The homes of Tarpon Springs are very diverse, matching the richness of the city’s history and culture. Historic Victorian homes in Tarpon Heights are nestled close to downtown, while new planned development communities offer newly constructed homes. Tarpon Springs is also spotted with a variety of gated communities for those seeking more privacy.
Tarpon Springs borders the Anclote River, which feeds into the Gulf of Mexico. Rich sponge beds were discovered in the 1880’s, which spawned a flourishing industry. Today, Tarpon Springs remains the world’s largest natural sponge-producing industry supplying 70% of the national sponges. The city also borders Tarpon Lake to the southeast and the Gulf of Mexico to the west. It’s no surprise that this is a water-loving city.
Greek culture runs deep in Tarpon Springs, which claims the highest percentage of Americans with Greek heritage of any city in the United States. An array of everyday activities and special events exemplify the area’s rich Greek culture. It is characterized by the sponge docks, Greektown Historic District, St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral, as well as annual festivals such as the infamous Epiphany Celebration, where young Greek-American males dive into Spring Bayou each January in hopes of retrieving the coveted Epiphany Cross, .
Extensive Greek infrastructure and a strong continuity of traditions and culture helped Tarpon Springs earn a designation as a Historic District (Traditional Cultural Property) from the National Register of Historic Places. The Greektown Historic District encompasses the sponge docks, downtown, and historic neighborhoods surrounding downtown, including Tarpon Heights.
In addition to rich Greek culture, Tarpon Springs serves many seeking active lifestyles by offering golfing, boating, fishing, kayaking, scuba diving and more. Tarpons Springs also marks the northern tip of the Pinellas Trail, a 45-mile rail trail that stretches from Tarpon Springs to St. Petersburg. This provides a great space for walking, running, skateboarding and biking.
Anclote Key State Park and Lighthouse is located just a few miles off the coast of Tarpon Springs. It’s accessible via a public ferry from the mainland and offers several recreation opportunities such as bird watching, sea shelling, swimming and sunbathing. The beaches on Anclote Key are often less crowded than others.
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