Skip the bridge and explore the other side of the bay with “Car-Free Baycation”

Exterior of a large ferry vessel with multiple people on board. A small dock is on the right side of the photo.
Photo by Andrew Harlan

A new way to explore our little slice of paradise is on the way. The Cross-Bay Ferry is resuming its fall and winter schedule soon, and in honor of today being World Car-Free Day, they’ve announced a pair of “Car-Free Baycation” events to help locals experience both sides of Tampa Bay.

Consider it the perfect staycation: a chance to get out and see the best of the other side of the bay (skipping the bridge). By taking the ferry, a pair of events in St. Pete and Tampa will bring those from the opposite side to their neighboring city for a day of car-free exploration and fun.


On Saturday, October 28, Car-Free Baycation takes over downtown Tampa for a jam-packed day of excursions. Riders get their pick between a biking tour of Tampa’s iconic landmarks and neighborhoods, finishing with a visit to the Florida Aquarium, or a guided walking tour of downtown with the Tampa Bay History Center, finishing with a visit to the Children’s Glazer Museum.

On Saturday, November 4, the Car-Free Baycation arrives in downtown St. Pete for a full day of fun. Guests can opt for either a biking tour down the Pinellas Trail starting from the celebrated Saturday Morning Market, or do a walking tour of downtown that includes rides on the trolley to a few local favorites.

Because each side of the Baycation is aimed at visitors from the opposite city, travel on the ferry back and forth is included in the ticket, which is $40 for each experience. The entire series is being put together by the Cross-Bay Ferry, the Tampa Downtown Partnership, the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership, Car-Free St. Pete, I Love the Burg and That’s So Tampa.


More details on each tour:

  • Tampa biking tour, October 28: Guided Bike tour that visits Tampa’s iconic landmarks and neighborhoods, including Ybor, Downtown, Channel District, and Hyde Park (included). Bike tour will end at the Florida Aquarium, where there is bike parking, with a tour of the American Victory Ship (included).
  • Tampa walking tour, October 28: Guided tour through Downtown with the Tampa Bay History Center (included). Guided tour will end at the Children’s Glazer Museum where attendees will get a private tour of the Glazers Children’s Museum (included).
  • St. Pete biking tour, November 4: Visit the Saturday Morning Market for lunch (not included) then go on a guided bike tour of the Pinellas Trail (included). Bike tour will end at the Fairgrounds, an immersive, innovative art installation located at the Factory (included). We will finish our day with a private tour of Brick Street Farms (included) before biking back to the ferry.
  • St. Pete walking tour, November 4: Guided tour through Downtown on the Downtown Looper Trolley (Included) to the 600 block for lunch (not included). Then, ride the SunRunner to visit the Imagine Museum (included), and return to Downtown St. Pete for a guided historic walking tour.

Learn more and get tickets for the Tampa tour here, and the St. Pete tour here.


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