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Enjoying a Well Planned Trip to Busch Gardens at Tampa Bay Florida

Updated on April 23, 2011

Privileges of Living in Florida

One of the most special privileges you can have for living in Florida is the ability to visit some of world’s most amazing theme parks and recreational areas. Places like Disney World, Universal Studios Park, Sea World, Wet ’n Wild, Busch Gardens and many others are just a quick drive away.

But even if you don’t live nearby such beautiful places, taking the time to drive for a nice vacation over in Florida is more than worth your time. Today we will be visiting Busch Gardens located in Tampa, Florida. I’ve been to Busch Gardens a couple of times since I only lived 1 hour away from it and 5 minutes from Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida, so allow me to share some great experiences I had that you won’t want to miss while you at the same time plan your trip to Busch Gardens as well.

Busch Gardens Location

10165 North McKinley Drive, Tampa, FL:
10165 McKinley Dr, Tampa, FL 33612, USA

get directions

Too Much Fun!

While there is so much fun one can have in Busch Gardens, I will just give some very good tips for you while planning your trip to visit this beautiful and amazing theme park.

Great Hotels near Busch Gardens

While many people go for a quick one day visit and then drive away, perhaps you are one of those that like me want to back there many times to explore the theme park as much as you can, watching the shows, trying all rides and having fun with the toys and experience exciting moments while going through the Safari. In this case if you don’t live in Florida you will want to find a comfortable place to relax and enjoy a nice night of sleep.

Luckily we can find great hotels near Busch Gardens that allow us to plan a trip that needs to take more than a single day without having to spend too much money.

Hyatt Place Busch Gardens :
N 30th St, Tampa, FL 33612, USA

get directions

Econo Lodge Busch Gardens :
1701 East Busch Boulevard Tampa, FL 33612

get directions

Hilton Garden Inn :
13305 Tampa Oaks Boulevard Temple Terrace, FL 33637

get directions

La Quinta Inn:
9202 N 30th St, Tampa, FL 33612, USA

get directions

Super 8 Motel:
321 E Fletcher Ave, Tampa, FL 33612, USA

get directions

Check out these great places near Busch Gardens

A) Hyatt Place Busch Gardens (From $88)

1408 North 30th Street
Tampa, FL 33612, USA
Phone:+1 813 979 1922 Fax: +1 813 979 1926

B) Econo Lodge Busch Gardens ($43)

1701 East Busch Boulevard
Tampa, FL 33612-8661
(813) 933-1915

C) Hilton Garden Inn Tampa North Busch Gardens (From $66)

13305 Tampa Oaks Boulevard
Temple Terrace, FL 33637
(813) 342-5000

D) La Quinta Inn (From $45)

La Quinta Inn Tampa Near Busch Gardens.
9202 North 30th St Tampa
, FL 33612.
Phone: 1-813-930-6900. Fax: 1-813-930-0563

E) Super 8 Motel (From $39)

Super 8 Motel of 321 E Fletcher Ave,
Tampa, FL. Phone: 813-933-4545

*Prices are according to, please call to confirm availability of rooms and for price inquiries,.

Please note that some hotels are very close to each other, hence the reason why you can't seen their representing letter in the map, like hotels A, B and D.


Let the FUN Begin!

While you enter the park make sure you grab a map similar the one in the picture to the right, from here on it will be up to you to decide which route to take. The park is huge and this map will guide you letting you know exactly where the roller coasters, fun spots and food areas are located among many other things.


As you walk around the park you will be introduced to many exciting things, views, and even some very funny characters like this lion in a bush, funny to think, so here is a picture we took while this lion was just standing there with a body made of leaves, very nice and cool looking.

Kids just enjoy being around things like this one, it's just an amazing work of art that takes time and dedication to end up looking like what you see in the picture to the right.


The African Theme

The following are just a few pictures I took from the creatures I met along my walk in the park, before going to the roller coasters, these animals are just amazing specially when you see them so close to you.

The giant elephants are just amazing, I also had never seen giant turtles like the ones in the pictures I took and the turtles are just so big.

The birds also picture were beautiful, living in their colony together with their own kind, I had a lot of fun feeding them with bread and other things they allowed us to buy and throw at them from a certain distance only.

Whenever you get the chance to come around Busch Gardens at Tampa Bay, head over to check out the wide variety of birds and enjoy one of the most fun things which is the ability to feed them will seeds that you can get from a machine by inserting quarters into it. You will have a blast!


But one of the most exciting animals I saw was a female lion lying down really close to the thick glass that separated us the crowed from them the lions and female lions. It was truly a very exciting experience.


Very Nice Video Showing Sheikra in Complete Action Mode!

Meet the Roller Coasters

Among many attractions like the Rhino Rally, Scorpion, Edge of Africa, Jungala and others Busch Gardens at Tampa Bay also counts with some very exciting roller coasters that I had the pleasure to ride. These roller coasters fulfill the promise of delivering a lot of excitement to its riders and those that have never been to a roller coaster ride before should get ready to ride on some of the world’s most exciting coasters like the vertical dive coaster named Sheikra.

Though the video to the right is low in quality, you can watch it how the complete ride goes, in many views and angles. Very well put together.

Picture I took from Sheikra, it didn't come out as nice as I wanted but here we have a shot from the view under the coaster.
Picture I took from Sheikra, it didn't come out as nice as I wanted but here we have a shot from the view under the coaster. | Source
Very Fun Busch Gardens Ride!
Very Fun Busch Gardens Ride! | Source

The Fun Continues!

The fun just seems like it’s never going to end as you continue to explore the park you will encounter ferries, trolley rides, train rides, you will find nice monuments which makes you feel like you are in Egypt.

The Africa Theme in Busch Gardens surely has a lot of people excited as every turn they make they find amazing creatures or very exciting moment like walking by the giant aquarium, you are able to see many different species of fish that are so unique, fish that you have never seen before and it gets more exciting when you are staring at the fish and notice a giant crocodile inside the water, WOW that was scary!


Plan Your Trip!

So plan your trip ahead, if you are flying then make sure you include your hotels and if you are driving try to get there early to book a room before heading towards the park. The park usually opens around 8:00AM so try to get there early at dawn and you will have plenty of time to relax before heading towards the park, or simply take the first day to enjoy the attractions and roller coasters and on the following day enjoy some of Busch Garden’s exciting shows.

The calendar of shows in Busch Gardens constantly changes, so make sure you head over to their website for show times, ticket prices and other very important details that you will need to check before leaving to the park.

Below you can see the schedule of shows that will take place on Busch Gardens at Tampa Bay on Saturday, April 23, 2011 which as of today April 22, 2011 is still yet to happen.

Show Schedule For Saturday, April 23, 2011. Check Out: For updated events!

Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy
11:30, 1:30, 3:30, 5:30
Moroccan Palace
Sweet Music
2:15, 4:00, 6:00, 7:30
Marrakesh Theater
Let's Dance
12:15, 2:15, 4:30, 5:30
Desert Grill
Jack Hanna
2:00, 4:00
Stanleyville Theater
Critter Castaways
11:00, 12:30, 3:00, 4:30
Garden Theater
"A" is for Africa
11:00, 12:45, 2:30, 3:45, 5:00
Sunny Day Theater

Ticket Prices and Conclusion

Ticket Prices and Conclusion

If you live in Florida you probably have grown tired from seen those booths that sell discounted theme park tickets, but if you have to come from far, purchase your tickets through their website, check out the prices by heading over to the official Busch Gardens tickets website in this link: You will save a lot of headaches and stress by avoiding those long lines in the entrance to the park.

Concluding Our Journey!

I hope you have enjoyed the tips that I shared with you, planning a trip has to be a great moment from beginning to the end and even if it doesn't turn out to be as perfect as you thought it would be, it's alright. It's all about having fun and enjoying your time.

Some additional tips I want to share before finishing are that if you are taking backpacks and other items remember that just like all other theme parks you have to leave those things in the ground before getting on many rides, to avoid carrying too much stuff with you, as you enter the park there will be some very neat locker rooms for you to leave the excessive personal belongings you brought along, lave the excessive items there that you won’t be needing any time soon.

And if by any chance you get tired like I did, find a nice place to rest and don’t just sit anywhere. It took me a few minutes to realize I was sitting in the path of Busch Garden’s little train, but I soon realized I was wrong got up and moved on to finishing my journey as the little train was coming towards me.

Me, sitting in the little train's path.
Me, sitting in the little train's path. | Source

Wear thin shorts, as there are some very nice wet rides that get you all wet and as you know the nice Sunshine State will have its Sun drying you up in no time as long as you're not wearing excessive clothes.

Thank you for reading and be sure to leave your comments, suggestions and share your experiences!


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