Welcome to the sunshine state! If you want to live by the beach but work in an office, Tampa could be your place. The city isn’t exactly one of the beach towns you might think of when you picture Florida, but it is on the water and less than an hour away from the award-winning white sandy beaches of Clearwater and St. Petersburg. Another plus: It’s home to a major international airport.
It’s also pretty affordable to live in Tampa. The median home value in the city is $198,200 and median rent is $1,400. Also don’t forget, there’s no personal income tax in Florida … hello, fat paycheck.
South Tampa is the spot for young professionals looking to live by the water and close to the action. Some neighborhoods to check out in South Tampa are Hyde Park and SoHo. If you like the feel of the city and/or want to be close to work, shop around Downtown Tampa. Harbour City is touted as a great place to start a family.
Tampa’s most flavorful neighborhood is the Latin historic district of Ybor City. The neighborhood grew up around the cigar industry, which boomed back in the late 1800s. It was home to Cuban and Hispanic immigrants and also the birthplace of the Cuban sandwich. Today, its history is kept alive through Cuban restaurants (many of which have created their own versions of the Cuban sandwich) and cigar shops. It’s also the spot for Tampa’s many festivals, including Guavaween (a Latin-inspired Halloween celebration) and Gasparilla Pirate Fest, a huge celebration that includes a parade, music, film and art festivals and just general merriment.
Leisure-time activities for adults may include heading to the beach or throwing back a few drinks at the city’s many watering holes, but there is also plenty of fun for kids (or kids at heart). Head to Busch Gardens, Adventure Island, the Florida Aquarium and Dinosaur World.