Florida's vast and unique landscape makes it a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers.
The Sunshine State has more than 30,000 lakes of all sizes spanning three million acres.
One of the places that prove Florida's abundance of lakes is Odessa.
This suburban community, considered a census-designated area in Pasco County, boasts more than 20 lakes.
This unique and charming community is considered by many as their home.
At the same time, visitors can explore this place and enjoy the peaceful vibes and vast natural areas teeming with outdoor adventure.
If you have the appetite to discover unknown places, Odessa is an excellent destination worthy of exploring.
So, here are the 15 best things to do in Odessa, FL, and its nearby places:
Wander through the Vast Natural Areas of Brooker Creek Preserve
The Brooker Creek Preserve, which spans 8,700 acres, is Pinellas County's most extensive natural area.
The entire preserve comprises pine Flatwoods and forested wetlands while bordering it is a successful urban development.
This natural attraction just east of Odessa is an excellent place for nature lovers to discover a unique and diverse native flora and fauna collection.
In addition, people can visit this place to hike and have worthwhile nature photography, capturing the natural beauty of the Sunshine State.
Furthermore, the Brooker Creek Preserve protects a vast portion of the Brooker Creek Watershed.
Overall, this natural area west of Odessa offers outdoor adventurers like you a splendid hiking, nature photography, and horseback-riding experience.
Chug Down a Pint at the Big Storm Brewing Co.
Reward yourself with a pint of a freshly-brewed craft beer at the Big Storm Brewing Co. after a tiring day exploring Odessa's parks and nature preserves.
This local brewer is known for its dynamic line-up of craft beer, but recently, they're also developing their line of world-class spirits.
So, don't forget to unwind, loosen a bit and grab a pint after a whole day of exploration in Odessa at the Big Storm Brewing Co.
Spend Your Day at the Lake Rogers Conservation Park
The Lake Rogers Conservation Park, accessed through North Mobley Road in Odessa, is a sprawling natural area that offers an incredible place for outdoor activities.
This conservation park is famous for picnic, hiking, fishing, and boating activities.
It's an excellent place to bring your family or travel buddies and enjoy the vast open space that spans over 272-acres.
Its trail covers around three miles taking hikers to picturesque wooded areas and open green spaces.
Most of those who visit the Lake Rogers Conservation Park love to spend their day at the lake, offering a scenic backdrop for a perfect picnic.
In addition, the park is teeming with small animals such as lizards commonly seen along the trail, making it an excellent place for wildlife photography.
To start your travel adventure in Odessa, head to the Lake Rogers Conservation Park.
Have a Worthwhile Hike through the Suncoast Trail
The Suncoast Trail, which opened in 2001, is part of Florida's vast Statewide Greenways and Trails System.
This trail accessed in Odessa is parallel to the Suncoast Parkway that starts in the northern portion of Hillsborough County and leads hikers through the north to Hernando and Pasco Counties.
If you're planning for a hike, your journey through the Suncoast Trail takes you to a mixture of natural, agricultural, and suburban sceneries.
Many interpretive signs detail the area's historical significance, local ecology, and wildlife.
One of the best features of Suncoast Trail is probably the Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Preserve, known for its picturesque waterways and natural areas.
So, head to the Suncoast Trail, open all week, for a worthwhile hike.
Give Your Best Shot at the TPC Tampa Bay
The TPC Tampa Bay golf course in Lutz, just outside of Odessa, is a stunning golf course that you need to check out.
Constructed and designed by Bobby Weed for the PGA Tour in 1991, this 18-hole golf course boasts 4.5 star-rating by the Golf Digest and even earned the "Top Five Golf Courses in Florida" from the Florida Golf Magazine.
If you're still not convinced, this golf course hosted the PGA Tour Champions for more than two decades, making it one of the top-notch golf courses throughout Florida.
It's hard to imagine that a golf course this prestigious is found in the sleepy town of Odessa.
The TPC Tampa Bay is known for its charming course spanning natural wetlands, lagoons, and cypress heads, making a perfect backdrop for each golfer.
In addition, the TPC Tampa Bay is one of the two golf courses designated as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary in the Tampa Bay Area.
Aside from the wildlife and natural scenery, this golf course provides enough challenge to golfers.
However, it provides a fun and memorable experience to everyone who wishes to play there.
Enjoy the Outdoors at the Odessa Community Park
Compared to the Lake Rogers Conservation Park, the Odessa Community Park offers sports and outdoor facilities to the public.
Many of Odessa's locals love to spend their morning or afternoon at this park not just to relax but to play at various ports.
The Odessa Community Park spans 29 acres and has numerous sports facilities like a basketball court, tennis courts, a playground, and a boardwalk.
With all these amenities and facilities, you'll have an enjoyable experience there.
In addition, its boardwalk offers visitors a great view of birds, trees, and plants thriving in the area.
While its picnic tables with grills add more reasons to have a picnic there with your travel buddies or your family.
The Odessa Community Park has plenty of exciting things and space to spend quality time outdoors.
Have a Family's Day Out at the Old McMicky's Farm
The Old McMicky's Farm along Crescent Drive in Odessa is a themed family attraction based on the classic nursery rhyme "Old McDonald Had a Farm."
This place offers a wholesome experience for kids and adults by treating everyone with its great farm activities.
From milking a cow and catching chickens to riding a pony, there are many exciting farm activities your family can enjoy at Old McMicky's Farm.
You and your loved ones can enjoy a little ride through its barn maze hayride through its vintage 1949 Ford Tractor to add more excitement.
Or perhaps, get a closer look at the cute and cuddly piglets and calves at its farm nursery.
Every corner of Old McMicky's Farm has a fun-filled surprise waiting for you and your loved ones, so don't miss visiting this place when you're in Odessa.
Enjoy the Outdoors at the Upper Tampa Bay Trail
The Upper Tampa Bay Trail spans through Westchase in the south to Odessa, covering roughly five kilometers of out-and-back trail.
If you have more energy for hiking, check out Upper Tampa Bay Trail's moderately challenging route.
The hike leads through a mixture of sceneries from suburban and agricultural to natural areas.
The Upper Tampa Bay Trail is widely regarded as the area's most excellent urban trail, offering you a unique hiking experience.
Instead of the usual hike, you're passing through communities, grazing fields, and even local businesses, which tempt you to stop and grab something to eat.
Overall, the Upper Tampa Bay Trail is a must-hike destination in Odessa if you're seeking a unique hiking experience.
Get into Outdoor Action at the Starkey Wilderness Preserve
The J.B Starkey Wilderness Park north of Odessa is a sprawling natural area covering more than 8,300 acres.
This natural area is co-managed by the Pasco County Parks and Recreation and the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
This wilderness preserve adjoins the 6,500-acre Serenova Tract further north and the Anclote River Ranch Tract that spans 1,300 acres to the south.
The J.B Starkey Wilderness Park is the most extensive recreational area in the Central Florida region with all these combined.
For outdoor lovers, it's an excellent place to do various outdoor activities.
Aside from hiking, many people flock to this park to have a picnic, do horseback riding, bike, play sports, and birdwatching.
The whole park is so vast that you'll likely spend the entire day exploring it.
Learn Horseback Riding at the Odessa Equestrian Center
If you're looking for a one-of-a-kind experience during your travel adventure to Odessa, try horseback riding at the Odessa Equestrian Center along Huntsville Road.
This charming 30 acres of equestrian center boasts some of the finest horses for equestrian and horseback riding experience in Florida.
This equestrian center offers lessons for all disciplines to everyone.
It has an excellent boarding facility tucked into private property that features a beautiful landscape.
If you want to learn equestrian, head to the Odessa Equestrian Center and return home with a new skill.
Have More Golf Sessions at the Eagles Golf Club
The Eagles Golf Club in Odessa along Nine Eagles Drive has been operating since the mid-1990s.
When it comes to standards, the Eagles Golf Club excels as one of the best public golf courses in the Tampa Bay Area.
It has two top-notch 18-hole golf courses known for their challenging yet beautiful landscape teeming with forest and lakes.
These golf courses are named the Lake Course and the Forest Course, offering unique challenges and beauty.
In addition, its local wildlife and scenery add more beauty to these golf courses.
So, it's up to you which of these two courses you want to spend time with, or perhaps, tee up for both.
Lend a Helping Hand at the Odessa Wildlife Rescue and Sanctuary
For a more meaningful experience in Odessa, you can visit the Odessa Wildlife Rescue and Sanctuary along Rustic Woods Trail.
This place, which opened in 1992, has been a haven for abused and neglected animals in the Tampa Bay Region.
Cats and dogs were the first animals brought here for treatment and care during their early years.
More animals of different types are brought to this sanctuary as the years have passed.
It's a must-visit place for animal lovers because of its interactive private tours.
The tour lets visitors learn how to work with animals in a rescue sanctuary.
There are feeding, playing, and petting sessions with the animals being taken care of at this sanctuary.
You're likely to feed a zebra, an alpaca, zebu, and donkeys currently being fostered at the sanctuary.
In addition, your tour there is similar to visiting a zoo because of the wide variety of animals that you'll only see in a zoo.
Overall, visiting the Odessa Wildlife Rescue and Sanctuary is a fulfilling experience you shouldn't miss, especially with your loved ones.
Other Things to Do Nearby
Feel the Thrill with Your Loved Ones at the Busch Gardens
The Famous Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay is a half an hour's drive south of Odessa, making it the perfect destination after exploring the latter.
This theme park spanning 297 acres, features more than 12,000 animals, more than a dozen shows, rides, restaurants, games, and shops.
As one of the longest-running theme parks in Florida, there are many reasons for you and your loved ones to visit this place.
Everything you do there guarantees you excitement, fun, and great memories.
Get Up Close with Animals at the Tarpon Springs Aquarium and Animal Sanctuary
The Tarpon Springs Aquarium and Animal Sanctuary is another attraction near Odessa worthy of visiting.
Situated west of Odessa in Tarpon Springs, getting there is quick, which takes about 28-minutes or less.
Visiting this place offers everyone the chance to hold and pet exotic animals like alligators, sharks, rays, tarpons, turtles, snakes, and tortoises.
So, list Tarpon Springs Aquarium and Animal Sanctuary on your must-visit places near Odessa.
Watch Top-Notch Entertainment at the Richey Suncoast Theatre
The Richey Suncoast Theatre, which is 25-minutes west of Odessa, has been a regional entertainment and historical icon since the 1920s.
If you're a Broadway fan or a history buff, this is the best place you need to check out.
Today, the Richey Suncoast Theatre remains the premier entertainment destination in New Port Richey.
It has hosted countless live performances, concerts, and Broadway-style shows while maintaining its old beauty and adopting modern technology.
Before wrapping up your Odessa travel adventure, spend some time at the Richey Suncoast Theatre and be amazed by its timeless beauty.
For many, Odessa might be another suburban community, but it's a lowkey, incredible destination for those yearning to escape the city stress.
With its tranquil atmosphere paired with untamed wilderness and natural beauty, Odessa is a hidden gem in Central Florida.
So, bookmark this page for your reference during your visit to Odessa before packing your stuff.