There’s a reason they call Miami ‘Magic City’. From its beautiful, year-round climate to its stunning golden beaches, crystal waters and endless list of attractions – you could spend a lifetime in Miami without getting bored. So if you’ve only got seven days, how do you pack a little bit of everything in?
Day One – South Beach and Ocean Drive
So you’ve finally touched down in sun-soaked Miami. After your flight, and once you’ve reached your accommodation, you’re probably going to want some time to take stock and unwind. Thanks to Miami’s near-perfect climate, it’ll likely be ideal weather for you to hit the sands straight away – no matter what time of year you visit. For the authentic Miamian experience, venture straight to famous South Beach. Hang around the area after sunset and you’ll see the iconic art-deco-style architecture along Ocean Drive illuminated.
Day Two – Downtown
Narrow, Latin-flavoured backstreets meet with towering glass skyscrapers in Miami’s downtown district. You’ll find everything you could possibly want here- from over a thousand shops, to restaurants serving up all-manner of international cuisine and thriving nightlife that spills out into the city’s streets. To see as much as you can, you could take a tour bus around the city earlier in the day to help you get your bearings, before enjoying an afternoon on foot. Cap off a spot of retail therapy with some al-fresco cocktails in the evening.
Day Three – The Everglades
No trip to Florida would be complete without experiencing the Everglades; and in Miami, you’re perfectly situated for it. The enormous wetlands lie just west of the city, and can be easily reached by private vehicle and public transport. Once you’re there, there’s a whole host of options as to how to explore this unique natural habitat. Whether you opt for an airboat, a swamp buggy or even a kayak, prepare to spot alligators and beautiful native bird species as you go.
Day Four – Key Biscayne
After a couple of days off the sand, you’ll be itching to get back on. You’ve already experienced the electric vibe of South Beach, so it might be time to opt for something more tranquil. Key Biscayne is a small island situated just southeast of the Downton area, and can be accessed easily by road. It’s hardly remote – you’ll find numerous resorts, a golf course, tennis centre and a marina here – but head to Bill Baggs State Park at its southern tip. The golden stretches here are quiet, secluded, and totally unspoiled. It’s the locals’ best kept secret.
Day Five – Little Havana
Due to the island’s proximity, there’s an enormous Cuban community in Miami – and its influence is clear to see wherever you look. Nowhere is it more prominent though, than in the city’s ‘Little Havana’ district. Stop at a café and grab some authentic Cuban grub as you listen to jazz music spill out of record stores and into the streets. If you’re around on the last Friday of the month, don’t miss ‘Viernes Culturales’ – a huge arts and culture fair that takes place across the district.
Day Six – Venetian Pool
Even if your accommodation comes with a pool of its own, a lazy day at the Venetian Pool is not to be missed. Built way back in 1924 in the place of a shallow quarry, it’s the largest freshwater pool in the United States. As the water’s pumped in from underground wells, it’s refreshingly cold and is the perfect antidote to the searing Florida sun. What makes it a real standout however, is its stunning venetian stylings. They may not be authentic, but you really will feel like you’ve been transported to a paradise Venetian villa.
Day Seven – Perez Art Museum and The Design District
A dose of art, design and culture is the perfect conclusion to your Miami trip. The Perez Art Museum is a fascinating contemporary art museum located in the lush Museum Park, on Miami’s waterfront. Over 1,800 works are spread throughout a masterfully designed new facility.
Once you’re done here and have grabbed a spot of lunch, head north to the Design District. Here you’ll find an eclectic blend of street art, artisan cafes and independent stores selling everything from jewellery to furniture. It’s the perfect opportunity for a last-minute purchase to remember your trip by.