If you’re a true local, you know that Tampa Bay has some of the best sunset views in the country. In 2013, Clearwater Beach  was rated the #1 spot to watch the sun go down in the US. I’m here to show you why Tampa is #1 in my heart for the most breathtaking pink and purple skies during that golden hour. Here are seven of my favorite spots to watch the sunset in Tampa Bay!

Davis Island Dog Beach

You might think I’m crazy, but I have the pictures to prove it: Davis Island Dog Beach has a good view of the sunset from any angle. You can sit on the rocks by the corner of Martinique and Severn Ave to see the sunset over the water. Or you can go to the beach on the Davis Island Yacht Club side and see the sunset through the sails of the Wind Dancer. Lastly, take your dog to the beach to watch the sun go down over the Peter O'Knight Airport. Maybe you’ll get lucky and see a plane take off as the sun dips behind the horizon. But no matter the view you choose the best part is that you can bring your furry friend to take in the pink and purple skies with you.

Clearwater Beach

I don’t know what changed after 2013 because Clearwater Beach still takes my breath away as the bright orange sun goes beyond the horizon. As the sun sets over the water, a reflection of the colorful skies creates a pink lighting for all within sight of the sun. Whether you’re with a significant other or your Mom and Dad watching the sunset over Clearwater Beach will make you feel like you’re in a movie.

Whiskey Joe's

If you've never been then I’m sure you’ve seen the crowds at Whiskey Joe’s on any given Saturday or Sunday. Whiskey Joe’s has been a popular sunset spot since they opened in 2005 on the Courtney Campbell Causeway. With a unique location like their small peninsula surrounded on three sides by the Bay, their sunsets provide onlookers with a romantic view for dinner or backdrop for their next Instagram. Stop by today and enjoy a beer or bite to eat with a fantastic view!

Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park

This beautiful park in the middle of Downtown Tampa provides students from the University of Tampa with a nostalgic view to remember forever while the sun sets. When I first began taking classes at UT, I was thrilled to find this hidden gem. Curtis Hixon Park looks over the minarets of Plant Hall, which is the most charming and well-known building on campus. For UT students, alumni and faculty it's an immediate reminder of their time spent at UT. But whether you're a Spartan or not, don't miss the sunset from Curtis Hixon Park.

Ballast Point Park

Ballast Point Park, the small park at the very end of Bayshore Blvd, has a great view of the Downtown Tampa skyline from across the Bay. I don’t know exactly what it is, but there’s something extra special about watching the sun go down over a body of water and the bay is no exception. At Ballast Point Park there is a boardwalk that adds to the beauty of that golden hour. If you’re hungry you can grab an ice cream or some seafood from Taste of Boston but make sure you take a second to enjoy the colorful skies all around you.

Picnic Island Beach

Picnic Island Dog Park is the southernmost point of South Tampa where you can play disc golf or let your dog run around on the beach. It's a place where the whole family is welcome, even your furry friend! But it’s also one of the best places to watch the sunset in Tampa. And here's the proof!

From the Highway- 275 Downtown/Ybor Area

Strangely enough, I’ve seen some of the most beautiful sunsets in Tampa from the windows of my Prius. When I’m headed north on 275 during the sunset I always get the best view because the highway is elevated. It’s a real blessing because it makes that rush hour traffic more bearable!  Above are some of the pictures I’ve taken on the highway (and don’t worry I was riding shotgun!).

Share with us your favorite place to watch the sunset in the comments! We’d love to feature your picture or write about your favorite spot.

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All pictures from author.