Channelside in Tampa is frequently mentioned at Tampa Florida Attractions because of its central location and sheer volume of entertainment options. Its official name is Channelside Bay Plaza, and it’s located at 615 Channelside Drive, Tampa, 33602. There is plenty of parking and it’s easy to get to because it’s sandwiched in between the St. Pete Time’s Forum, where the Tampa Bay Lightning Play, and the Tampa Cruise Ship Terminal. This location is also why it’s ideal for your next Tampa Date Night!
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There are so many options at Channelside Tampa that it’s difficult to pick an agenda for your night out. If you want to go with the traditional Dinner and a Movie though, it’s a simple choice based on your favorite foods. Stay away from the traditional wings and burgers.. too messy for Date Night (no Hooter’s please). There are 3 great ethnic restaurants to choose from:
- Taverna Opa – This Greek Restaurant has gotten mixed reviews, but it’s is nevertheless a nice little spot to take your special someone. Located as close to the water as you can get in Channelside, the outside seating is a real advantage.
- Tina Tapas – Tapas is a great way to keep the conversation going during Date Night. You order multiple small plates and share. The atmosphere here is casual and a little upscale so it’s easy to make a good impression.
- Thai Tani – It’s important that you quiz your date in advance before settling on Thai food and spicy is a bold choice on Date Night, but it’s a real winner if your date is a fan.
The Movie part is pretty obvious as Channelside Bay Plaza has one of the only 2 iMax Theaters in Tampa. You could easily substitute Bowling for the Movie part of you traditional date at Splitsville. Splitsville Channelside is an upscale bowling alley, cocktail lounge and all around entertainment complex all rolled into one. It’s also 21 and up, so if you’re a teen looking for bowling night, keep moving.
Game and Concert Based Dates at Channelside Tampa FL
Using the St. Pete Times Forum as a jumping off point for your Tampa Date Night is a great idea! Even if your date isn’t a sports fan, watching the Tampa Bay Lightning or Tampa Bay Storm is more a social experience than an athletic event. The newly renovated Forum, with its light show, pipe organ and Tesla coils can make even the most one-sided matches exciting. Tickets come at a variety of prices and there’s always room for 2 more people.
A concert is another great anchor for your night out. The St. Pete Times Forum always has something going on; in January of 2012 alone you could see the Ringling Bros Circus, Evanescence or the Red Hot Chili Peppers in addition to the ½ dozen Lightning games.
Leave your concert, which is a quick walk from Channelside, and head over for a little after hours fun at one of the surrounding clubs, like Aja or Howl-at-the-Moon. Or go for a quieter recap with a walk along the Riverwalk. Tampa’s Riverwalk runs from the Tampa History Center, right behind the Forum, and along the water to the Tampa Convention Center. It’s a romantic stroll, especially when there’s live music playing form the Columbia patio bar behind the History Center.
Surprising Options for Channelside Tampa Florida Dates
One of the most surprising Date Night options for Channelside is what goes on at the Tampa Aquarium (The Florida Aquarium). The Tampa Aquarium is normally reserved for educational family fun, but just occasionally you’ll find some cool, adults only evenings. They have New Year’s Eve bashes, Ghost Ship tours, and cocktail hours based around charity and business events. Check their calendar and see what’s up.
Several dining cruises leave the docks right next to Channelside Plaza. If you haven’t done this before, seeing the lights of Tampa from the water provides a romantic backdrop for you meal. The only downside here is that the menu is a bit limited and you’ll need to make sure you get a spot by the window.
Channelside Bay Plaza is one of Tampa Florida attractions that is a perfect backdrop for Date Night!