When Is The Best Day To Go To Busch Gardens Tampa Bay?


Thinking it’s time to take the family (or just your thrill seeking self) on that roller coaster adventure holiday to the adrenaline junkie Mecca and activity hub that is Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay, Florida? You genius!

But, we know what’s running through your mind… When is the best day to actually visit? Well, take your thoughts back to spotting rare and endangered animals, having your hands in the air and the breeze and bugs in your face because we’ve got this covered for you.

The line outside of this attraction is often very long. But rest assured, book in advance for skip-the-line tickets with our exclusive inventory of tickets, and never waste time standing in line.

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When Are The Biggest Crowds?

Ideal information if you want to get on as many rides as possible without spending a small fortune on fast passes! Traditionally speaking, weekdays are the most quiet to visit Busch Gardens, as most tourist crowds tend to enjoy the park on the weekend, and also avoid school holidays if possible.

Monday is the least busy, with Tuesday and Wednesday also being quieter days than others. It’s also worth noting that the first couple of hours after opening – between 10am and 12 noon – are the most calm, giving you a chance to get around at least some of the more popular attractions as quickly as possible.

What Shows Or Events Are On?

Currently there is a consistent showing of four different productions at a number of times per day, these include:

  • Opening Night Critters, a humorous and warming show, incorporating an all animal cast
  • A is for Africa, a musical show involving various Sesame Street characters, bringing a number of tales and exciting adventures to life.
  • Rock A Doo Wop, remembering and celebrating the Doo Wop musical genre of yester-America.
  • Iceploration, an on-ice story of a boy and his explorer grandfather’s opposing views on modern technology and its effect on the younger generation.

Seasonally, Busch Gardens also put on various other shows and events, with Christmas Town running from 24th November, right up to December 31st, Howl-O-Scream for the week running up to Halloween and Summer Nights in June. There are also a number of other festivals and events from food and wine festivals to a Guy Harvey weekend at differing points throughout the year.

If you are interested in particular events which may influence your personal or family choice of the best day to visit, check out the day-by-day calendar or the events tab on the official website.

Does The Park Close?

The simple answer is no, whether its Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Chinese New Year or your birthday, Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay is open 365 days per year.

Whether its Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Chinese New Year or your birthday, Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay is open 365 days per year.

Meaning more fun, all year-round.

Beware however, as often certain rides and attractions can be closed for different reasons, from routine maintenance to planned upgrades.

If you’re visiting to see specific features of the park, and don’t want to arrive disappointed, make sure you look up what is and isn’t running via Busch Gardens Tampa’s ‘Attractions Updates’ page, which has a detailed list of what will be closed for maintenance between certain dates.

Are There Seasonal Times To See Certain Animals?

No, all the animals at Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay are permanent residents and can be seen every day of the week in their tailored environments.

From cheetahs to penguins, there are over 12,000 animals from more than 250 different species to spot, and over 30 threatened, or endangered species cared for within the park’s boundaries in four different safari themed zones: Edge of Africa, Jungala, Myombe Reserve, and Serengeti Plain which represent as closely as possible, the natural habitats of the animals enclosed.

Currently, there are also ten different tours available at Busch Gardens, from Elephant spotting to going behind the scenes at the Animal Care Centre, all of which are open every day of the year, unless otherwise stated.

Any Other Issues I Should Know?

Yes, the weather, if you want a beautiful sunny day, all day, it’s best to avoid the rainy season which runs from June to September, with different intensities.

Outside of those months its generally still a very warm climate, with only a few colder days, but far less rain. Just check the weather for the month you’re expecting to visit to see the likelihood of adverse conditions.


So, when is the best day to visit Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay?

  • If you want to beat the crowds, then between Monday and Wednesday (not including holidays) and as soon as the park opens
  • if you want to enjoy specific seasonal events, check the above calendar, or if you simply wish to enjoy the rides, animals and regular shows, any day is a-ok.

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