Historic Walking Tour Of Tampa

June 9, 2014 8:00 AM

The Ybor City area of Tampa is a must-see for history buffs. For $15, you can take a guided walking tour that lasts approximately two hours. For $9.95, you can purchase a narrated self-guided walking tour so you can explore at your own pace. For nothing but time, you can create your own walking tour with some of Ybor’s most fascinating attractions. Here are the top five destinations in Ybor City.
Ybor City Museum State Park
1818 9th Ave.
Tampa, FL 33605
(813) 247-6323

If you do nothing else in Ybor City, you must go to the Museum State Park. The museum is situated in the Ferlita Bakery and traces Ybor’s history all the way back to when it was first settled in the 1800s. Learn about who Don Vicente Martinez Ybor was and how Ybor City became the cigar-making capitol of the world.
Columbia Restaurant
2117 E. 7th Ave.
Tampa, FL 33605
(813) 248-4961

Ybor is packed with incredible restaurants, but the Columbia, originally founded in 1905, is the crown jewel. The restaurant serves authentic Spanish cuisine that includes chorizo, paella and, of course, Cuban sandwiches. In the evening, there are live performances by local Flamenco dancers that are too amazing to be missed. You can even shop in the Columbia store and take home some goodies like sangria mix, key lime marmalade and Cuban roasted coffee.

Ybor Cigars Plus
1725 E. 7th Ave.
Tampa, FL 33605
(813) 516-0259

Ybor keeps the tradition of fresh, hand-rolled Cuban cigars alive. There are plenty of shops that sell them, but what sets Ybor Cigars Plus apart is the weekend show. There is live music for entertainment as well as a cigar artist that shows guests how these Cuban specialties are made. Cigar aficionados can take home singles, bundles or boxes of cigars in a variety of flavors.

Related: Best Art Walks Around Pinellas County

Centennial Park
1800 E. 8th Ave.
Tampa, FL 33605
(813) 242-5370

Centennial Park is a great place to enjoy beautiful weather. Built with statues and plaques dedicated to important historical figures, there is plenty to learn about Ybor’s history here. There is also plenty of shade and picnic benches to enjoy a snack or lunch with the family. The park also hosts some of Ybor’s special events, such as Flan Fest and the Festa Italiana.

The Don Vicente de Ybor Historic Inn
1915 Avenida Republica de Cuba
Tampa, FL 33605
(813) 241-4545

If you fancy yourself a ghost hunter, you will definitely want to check out the Don Vicente. Nicknamed “Hotel Hell,” the inn has been featured on the Travel Channel’s “The Dead Files” for its other-worldly visitors. In the past, the building was used as a hospital and medical clinic, so people were known to die there. Tessa Shiver, the inn’s co-owner, admits to seeing spirits and said that she believes the spirits are “mostly good.” You don’t need to stay the night in the inn to do some exploring, but perhaps it might increase your chances of seeing a ghostly guest.

Related: Best Haunted Places In Tampa Bay

Amanda Mole has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil and cooking since she was tall enough to reach the stove. She believes that food provides more than just vital nutrients: it is an irreplaceable part of countless cultural and social activities. As a Tampa Bay resident for the past 21 years, she is well acquainted with the incredibly diverse range of restaurants, bars, and food festivals that the area has to offer. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.