If you are visiting Miami with kids, these are some of our favorite experiences that can be done in one day that you won't experience anywhere else! From food to art to animals, there is plenty to see and do in this vibrant cultural city!

An image of a mom and two kids in front of a mural in Miami.

Table of Contents
  1. When to Visit Miami
  2. Best Things to Do in Miami
  3. Enjoy Delicious Cuban Food
  4. Visit Calle Ocho in Little Havana
  5. Grab a Fresh Fruit Milkshake at Robert is Here Fruit Stand
  6. Admire the Art Deco Historic District in South Beach
  7. Day Trips from Miami

Miami is such a cool and interesting place and I have been lucky to go there to visit a number of times over the years. The first time I visited Miami was back in 2009 during law school when I actually participated in a national moot court competition as part of the BYU Moot Court Team.

It's a totally different experience returning with kids and I'm sharing some of the highlights of our most recent visit to help you come up with ideas for things to do if you are planning a trip to Florida soon!

When to Visit Miami

Miami can be great any time of year, but the best time to visit Miami depends on your preferences and the type of experience you're looking for. I have actually visited in every season but my personal favorites are winter and fall. Here are some considerations for different times of the year:

Winter (December to February):

  • Pros: Mild temperatures, lower humidity, and less rainfall. This season is ideal for outdoor activities and enjoying the beaches.
  • Cons: It's the peak tourist season, so accommodation prices may be higher and things can tend to feel a little more crowded. You'll want to make reservations in advance for some things.

Spring (March to May):

  • Pros: Pleasant weather, with warm temperatures and lower chances of rain. Spring break crowds start to taper off in late April.
  • Cons: Accommodation prices may still be relatively high.

Summer (June to August):

  • Pros: Hot and sunny weather, great for beachgoers. Summer is also the low season, so you may find better deals on accommodations.
  • Cons: High humidity and the possibility of occasional heavy rain and thunderstorms. Hurricane season officially begins in June.

Fall (September to November):

  • Pros: Warm temperatures, and it's the tail end of hurricane season. Lower accommodation prices compared to winter.
  • Cons: There's still a risk of hurricanes in September, and some attractions may close for maintenance.

If you prefer fewer crowds and lower prices, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of spring and fall.

Best Things to Do in Miami

Explore Urban Art at Wynwood Walls

Our favorite Miami experience was viewing the huge, colorful murals at Wynwood Walls. There are some incredible murals that can be found all over the city, but Wynwood Walls is an outdoor art museum with a concentration of incredible artwork that everyone can enjoy. There is a more formalized gallery that you have to pay to enter, but there are also plenty of murals in the neighborhood if you just wander around. Or there are even golf cart tours that will take you to some of the current highlights with a guide who will talk about the artists and area.

An image of a girl in front of a mural in Miami.

Think of Wynwood Walls like a living canvas. It's an open-air art gallery that turns the streets into a masterpiece. Picture massive, eye-catching murals created by talented artists from around the world, with each wall telling a unique story. It's a dynamic eye-popping celebration of urban art and culture and even someone like me who doesn't typically thrill at the idea of visiting art museums was entertained and impressed at the scale of the project.

An image of a mural at Wynwood Walls in Miami.

Wynwood Walls isn't just for art enthusiasts; it's for anyone looking to experience the soul of Miami's art scene. The atmosphere is electric, with a mix of trendy galleries, hip cafes, and vibrant street life. Whether you are looking for Instagram-worthy photos or simply soaking in the energy, Wynwood Walls is a memorable and immersive artistic adventure.

In fact, one of our favorite experiences was getting to try our hands at graffiti ourselves. If you go to the Wynwood Walls outdoor museum, there is a complimentary 3 minute experience.

If you want even more time painting with spray paint cans, you can sign up for a full hour graffiti experience. Both our kids (especially our 9-year old) LOVED spray painting the wall and it really sparked an interest in her.

Enjoy Delicious Cuban Food

There are so many great places to eat around Miami that I can't possibly list them. But I have to give a shout-out to Sanguich de Miami, which does the famous Cubano (a hot, pressed cuban sandwich made with city ham, lechon, mustard, pickles, and Swiss cheese on Cuban bread) better than anywhere else I have tried. They are INCREDIBLE.

We tried a couple of other sandwich and Paul and I are obsessed with the pan de bistec. It has thinly sliced sous vide steak, mojo rojo, fried string potatoes, and swiss cheese and is also served pressed and hot. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

Sanguich is popular though, so be prepared to wait in line if you are visiting during the lunch hour, at least at the Calle Ocho location. (They are opening more locations soon according to their website). And seating inside is very limited. But trust me, this place is legitimate and completely worth it.

My other "must-do" food experience in Miami is to go to a Cuban bakery. There are a lot of them in the Calle Ocho area, but also elsewhere in the city and their pastries are wonderful. My favorite will always be the guava pastelito though, which has guava paste inside a buttery, flaky pastry. So good both with and without cream cheese inside.

An image of a Cuban pastry with guava.

Visit Calle Ocho in Little Havana

One of my favorite parts of Miami is Little Havana, and particularly Calle Ocho, or Eighth Street, which is the heart of Little Havana. This part of Miami has a vibrant and culturally rich heritage and the neighborhood is known for its significant Cuban influence.

An image of a mom and kids in front of one of the Calle Ocho roosters in Little Havana, Miami, Florida.

This is the place to go if you want to experience authentic Cuban cuisine, music, and art. There is even an annual street festival, the Calle Ocho Festival, which is part of the larger Carnaval Miami. There is live music, dance performances, food, and lot of cultural activities.

But even on a regular weekday, Calle Ocho is adorned with colorful murals and street art depicting the history, culture, and struggles of the local Cuban community. Maximo Gomez Park (aka Domino Park) is a gathering place for many of the elderly Cuban community where locals play dominoes, share stories, and enjoy each other's company.

Calle Ocho is alive with the sounds of Latin music, and you'll find numerous venues where you can enjoy live performances of salsa, merengue, and other traditional Latin dances. We stood and listened to some live music in the middle of the afternoon at the famous Ball & Chain Bar & Lounge and it was fantastic.

Another fun thing to look for are the painted roosters. Located up and down Calle Ocho, the painted roosters are part of an artistic and cultural initiative known as "Viernes Culturales" or Cultural Fridays.

Roosters hold cultural significance in many Latin American countries. In some cultures, the rooster symbolizes strength, courage, and resilience. By incorporating roosters into the public art of Little Havana, the community expresses these values and celebrates its heritage. Plus the colorful and unique designs add a playful and artistic element to the streetscape.

Be sure to stop for ice cream at Azucar on Calle Ocho. There are lots of unique and delicious flavors, like the "Abuela Maria" with guava chunks, cream cheese, and cookies. They will even add more guava sauce on top (say yes).

Grab a Fresh Fruit Milkshake at Robert is Here Fruit Stand

The famous Robert Is Here fruit stand is just outside of Miami in Homestead, Florida. It was started in 1959 and specializes in exotic fruits, smoothies, and milkshakes.

An image in front of the Robert is Here mural at a fruit stand in Florida.

We're not just talking mangoes, avocados, or even star fruit. There were fruits even I have never heard of before like canistel, guanabana, and black sapote! The workers there will happily slice up whatever fruit you want (our girls opted for a star fruit) and their fruit smoothies and milkshakes are delicious.

It feels like (and okay, maybe it kind of is) a tourist trap, but if you are heading to or from the Everglades it's going to be on your way anyway and definitely worth a stop for refreshment.

I got a mango-passion fruit-banana milkshake and it was excellent. The rest of my family was boring and got Oreo and strawberry, so apparently I'm not raising them right.

A mango-passionfruit-banana milkshake in a styrofoam cup with a straw.

There is also a large pen with lots of farm animals, tortoises, and emus, and an aviary with exotic birds. It's all very eclectic and slightly bizarre, but in a fun way. They are open from 9am-6pm most every day.

An image of farm animals at Robert is Here fruit stand in Florida.

Admire the Art Deco Historic District in South Beach

Miami is renowned for its iconic Art Deco Historic District in the South Beach neighborhood, which features the iconic Art Deco hotels.

The Art Deco area is characterized by its distinctive architectural style from the 1920s and 1930s. The buildings have sleek lines, geometric shapes, and bold colors, reflecting the elegance and glamour of the Art Deco movement. Many of the Art Deco hotels are located along Ocean Drive, which is a famous thoroughfare in South Beach absolutely loaded with stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and easy access to the vibrant nightlife (not kid-friendly, so we skipped it on this trip but I have been on previous visits), restaurants, and beach activities.

Think of the classic Miami Vice pastel hues, neon lights, and bold color combinations which all contribute to the lively and energetic atmosphere of the area, especially when lit up at night.

Day Trips from Miami

I'm a big fan of our National Parks and there are two of them within easy driving distance of Miami that you could do as a day trip.

Everglades National Park

If you haven't been to the Florida Everglades and are interested in alligators, marsh birds, and other wildlife, I highly recommend driving over to Everglades NPS. I wrote a whole post on our stop at the Shark Valley Visitor Center in Everglades National Park. There's a fantastic tram tour and lots to see and do. Or visit one of the other visitor's centers in other parts of the park to try to spot manatees or flamigos!

Biscayne Bay National Park

Discover the underwater wonders of Biscayne National Park. Take a boat tour to explore coral reefs, snorkel, and enjoy the marine life in this coastal paradise. Keep in mind that

Florida Keys

You might not make it all the way to Key West and back as a day trip from Miami, but you could easily visit Key Largo, the first of the Florida Keys.

A dad and two daughters in front of graffiti at Wynwood Walls in Miami.

Your turn! Have you visited Miami with kids? If so, we would love to hear what your favorite experiences were and if there is something we should add to our list for our next visit!

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About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

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