Accolades in Greater Tampa Bay - Guide to Greater Tampa Bay
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Accolades in Greater Tampa Bay

Accolades in Greater Tampa Bay


When a city ranks as the best in the entire State of Florida, it is not unusual to have a long list of awards and prestigious titles following it. Yes, of course, Tampa Bay’s nickname is Champa Bay because of its amazing sports teams with championship records, but the entire area is so much more than that.

From the best schools in the state to the best place to retire, Greater Tampa Bay has a long list of accolades that it is excited to brag about. Here are just some of the titles that the area has achieved:

  • Best cities to live in America — Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater

Ranking site compiled a list of the best U.S. cities to live in using criteria including crime rates, public schools, cost of living, job opportunities and local amenities such as shops and restaurants. Tampa came in nationally at No. 40, St. Petersburg at No. 43 and Clearwater at No. 92 on the list. Three major cities on the list? Yes, please.

  • No. 1 emerging tech city — Tampa

With more than 50 software and tech companies located here, Tampa is “quickly turning into Florida’s tech capital,” according to none other than Forbes. Some major reasons Forbes named Tampa the top emerging tech city in the country: it is responsible for over more than 25% of Florida’s tech jobs, and thousands more are anticipated as existing companies grow, startups blossom and developments spring up.

  • Cheapest city to live in “under the radar” — St. Petersburg

Cheap may not always be a good thing, but it certainly is when it comes to cost of living. Thrillist called St. Petersburg a “hyper-affordable beach town for the non-retired,” and it came in second on the list of the best, cheapest cities to live in. The ranking mentioned St. Pete’s numerous cultural and recreational opportunities as a benefit to quality of life.

  • Best public high schools in Florida

Niche featured 10 Tampa Bay schools featured on this list, including Sickles High School, Plant High School and Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School. Not too shabby for bragging rights.

  • Best U.S. city to be a dog — Tampa

Pet food company Honest Paws gave the City of Tampa the top spot in 2020 and again in 2021. The rankings are based on pet-friendly businesses and off-leash beaches, just to name a couple criteria. Tampa has 16 dog parks, 52 pet-friendly breweries and six pet-friendly beaches, so it is not hard to see why the city won the top spot.

  • Best places to retire — Tampa, Lakeland

 Out of the 25 cities nationwide on the U.S. News & World Report’s list of the best places to retire, two of them are in the area. Lakeland was No. 18, while Tampa followed at No. 20.

  • Most popular city for the holidays — Tampa

Probably not a huge surprise but absolutely worth noting, ranked the City of Tampa 19th on the list of the most popular cities to visit during the holidays. Of course, it is a popular destination for those from up north who want a warm Christmas. Interestingly enough, Tampa ranks higher, at No. 12, for those who want to spend New Year’s on the beach.

  • Best place to work remotely in America — St. Petersburg

The number of remote workers has increased 87% nationwide because of the pandemic, so for those at-home workers looking for new scenery, St. Petersburg is the No. 1 place in the country with population under 1 million to work remotely, according to

  • Most fiscally fit cities — Tampa-St. Pete-Clearwater used criteria including investments, quality of life and life insurance coverage to determine the nation’s 50 most fiscally fit major metropolitan areas. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater came in high at No. 3.

See Also

  • Best places for women to start a business — Tampa-St. Pete-Clearwater

With only 39% of businesses in the U.S. being owned by women, female entrepreneurs are always looking for the best places to start up and succeed. Tampa Bay came in at No. 11 on’s list, where 25% of business are already female-owned. Get it, girl.

  • Best new attraction — St. Pete Pier

Need something to do? Look no further than the St. Pete Pier, which USA Today’s 10best ranking site listed as the second-best new attraction in the country. It features a marketplace, shops and restaurants, an art installation, the Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Center and more.

  • Best baseball city — Tampa-St. Pete-Clearwater

Tampa Bay is exactly where fans of America’s favorite pastime want to be. Ranked by as the No. 8 best baseball city in the country, Tampa Bay has had 98 local players go to the major leagues since 1920, in addition to having the Tampa Bay Rays make it to the World Series in 2020. The sunny weather helps, too.

  • Best new food city in the United States — Tampa

Tampa made Thrillist’s list of the top 15 cities in the country that are great for foodies. From the traditional Cuban sandwich to street food to farm-to-table, there is something for every palate in Tampa Bay, and the rest of the world is finally catching on.

By Jen Clark

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