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Tampa Bay’s Picnic Spots

picnic island park

National Picnic Day is coming on April 23rd! So if you’re ready to have some spring fun with the fam, grab your picnic basket and head to one of Tampa Bay’s best places to spread a blanket and share a meal! Here’s a list of the best places for a picnic:

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #1:

Lettuce Lake Park – Lettuce Lake Park is a 240acre Hillsborough County-run park just outside the city limits of Tampa, Florida. It is located on Fletcher Avenue between Interstate 75 and the University of South Florida. The park opened in 1982.Lettuce Lake Park features several boardwalks that wind through a variety Florida ecosystems; a fresh water wetland and flood plain, an oak-dominated hardwood forest, cypress domes, and the Hillsborough River. The park also contains a visitor’s center, an observation tower, nature trails, picnic tables, barbecue pits, restrooms, an open play field, and a playground. Audubon Resource Center The Audubon Resource Center at Lettuce Lake Park, also known as ARC in the Park, is operated by the Tampa Audubon Society in the visitor center. The center features natural history exhibits and wildlife native to the Hillsborough River watershed, and provides environmental education programs and field trips for all ages.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #2:

Honeymoon Island and Dunedin Causeway, Florida – Honeymoon and neighboring Caladesi Island were originally part of a large barrier island that split in half during a major hurricane in 1921. The waterway between the islands is known as Hurricane Pass. One of the island’s services, a ferry to Caladesi Island, is only for convenience to those in the Honeymoon Island area to reach Caladesi Island across Hurricane Pass. Caladesi Island is easily accessible by walking from Clearwater Beach, Florida, as it has been for decades, and it is only separated by a “welcome sign” from the south.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #3:

The Tampa Riverwalk Tampa Riverwalk is a 2.6-mile-long (4.2 km) open space and pedestrian trail development along the Hillsborough River in Tampa, Florida. The downtown Tampa portion runs alongside the Tampa Arts District and allows access to Curtis Hixon Park , MacDill Park, Tampa Museum of Art , Glazer Children’s Museum , Rivergate Tower , The Park at Armature Works, Sparkman Wharf Park and adjacent atrium containing the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts . The Historical Monument Trail has taken shape along the Riverwalk. The Riverwalk serves as a hub for art, leisurely lunches, performances, fitness and more. By nightfall, music plays and couples walk hand-in-hand under that same sky, which has given way to a canopy of stars. As well as walkable, bikable, Segway-able path connecting culture and entertainment.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #4:

Paul Sanders Park – located in Brandon, FL, is a Park that offers outdoor recreation and nature preservation. A public space open to the general public, the Park offers open spaces under the maintenance of the Brandon Parks Department. Massive Oaks are the main attraction for kids. Thick limbs low to the ground are climbable with relative ease. 

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #5:

Vinoy Park Saint Petersburg – Is an 11.6 acre park and one of the most talked about and visited park in St. Petersburg’s downtown waterfront, Vinoy Park is named after the Vinoy Park Hotel, which once sat adjacent to the park. The park has some of the most scenic views in St. Petersburg and is a popular place to rent for hosting events, such as festivals, concerts, Ribfest, Blues Festival, Christmas displays and sporting events.

Besides its popularity for events, it’s also a popular place for fitness and offers recreation trails along the waterfront of avid walkers, runners and bikers.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #6:

AL Lopez Park – This park is made up of approximately 132 acres offering a nature trail, freshwater ponds, and a community center. Al Lopez Park has a 1.2 mile interior loop asphalt multi-purpose trail. The trail is 15 feet wide with overhead lighting. On the northeastern edge of the loop, a nature trail continues through wooded areas. Care should be taken when exercising alone. Al Lopez has a very large dog park, children park, two ponds, wildlife and lots of open grass for outdoor activities.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #7:

Gizella Kopsick Palm Arboretum – The 2-acre park began in 1976, there are more than 500 palms and cycads representing some 150 species from around the world. Development of the arboretum is a continuing, never-ending project.  Located on North Shore Dr. at the foot of 10th Ave. NE, just north of North Shore Swimming Pool and the Vinoy Resort. Adjacent parking is free of charge.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #8:

Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park – Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park is an 8-acre public park located along the Hillsborough river in downtown Tampa, Florida that opened in its current configuration in 2010. It is adjacent to the Tampa Riverwalk, Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children’s Museum, and Rivergate Tower. The park overlooks the University of Tampa’s Plant Hall, which is directly across the river. The park is in an area known as the Waterfront Arts District. Much of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park consists of an open grassy lawn that slopes gently towards the river in a series of wide terraces. Around this greenspace are several fountains, a large playground, a public boat dock, a dog park, several shaded pavilions, an amphitheater, various sculptures, a garden area designed by Dan Kiley, and a small concession kiosk with restrooms. The park is bordered by the Tampa Museum of Art and the Glazer Children’s Museum on the north, Ashley Drive on the east, and the Rivergate Tower and parking garage to the south. On the west side of the park is the Hillsborough River and the Tampa Riverwalk, a 2.4 mile long walkway which connects Curtis Hixon Park to several attractions and facilities (including the Tampa Convention Center and the Straz Center for the Performing Arts), many hotels and restaurants, and a series of smaller parks along Tampa’s downtown waterfront. 

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #9:

North Straub Park – Downtown Waterfront Park North Straub Park is located in St. Petersburg’s downtown water from and offers beautiful scenic views of the bay, recreation trails for bikers, runners and avid walkers to enjoy and a concrete stage, making it a great place to host an event.

Tampa Bay Picnic Spot #10:

Edgewater Park – Is a four-acre waterfront park located at Dunedin Marina. The park is well shaded and features a playground, picnic tables, rest room facilities and a gazebo that may be reserved for weddings and other functions.

John Warner

John Warner

I am a Real Estate professional and understand that buying or selling a home is more than just a transaction: it’s a life-changing experience. That’s why I provide exceptional, personalized service for all my clients. I take great pride on the relationships I build and always work relentlessly on the client’s behalf to help them achieve their real estate goals. In my role as a Realtor® Consultant, I will listen to your requirements and develop a plan of action based on your time frame and needs. I have experience selling new construction homes, single-family homes, duplexes/villas, multi-family homes, (pre-foreclosure) short-sale homes, investment properties, and First-Time home buyers! As a Realtor, I will consult and provide market evaluations of any of your Real Estate inquiries. I will utilize social media & Internet Marketing to find your next property and sell to gain the most exposure. Working as a team, we can achieve your goals, and working together will make the process as seamless as possible. As a Realtor, I will successfully guide you as a home buyer or seller through selling and purchasing properties. Here are a few items that I will be performing as your Realtor to keep you in compliance with laws and regulations. Generate lists of properties compatible with buyers' needs and financial resources. Coordinate appointments to show homes to you as a prospective buyer or arrange appointments to show your home as the seller. To establish a positive flow of communication with other agents, buyers, sellers, mortgage officers, title personnel, and attorneys involved in the home buying and selling process. Present purchase offers to sellers for consideration and negotiates contracts on your behalf. Coordinated property closings, overseeing the signing of documents and disbursement of funds with the Closing agent. Over the last ten years, I have continued to learn with each transaction and professional education training through the National Realtor Association and our local Greater Tampa Realtor association to give you the best service! I know the following designations or certifications: ABR® The Accredited Buyer's Representative (ABR®) designation is for real estate buyer agents who focus on working directly with buyer-clients at every stage of the home-buying process. AHWD At Home With Diversity® (AHWD) is a NAR certification program designed to present a picture of the changing face of the real estate industry. Since 1998, the At Home With Diversity® program has prepared over 20,000 REALTORS® to work effectively with and within today's increasingly diverse pool of homebuyers. GRI Earning the Graduate, REALTOR® Institute (GRI) designation is a way to stand out to prospective home buyers and sellers as a REALTOR® who has gained in-depth market knowledge, increased proficiency in a broad array of subjects to enhance professionalism and business success. MRP The Military Relocation Professional (MRP) certification is for real estate professionals working with current and former military service members. SFR The Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource (SFR®) certification are for REALTORS® who want to hone the skills that will allow them to help buyers and sellers of distressed properties. SRES The Seniors Real Estate Specialist® (SRES®) designation is for REALTORS® who want to be able to meet the special needs of maturing Americans (Active Adults) when selling, buying, relocating, or refinancing residential or investment properties. SRS The Seller Representative Specialist (SRS) designation is the premier credential in seller representation. It is designed to elevate professional standards and enhance personal performance. Staying up to date with the most current information available and earning my Commitment to Excellence (C2EX) from the National Association of REALTORS® empowers REALTORS® to evaluate, enhance and showcase their highest levels of professionalism. It's not a course, class, or designation—it's an Endorsement that REALTORS® Earned can promote when serving clients and other REALTORS®. I love to explore new restaurants and communities in the area. Since I have moved here from Grand Island, NY, the growth in the Tampa Bay area has simply been amazing and truly named correctly as the Sunshine State. I look forward to working with you as your Realtor® in the Tampa Bay area. I support several local charities.