08/22/2012 07:24 am ET Updated Oct 22, 2012

The Best Road Trips from Tampa (PHOTOS)

The Best Road Trips is a weekly summer series highlighting our favorite getaways from major cities all over the U.S.

With a thriving arts scene, diverse shopping districts, the NFL's Buccaneers, and a rich local history, the Floridian city of Tampa has a lot to offer itself. The beaches along Tampa Bay are lovely spots to take a dip and -- after exploring such attractions as Busch Gardens, the Florida Aquarium and the historic Ybor City (once the bustling center of America's cigar industry and now a great shopping area and artistic haven) -- a welcome respite at the end of the day.

With average temperatures staying at a nice 75° to 80° Fahrenheit nearly year round, it must be hard to convince Tampanians to part from the Big Guava. But Buccaneers are known to set sail, and while the whip can't take you off to sea, it can certainly get you to some great land locales. So pack your bags, crank the A.C., and hop in the car -- we've got some miles to cover.

-- Kristina Fazzalaro,

The Best Road Trips From Tampa (PHOTOS)