Miami Beach Travel Guide

Sit back and enjoy our Miami Beach Travel Guide.  Find everything you need for a wonderful vacation at a top notch beach destination.  Hear the word Miami and the first thing that may come to mind is the beach. Miami beach has mile after mile of sparkling waters, golden sands, tanned tourists, celebrity-studded hotels, and nonstop nightlife.  You can look at the glamorous images, or you can come see for yourself!   Miami Beach, from South Beach to North Beach, is a legendary resort destination, setting high standards for hospitality, but always renewing and renovating to catch the latest waves of visitor expectations.  Miami Beach offers a variety that goes far beyond sun and sand, to include world-famous nightlife and world-renowned art galleries, first-class hotels and second-to-none dining, designer shopping and a unique architectural style that makes it one of the world’s most visually distinctive regions.  Visit the beaches of Miami here.

Weather – When to Visit Miami Beach

The warm season lasts from May 29 to September 29 with an average daily high temperature above 88°F. The hottest day of the year is August 7, with an average high of 91°F and low of 75°F.  The cold season lasts from December 5 to February 24 with an average daily high temperature below 79°F. The coldest day of the year is January 18, with an average low of 57°F and high of 76°F.Airports

Miami Beach Attractions

South Beach

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People watching is a great pastime in Miami’s South Beach, which draws celebrities and beautiful people in skimpy swim attire to see and be seen. The wide and fine, white sand-covered beaches are popular spots for fashion photo shoots, so you’re sure to see models. The area is known for its hip clubs and wild nightlife as well as numerous excellent restaurants.

Lincoln Road

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Lincoln Road features various shops, cafés, galleries, restaurants, bars and other businesses. It attracts over 11 million visitors annually from all over the world not just for its premier shopping destinations, restaurants, and nightlife but also for its architecture.

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Miami Beach Boardwalk

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The Miami Beach Boardwalk is a must-see when visiting the Miami, Florida area. It is a beautiful and scenic pathway that stretches from the southern point of South Beach northward for approximately 40 blocks. You have beautiful views of the Atlantic ocean on one side and views of lavish South Beach hotels and condos on the other. 

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South Pointe Park

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South Pointe Park is a park on Miami Beach with access to the beach but much more to do. There’s a sidewalk for jogging, modern benches for lounging, a children’s playground with water features, green areas, a pier for fishing, access to a beach and easy access to restaurants and other attractions of the area. South Pointe is an iconic backdrop for many a photo shoot of amateurs and professionals alike. Another local spot to check up is the onsite Smith and Wollensky steakhouse.

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Ocean Drive

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The pastel-hued, art deco buildings, colorful night lights, fancy cars, and of course, rows and rows of palm trees are exactly what make Ocean Drive quintessential Miami. Stretching from 1st street all the way up till 15th street, Ocean Drive is filled with colorful shops, all types of dinning and, of course, the best people-watching around.

Things to do in Miami Beach

Thriller Miami Speedboat Adventures

Cruise the Miami coastline ‘Miami Vice-style’ on this 45-minute speedboat cruise. Settle in to your plush seat as your expert captain pilots the speedboat down the sandy shoreline, where you can view Fisher Island and Star Island’s collection of multi-millionaire and celebrity homes. Buzz by Miami Beach, where the locals strut their stuff in sun and you can snap photos of the Art Deco mansions lining South Beach. Telephone: 305-371-3278 Web: Thriller Miami Speedboat Adventures

Cypress Airboats

Miami Florida’s premiere air boat rides in the Everglades. Join them for a fantastic journey on the river of grass. Everglades national park air boat rides in Miami are the best place to see wildlife, Birds and of course the American alligator. Telephone: 305-280-4812 Web: Cypress Airboats

Dolphin World

They provide the best tour & ticket to swim with the dolphins. With pick up service for this tour, the guide will give you all the details of your dolphin swim, fast pass check in, round trip transportation and your dolphin program. The dolphin program is 30 minutes in the water with the dolphins where you get to pet, hold, play and swim with them. Telephone: 954-525-4441 Web: Dolphin World

Everglades Birding

At Everglades Birding,Capt. Dave Hunt, a certified Florida Master Naturalist, will take you on a unique journey where you’ll see a wide array of birds living and feeding in their natural coastal habitat within Everglades National Park which is one of the top 10 birding locations in the World, according to many sources. Telephone: 954-319-1849 Web: Everglades Birding

Tigertail Airboat Tours

They we specialize in small guided airboat tours. They operate in the southern end of the Everglades on Tamiami trail in the Miccosukee reservation near Miami. You will experience the Everglades first hand as you handle young alligators and turtles while learning about the wildlife, and the area. Telephone: 305-439-2745 Web: Tigertail Airboat Tours

Best Miami Beach Restaurants

$-Inexpensive     $$-Moderate     $$$-Pricey     $$$$-Ultra High End

$$ – $$$ Joe’s Stone Crab

Though Joe’s boasts a full selection of fresh seafood and steaks with full-time fish and meat butchers tasked with cutting the perfect piece of flesh, it’s the stone crabs that people fly across the globe for. The claws, served with the restaurant’s signature mustard sauce, are the reason why  people keep going back. Telephone: 305-673-0365 Web: Joe’s Stone Crab

$$$$ Stubborn Seed

The 70-seat restaurant features industrial lines interspersed with graffiti, allowing focus to be drawn to the food. A menu features items under the categories of “Raw/Snacks” and entrées of “Meats/Fish.” If you have time, opt for a $95 tasting menu that provides nine courses with luxury embellishments that are rotated based on seasonality. Telephone: 786-322-5211 Web: Stubborn Seed

$$ – $$$ Macchialina

Macchialina is an energetic, casual Italian taverna featuring the bold, seasonally inspired cooking of Chef Michael Pirolo. The recipe is simple, clean flavors, fresh ingredients & rustic accents. The 70-seat establishment emits a warm, inviting and hip ambiance that feels as if it has been plucked from the streets of New York City.   Telephone: 305-534-2124 Web: Macchialina

$$ – $$$ Planta

The menu is extensive and on the culinary cutting edge, offering impressively creative dishes such as ahi watermelon nigiri, melt-in-your-mouth cauliflower tots, an omnivore-inspired meat lover’s pizza, and a Planta burger.  Telephone: 305-397-8513 Web: Planta

$$$$ The Bazaar by Jose Andres

Your palate will never experience a dull moment — from liquid nitrogen caipirinhas (that drink like adult sorbets and rouse oohs and ahhs throughout the under-the-sea-like white dining room) and the onion soup with foie gras cappuccino to the airbreadcubano ($12), chock-full of Swiss foam and topped with house-made pickles and Ibérico pork meat that literally explodes in your mouth.   Telephone: 305-455-2999 Web: The Bazaar by Jose Andres

Best Miami Nightlife

Rusty Pelican

Popular with tourists and a fun spot to take out of town guests, the Rusty Pelican is one of Miami’s landmark lounges located on Key Biscayne and offering dramatic views of the Downtown Miami skyline. Stop in at sunset to enjoy the best of the bar area, serving drinks until 11pm weeknights and 1am on weekends. Perfect for a pre-dinner toast or a romantic nightcap, the Pelican Bar also offers happy hour discounts weeknights from 4-7pm.   Telephone: 305-361-3818 Web: Rusty Pelican

River Yacht Club

Enjoy food, drinks, music and fun as the sun sets and the city’s top DJs spin for a well-dressed crowd. If you’ve got the income for a Van Dutch yacht, you can make your entrance via the dock area with all eyes on your pricey boat. Otherwise, be content to relax under a tropical gazebo sipping cool drinks and sizing up the crowd.    Telephone: 305-200-5716 Web: River Yacht Club

Smith & Wollensky

Smith & Wollensky is a popular steakhouse with a waterfront bar offering stellar views of massive cruise ships slowly steaming out to sea. Folks in the know gather around 4pm to toast the afternoon with a round of drinks and a cool ocean breeze. Enjoy classic cocktails, a well-curated wine list and tasty bar bites in good company seven days a week.   Telephone: 305-673-2800 Web: Smith & Wollensky

Nikki Beach Club

Nikki Beach Club provides private beachfront access at the southernmost part of Ocean Drive. With full bar and dining service both indoors and alfresco, the club is an ideal spot to spend a lazy weekend afternoon surrounded by some dazzling beach bodies.   Telephone: 305-538-1111 Web: Nikki Beach Club

Ricky’s South Beach

Ricky’s South Beach is a downmarket bar, restaurant and live music venue adjoining Bodega Taqueria on 16th Street just west of Alton Road. Part of the Menin Hospitality collection’s new ventures in the area, Ricky’s offers nostalgic arcade games, a carnival-inspired menu by Chef Bernie Matz, and a broad selection of beer, whiskey and craft cocktails. Telephone: 305-704-3602 Web: Ricky’s South Beach

Top Miami Beach Hotels

The Miami Beach EDITION

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This beachfront Miami Beach hotel features an on-site ice skating rink, 2 outdoor pools, free WiFi access, and a petite spa. The Lincoln Road Mall is 1.4 miles away from the Florida hotel.  A bowling alley, nightclub, and fitness center are available for guests to enjoy on site at The EDITION. Bars and cabanas are offered poolside, and an outdoor movie theater is also featured.  Matador Room prepares Latin cuisine while Tropicale serves light snacks poolside. The Market at The Miami Beach EDITION includes cocktails, sandwiches, and a raw bar. The Matador Bar and the Lobby Bar offer wine, champagne, and other beverages. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit The Miami Beach EDITION.

1 Hotel South Beach

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This property is 2 minutes walk from the beach. This historic oceanfront hotel features a private beach area and an on-site restaurant. There are 4 swimming pools, including a rooftop pool, available at 1 Hotel South Beach.  1 Hotel South Beach guests can access the on-site fitness center and spa and wellness center. Guests looking for adventure can enjoy water sports activities while kids can explore the children’s club activities.  Beach Craft restaurant by Chef Tom Colicchio offers seasonal farm-to-table Mediterranean fare. Four on-site snack and beverage bars, as well as 24-hour in-room dining, are available.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit 1 Hotel South Beach.

Nautilus, a SIXTY Hotel

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This oceanfront 1950s-era Nautilus, a SIXTY Hotel boasts an outdoor pool surrounded by cabanas, spa services, and a restaurant. A continental breakfast buffet is available, and the South Beach district is 10 minutes’ walk away.  Direct beach access with lounging chairs can be enjoyed to the utmost with full food and beverage service. Guests can access the fitness center 24 hours a day. A 24-hour reception, concierge service, and luggage storage are available to all guests throughout their stays.  Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served on the terrace or indoor dining room at the Nautilus Cabana Club. In-room dining is offered for a fee.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Nautilus, a SIXTY Hotel.

Faena Hotel Miami Beach

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The oceanfront Faena Hotel is situated in Miami Beach, Florida and features an outdoor pool and a South American-inspired spa with massage, nail care, and salon services. The fitness center with an ocean view offers daily indoor and outdoor classes.  A relaxed meal or cocktail can be enjoyed at Veranda, which boasts views of the pool and ocean. Pao serves Asian cuisine with international influences, including original rice dishes and fresh meats and fish. The restaurant, Los Fuegos, boasts an open-fire kitchen and dishes made with local ingredients.  Guests can retreat to the late-Deco styled rooms with free WiFi, a flat-screen TV, and a safety deposit box. Each Carrara marble-tiled bathroom has bathrobes, slippers, and complimentary toiletries.   For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Faena Hotel Miami Beach.

Fontainebleau Miami Beach

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This property is 3 minutes walk from the beach. Beachfront Fontainebleau Miami Beach features scenic ocean views and 6 outdoor swimming pools surrounded by private cabanas. A nightclub, 9 restaurants, and a spa are located on site for comfort.  Enjoy music by the pools or relax in one of the private cabanas that include a flat-screen TV, WiFi, and butler service. There is also a children’s playground, children’s waterscape, and direct beach access.  Hotel Fontainebleau Miami Beach offers 9 dining establishments with a wide range of cuisines, including Chinese, Italian, and Japanese. Guests can enjoy oceanfront dining at La Cote or relax with coffee and cake at Chez Bon Bon.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Fontainebleau Miami Beach.

26 Comments

  1. andrejs

    Thanks for another great beach travel guide. It looks like there are so many attractive places to go and relax that only you need is a thick wallet in your pocket.
    Most of all I am intrigued about Miami Deep Sea Fishing Charter Therapy IV and Miami Pirate Duck Tours. It looks exciting.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You would enjoy for sure. Miami Beach has a lot to offer for all ages. Yes, Miami Beach is probably one of the more spendy areas of Florida, but well worth it!

      Reply
  2. Online with Nerissa S.

    This was a very informative guide. I have traveled to quite a few places, and my next destination is to the one and only MIAMI! I had originally planned to go in June, in hopes of beating the heat of July and August; however, I think now– you have persuaded me to go at closer to October. I think it won’t be too hot then (and presumably, still warm enough to enjoy the beach).

    The guide of restaurants to visit was a great addition and more than helpful… I have a friend who visited Osteria del Teatro last year and raved about how fabulous the menu is. So guess what’s first on my places to visit?!

    As always, great guide for us travel enthusiasts!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I think you will have a fantastic time! Every place recommended is great, you just might have to try each place 🙂

      Reply
  3. Christian

    Ever since I went on my first cruise back in September, I have admired the atmosphere that Miami had. We spent a day in town before we boarded for our cruise, and I was in love with the city and the vast cultural experiences that it offered. So much so until I would like to move there.
    I did not get a chance to visit the beaches though. Where would you recommend that I start? I know that South Beach is very popular of course.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I would start at South Beach and work my way up! And I am moving there in a couple of months….can’t wait.

      Reply
  4. PierreAlex

    Your page is crammed with awesome info to make the most out of a trip in Florida and that’s not just for beach lovers and sunbathers. I am not the kind who will sit around all afternoon in the hope of perfecting my tan.

    I spent the past 3 weeks enjoying the beach, the waves and the sun in Bondi beach, Sydney. There is a lot to do there to, but if i’d found a page like this one about Bondi it would have been a great help.I like the “things to do part” part.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Pierre and yes, I did review Bondi beach, and plan on a vacation guide for there as well.

      Reply
  5. Patrick

    This is an awesome travel guide! I’ve got family in Miami and they recommend many of the same destinations that are in this guide. Miami is definitely the top travel destination in Florida, and I’ve personally been there to visit the Disney theme park. Again, a lot of the places you recommended are things I’ve heard locals recommend at well, so it’s cool to see that this is a guide you can trust!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Patrick and I am glad you found the information spot on and useful!

      Reply
  6. Maureen

    When you think of going to Florida Miami is definitely the top pick. I was in Miami once for about an hour. Landed there to catch a cruise ship so you might say I really did not see any of the great things that you have described on this site.
    I would love to someday take a vacation to Miami. I can see my husband and I enjoying the beaches and would love to take the Miami Pirate Duck Tour.
    Also the restaurants that you showcased sound delightfully delicious.
    The only thing that does concern me is how high is the crime rate. I think years ago it was pretty high but I do believe that has changed for the better. Is that right?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, Miami is better now as far as crime is concerned. And along the beach, it is definitely better. Thank you for reading Maureen.

      Reply
  7. Gary LaBlue

    Leahrae,
    Great website very detailed and appears that all the necessary information you need to book a trip are covered.
    There’s one except, over the past two years there has been Security Issues in and around some of the Caribbean Islands . This is definitely an item I for one will be looking for when I do book a trip.
    Regards,
    Gary

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I would recommend that most definitely. I think that is why travel within the U.S. has increased. Thank you for visiting Gary!

      Reply
  8. Marcelochelo

    I love Miami!!!, I want to go on Holidays with my wife and kids, do you know places to hang out with kids, I know there is a zoo right? can you give some info about that.

    Last time we went to Ocean Drive to eat some seafood, but they are so many, is there any nice restaurant can you recommend me?

    I will definitely try the shops you suggest in your site,

    Thanks

    Marcelo

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, the restaurants I listed are the best ones to go to. Yes, go to the Zoo Miami. Their website is http://www.zoommiami.org. Another good choice with kids is Jungle Island. Jungle Island is an interactive zoological park in Miami Florida where you can meet and interact with some of nature’s most amazing creatures. Thanks for reading!

      Reply
  9. Misty

    My husband and I have wanted to visit Miami forever, I’m so glad I came across your site. Thank you for all of the very useful information! Is there a restaurant where you are almost sure to run into a celebrity?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Ok, the restaurant Zuma, Dirt, Komodo Miami, STK Miami Beach, El Tucan and the Wall Lounge are all places you will see celebrities. Thanks for visiting Misty!

      Reply
  10. Joseph Mo

    Your site has me glued to the screen. This is some really good information. I have always thought of a vacation in Miami. Your information is really easy to follow and narrows down my decisions. The Priceline estimator is a great touch to the site, I can easily know how much I need and budget for the holiday. Thanks again!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I am so glad it was helpful. Thank you Joseph for visiting Miami Beach Travel Guide.

      Reply
  11. rule2020

    This is another highly targeted niche that’s very interesting to middle class and above type of audiences. The article itself is very comprehensive as it gives complete guidance for those who are interested to go to Miami beaches. From the airport, weather, car rentals, restaurants, bars and activities, you couldn’t ask for more.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you and I am glad. Exactly what I was shooting for 🙂 Hopefully you can make it there one day, and I would be glad to help with your travel plans to Miami Beach!

      Reply
  12. cristina

    nice post 🙂 i really need a vacation after a hard working summer and Miami beach look nice:)
    I live in a wonderful place, Rhodes, Greece but no time at all in the summer to enjoy it . you know… touristic jobs:))
    Did you think to write about the beaches here?Greece was nr 1 in Europe touristic destination this year:)
    your post was great, with the detail I need and i relly enjoyed it 🙂
    Cristina

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thanks Cristina and yes I did write about the beaches in Greece because they are wonderful! The link is http://www.beachtraveldestinations/best-beaches-of-Greece 🙂 Glad you enjoyed and you are lucky to live there!

      Reply
  13. Eddie S Warner

    Really nice site. I like how it’s like a one-stop for travel and town info. You made everything short and sweet, and a lot of it! I will probably try Amsterdam, but I’m not sure. I’ve been to Fort Lauderdale. You know, it would be great if locals everywhere would do what you did, because why would you go to Expedia, when you could have one page with all the stuff you’re looking for on one page? Best o luck!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Eddie! I am glad you like it. More of a beach niche, which Expedia doesn’t do I don’t think anyway. Thanks for visiting Beach Travel Destinations.

      Reply

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