The bus into Tampa went through Ybor City, the sort of old town area, so I got off to have a look. It’s a mixture of colonial buildings, cobbled streets and refurbished warehouses. Ybor City seems nice enough but as it was 11am not much was happening.

Tampa appears to be one of those US cities where the downtown area is more business orientated rather than lived in. There’s plenty of hotels and offices, as well as a huge convention centre, yet there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of shops or restaurants. I’d imagine that it’s fairly dead around here during evenings and weekends when Ybor City is likely more happening. There’s a nice pedestrianised area along the river and a fair bit of decent architecture, with a nice mix of modern and older stuff. As city centres go though, Tampa’s nothing to write home about.

Slightly randomly, today I discovered how expensive deodorant is in the US. The roll-on variety seems dominant but I don’t like these. An aerosol bottle of Right Guard that is widely available in Poundland will set you back about £5 here. However deodorant is kind of a necessity, especially in this sort of climate. You can’t really be smelling like a wild man!

Point Break (the remake) was on telly so that provided tonight’s entertainment. I love the original film so was inevitably set up for disappointment. Without wishing to sound like Barry Norman, it looks good visually but is a poor imitation on the original.

Ybor City
Tampa Museum of Art
River Walk
Downtown Tampa