THEA Top 3 Must-Take Road Trips Near Tampa

Looking for something fun and inexpensive to do with your family this summer? There are so many places to explore that are an easy drive from Tampa, St. Pete or Brandon. The Gulf Coast of Florida region has some amazing wildlife along with some spectacular water vistas, so this summer plan a one-day road trip to one of our recommended destinations, where you will have the opportunity to see native seabirds, a variety of fish, otters, manatees, and the occasional alligator.
Here are THEA Top 3 Must-Take Road Trips Near Tampa:

1. Myakka River State Park

Located near Sarasota, Myakka River State Park is one of the oldest and largest state parks in the United States. The park has a network of trails along with an elevated boardwalk, giving you views of the Myakka River, Florida vegetation and glimpsing of the wildlife that live here like wild pigs, sea birds, and some very large alligators. You can rent bikes, canoes and take an airboat ride from within the park.

2. Venice Beach

Just a little over an hour drive away on Florida’s white-sanded Gulf Coast, Venice Beach is known as the Shark Tooth Capital of the World. The Venice coastal area sits on top of a fossil layer that runs 18-35 feet deep and was once teeming with sharks. Bring a shovel and a straining basket and you might find all kinds of shark teeth along its 14 miles of beaches to take home with you, even ones from the pre-historic giant Megalodon shark! The Venice Pier is a good place to start your hunt.

3. Don Pedro Island State Park

Don Pedro Island State Park is a barrier island located across the Intracoastal Waterway from Cape Haze. It is only accessible by boat, kayak or Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP). The area is teeming with starfish, dolphins, manatees, tortoises and a variety of seabirds, which you can see from your water vehicle of choice. If you don’t have your own kayak, an eco-tour is the way to go!

We hope you enjoy your summer, and #LoveYourDrive