Entertainment in Tarpon Springs, What To do?
Tarpon Springs, Fl, located a half-hour from Clearwater, is a wonderful tourist location full of Greek culture and rich history. Greek sponge divers came to Tarpon Springs in the early 1900s after an abundance of natural sponge beds were discovered in the area. What started as a small group of Greek entrepreneurs turned into one of the most famous sponge industries in the world. Tarpon Springs sponges are shipped across the globe and are known for their softness and quality. Did you know they are also anti-microbial? Success in the sponge industry drove growth in Tarpon Springs and became a Greek food and cultural center that lasts to this day. Every year, thousands of visitors come to eat amazing foods, shop at artisan stores, and take in cultural activities from all over the world. Here are the top 5 things to do in Tarpon Springs when you’re in the Tampa Bay Area.
Visit the Sponge Docks
Tarpon Springs’ most famous landmark is its sponge docks located along the Anclote River. Enjoy great coastal weather as you walk along the docks and take pictures in front of docked sponge boats. Decades-old restaurants, originally established to feed the sponge boat crews, line the streets beside the docks, serving up incredible Greek fare. Hellas Bakery and Restaurant is a local favorite, be sure to sample the baklava, made with flaky filo dough and filled with walnuts and honey.
Shop Dodecanese Boulevard
Dodecanese Boulevard is a shopper’s dream. The street is full of quality, unique stores that make home goods, local souvenirs, and, of course, incredible natural sponges. Some of the shops on the boulevard have been around forever, and shopping Dodecanese can feel like you’re transported to another era at times. Be sure to stop in at the Tarpon Shell Shack where you can find handmade soaps and unique items to the Tarpon Springs area.
Take a Cruise with Odyssey Cruises
Odyssey Cruises is a Tarpon Springs institution. The local company offers dolphin adventures and nature cruises that give you a one of a kind glimpse of the area that includes island sightseeing and breathtaking sunsets. Odyssey is the only Tarpon Springs tour that has a certified naturalist on every tour narrating your trip down the Anclote River. They cruise several times each day, and with two boats, you can catch a tour just about every hour. They have been featured by Bay New 9 (local news station) several times throughout the years. Catch a sunset cruise or book one of their special island shelling trips featured only a couple times each month. You can often find large conch shells and rare shelling souvenirs, check out their website for dates. https://odysseycruises.net
Charter a Boat and Go Fishing
Lake Tarpon is nearby the sponge docks area, where you can charter a boat with a Florida fishing guide for trophy bass fishing. It’s a 2500 acre lake that is 9 miles long with lots of opportunities to catch largemouth bass due to its deep contours and a large variety of grass beds. Bass fishing guides at Horizon Fishing have a no-fish no charge guarantee, check them out.
Visit the Historic District
Spend a day south of the sponge dock in Tarpon Spring’s historic district. The town’s history includes some amazing historical architecture that still lines the streets today. It is a gorgeous stroll along the canal. The district is home to many antique stores and art galleries, as well as theaters and other cultural centers. The Tarpon Springs Heritage Museum is located here just off S Spring Blvd.
Florida’s gulf coast is full of off-the-beaten-path fun. There are a ton of things to do in idyllic Tarpon Springs. It’s a charming coastal town with food, beautiful views, and lots of adventure! Book your trip now to experience this one of a kind historical location in Florida!