The Ultimate Miami Beach Staycation

Ocean Drive
South Beach Bike
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By: Ali Bibeau

Even if Miami is where you call home, sometimes it’s a great feeling to get out of the house and find a vacation in your own backyard, and what better backyard than Miami Beach? It doesn’t matter if you are staying for just a weekend getaway or a longer visit, we’ve got all sorts of suggestions to enjoy the Ultimate Miami Beach Staycation. And this is one easy trip that you can do again and again and not see the same thing twice! While planning your itinerary, you may want to call or check websites for the most current information.

1 Hotel
From beachside resorts to Art Deco boutique hotels, find your perfect hotel in Miami Beach

Pick the Perfect Hotel

First, pick the right hotel to suit your needs. Miami Beach has hotels to suit every visitor, including larger, suite-style accommodations for families or friend groups, unique and intimate boutique options, resort-style accommodations, and even LGBTQ Hotels. Miami Beach hotels offer everything from quiet retreats to hot spots that offer a little more party. 

Once you’ve arrived at your hotel, put your car keys away and enjoy any of the complimentary and stress-free ways to get around. After all, you are on vacation, and Miami Beach offers many fun and even free transportation options, so leave the stress of driving behind! The Miami Beach trolley, FreeBee, and affordable bike and scooter rentals, make it easy (and more fun) to get things rolling (no pun intended). 

Beach Umbrellas
Kick back on the beaches of SoFi

A SoFi Staycation 

The area on South Beach that is south of 5th Street, has become affectionately coined ‘SoFi’ by locals. If you are in the mood for some music with your staycation fun, you can enjoy the original, casual-chic beach club concept, Nikki Beach Club. Don’t think this is all about the single life, families are also welcomed to enjoy a meal on the sand during daytime hours. Here you can feel the beach life with surfers and SoFi locals heading out to enjoy the turquoise South Beach waters.  

If you venture out to the beach here, bring a mask and snorkel, as you are sure to see colorful fish, coral and maybe even a nurse shark along the jetty at South Pointe Park. Or simply walk out on the pier for a picturesque moment on the Atlantic Ocean and with an amazing view of South Beach. 

Beach chairs are included as part of many Miami Beach hotel resort fees, but if yours doesn’t, don’t worry, Boucher Brothers has got you covered and you can easily rent chairs, umbrellas and other beach gear. Remember to bring your cooler or you can purchase beverages from many of the huts located on the beach. 

Explore Miami Beach on the water

Enjoy Life on the Water

If you like a bit more excitement when you are on the water, cruise over to Miami Beach Marina, where you can easily rent jet skis and paddleboards, or you can book a snorkel or dive trip.  

Jet skis and paddleboards are also a fun and different way to explore Miami Beach’s Venetian Islands that lie along the MacArthur Causeway. Glide past multi-million-dollar mansions—you might even catch a glimpse of a superstar chilling in their actual backyard! Marvel at the massive and acclaimed cruise ships docked nearby at PortMiami, the Cruise Capital of the World, and after you return, enjoy the sunset and happy hour at Monty’s Miami Beach

Dinner time presents all sorts of options from al fresco dining to more formal indoors options. You can’t get fresher seafood than Greek-inspired Estiatorio Milos, or enjoy an authentic Brazilian Steak Experience at Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse—both also located in SoFi. 

Art Deco
Explore the Art Deco District in South Beach

Soak In the South Beach Vibe 

5th to 21st Street, typically considered the heart of South Beach and home to famed Ocean Drive, has recently been made even more pedestrian-friendly. Here you will find the largest collection of Art Deco hotels in the world. Make time to explore the architectural details of the hotels lining the street, and visit the Art Deco Museum at the Welcome Center on 10th Street at Ocean Drive, where you can pick up maps and area information as well as join a guided Art Deco Architectural Walking Tour.  

Other must-do’s on Ocean Drive include the Clevelander Hotel, where you can enjoy a burger and beer alongside locals and tourists alike. Mango’s Tropical Café keeps the beat going all night long and can also be enjoyed during the day, welcoming families, as well as serving delicious Cuban-style meals and entertainment. 

As you continue going north along Miami Beach, you’ll want to take time to stroll through Espanola Way, where you will feel transported to a small European-style village offering a variety of cafés and quaint shops to check out.  

Lincoln Road
Browse through the shops on Lincoln Road

Treat Yourself to Some Shopping

Shopping, you say? Yes! There is more than a little shopping to be had on Miami Beach. Be sure to visit the designer stores along Collins Avenue, and of course, world-famous Lincoln Road. Lincoln Road has fantastic pedestrian-friendly shopping, dining and people-watching, and includes Macy’s South Beach, with its unique Miami Collection of clothing and brands, to trendy boutiques, so you can really get your shopping on! Lincoln Road is also home to the historic Colony Theatre and New World Symphony, to add some culture to your trip. 

When you need a break from all that walking along Lincoln Road, what better place to stop than TIme Out Market, one of Miami’s newest food hall concepts, or just stroll down Lincoln Road and take your pick from the dozens of other international restaurants you will pass. Whatever you choose, keep your eyes open for the massive Botero art sculptures along the way, a one-of-a-kind public art installation, only found here.

The Bass
View iconic art in Miami Beach

View Art Around Every Corner

Speaking of art, did you know that Miami Beach is home to eight museums, including the recently opened Artechouse on Collins Avenue and the Museum of Illusions on Lincoln Road? Miami Beach is also home to the world-renowned Art Basel, so it’s no surprise that you will also find many galleries and artist enclaves to visit. Oolite Arts is one such location, also right on Lincoln Road, offering glimpses into local working artist’s studios, community art classes, and events. 

Just one block away, you can take a leisurely stroll through the newly opened Pride Park facing the reimagined Miami Beach Convention Center, home to Art Basel, as well as more Art in Public Places. Then take in a tropical experience at the adjacent Miami Beach Botanical Garden, offering free entry daily, or remember the past at the neighboring Holocaust Memorial. There are many Miami Beach parks and open spaces that can be enjoyed during your visit, offering tennis courts, basketball courts, playground experiences, and more! 

Into Golf? Consider setting up a tee time at the Miami Beach Golf Club, open to the public every day. After a round of golf, take in the sunset along with a drink or meal in the hip local neighborhood of Sunset Harbour, on the west side of the island. 

Get some fresh air on the Miami Beach Boardwalk

Experience Some Mid-Beach Magic 

Once you pass Collins Park and 21st Street, you will notice the vibe is a bit quieter again. That said, you certainly want to explore the area of Miami Beach called Mid-Beach. You can walk, bike, or skate along the recently expanded Miami Beach boardwalk for a fresh air experience, and you can view the pool scenes at the many hip hotels as you go along this beautiful four-mile strip. 

Relatively new to the Miami Beach scene is the Faena District, comprised of the Faena Hotel, Faena Theater, Forum, and Marketplace. The ‘Golden Mammoth’ in the Faena Hotel lobby is a must-see, whether you stay for the night or are just having a drink or dinner at one of their amazing restaurants.   

Other must-see hotels include the iconic Fontainebleau Miami Beach Resort and Nobu Eden Roc. Both have a rich history to share, offering a glimpse of the past, while embracing all the modern luxury amenities of today. Even if you do not stay at these hotels, they are definitely worth a visit to marvel at the architecture and décor while enjoying a delicious meal at one of their upscale restaurants. 

North Beach Bandshell
Enjoy the relaxing charms of North Beach

Sooth Yourself in North Beach 

Just a bit farther north, you will be in charming North Beach, where you really can get away from it all. This area offers a more laid-back, local experience, featuring the tranquil North Shore Park, perfect for a beach BBQ, or enjoy the walking and biking trails as you take in the fresh ocean air. You can also book a surf lesson, where on most days you can enjoy at least small swells at the 85th Street Sandbar. The North Beach Bandshell offers al fresco concerts and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a magnificent example of Miami Modern architecture.  

There is no better time than now, to come and explore all that can be enjoyed along amazing Miami Beach. No matter what your interest or activity level, your backyard truly has something for everyone. Get started on planning your Ultimate Staycation here! 

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