm. This is right next door to the Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park mentioned above and the Riverwalk mentioned below.
Courtney Campbell Trail – 9.5-mile paved trail that over amazing panoramic views of upper Tampa Bay.
Riverwalk – Many things to see and do here. This place is perfect for people watching. There are many parks along the riverwalk as well.
Sunset Cinema at Pier 60 – The pier puts up a huge screen and puts on movies after dark. Movies range between rates G to rated PG. Grab your blanket for a family movie night!
The Beach – Hit the beach, any beach! There are some fantastic beaches in the Tampa area and many of them you can find sharks teeth at!
J.C. Newman Cigar Company Museum – This is a 2 room museum filled with the history of the last running cigar factory in the city.
Florida Botanical Gardens – These gardens are located right next door to the Pinellas Heritage Villiage, and the gardens are also free. They are also pet-friendly!
Henry B. Plant Museum – This was once an elegant hotel but is not turned toa museum. You can see much of the hotel and learn about the turn of the century life in the area. Free admission from 5pm to 7pm on the first Friday of the month.
Tampa Firefighters Museum – Free admission and you and learn the history of firefighters in the area.
Gasparilla Pirate Fest – This is the 3rd largest annual parade in the country. This parade is held every January to celebrate the famous pirate Jose Gaspar who operated in the area.
Walk Ybor City – There is so much history in Ybor City and walking the street you can take so much of it in!
The Raymond James Gasparilla Festival of the Arts – This is one of Tampa's biggest festivals and held every year in March.
Watch the Sunset on Pier 60 – Head over to Clearwater Beach and watch the sunset on Pier 60.
Tampa Bay Farmers Market – It's no secret I love visiting the farmer's markets when I'm in an area. Talking with the locals you get some local recipes and find out about hidden locations only the locals know.
Tampa Police Museum – Learn the history of the Tampa Police all the way back to the 19th century. A popular exhibit is the 1924 Model T police car.
Tampa Downtown Partnership Free Guided Walking Tours – Learn the history of the city with the free guided walking tour held the 1st and 3rd Fridays of the month.
Are we missing anything on your list of free things to do in Tampa Florida? Let us know in the comments below!