Where To Go Salsa Dancing In Miami


The Pineapple Stage at Ball and Chain




Fun with friends at Ball and Chain

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Dance the night away at these spicy salsa dancing hotspots.

Get to know Miami’s connection with Latin American culture through an immersive experience - a night of salsa dancing! What better way is there to really understand a culture than through its music and dance? The ultimate form of expression, you don’t need to be an expert, or even know anything at all, before joining in on the dance floor at one of Miami’s salsa dancing hotspots.

Salsa dancing originated in eastern Cuba, just over 300 miles away from Miami. This traditionally Afro-Cuban dance is a mix of cha-cha-cha, mambo, rumba and other popular traditional Latin dances and musical styles. The key to salsa dancing is to focus on keeping the upper body still while moving the hips and feet. You’ll know it when you see it! It’s a fast, fiery dance that’s often done in pairs but can also be danced alone.

If you’re intimidated by jumping in without knowing the basics, options for watching salsa dancing and listening to the music abound no matter what you’re looking for. Whether you prefer lessons, a performance or to join in on the action at a club/discoteca, Miami is the American salsa hotspot.

Ball & Chain in Little Havana

The historic Ball & Chain bar and music venue was revived in 2014 after sitting dormant for decades. The original saloon opened in 1935 and was famous for performances by Count Basie, Billie Holiday and Chet Baker in the 1950s, now, it’s back.

Reviving the nightlife scene on Calle Ocho, the venue is designed in a sexy, wood-paneled setting with green leather banquettes and palm fronds reminiscent of its heyday. Live music is once again the focal point. Acts range from legendary Tito Puente to Latin house party DJ sets to salsa lessons and competitions to live jazz sets by local bands like Palo! Make sure to go out back to the pineapple band shell to experience its live music. This nightspot also serves a tempting tapas menu and delicious craft cocktails created by Cuban mixology impresario Julio Cabrera.

CubaOcho in Little Havana

Part research center and art gallery, part rum bar with live music, CubaOcho is a true Little Havana treasure. During the day, explore the collection of antique artwork and furniture from 1850-1958. Ask the owner to show you pieces formerly owned by Frank Sinatra. It’s a place for locals to congregate day and night over cigars in the outdoor courtyard.

Head over to the bar and sip from a huge selection of rum (arguably the most extensive rum bar in Miami) while listening to a wide array of music for live Latin bands and performers. Weekend evenings come alive with live music ranging from jazz to salsa and everything in between. Get on the dance floor yourself or just sit back and watch the locals play in this intimate setting.

YUCA 501 on South Beach

YUCA, an acronym for “Young Urban Cuban-Americans,” serves up contemporary Cuban and Nuevo Latino dishes downstairs and on the sidewalk at this Lincoln Road restaurant. The upstairs ballroom is the location for salsa lessons on Wednesday and Friday nights starting at 8:30 p.m. by Salsa Fever Miami. It's an inspiring setting to test your salsa skills, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking passersby on Lincoln Road and the Miami night sky. Expect live music or a DJ and stick around after your lesson to work on your moves with the local Miami Beach crowd and be sure to book a table to enjoy dinner at their onsite restaurant. This white tablecloth restaurant serves a new spin on Latin food favorites like a Tuna Taco Wrap, Guava Burrata Caprese, Watermelon Cuban Gazpacho, Plantain Coated Mahi-Mahi and more delicious dishes.

Salsa Mia on South Beach

Salsa Mia teaches classes and gives you a place to try our your moves above Mango's on South Beach every night of the week, where professional dancers are the main event (see below). Sign up for a one-hour salsa lesson or go all in with the Sip, Savor & Salsa - a full night experience where you'll enjoy a one-and-a-half-hour class for all levels. Trade-off dance partners, get to know your neighbors and learn the basics of salsa and bachata. Then, stick around for a party! The atmosphere is friendly and inviting, whether you choose to grab a partner and show off your own moves or simply want to watch others while sipping a mojito. Sign up on their website to get your Salsa Lessons & Party Pass ticket, which gives you VIP club entrance until 4:00 am.

Mango's Tropical Cafe on South Beach

A night at Mango’s is an iconic Miami experience at this dinner-and-a-show style venue that you are unlikely to forget. The dancers are well versed in Brazilian samba, conga, flamenco, 80s and 90s hits and, of course, salsa. Be ready to be wowed by the colorful costumes, the high-energy show and fun music. The Latin Connection Band plays every night from 8:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., so you don’t have to wait until the sun sets to get your groove on. For the night owls, Mango’s is open until 5:00 a.m. every day.

El Patio in Wynwood

El Patio is in Wynwood, so it's a bit hipper and younger than some of the other places highlighted on this list. Feel transported when you walk in - the furniture is an eclectic mix of abuela-chic pieces. Sundays are “Sanchoco Sundays” with a unique weekend happy hour as a highlight. They regularly host DJs, BBQs and special events, but you can rest assured that any day you head over to El Patio there will be Latin music playing you can dance to.

Tucandella in Brickell

In Brickell’s Mary Brickell Village, Tucandela is a local club and lounge with great Latin music ranging from Spanish music including salsa, reggaeton, plus hip-hop and today’s hits for a stylish crowd. Their DJs will play anything that will get the crowd dancing, but there's a definitive slant towards Latin music. It’s a great place to dance to current Spanish-language hits. Order an aguardiente, a popular Colombian liquor, known for getting the party started.

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