There are things to do in Miami to satisfy everyone’s tastes. Whether you’d like to party all night on South Beach, explore the natural wonders of Everglades National Park or simply veg out on the beach with your friends, Miami has plenty of recreational opportunities available to you. In this article, we take a look at the 10 best ways to kick back and relax in South Florida.
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1. South Beach, Miami, Florida
No visit to Miami can be considered complete without a stop at South Beach — the quintessential Miami hot spot. From shopping to partying, this area of Miami Beach is well-known for being a trendy locale. Depending on your personal tastes, you might enjoy spending a full weekend touring South Beach, stay at one of the best hotels in South Beach, take a South Beach walking tour, explore the Art Deco architecture of the area or party all night with the Miami Beach nightlife.
With 1.5 million acres of swamps, saw-grass prairies, and sub-tropical jungles, Everglades National Park is one of the most unusual public parks in the United States. Located on the southern tip of Florida, the park is home to 14 rare and endangered species, including the American Crocodile, the Florida Panther, and the West Indian Manatee. A large portion of the park is primitive, explored only by adventurists and researchers – but visitors have ample opportunity to walk, camp and canoe.
3. Zoo Miami
Zoo Miami is fast becoming one of the best zoos in the nation. Its climate allows it to keep a wide variety of animals from Asia, Australia and Africa like no other zoo in the country. One of the first free-range zoos in the country, the exhibits are entirely cageless. Animals are grouped according to their geographic territory and animals that live together peacefully in the wild are placed in exhibits together.
4. Miami Seaquarium
The Miami Seaquarium is located right in the middle of the tourist area, on the causeway between downtown Miami and Key Biscayne. It’s a fabulous stop where you can witness an outdoor aquarium experience that’s only possible in our tropical climate. Be sure to budget enough time to spend at least half a day there!
5. Hit the Beach!
Miami’s beaches offer a great opportunity to get some exercise or just enjoy some time in the sun! We take a look at a few of our favorite beaches, including a couple of lesser-used spots where you’ll be able to avoid the tourist crowd.
6. Miami Science Museum
Check out the latest kid-friendly exhibits at the Miami Museum of Science. You’re bound to find a learning adventure for the whole family. The museum is home to the Bird of Prey Research Center and the Weintraub Observatory.
7. Miami Children’s Museum
If you have kids (or just like to act like them!), the Miami Children’s Museum is a must-see destination. Their motto of “Play, Learn, Imagine, Create” shines through in the wide variety of interactive exhibits that allow children to explore everything from a supermarket to a television studio, picking up valuable lessons along the way.
8. Jungle Island
Jungle Island (formerly known as Parrot Jungle) offers visitors a fun, educational opportunity to get an up-close look at tropical birds in replicas of their natural habitats. The attraction routinely hosts field trips and offers frequent educational programs.
9. Monkey Jungle Miami
“Where the humans are caged and the monkeys run wild” – it’s more than a catch-phrase. Monkey Jungle in southern Miami-Dade County is a truly unique park. While homo sapiens walk through carefully constructed wire pathways, many species of primates scamper above your head, swing through trees and interact with each other in ways difficult to observe in captivity. Keep your eyes open; you never know who’s hanging around!
10. Coral Castle
Coral Castle is truly a monument to the uniqueness of Miami! This attraction was built by a Latvian-born Miami resident named Ed Leedskalnin as a monument to his lover. After 28 years of effort, he introduced his 1100-ton coral creation to the world. It’s a bit of a trip from downtown, but well worth the time.
11. Vizcaya in Miami, Florida
No visit to Miami is complete without a stop at the historical 50-acre Vizcaya estate. This European-style mansion offers a glimpse at life in turn-of-the-century South Florida. It’s also an extremely popular venue for galas, weddings, and other entertainment events.