What began as a hospitality center for Anheuser Busch in 1959 has grown into a top Tampa attraction, a top United States zoo, and a world-class theme park known as Busch Gardens. At first this location was a modern take on traditional German beer gardens, then over 55 years it has grown into a 335 acre, African-themed, wildlife and recreation mecca. In the 1960s the African theme began, with the establishment of a 29 acre Serengeti Plain featuring giraffe, zebras, and bongos. A decade later the steel corkscrew coaster Python was introduced to the park, creating the beginnings of the world-class theme park. Since then the famous Kumba, Gwazi dueling wood coaster, Cheetah Hunt’s famous triple launch coaster, and North America’s largest freestanding drop tower, the Falcon’s Fury, have been thrilling guests daily!
Perhaps the most important aspect of this park is the wildlife, the whole park featuring over 12,000 different animals spanning across 250 various species. 30 of those species are threatened or endangered, making it a point as an industry to help conserve what they can through their services. In the 1990s, a 3-acre lush habitat called the Myombe Reserve was created to house endangered lowland gorillas and chimpanzees, and today that area combined with similar surrounding areas allow your group to view hippos, hyenas, Malayan tigers, Asian elephants, cheetahs, and orangutans up close and personal! The wildlife aspect of Busch Gardens in Tampa is so influential that you can see the park and its inhabitants every Saturday morning on the popular TV show, Wildlife Docs.
Tours are a wonderful way to enjoy group outings whether you are a social group, student group, or family reunion. Tour the Animal Care Center and see how the zoologists and veterinarians take care of the exotic animals or go on the Serengeti Night Safari and watch the lions prowl through the dark. After you’ve explored all the thrilling rides and exciting habitats you can stop at any of the onsite eateries for a delicious dinner or spend some time at the large and very fun Busch Gardens gift shop.