Whether you’ve been to Miami before or have just seen it in movies, you probably already know what the main focus is- the beach. Miami runs along the east coast of South Florida and is home to some of the most famous beaches in the United States because of its soft, white sand and clear blue water. Along with the endless sand and sun, Miami also offers a wide range of water-based activities that will be sure to keep you busy, while giving you a feel for what this area is all about. Below we walk you through an exciting itinerary in the shoes of a Miami native for a day.
First: Brunch with a water view
One of the most common activities you’ll see people divulging in during the weekend in South Beach is brunch. Whether you’re there for the mimosas or just the french toast, you have a wide array of options that will be sure not to disappoint. We recommend going to Rusty Pelican in Key Biscayne because of its breathtaking view of the city and open water- you’ll see a ton of yachts, jet skiers, fishermen, and dolphins out when the weather is nice.
Second: Go to the Beach or Rent a Yacht
Okay, so for this activity, we are going to offer two different options since renting a boat of any kind can get pretty pricey. Although it is an unforgettable experience, you don’t need to be rich to get a feel for Miami Beach and all it has to offer.
So if you plan to save a few bucks and still enjoy yourself, head on over to South Pointe and find a place in the sand to put your things down and relax. South Pointe is not only a beautiful beach, but it also has a big grass park that offers yoga & pilates classes during the weekend. It has a ton of space to roam around, play with your dog, or just enjoy the weather with a friend.
We often see people in this grass/boardwalk area setting up picnics, rollerblading, biking, and just hanging out with friends and family. From the beach to this grassy area is a nice boardwalk that takes you along the water towards the marina. If you walk on the path and head towards the beach instead of the marina, you’ll automatically end up on the big pier where you can look out and eye some dolphins, fish, and other findings that might be in the ocean.
Not only does South Pointe have a pier, beach, and boardwalk, but there is also a nice park for kids to play on, grassy hills to run up for exercise, and a big set of bleachers that can also be of use to work out. So if you’re coming to South Pointe, you can make it a day trip and stay here for hours on end.
There are a ton of restaurants within walking distance, with Smith & Wollensky’s right on the boardwalk itself. This is a pretty expensive option, but if you keep walking north, you’ll be right in the middle of streets filled with an overload of restaurant options. These streets are only about a 5-minute walk from the sand. For GPS reference, you can put in “South Pointe Park” to your Maps app and park wherever you find a spot; from there, you can wander the streets, go to the beach, a park and enjoy the Miami weather and scenery.
Now, if you’d rather splurge and rent a yacht, you can choose between a 4 or 8-hour day charter. The average size you can rent is anywhere between 45′ to 115′ with a maximum of 10 people in your party. We recommend going with a company that is offering some type of deal- for out of towners that would be Yacht Rentals in Miami, FL. From there, they will tell you the boats they have available (they sell out very quickly on the weekend), and you can make the best decision for your situation/preference.
Before you confirm your trip, make sure you can decide the route you’ll go on and the places you stop. You want to have a say in where you stop because chances are the captain will just choose their easiest route, which might result in you missing out on some beautiful areas. We recommend booking a yacht that includes a Waverunner, takes you to Haulover sandbar, Nixon sandbar, the keys, or any restaurant you can dock at and hop off to eat.
Third: Watch the Sunset
Although Miami faces east, many people head over to the beach during sunset time because the sky turns many different colors, and the weather is breezy yet still warm. Bring a blanket/sheet, pack a bag of snacks, wine, or whatever food you like, and head on over to the beach around 6 pm. This is a great time to go and relax because it is not that hot anymore and you’ll get to watch the sunset in an hour or so’s time. You can even put your stuff down and go for a walk on the boardwalk that stretches for a few miles, with hotels aligning the entire walkway.
We recommend doing this in South or North Beach so you can put in your map’s app either South Pointe Park or Sunny Isles Beach (specifically Collins and 74th-ish). Sunny Isles is a beautiful area that is much quieter than South Beach and still has a lengthy boardwalk- it is farther away from all the other attractions Miami has besides Bal Harbor, which is an outdoor luxury shopping mall.
Fourth: Rent Bikes and Go for a Ride
The beach is full of beautiful neighborhoods and scenic biking trails, but lest we not forget, it is all flat land. This is great if you’re not in tip-top shape and are going on a bike ride simply for the scenic part of it. We recommend getting bicycles and heading to the Venetian Bridge. You’ll pass the ocean, marina, and head into some beautiful neighborhoods filled with luxurious houses and gardens. You can rent a Citi Bike for as low as $3 an hour and will find them all over the city.
All in all, Miami is home to the beach bum mentality: where all your days can be spent at the beach, enjoying the weather and taking in the natural beauty around you. Should you be in Miami for vacation, this itinerary could be spread out between a few days. Whether you like South Pointe, Downtown, Brickell or North Beach, there are things to do on every corner, and searching for activities based on your hobbies is a great way to get a feel for the city.