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Things to do in Miami

Itineraries for Your Trip to Miami

Miami locals share their perfect days.
Find your Miami

3 Days in Miami for First Timers

Curated by Jessica Colley ClarkeJessica Colley Clarke is a freelance writer and curious traveler based in New York City. Her stories have appeared in AFAR magazine, BBC Travel, The Daily Beast, and the New York Times, among other publications.

From speedboat tours on Biscayne Bay to salsa dancing lessons in South Beach, Miami is full of things to do by day and night. Plan ahead to balance water adventures, neighborhood exploration, and day trips to the Florida Keys or Bahamas. Here are a few ways to spend three days in Miami.

Day 1

Get a broad view of Miami on an introductory tour. Explore on a hop-on hop-off bus tour, with the freedom to stop at more than 40 locations, or climb aboard a speedboat for a fast-paced tour of Biscayne Bay. Other adventurous options include a seaplane tour with take-off and landing in the bay, or a parasailing excursion—both of which offer a bird’s-eye view of the water. Combination tours also provide an overview: some tours combine city sightseeing, a scenic cruise in Biscayne Bay, and a wildlife-spotting airboat ride in the Everglades.

Day 2

Discover Miami’s vibrant culture with a day focused on exploring its neighborhoods, food, and dance traditions. Visit the Cuban neighborhood of Little Havana for a food-focused walking tour or a food-themed bike tour that covers ground quickly. Or if you prefer, take a South Beach food tour, focused on the history of the Art Deco District with tastings at Latin American restaurants. By night, keep the cultural crash course going with an evening of mojitos and salsa dancing. Follow the lead of your dance instructor and take in live entertainment such as cabaret shows.

Day 3

While the sun and surf of Miami make it tempting to stay put, there are adventures beyond South Beach. Discover the natural beauty of the Florida Keys with a day trip that might include sailing and snorkeling, or via seaplane from Miami to the Keys to maximize time. Those interested in space can plan a day trip to the Kennedy Space Center. For something further flung, book a Bahamas day cruise. Families can head to Orlando on a tour that includes 1-day admission to Disney World and transportation from Miami.

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