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This episode we talk with Jessica Watkins a Park Ranger for Ybor City Museum State Park.  Ybor City is a small suburb of Tampa Florida, and is one of only two National Historic Landmark Districts in Florida, with some of the richest history you will surely want to learn about and visit. The name Ybor came from one of the founders Vicente Martinez-Ybor. He immigrated from Spain in 1887 to start a cigar company which eventually grew into one of the largest cigar manufactures in the world making Tampa Florida the cigar capital of the world. As you walk through Ybor City you will find many buildings with remnants of a cigar era and industry gone by.  But don’t despair, there are many store fronts with master rollers on site showing their craftsmanship with hand rolled cigars for you to try.

The Museum and State Park is available for private parties, weddings or the just to sit and relax in a Mediterranean setting. “I would encourage those in the area to spend their lunch break here.” Jessica stated. “At night when the lights on the park are on, it’s simply beautiful.” Private Guided tours are available as well as self-paced for those who love to take their time.

Ybor City, with its diverse culture has many different restaurants to visit. One of the most famous is the Columbia established in 1905 making it one of the oldest in Tampa. Now going on its 5 generation of owners, the Columbia’s Spanish stylish cuisine is a must when you visit Ybor City.

So next time in Tampa Florida visit Ybor City Museum State Park, walk around town, dine at one of many great restaurants and if it’s to your taste, stop by one of the many cigar shops to watch a master in action.

Mentioned in this Episode

Madison County FL

Wallis Reyes 

Jose Marti Park

Ybor City

Columbia Restaurant

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