The Tampa museums figure prominently among the city's collection of attractions, which is why many visitors look to visit one or more of them during their Tampa vacation. Whether you are a kid, a kid at heart, an art enthusiast, or a history buff, there is a museum in Tampa for you, and you'll do well to make it around to all the city's top museums during your trip. The best museums in Tampa include the Museum of Science and Industry (or MOSI, as it is also known), the Henry B Plant Museum, and the Tampa Museum of Art, among others, so you might start there when looking to build up your itinerary. By no means should you stop there, however, as there are a variety of other area museums that also beg a visit.
The Museum of Science and Industry is a museum in Tampa that both kids and adults will enjoy, thanks in large part to the museum's hundreds of interactive exhibits. MOSI is the largest science center in the Southeastern US, and you can easily spend at least a few hours here. When you're not enjoying all of the great interactive exhibits, you might take in an IMAX movie production or take to the trails at the outdoor nature preserve. The admission price covers the IMAX movies that are being offered during your visit, which is a nice bonus. Don't forget to check out the Saunders Planetarium during your visit to the Science and Industry Museum in Tampa.
While the Museum of Science and Industry is one of the Tampa museums that science and space enthusiasts won't want to miss, those who are interested in history shouldn't leave the Plant Museum off of their list of attractions to visit. This museum in Tampa is something that architectural buffs will also do well to check out, as the ornate building in which the museum is housed is quite impressive. Originally built in 1891, the building that houses the Henry B. Plant Museum was once the luxurious Tampa Bay Hotel. The Moorish design of the building was inspired by the Alhambra, a renowned Moorish palace in Granada, Spain. The building itself, which is a National Historic Landmark, is the main attraction at the Henry B. Plant Museum, though that doesn't mean that you shouldn't take a look at what's inside. While visiting this historic museum in Tampa, you can see unique European and Asian furnishings, gain insight into the history of Tampa and of the railroad resort that helped to put it on the map, and learn about the Florida's early tourist industry, among other things.
The Plant Museum is just one of two Tampa Florida museums that you won't want to miss if you are interested in Tampa history. The other is the Tampa Bay History Center, which offers a more general look at the history of this thriving Southern city. Like most of the Tampa museums, the Tampa Bay History Center is an attraction that both kids and adults can enjoy, which helps to make it a top family attraction. Other Tampa Florida museums that are ideal for families include the Children's Museum of Tampa and the Florida Aquarium. The former is a new museum that promises to inspire kids and families with its fun and interactive exhibits, while the latter is a little different than your typical museum. The Florida Aquarium might not technically be one of the Tampa museums, but it's a top local attraction where you can see more than 5,000 different plants and animals that originally hail from Florida, including sharks and stingrays.
In addition to these Tampa Florida museums that are recommended thus far, you also ought to consider the Ybor City State Museum. This museum offers fantastic insight into Ybor City, a district that is truly at the heart of things when it comes to Tampa. After learning about science, history, and marine life at some of the Tampa Florida museums, you even can head over to the Tampa Museum of Art to observe some fine art. This is the top art museum in Tampa, and you can view both antique art and contemporary pieces when visiting it. Any art enthusiasts who find themselves in the Tampa area should also consider adding a trip to the Salvador Dali Museum to their agenda. Found in nearby St. Petersburg, this museum is home to some of the Dali's most famous works, and the overall collection is nothing short of impressive.