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Two women wearing wide-brimmed hats crossing a bridge surrounded by trees and vegetation



It’s a new year (thankfully) – and there’s no better way to start out fresh than spending some time outside. Get your body moving and fill your lungs with oxygen as you visit these five lovely green spaces where you can enjoy the beauty of Tampa.

1. Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park

Just across the Garrison Channel from Harbour Island, you’ll find Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park, a scenic waterfront park with plenty to keep you entertained. Stroll out on the pier and enjoy views of the bay, or lace up the sneakers and take a jog along the running path. Hanging out here, you’re in the shadow of Amalie Arena, home to the Tampa Bay Lightning, and that gives the park a fun and playful vibe. If you want to get out on the water, you’ll find a handy canoe launch, and if you’re looking for a playground, you’re covered there as well. Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park is a great way to spend a sunny afternoon.

2. Rowlett Park

Looking for a fun place to take the pup? Head out to Rowlett Park for some playtime that you’ll both enjoy. Start with a stroll around the park to take in the lush greenery and the Spanish moss hanging moodily from the trees. Check out the Rowlett Dog Park together, where you’ll find a large and well-maintained off-leash area that features separate enclosures for small dogs and big dogs. If that hasn’t worn you out, go for a run along the Rowlett Park Loop, a 1.5-mile paved trail with river views.

3. Ballast Point Park

For exceptional views of Hillsborough Bay and downtown Tampa, you can’t beat Ballast Point Park. This gorgeous park along the waterfront sits on a historic property in South Tampa once linked to the city by trolley cars in the late 1800s. There’s no better place to take a walk along the bay, or to snap a picture of downtown. A splash pad and playground will keep everyone entertained. Wander out onto the 600-foot wood-plank pier for the best of the scenery.

4. Eureka Springs Park

Get lost among stunning tropical flora with a walk through Eureka Springs Park, the perfect place to experience the area’s natural beauty. Ferns, monstera, and all varieties of vegetation will keep you captivated. Scenic boardwalks through the trees and over marshlands make Eureka Springs Park a Florida outdoor destination.

5. Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park

Don’t miss a visit to Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, a city green space in the middle of it all. Grab a good bite to eat at Samaria Cafe or any number of great options nearby, and head out to the riverfront lawn for a picnic. Bring the dogs along to enjoy the dog run, and find several drinking bowls to keep them hydrated. Interactive water fountains and regular concerts and events make this a cool hangout any day of the week.

Looking for more tips on things to see and do in the new year? Check out our Olympus Harbour Island blog to stay plugged in.