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Tampa Bay History Center

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Address: 801 Old Water Street, Tampa, FL 33602
Phone Number: 813-228-0097
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10:00 am - 5:00 pm
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Description: Experience 12,000 years of powerful stories at the Tampa Bay History...
Experience 12,000 years of powerful stories at the Tampa Bay History Center. During your journey, you will stroll through a 1920s-era cigar store, row up the Hillsborough River, ride along with a cattle drive and learn about the early exploration of Florida. This waterfront building, with an eclectic Museum Store and the signature Columbia Cafe, is a memorable experience for families, history enthusiasts, Tampa area natives and beyond.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 294 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 155
    Excellent
  • 102
    Very good
  • 31
    Average
  • 6
    Poor
  • 0
    Terrible
Excellent facility

We ended up spending a really enjoyable couple of hours here after parking up in Tampa Port and speaking with a nice lady in the visitor centre there. Her recommendation paid off... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed September 3, 2015
Russhrew
,
Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
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294 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
49 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2015 NEW

We ended up spending a really enjoyable couple of hours here after parking up in Tampa Port and speaking with a nice lady in the visitor centre there. Her recommendation paid off as we learned so much about the history and culture of the area. The numerous and varied exhibits are located within a really spacious facility, which is very... More 

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Level Contributor
16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2015 NEW

So surprised by our visit! We learned so much about Florida's history. The traveling exhibit that was there was horrible but the permanent exhibits were great.

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Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
23 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2015 NEW

Using exhibits and video presentation this museum shows the history of Tampa and the surrounding area. Well laid out with timely items on display and knowledgeable people on hand to answer questions. A huge plus is the presence of an on-site restaurant Columbia Cafe. One problem: The History Center web site advises parking at the "Blue Lot" and the museum... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Tallahassee, Florida
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2015

Excellent museum. Hard to get to due to road construction, make sure you have a GPS! 1st floor displays were excellent. 2nd floor displays were informative. 3rd floor varies, but not worth the effort currently. We ate at the Café at the museum and enjoyed the meal. Take time to take a walk outside along the river walk, great for... More 

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Tampa
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2015

Our family is a big fan of history, so I was confident that this would be a fun place for my myself, my wife, and my parents. But I was concerned about how interested my 6 year old would be in this museum. I am pleased to share that this place was a hit with everyone! They must have consulted... More 

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Tampa FL
Level Contributor
238 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2015

Went on a docent led tour and was amazed at how much I learned. The short film and the multi-media show added so very much to my sense of the history of the area. Who knew so much about the Seminole Indians? Who knew so much about Tampa's history of cigar making and how Castro's coming into power ended that... More 

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Brandon, Florida
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2015

The Tampa Bay History Center is one of those places you can go to over and over again. Its great for the kids and the traveling exhibits mean there is always something new. Plus, they have their own Colombia Restaurant right there on the premises, a great view of the river, and a cool gift shop.

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Valrico, Florida
Level Contributor
17 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2015

This is a large downtown museum that focuses on the history of what was the county of Hillsborough before other counties were formed from the original large area. It has a wonderful and accurate film about the Spanish explorers, many different display items including a number of Seminole artifacts, a very interesting presentation of a part of the Second Seminole... More 

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Royersford, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
36 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2015

This History Center gives across the idea that it is beyond amazing. It is in a massive, gorgeous building along the waterfront. It is partnered with the Smithsonian and does have quite an impressive collection of artifacts. But the history is specific to the Tampa Bay area, and has a heavy emphasis on the American Indian history of the area.... More 

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Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2015

History Center has a great location in downtown Tampa. Beautiful area and nice and clean. The center was kid friendly and very informative. . .

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Tampa Bay History Center and other visitors
2 questions
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7 months ago
Killbuck,Oh
7 months ago

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?