We all have seen Miami on TV and have an idea of what the city looks like, however it might surprise you. Miami is taking an artistic turn that we love, a vibrant city that has Cuban influence reflected in every corner of the city, with amazing barrier islands, turquoise waters and white sandy beaches ready to enjoy at one of the world's trendiest and flashiest hot spots. In this post we put together some of our favorite things to do in Miami, restaurants and hotels!
Things to do in Miami
1. Visiting Nature - options if you are traveling with the kids!
Among the top things to do in Miami, visiting the Jungle Island might be one of my favorites. There are over 1,100 birds in a tropical forest setting, with around 2,000 varieties of exotic plants in the gardens and amazing animals like flamingos, alligators, monkeys, baboons, tigers and tortoises.
2. Miami Seaquarium
This aquarium is actively involved in the rescue and rehabilitation of manatees, also it develops an amazing program to teach about the physiology, behavior and natural history of dolphins. They have daily shows featuring seals, killer whales and of course dolphins, and observation tanks with tropical fish, sharks and alligators.
3. Zoo Miami
I love animals, and this zoo has more than 2,000 wild animals in a similar setting to their natural habitats and cage less environment. Exhibits are open air and large. They have a small children's zoo, where kids can interact with the animals and even ride a camel!
4. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
A great place to relax and get peace of mind, as soon as you get in you will be transported to the tropics, where warm breezes and sweet fragrances will feed your spirit. It is one of the best botanic gardens in the world.
2. Things to do in Miami: Museums, why not?
Villa Vizcaya: The former villa and state of James Deering is today a beautiful museum with amazing gardens where the Baroque elements and the Italian Renaissance touches give this historic village a unique landscape.
Coral Castle: Ed Leedskalnin spend 28 years caving this Coral Castle as a tribute to his sweet sixteen love, it is impressive because he cut, moved and cave coral blocks using only hand tools, the result of his job is an awesome place.
3. Things to do in Miami: Swim and Sunbath
Venetian Pool: Located in Coral Gables, it is a great place to visit on a sunny day! The pool was created in 1923 from a coral rock and it is fed with spring water from an underground aquifer, during summer season it is filled and drained daily, so clean and fresh water is guaranteed. And to complete the beauty, there are two waterfalls that provide a scenic backdrop.
Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park: Miami has a lot of state parks, but i must say, this is my favorite! It is home of a lighthouse built in 1825, a beautiful place where you can sunbath, swim and make picnic in more than one mile of white sandy beach.
Miami Beach: The perfect place to find trendy and upper restaurants and shopping, besides it is one of the most popular beaches. The Art Deco District, with pastel buildings from the 1930s with classic neon signs it is a photogenic one; a great place to walk in a the afternoon along with the Ocean Drive. Ending with a refreshing cocktail might make the perfect evening!
4. Things to do in Miami: Arts and Shopping
Wynwood Arts District: It is no secret that you can find in this trendy spot in Miami a wide variety of art pieces. Located in 404 NW 26th Street, this district has become a must if you are visiting Miami. You'll discover more than seventy art galleries and other places to buy antiques or design pieces, restaurants and activities to have a blast surrounded by art. You'll also be amazed by the great pieces of street art that you'll find in one of the largest places dedicated to it.
Bayside Marketplace: My favorite place to shop at an outdoor mall with shops, cafes, restaurants and even live entertainment. Among the best view as it is waterfront, right next to the docks and boats around Biscayne Bay.
Best restaurants in Miami
NAOE: An ultra intimate dinning room for up to 8 patrons at one time, exceptional skill with imagination and verve to create a truly omakase experience at this rewarding Japanese restaurant.
DB Bistro Moderne: This is a modern French-American Bistro with a touch of traditional French Cuisine and the local flavors of the American market to create a contemporary Parisian bistro, a delicious dinning experience.
The Cypress Tavern: The best American grill food that evokes the simplicity of a classic dinner with the essence of an elevated dinning experience to match with wine, beer & cocktails.
The Shikany: A modern progressive approach to the gastronomical cuisine creating whimsical dishes with outstanding quality and presentation using the finest ingredients.
J & G Grill: Where simple grilled dishes become an unforgettable dinning experience. At the comfortable and elegant ocean view restaurant with the highest quality meats and freshest seafood available in the market.
1826 Restaurant: A classic French and forward-thinking vision are the ingredients to define the seasonally menu where every detail embraces the luxury ingredients of the serving dishes.
Where to stay in Miami
The Setai: In the heart of South Beach, with an Art Deco landmark building with an exquisite Asian influence. Get ready to indulge yourself in an intimate and serene oceanfront hotel.
Hotel Beaux Arts Miami: The most intimate settings at an urban location with breathtaking views of Biscayne Bay at the guest rooms, create a perfect boutique hotel to go above your expectations.
Epic Hotel: An urban sophisticated resort located in Downtown Miami, with the most amazing views from the rooftop pools, incredible guest rooms to provide a luxury relaxing stay.
Boulan South Beach: Right on Collins Park a infusion of South Beach Style with a little of sophistication to create a lavish boutique resort with exquisite guest rooms that make you fell in home.
SLS South Beach: In the trendy South Beach, this sophisticated art deco oceanfront hotel where welcome service and redefined luxury are the clue to an amazing vacation.
Breakwater South Beach: On Odean Drive in vibrant art deco district this beachfront boutique hotel retains its original 1939 art deco exterior, with contemporary rooms.