For generations, snowbirds have flocked to the sunny skies and subtropical temperatures of Miami to escape harsher winters in other parts of the world. But decades ago, this coastal city also started attracting business travelers, spring breakers, families, and international visitors seeking some fun in the sun. Sure, the sand-covered beaches, music, and celebrity sightings are major attractions. However, there's a long list of other excellent reasons why you should make plans to visit Florida's Magic City.
Home to one of the largest ports in the U.S., Miami is famous for the number of cruise lines and water excursions that sail from here. Whether you're planning a day trip, a weekend getaway, a two-week vacation, or a six-month cruising adventure, you can start your ocean excursion in Miami.
Choose a private, romantic day cruise aboard a luxury yacht or opt for a speedboat sightseeing tour. If engaging culinary experiences are your thing, consider a gourmet cruise. Or, explore off-the-beaten-path destinations aboard massive cruise ships that stop at lesser-known but fascinating ports of call.
There isn't a bad time to visit Magic City as far as the weather goes. Most of the year, you'll find warm-to-hot temperatures. During the winter months, thermometers seldom dip below 50 F. As spring arrives, so do warmer temperatures.
Be prepared for more humid conditions in the summer due to daily rain showers. Don't worry about the rain interfering with your getaway, though. These rainstorms seldom last more than an hour.
No matter what type of travel experiences you're looking for, you'll find them within any of the 25 versatile neighborhoods of Miami. Those who love the vibrant energy of big cities will find all that they seek in the downtown area. Historic landmarks, a lively arts scene, and world-class accommodations fill the city's progressive center.
Visit the creative, trend-setting Design District to the north, where you'll find a cornucopia of entertainment, dining options, and chic shops—head west of the downtown area to discover Little Havana, the heart of Cuban culture in Miami.
Miami is within driving distance of national parks and preserves for travelers who enjoy natural settings. Everglades National Park, the largest subtropical wilderness in the country, sits at the southernmost tip of the Florida mainland. Watch alligators, herons, egrets, and manatees hanging out in their natural habitats.
Or, take a moonlit bike ride and experience a meteor shower over the prairie. You can also travel west of Miami to explore the Big Cypress National Preserve. Join a ranger for a hike through the swamp, or hire an airboat to experience the fascinating and varied ecosystems in the preserve.
According to local nightlife experts, Miami is at its best after dark. This city's nightlife isn't just a weekend party scene but one that happens every night. Diverse crowds made up of locals and travelers join together to dance the night away.
Whether you're looking to experience an energy-packed, crowded discotheque or indulge in a tasty cocktail and late-night bite to eat, you'll have no trouble finding a new favorite spot in Magic City.
Water lovers will find just about any type of water sport they desire along the beaches in Miami. Jet-ski and boat rentals are abundant. Expand your horizons by trying out some parasailing, flyboarding, windsurfing, or tubing along the city's coastline. For fans of underwater sports, there are plenty of opportunities for snorkeling and scuba diving as well.
Getaways are not only about new experiences but also rejuvenation. This city offers plenty of opportunities for both. The North Shore Open Space Park is a less-crowded option to the popular, tourist-filled beaches in Miami. Enjoy a serene walk on the walking trails or a soothing swim in the ocean.
Miami's got you covered if you're in desperate need of some pampering and self-care. The city is famous for its day spas and wellness centers, beautifully relaxing places where you can wind down and recharge.
Miami is loved by visitors for much more than its beaches. The city is one of the most diverse in the nation, with every culture sharing its heritage, customs, and culinary specialties with those who visit here.
West of the downtown area lies the Little Havana neighborhood, the heart of Cuban culture in Miami. Calle Ocho is the community's center, where the smells from authentic Cuban restaurants and bakeries fill the air, and cigar masters practice the time-honored tradition of cigar rolling in local shops.
Infectious, provocative, and electrifying, Miami's music scene is known the world over. From grand opera and symphony performances to cabaret, jazz, country, salsa, and pop singer lineups, this city is brimming with live music every night of the week.
In Little Haiti, you'll discover a unique blend of Afro-Cuban, jazz, electronic, and rap music being performed in local bars and pubs. While you're in the neighborhood, stop by Sweat Records, a hangout for Miami's thriving indie music scene.
Miami is a city that loves to celebrate, and its huge array of festivals highlights what all it has to offer as a top destination. The III Points Music Festival is a two-day event with a lineup of both up-and-coming and well-known DJs who are backed by the latest in audiovisual technology.
One of the city's most popular events, the Calle Ocho Music Festival, features dozens of music stages and examples of mouth-watering cuisine from the city's diverse Latin cultures. The Brew Miami festival celebrates the city's craft beer and food industry with live music performances and opportunities to sample the best and latest spirit concoctions.