Tampa/Tampa Bay area

Shrmdougluvr

Drinkin Henny and I'm tryna forget
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One afternoon/night in Tampa Bay area. Where do you stay and what do you do? We're staying for a week with my sister in the Port Charlotte area, and my wife and i are looking to steal away for one evening. Was thinking about getting an early dinner at Bern's, then heading to Ybor. I'm fine with just conventional touristy stuff. The beach is not an option. Think TexanMark and chugg21 are local, so hoping to hear from you.
 

TexanMark

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If you don't want the beach then Tampa and YBor is your best bet

Dunedin and Gulfport are fun for several hours

Florida Botanical Gardens is free and really cool if you want to see tropical foliage and gators
 

chugg21

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One afternoon/night in Tampa Bay area. Where do you stay and what do you do? We're staying for a week with my sister in the Port Charlotte area, and my wife and i are looking to steal away for one evening. Was thinking about getting an early dinner at Bern's, then heading to Ybor. I'm fine with just conventional touristy stuff. The beach is not an option. Think TexanMark and chugg21 are local, so hoping to hear from you.
Actually just moved from there to College Station, TX last week. Ybor is alright but might be overrun with club type folks if it is a weekend night. Are you into the beer scene? There are a few places that are particularly sought after in the beer community that are in town. Obviously you are aware that Bern's is the top food destination in town. American Social is right on the water and provides a nice view of the water and downtown, has a real nice happy hour for apps/drinks. If it's Fri-Sun then I'd recommend Garigiste Meadery for pre/post dinner drinks. Real small spot that puts out some of the best mead in the country.

I honestly would recommend St. Pete or Dunedin myself. Hotelwise over there, the Fenway in Dunedin or The Vinoy in St Pete are both really great and are very close to a lot worth doing. If you opt for one of those then I'd have more localized recommendations. My favorite combo to take visitors was in downtown St Pete, Annata for the oxtail tortellini that is just crazy good and either pre or post-dinner drinks at The Canopy. It's a rooftop bar at The Birchwood hotel overlooking the water. Some little shops and a lot of other bars/restaurants in walking proximity.
 

Shrmdougluvr

Drinkin Henny and I'm tryna forget
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Not really a "beer" guy. Basically, as a family, we've been to Clearwater Beach three times. This February, we are going down as a family and staying with my sister near Port Charlotte (North Port) for a week. Will be getting plenty of beach, fishing, etc. My wife and I are just looking for a date night basically, where we get away. I figured Tampa made sense. Am amenable to different ideas. Mostly just looking to walk around, eat good food, etc. That's why i figured Ybor would be neat - and maybe culturally interesting. Bern's is not a must do for us, its just a place ive wanted to try. Have read good things about Columbia.
 

TexanMark

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Not really a "beer" guy. Basically, as a family, we've been to Clearwater Beach three times. This February, we are going down as a family and staying with my sister near Port Charlotte (North Port) for a week. Will be getting plenty of beach, fishing, etc. My wife and I are just looking for a date night basically, where we get away. I figured Tampa made sense. Am amenable to different ideas. Mostly just looking to walk around, eat good food, etc. That's why i figured Ybor would be neat - and maybe culturally interesting. Bern's is not a must do for us, its just a place ive wanted to try. Have read good things about Columbia.
Columbia is a must do

Try Gulfport for lunch
 

chugg21

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Not really a "beer" guy. Basically, as a family, we've been to Clearwater Beach three times. This February, we are going down as a family and staying with my sister near Port Charlotte (North Port) for a week. Will be getting plenty of beach, fishing, etc. My wife and I are just looking for a date night basically, where we get away. I figured Tampa made sense. Am amenable to different ideas. Mostly just looking to walk around, eat good food, etc. That's why i figured Ybor would be neat - and maybe culturally interesting. Bern's is not a must do for us, its just a place ive wanted to try. Have read good things about Columbia.
I'd recommend the St Pete combo for a real nice date night. Would start at The Canopy for drinks on the roof, head to Annata for dinner and then my wife just added to finish up at Rubys Elixir. Its a cocktail/cigar bar with live jazz every night. Definitely one of our favorite places over there.

Ybor is honestly pretty trashy and there's nowhere over there that I'd be looking to stop at whenever I go back to visit. Only real cool thing to see are all the wild chickens running around. Columbia is right on the edge of Ybor though and is always solid if you wanna grab some Cuban.
 
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TexanMark

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Staying on one side (all St Pete or all Tampa) is a good thought. However if you have a hotel over in Tampa just cross the bridge by 4:30pm. If a Friday make it 3:30.pm

If you stay on the St Pete side this place has a very good reputation for dining and the rooms are a throwback to old Florida.

 

TexanMark

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Agree with Chugg...YBor is nice to visit for dinner and walk around a bit before or after. Buy some hand rolled cigars if that is your thing. The night scene does gets a little edgy as you head towards 10pm.
 

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