Moving to a new city is always challenging. And a large part of that challenge is looking for a place to live. There are so many things to consider when weighing your options-house styles, neighborhood safety, quality of schools, the convenience of location-it all can be quite overwhelming. That’s why we’ve researched the best places to live in Tampa for you, so you don’t have to. You’ve no doubt seen our Tampa City Guide, which includes a short section on a few of Tampa’s most popular neighborhoods.

This list and our “Best Up and Coming Neighborhoods in Tampa,” “Best Suburbs of Tampa,” and our “Best Neighborhoods for Families in Tampa” lists are more in-depth neighborhood guides meant to examine what it’s like living in each of these highlighted areas, with links to popular destinations, as well as available houses for sale and apartments for rent (and by way of introduction, we’re Bellhop —movers in Tampa and beyond).

The Best Places to Live in Tampa (2022) Bellhop Blog

A Little About Tampa and its Neighborhoods

Not too long ago, Tampa didn’t pique much interest. Apart from theme parks and strip clubs, there didn’t seem to be much happening. And kids plus creeps make for an uncomfortable combo. So we’re all thankful – locals and visitors alike – that Tampa has completely transformed. Now the city is packed with killer breweries, a great music scene, and incredible outdoor and water activities (need we say more than kayaking with manatees?).

Before we jump into specific neighborhoods, let’s go over the lay of the land:

Tampa is part of the greater metropolitan region known as the Tampa Bay Area. So a lot of people lump in the neighboring St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Brandon, and Spring Hill when talking about the area. Six general sections (New Tampa, West Tampa, Brooklyn Village, Downtown Tampa, Ybor City, and Channel District) divide up all of Tampa’s neighborhoods. And there are over a hundred of them…

But don’t worry, our list should narrow down your options. Before you know it, you’ll be sun-baked and chewin’ on a salami-packed Cuban sandwich and with your fellow Tampanions.

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South Howard

South Howard is quickly becoming one of Tampa’s most popular neighborhoods. And millennials are moving in. Why? Because South Howard is stacked with great bars, restaurants, and venues. The neighborhood still has character though – it’s certainly not a row of only junky dive bars. This residential district sits within the greater Hyde Park neighborhood and is littered with historic architecture.

What’s Happening in SoHo

With such a great location, SoHo is within walking distance to high-end restaurants, popular cafes, nightlife venues, locally-owned vintage clothing stores, art galleries, and the waterside Bayshore Boulevard.

Over time, SoHo has developed into a unique blend of historic + chic-modern + no-shame nightlife. Century-old homes bring a rich character to the area. Posh boutiques and opulent restaurants set up shop next to not-so-classy nigh clubs. In a way, the ironic name of the 20-year-old SoHo dinner joint, Gourmet Pizza, encapsulates the mix-matched themes of this neighborhood.

For great local eats, visit Civiche, 717 South, and The Green Lemon.

Schools in SoHo

Schools near SoHo include Hyde Park Day School, Woodrow Wilson Middle School, and St. John’s Episcopal Parish Day School among others.

Homes in SoHo

Quirky and quaint homes line these historic streets. But with more people moving in, newer housing buildings keep popping up.

The Best Places to Live in Tampa (2022) Bellhop Blog


This neighborhood isn’t only on a beach. It’s on one of the best beaches. A trip to neighboring Caladesi Island State Park will leave you agreeing with us. This pretty pocket has breweries and BBQ, white-sand beach parks, and views of the Gulf of Mexico. Its one of the oldest towns on the West Coast of the state, and it’s home to community gardens, downtown markets, museums, golf courses, and sports complexes.

What’s Happening in Dunedin

To truly immerse yourself in Dunedin’s culture, you have to attend the annual Scottish celebrations. You may have to buy a kilt to fit in here…and start practicing you heavy-rock-throw if you want a good dose of Scottish respect from your neighbors.

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But it’s not all plaid skirts and bizarre activities. Dunedin’s charming downtown interests locals with quaint shops and occasional events. The nearby Honeymoon Islands State Park offers locals a piece of untouched tropical beauty. And restaurants, bars, and breweries add the cherry on top. Check out Eli’s Bar-B-Que, Bon Appétit, and HEW Parlor & Chophouse for some incredible local eats.

Ybor City and The Channel District

Ybor sings with the charm of restored brick roads and an active trolley system. This area uniquely blends eclectic with old-timey. It’s offerings of one-of-a-kind, locally-owned shops and restaurants make the area of Ybor feel like a hole in the wall.

What’s Happening in Ybor City and The Channel District

Ybor is gaining attention. And since the announcement that the Tampa Bay Rays plan to move to the neighborhood, more people have been turning their heads in Ybor’s direction.

With or without the Blue Rays though, Ybor offers its locals plenty of interesting things to do. The area regularly throws festivals, parades, and events. And Tampanions know the area for its prime nightlife, with clubs, bars, and music venues that will blissfully pass the night away.  

Want to experience the soul of the city? Smoke a hand-rolled stogie from Nicahabana Cigars. Ybor City is known for its historical Cuban cigar factories, and there are still quite a few available for perusing.

Schools in Ybor City and The Channel District

Schools near Ybor City and The Channel District include Phillip Shore School and Academy Prep Center of Tampa among others.

Homes in Ybor City and The Channel District

In Ybor City and the Channel District, historic homes intermingle with newly constructed homes and apartments.

The Best Places to Live in Tampa (2022) Bellhop Blog

St. Petersburg

The past several years have brought a large wave of younger professionals and entrepreneurs to St. Petersburg. And with this change came an available market to target. Since then, myriads of activities, events, restaurants, bars, and shops have opened up and cashed in on these new residents. Well, interestingly enough, this change has made St. Petersburg even more attractive to young adults looking for their dream place to live. And St. Petersburg hits a lot of requirements on the list. (Oh, and we are St. Petersburg movers too, by the way).

What’s Happening in St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg started off right – with brick-lined streets, large sidewalks, aesthetic architecture, and waterfront parks. Now, the area has an event every weekend, Saturday Morning Markets, and a courtyard music venue. St. Petersburg’s got nightlife down. Central Avenue will require that you pace yourself, with its notable breweries, cocktail joints, dive bars, clubs, and speakeasies.

Locals of this beachy paradise live in the excitement and vibrancy of downtown life – walking to farmers markets and coffee shops, enjoying eclectic cuisines, and attending festivals and regular concerts. No matter where you are in St. Pete, the beach is a 20 minute or less trip away, making it a regular stop for locals who like to play a pickup game of beach volleyball or enjoy a blended drink at one of the beachfront restaurants.

Schools in St. Pete Beach

Schools in St. Petersburg include Pasadena Fundamental Elementary School, Plato Academy of St. Petersburg, and Bay Vista Fundamental Elementary School among others.

Homes in St. Pete Beach

St. Petersburg is known for its large and beautiful homes. But finding affordable and lower-priced houses is very doable, and downtown offers great apartments and houses for rent.

There you have it: the best places to live in Tampa!

We hope this was helpful, and if you decide to take the plunge, don’t hesitate to reach out to your friends here at Bellhop. As we said, we coordinate local and long distance moving services in Tampa, and we would love to help. Lastly, we also help coordinate moves for nearby cities such as JacksonvilleOrlando, and Miami should you be interested!

Harrison Stevens