Historic, picturesque, and unspoiled, Tarpon Springs, Florida is composed of delightful residential areas, clustered around beautiful saltwater bayous and other waterways. The community is a mix of new houses and graceful old mansions. There is plenty to see and do, from the world famous Sponge Docks, to deep sea fishing, from antique shops in the historic downtown area, to walking around Spring Bayou, to watching the sunset on the Gulf of Mexico. A day trip to Tarpon Springs is enoyable by for all ages.
The Tarpon Springs community is permanently enriched by the Mediterranean heritage brought at the turn of the century by Greek sponge divers and their families. For lunch head out to sample the Greek cuisine. Make your way down to the Sponge Docks and while you’re waiting for your cruise to leave, stop by Hellas Restaurant and Bakery. It is located at 785 Dodecanese Boulevard. The restaurant has a child-friendly atmosphere and outdoor seating. Don’t forget to sample some of the traditional Greek dishes, but leave room for one of their tempting Greek pastries. Now you’re ready to explore the “Sponge Capital of the World”.
There are several cruise and deep-sea fishing options available. “Sea” fari Adventure Cruises provides a narrated eco-tour of the Anciote River, the Gulf of Mexico, and the bayous. The seventy five minute tours depart daily and include insights to local history, the sponge and shrimping industries, and wildlife sightings.
If you continue down Dodecanese Boulevard, you will come across the Tarpon Springs Aquarium. This is definitely worth a stop. A spectacular living reef, once the domain of divers only, may now be experienced by you. Live coral, sponges, sharks, and fish come together to form this truly unique undersea oasis. Don’t miss this most exciting marine attraction. The spectacular 120,000 gallon tank is home to more that thirty species of fish including nurse sharks, bonnet head sharks, snook, tarpon and protected Jewfish. Four times daily, a trained diver enters the tank and hand feeds all of its inhabitants. These thirty minute dive shows are narrated, very educational, and a must see. Don’t miss the two hundred pound Goliath grouper! The aquarium is also home to alligators, eels, lobsters, octopus, live coral, anemones and stingrays. There is an entire room devoted to a “Touch Tank”, where you can safely pet and feed stingrays and small sharks. Call ahead for specific information on feeding times and demonstrations.
Tarpon Springs, Florida 34689
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