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By: Shayne Benowitz

Grab the kids, hit the road and make your way to Greater Miami & Miami Beach for a wonderful family vacation. Whether it’s a relaxing day at the beach, an exploration of the Everglades or an afternoon of discovery at a world-class museum, families will have plenty of opportunities to bond and create magical memories together in Miami.

Matheson kayak family
Enjoy a day of fun and sun on the water

Beach Day

Pack a picnic, soak up the sun and make a splash. Miami boasts miles of pristine Atlantic Coast shoreline, making it one of the destination’s greatest draws. Your options for spending a day at the beach with the kids are virtually limitless. They’ll love watching cruise ships glide by and playing in the splash pad at South Pointe Park in South Beach. Surfside and Sunny Isles Beach provide pristine conditions in a relaxed atmosphere, perfect for families with younger kids. For active, adventurous families, consider Oleta River State Park Beach, Matheson Hammock Beach or Crandon Park Beach, where activities like kayaking, canoeing and kiteboarding are popular. No matter which beach you choose, you’re sure to have a day of fun in the sun, surrounded by beautiful scenery.

Grapeland Water Park
Splash around at Grapeland Water Park

Water Parks

Grapeland Water Park

Located near Miami International Airport, Grapeland Water Park is a fun-filled splash park with features designed by Romero Britto, Miami’s pop art impresario. It’s a family-friendly destination designed for kids of all ages. Come play on shipwreck-themed waterslides, a shallow water play area with water cannons and Buccaneer Falls, where a wave of water is unleashed at regularly scheduled intervals. There’s also a lagoon-style swimming pool and lazy river. Keep in mind that it’s only open on Saturdays and Sundays this summer season.

McDonald Water Park

McDonald Water Park in Hialeah is full of water-centric adventures for the whole family. The 17-acre property offers a wave pool, tot lot, waterfall, splash pad and a snack bar, complete with a 1,000-foot lazy river that is bound to be enjoyed by all. It’s also ideally set up for birthday parties and summertime celebrations.

Lazy River Turnberry
Spend the day at Tidal Cove

Tidal Cove at JW Marriott Miami Turnberry

When it comes to fun for the whole family, make a splash at the Tidal Cove waterpark at the JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa. The sprawling luxury resort in Aventura is home to several twisty-turny waterslides, a lazy river and a lagoon-style swimming pool. There’s even a Kid’s Cove with a 4,000-square-foot splash park, designed with a playful emoji theme. A day pass to Tidal Cove grants you access to the waterpark, CORSAIR kitchen & bar, Surf House and multiple other dining outlets.

Venetian Pool
Cool off at Venetian Pool's refreshing spring

Venetian Pool

Venetian Pool in Coral Gables differs from the classic water park – it’s an 820,000-gallon freshwater pool that is perfect for when you want a break from chlorine. It’s a natural spring with two waterfalls, decorated by palm trees and lush greenery. It even has a scenic bridge and multiple grottos, loggias and porticos that make swimming an adventure. Kids aged three and up are welcome.

Frost Science
Spark curiosity at Frost Science

Museums

Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science

Downtown Miami’s landmark Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science museum is one of the only science museums in the world to boast both an aquarium and planetarium under one roof. The hands-on, interactive exhibits make for a perfect family-friendly outing with kids. The Gulf Stream Aquarium spans three floors and includes an open tank at the rooftop. You’ll spy hammerhead sharks, stingrays and eels circling the 500,000-gallon tank. Be sure to reserve your planetarium tickets in advance to guarantee your seating at the spectacular show.

Chilren's museum
Don't miss the Miami Children's Museum

Miami Children’s Museum

For the young – and the young at heart – head to the Miami Children’s Museum. Located midway between Downtown Miami and Miami Beach on Biscayne Bay along the MacArthur Causeway, Miami Children’s Museum is filled with activities that emphasize art, culture, community, imagination and creativity. It’s also home to a two-story sand castle, an interactive health and wellness center, a cruise ship replica and an outdoor playground your kids will love.

HistoryMiami Museum

Located in a beautiful plaza in Downtown Miami, HistoryMiami Museum is a Smithsonian Affiliate cultural institution. With the exhibit “Tropical Dreams: A People's History of South Florida” on permanent display, the intimate museum also plays host to various exhibitions highlighting historic moments in Miami and throughout the world. It’s a wonderful way for your kids to learn about both Miami and the world in a fun, interactive environment.

Biking in Everglades
Explore the beauty of Everglades National Park

Nature Activities

Everglades National Park

Everglades National Park is one of the most unique ecosystems in the world. It’s also one of the most exciting places in Miami to explore with kids. These lush subtropical wetlands occupy 1.5 million acres of sawgrass prairies, hardwood hammocks, freshwater marshes and a diverse population of wildlife that includes bald eagles, white-tailed deer and, of course, alligators. Whether it’s hiking or biking, paddling in a canoe, gliding on an airboat or a naturalist-led tour, there are plenty of ways to experience the beauty of the Everglades firsthand with your family.

Zoo Miami
Encounter wildlife at Zoo Miami

Zoo Miami

Spanning 750 acres in South Dade with more than 3,000 animals on view, Zoo Miami is a wildly fun attraction for the whole family. Open-air exhibitions are dedicated to animal habitats from around the world, including Florida’s Everglades, the Amazon, Africa, Australia and Asia. Watch amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles roam freely in a habitat that mimics their native lands. Your kids will have the opportunity to feed animals, watch a wildlife show and ride through the zoo on a monorail or tram.

Indoor Activities

Brickell City Centre
Shop, dine and catch a movie at Brickell City Centre

Brickell City Centre

For the fashionistas in your family, don’t skip Miami’s mixed-use shopping development in the heart of Brickell. Anchored by Saks Fifth Avenue, Brickell City Centre is home to everything from Sephora and Lululemon to Pinko and Giuseppe Zanotti. There are plenty of tantalizing foodie options, too, including Pubbelly Sushi, Casa Tua Cucina and Tacology. Brickell City Centre is also home to the CMX luxury movie theater, where you can enjoy a gourmet meal in a reclining chair while watching the latest blockbuster. There’s also a forthcoming indoor mini-golf course in the works called Puttshack.

Sky Zone Trampoline Park

For a totally unique experience, head to Sky Zone Trampoline Park in Doral, where you can literally bounce off the walls. This indoor trampoline park includes a variety of bouncy activities like freestyle jump, SkySlam basketball, ultimate dodgeball and a giant pit of foam cubes that you can jump and flip into. It’s especially fun for little ones who need to burn off some energy – or anyone who’s simply young at heart. Their expert staff is on duty to ensure everyone’s safety and good time.

Topgolf Targets
Play some golf with the whole family

Topgolf

Grab the family, reserve a climate-controlled bay at one of Topgolf’s driving ranges in Miami Gardens or Doral, and score points based on how close your microchipped ball comes to the target. This entertainment complex is fun for the whole family with golf, gaming and dining. If you’re new to golf, you can take lessons, and there’s also a KidZone with clinics and coaching available for the little ones.

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