Tampa Journals

Amazing Tampa Simplified

A June 2001 trip to Tampa by Free Spirit

Shulas Steak House (Wyndham Westshore) Photo, Tampa, Florida More Photos
Quote: Making sense of a large city in a short time was my goal. With some time together and with more time on my own to explore, I developed a strategy for seeing the important parts of Tampa. I left longing for more time and will return.

Amazing Tampa Simplified

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Overview

Quote:
Tampa is a gift of nature. Above all I wanted to see the bay. In the process I met many friendly locals, and found that there is a wealth of other interesting attractions: University of Tampa (old Tampa Bay Hotel), MOSI (the Museum of Science and Industry), Busch Gardens (more a theme park than a garden), Ybor City (pronounced E boor), and in nearby towns like St. Pete and Sarasota, a wealth of museums. For stimulating the brain, satisfying the spirit, and tempting the taste buds, Tampa is a wonderful place to be.Quick Tips: Best Way To Get Around: Buses are available for public transportation, but for me the only way to make the most of a visit to the Tampa area is by car. Plan act...Read More

Intercontinental Hotel Tampa

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Hotel | "Wyndham Westshore"

Intercontinental Hotel Tampa Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
The room was clean and comfortable. The people who work there are very friendly and helpful. There is valet parking, but the parking garage behind the hotel is free and very convenient to reach by elevator inside the hotel so that you don't need to worry about the weather. Inside the hotel there is an area where one may purchase a nice breakfast, a snack, drinks, or if one is inclined to pay for an exceptionally nice meal, there is Shula's Steak House. There are also shops in the hotel in something called the Urban Center. The shops range from estate buyers to clothes cleaners and hair stylists. There is a shoeshine stand. Across the street from the hotel there is a mall. The hotel is convenien...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Intercontinental Hotel Tampa
4860 West Kennedy Blvd
Tampa, Florida 33609
866-915-1557

Shula's Steak House (Wyndham Westshore)

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Restaurant

Shula's Steak House (Wyndham Westshore) Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
Shula's Steakhouse is located in the Wyndham Westshore Hotel and is convenient for hotel guests. It is a restaurant where one will not be disappointed by the quality of the food, and the service was exceptional. It serves as fine a steak as one would desire, and my husband has since ordered steaks at restaurants, and they have paled by comparison. They boast a 48 oz. steak for $69.95 and challenge people to eat that. My husband opted for a 24 oz. Porterhouse for $32.95. One can order lobster or other seafoods, and I enjoyed the salmon. Vegetables and salads are ordered separately, and we had creamed spinach ($5.95), broccoli with Hollandaise sauce ($5.95), baked potato ($4.95), fresh asparagus spear...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 24, 2001

Shula's Steak House (Wyndham Westshore)
4860 W. Kennedy Blvd
Tampa, Florida 33609
(813) 286-4366

Steak and Ale Restaurants

Restaurant | "Steak and Ale"

Quote:
Because this restaurant was across the street from the hotel, we walked over and settled for a very ordinary meal when we were actually only a few blocks from fine seafood and other restaurants. The Steak and Ale was crowded and the air conditioners were not putting out enough cool air. We felt crowded and warm, and the service was poor possibly because of the number of people. We chose steak, baked potato, and salad bar, but the blue cheese dressing I used was not good. I wish we had taken more time and driven somewhere that would have been nicer that would have given us something special for the area.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Steak and Ale Restaurants
204 N. Westshore Blvd
Tampa, Florida 33609
(813) 281-2300

Bayshore Boulevard

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Attraction | ""Blvd. of Dreams""

Bayshore Boulevard Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
One of my favorite places in the world is the Battery in Charleston, S.C. Although it reminds me of the Battery, Bayshore Blvd. is longer and quite different. There are grand homes and the yards are green and beautiful. The entire boulevard extends for over seven miles from downtown all the way to a gate to Macdill AFB. I loved following the road right beside the bay. I love to look at water. There was no traffic. There were runners and walkers. There was a side street called Interbay that kept me right beside the water the whole way. I hope the people in those special houses don't feel as if their privacy is invaded too much by onlookers like me because the houses and their grounds can't be i...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Bayshore Boulevard
Bayshore Boulevard
Tampa, Florida

Ballast Point Park

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Attraction

Ballast Point Park Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
Even though there is a pier for fishing, that is not all that one can enjoy at Ballast Point Park. There are shade trees, a playground, benches, a small boat ramp, and horses across the way. It is public and free, but it is beside an exclusive looking yacht basin and club. I talked with people here who were very friendly and helpful. One local lady even gave me a map she had in her car when I told her that I didn't have a good one. She seemed surprised at how much I liked this little park, but I love simple things--if nature in all its beauty can be called simple. The park obviously is a wonderful place for families and children. Throughout Tampa I was impressed by groups of children from summe...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Ballast Point Park
5300 Interbay Blvd
Tampa, Florida 33611
(813) 274-8184

University of Tampa / old Tampa Bay Hotel

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Attraction | "University of Tampa/old Tampa Bay Hotel"

University of Tampa / old Tampa Bay Hotel Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
You might ask, "Why would I go to a university when I wanted to sight see?" Well, it is on Kennedy Blvd. just before one reaches the center of town and the Convention Center. Passing it, one is amazed at the architectural beauty. I thought it would also be a good place to find someone from the Tampa area who could give good directions and suggestions. I was not disappointed. I spoke at length with students and a lady who worked in one of the offices. The lady was a local and knew all about the building. It is a National Historic Landmark. It dates back to the late 1800's and was built by Henry B. Plant. The Plant Museum in the main building was not open, but I wandered around the buildings and grounds...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

University of Tampa / old Tampa Bay Hotel
401 W. Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, Florida 33606

Old Hyde Park Village

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Attraction

Old Hyde Park Village Photo, Tampa, Florida
Quote:
There are other streets that lead to this famous old area of Tampa, but I turned onto South Blvd. off Kennedy and went down to Swann (spelling?) and turned right. It's very close to Bayshore. This is an area that one would like if malls seem too impersonal and big. Like so many other cities, Tampa has this small "village" where one can shop, eat at one of the restaurants, walk around, get a feeling for the area. The shops sell nice merchandise of all types. I stopped into a small art gallery, for example, where I enjoyed talking with the ladies in charge who were very friendly and helpful. There is a fountain in the center of the village, but the water was not running. I wondered if that had so...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Old Hyde Park Village
South of Kennedy
Tampa, Florida 33606

Museum of Science & Industry

Attraction | "Museum of Science and Industry/MOSI"

Quote:
Every time I asked one of the locals about the Museum of Science and Industry, they replied, "Oh, you mean MOSI (pronounced Mozy)." This is a good place to go on a warm day. It is especially a place that children seem to enjoy because they are encouraged to touch the exhibits. It is an interactive museum. There are young people there who will assist with the exhibits and games. There is an area where visitors watch as experiments are performed, and kids in the audience love to be called upon to assist with the experiments. There is a wind "tunnel" in which you can sit to experience simulated hurricane winds. The film blew out of my camera bag and some nice young people rescued it while the wind blew a...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 23, 2001

Museum of Science & Industry
4801 East Fowler Ave
Tampa, FL 33617
(813) 987-6000

Quote:
There was more to see and do in Tampa than time allowed. I really wanted to go to Ybor City (pronounced E bore). That's the Latin quarter and boasts of dining, entertainment, and history. It was the center of the cigar industry. It is near the downtown Tampa Convention Center. I would also have loved to go to the beaches. Locals highly recommended the restaurants and night fun there. Busch Gardens would have been a lot of fun if my husband hadn't been working or if I had brought some children along to share the experience. Areas that are near Tampa such as St. Pete and Sarasota have so much to offer. When we return to Tampa, I think a day trip to Sarasota is a must. I really want to see the Ringling M...Read More