Florida State Fair 2024 Details You Need to Know

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Unless you live in the Tampa, Florida, area, you’re probably going to need a place to stay the night before and the night of your fair days. 

The fairgrounds do have an on-site campsite, and Tampa has everything from a five-star luxury hotel to private roomstays. There’s everything to meet your budget.


Camping & RV’ing

The Tampa State Fair fairgrounds has a campground. It’s open to fairgounds guests on a first-come-first-serve basis, and it’s a pet-friendly site. Campers can park one support vehicle at their camping space.

However, during the state fair, reservations are needed, and the fairgrounds only allows people with RVs and campers to stay in the “camping” area. First on the list of prohibited items is “tents,” followed closely with “open flame fires.” Sites have full hookups with power and electricity.

Campground rates are $47 per night for a 30 amp hookup $57 per night for a 50 amp hookup, per the 2024 Vendor Guide. 

I’m hoping to walk around and maybe find some vanlife kind of people, who are camping out of their vehicle. My goal is to have my SUV outfitted as a sleeper in 2025 and not have to deal with hotels. 

Fancy FIve-Star HOtels

Tampa is a high-class town, and it has more than just one fancy hotel for you Daddy Warbuckses. There’s a Grand Hyatt, a Hilton, a Marriot, an Embassy Suites, an Autograph Collection, and a Westin. 

The closest lux hotel to the fairgrounds is the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa hotel. Google estimates the hotel to be a 7-minute drive, or a 7-minute bike ride, from the fair, and a 49-minute walk. 

I’m a huge fan of things I can’t afford, and this hotel is just that extra. At $400 a nights (as of February 2024), this is way out of my budget, especially when I can go on a week-long cruise for that much cash… But maybe you have that kind of money. Good for you.

And if you have lots of money to throw around, check out The Tampa EDITION, where rooms start at $700 a night. It’s fancy-fancy.  

Normal Chain Hotels

Many of the “normal” hotels in Tampa are priced about $130 to $200 a night. These are your average highway roadside inns — La Quinta Inn, Days Inn, Holiday Inn, Red Roof Inn, Comfort Suites, Ramada Inn, and more.

These hotels book up quickly during fair time. If you don’t book early enough, your options will be limited to hotels with very questionable ratings and reviews. You know, the hotels that have as many one-star reviews as it has five-star reviews…and you just can’t be sure which ones are real, or if they’re written by people who usually stay at fancy hotels and don’t know what actual “roughing it” entails.


If you don’t mind bunking with others during your stay in Tampa, consider staying at a hostel.

Gram’s Place is a pretty cool location, with a hot tub and a tree house. The hostel is situated in two circa-1945 cottages near Busch Gardens and the Florida Aquarium. It’s private rooms are decorated by musical styles, like folk, jazz, rock, and blues. The dorm rooms also have music-themed names (not so much in decor), like country and disco. 

Besides grams, there are also more than a few homes that have rooms with bunk beds. These places operate as hostels.

Homestays & Vacation Rentals

Many Tampa residents have put their extra rooms and houses on vacation rental sites like Air B&B, Verbo, HippCamp, and Agoda.

For 2024, I’ve found a nice room on Air B&B very close to the fairgrounds. The price was very fair, and the host has hundreds of very positive reviews. (I haven’t stayed there yet, but after my stay, I’ll post some details. Fingers crossed…)

Remember, the beauty of fair food is its indulgence and variety. So, grab a friend, explore the options, and savor the experience!

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