Weekend in Miami Beach

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By: Shayne Benowitz

Your everything-guide to a weekend in Miami Beach

So, you’ve got a weekend in Miami Beach, and you want to make the most of it. For an itinerary jam-packed with the best places to eat, drink and explore, read on.

Miami Beach Botanical Garden Bridge
Miami Beach Botanical Garden is a soothing haven of tropical flora and art

Day 1: Beaches, Beer & Bayside Beauty


Get your morning in South Beach started with breakfast at Orange Blossom near Collins Park. Enjoy huevos rancheros – or their signature omelet made with ham and Swiss cheese – in the jungle-inspired outdoor garden. Next, make your way to the Holocaust Memorial for a self-guided tour around the stunning sculpture and fountain garden. Afterwards, the nearby Miami Beach Botanical Garden is a soothing haven of tropical flora and art.

Nikki Beach sliders & fries
Listen to DJ beats while you dine on global cuisine at Nikki Beach


For lunch, make your way to the legendary Nikki Beach and dine on global cuisine with your toes in the sand and a soundtrack of DJ beats on the salt breeze. Afterwards, pay a visit to The Wolfsonian-FIU on Washington Avenue in the heart of the Art Deco District for exhibitions with a unique lens on the modern world and how the past shapes the present. Next, hit up Abbey Brewing Company, a laid-back, classic South Beach haunt for Trappist-style Belgian craft beer.

Bayside marina at dusk
Enjoy views of Downtown Miami's skyline during a sunset cruise tour


Make your way to the Miami Beach Marina for a sunset cruise with Miami Tours & Water Adventures and take in the beauty of the dazzling skyline as the sun slips beyond the Downtown Miami horizon. Once you’re back on shore, head to Monty’s Sunset, located right at the marina overlooking the water for tiki bar vibes, fresh seafood, frozen drinks and live music.

Art Deco Building on Ocean Drive
Take a walking tour and learn about Art Deco history

Day 2: Art Deco & Stylish Strolling


Fuel up for the day at the kitschy 11th Street Diner, housed inside a retro silver Airstream-style dining car, for a breakfast of classic American comfort food. Then, make your way towards the ocean to the Art Deco Welcome Center at Lummus Park on Ocean Drive. Take off for a guided walking tour, where you’ll learn all about the historic Art Deco District’s unique history and pastel, neon-accented architecture. Operated by the Miami Design Preservation League, there are a variety of other tours on offer, including the Gay and Lesbian Walking Tour, focusing on the history and contributions of the LGBTQ+ communities in Miami Beach. If you’re still up for more exploration after your tour, check out a DecoBike from one of the many self-service stands located throughout Miami Beach and go wherever your feet pedal.

Friends pose at Museum of Illusions
Visit the Museum of Illusions for the perfect instagram shots


Take in lunch with a view at Juvia on Lincoln Road where their chic, indoor-outdoor dining room is perched atop a modernist parking structure by Pritzker Prize-winning architects Herzog & de Meuron. You’ll indulge in their upscale blend of French, Japanese and Peruvian fare helmed by Chef Sunny Oh. Afterwards, stroll down Lincoln Road to the Miami Museum of Illusions to marvel at more than 40 interactive 3D illusions designed for the Instagram age. There’s also a “smash it!” room where you can blow off steam by smashing plates against the wall. Next, make your way to Espanola Way for an afternoon stroll along this charming pedestrian promenade lined with boutiques and restaurants and modeled after a European village.

Byblos Miami interior
Sample upscale Mediterranean fare at Byblos on Collins Avenue


Clean-up for dinner and hit the town at trendy Byblos for upscale Mediterranean fare on Collins Avenue. Then, head up the street for an indie flick at O Cinema South Beach or make it a night of classical music at the New World Symphony. For an expertly mixed cocktail in a speakeasy-style setting, enjoy a nightcap at Swizzle Rum Bar and Drinkery, founded by members of New York City’s cult favorite Employees Only.

The Palace drag show
Enjoy an unforgettable meal during the drag brunch at The Palace

Day 3: Drag Brunch & the Perfect Beach Day


Begin your day at the iconic Palace on Ocean Drive; their drag brunch is where Miami’s fiercest queens sashay and perform for an unforgettable meal. Next, make your way to the World Erotic Art Museum for the country’s only museum devoted to fine erotic art.

South Beach Jetty
Take a dip in the inviting ocean at South Beach


Cool off with an afternoon at the beach near South Pointe Park, where you can stroll along the landscaped pathway and pier for panoramic views or simply take a dip in the aquamarine ocean. Afterwards, head to The Good Time Hotel – the latest collaboration between Pharrell Williams and Miami hospitality impresario David Grutman – for lunch poolside at Strawberry Moon. The hotel hosts a rotating cast of DJs for weekend pool parties, so stick around and get swept up in the groove.

Fillmore on Miami Beach
Catch a show at the Fillmore on Miami Beach


Grab dinner at CJ’s Crab Shack on Ocean Drive and delight in fresh seafood fare, from crab legs galore to lobster, shrimp and local fish, in a laid-back setting. Afterwards, see what’s playing at The Fillmore Miami Beach, an intimate theater that hosts everything from touring bands to comedians. For a nightcap, make your way to nearby Sweet Liberty, founded by a local mixology legend, for craft cocktails, tasty bites (order the cauliflower nachos!) and a laid-back vibe that turns up as the evening progresses.

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