We're extremely lucky to live in such a lush, gorgeous landscape of bright green foliage and romantic blue waters. It's also one of the most affordable areas in the whole country, not to mention the most beautiful. These are weird times, but happily, there are plenty of safe outdoor establishments near your home where you can relax with a nice cold beverage. Here are some of the most entertaining outdoor hideaways near your Tampa apartment where you can chill – socially distanced, of course!
Seminole Heights is Fun and Friendly
Founded in 1911, Seminole Heights is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Tampa. Close to downtown, Ybor, and the Dale Mabry shopping districts, this area also boasts some of the most laid back (and dog-friendly) drinkeries that the city has to offer. The new New World Brewery, just off Nebraska Avenue, is close to both USF and Busch Gardens. Formerly located in Ybor City, New World triumphantly reopened in the spring of 2020. Featuring an enormous outdoor seating area, an antique fountain, quirky art, some of Tampa's best bartenders, and a menu that will blow you away, New World is perfect for that long lazy afternoon with your dog and your boo. Just a few streets away rests another hidden gem, the Front Porch Grill & Bart's Tavern. Converted from one of the Heights' many stately old homes, the Front Porch is aptly named, with its welcoming wraparound veranda. Their secluded outdoor tavern is nestled in peaceful, leafy shade and cool breezes, and you can enjoy their entire food & drink menu al fresco. Their gorgonzola bread and Bloody Marys are some of the best tastes in town!
River Days are the Best Days
The proud Hillsborough River flows through the heart of Tampa and is a wonderful way to enjoy the local wildlife. Downtown Tampa offers several riverfront parks and restaurants that are safe, fun, and close to affordable apartment communities. Be sure to check out Ulele's craft cocktails and fresh seafood in their outdoor art and sculpture area, then stroll down to Armature Works. Kayaks and paddleboards are available for rental, and there are several charming outdoor seating areas facing the water, where you can glimpse the occasional dolphin or manatee. Take a delightful stroll down the river and visit the Sail Pavilion for that sports bar feeling but safely outdoors with fresh waterfront air. And don't miss the infamous
Rick's on the River, a Tampa tradition featuring its own marina (and Pirate Taxi dock), live music daily, oyster bar, and the best pina colada in town. The tables are socially distanced, the beer is ice cold, and the views of downtown are breathtaking.
Ybor City Slams
Tampa's own historical party district has a little something for everyone, including plenty of bars where you can sit outside and watch all the weirdos walk by. Gaspar's Grotto offers a full menu of local favorites, an epic "booze cruise" brunch (bottomless champagne!), and a wide-open, dog-friendly patio. King Corona offers cigars, delightful margaritas, and a covered porch directly on 7th Avenue. The Dirty Shame offers a comprehensive selection of craft cocktails and draft beers to enjoy in their expansive outdoor courtyard. There are new places opening all the time, so there's always something new to try!