The Tampa Bay area, located on the Gulf Coast of Florida, has rapidly grown in recent years, drawing more people to its vibrant communities. Tampa Bay has something for everyone with its picturesque beaches, thriving job market, and endless recreational opportunities.
#1 Top-Rated Clearwater Beach
Tampa Bay is home to one of the nation’s most beautiful beaches, Clearwater Beach. With its soft, powdery white sand and crystal-clear waters, U.S. News and World Report ranks Clearwater Beach as one of the top five beaches in the United States. Moreover, the beach offers many activities, from sunbathing and swimming to boating and fishing, catering to every beach lover’s interests. Clearwater Beach provides the perfect setting for relaxation and outdoor adventure all in one place.
#2 A Year-Round Outdoor Playground
The Tampa Bay area enjoys a warm subtropical climate, making it an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise. With an average of 246 sunny days per year, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities such as kayaking the Lowry Park, golfing at one of the 80+ courses, or biking on the 419 miles of trails in the Tampa area. You can also explore any of the numerous parks and nature preserves, like spotting gators in Lettuce Lake Park, taking a tram tour in Boyd Hill Nature Preserve, or taking in stunning views at Boca Ciego Millenial Park.
#3 Tampa Bay’s Reasonably Priced Real Estate
Compared to other major cities in Florida, the Tampa Bay area offers a more affordable housing market. The cost of living is 5% below the national average, and housing costs are 9% below the national average. So whether you are looking for a single-family home, condominium, or luxury property, you’ll find many options that best suit your budget and lifestyle. In addition, the area’s fairly priced real estate has made the area an attractive option for first-time homebuyers, growing families, and retirees.
#4 A Strong Job & Employment Market
The Tampa Bay area’s diverse and robust economy contributes to a strong job market. Unemployment is around 2.6% (19% below the national average). With its healthcare, technology, finance, and tourism industries, the region offers numerous employment opportunities for skilled professionals and entry-level workers. In addition, the area’s low unemployment rate and consistent job growth make it an ideal location for those looking to advance their careers.
#5 Excellent Local Cuisine & Dining Options
Tampa Bay is known for its diverse and thriving culinary scene. From fresh seafood to Cuban sandwiches and farm-to-table cuisine, the region offers a variety of dining options to suit any palate. The city of Tampa has more than 20 Michelin-starred restaurants like Rooster & The Till. The Tampa area features specialty restaurants like La Segunda Central Bakery and their flavorful Cuban sandwiches close to the city center. Food lovers will appreciate the abundance of local restaurants and food trucks. The Tampa Bay area craft brewing scene has exploded. Of the 400 breweries in the state of Florida, ¼ of them are located in the Tampa area. Top spots include Pinellas Ale House and Angry Chair Brewing.
# 6 Top-Rated Healthcare & Hospitals
The large urban centers of Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater are home to excellent hospitals that are the best in the region and among the very best in the state. Hospitals provide expert care with nationally recognized procedures throughout the region’s many smaller cities. The area’s top hospitals, according to U.S. News and World Report, include Tampa General Hospital, Morton Plant Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital, AdventHealth Tampa, and St. Anthony’s Hospital.
#7 Endless Events and Festivals:
Tampa Bay’s vibrant arts and culture scene provides residents with various events and festivals to enjoy throughout the year. If you like music, the Gasparilla Music Festival features a mix of local and nationally recognized acts. For food, The Tampa Bay BBQ Festival brings together both delicious BBQ with the fun of live music, and The Tampa Wine Festival occurs each around April.