15 Things Miami is Known and Famous For

Miami is a coastal city in the southeastern United States. From the white sandy beaches to the nightlife, there’s always something new happening in Miami. But what exactly is Miami known for?

Miami is known for its sunny and warm weather, perfect for enjoying its beautiful beaches fringed by palm trees. It has a fantastic nightlife scene, as well as shopping spots, art galleries, and historical attractions.

In short, Miami is a city with many different faces, and it’s up to you to decide which one you want to experience. It has something to offer everyone from families to party-goers! Let’s discover the 15 things that Miami is known for.

1. Coral Gables

coral gables city hall
Image credit: Kenneth Garcia

Coral Gables is one of Miami-Dade’s first planned communities. It was built in the 1920s and its architecture is Mediterranean.

The neighborhood is very well preserved and therefore is home to many of Miami’s historic buildings such as the Biltmore Hotel.

If you are planning on visiting, don’t forget to take a walk on Coral Way, a scenic road with tree tunnels that turns into a shopping street.

2. The Keys

Islamorada

The Florida Keys is a group of islands connected to the city of Miami by bridges. Cayo Hueso is the southernmost part of the continental United States, only 145 miles away from Cuban soil.

This is a great location for those who don’t like crowds and who enjoy their time with nature. And the best part is that you can make a road trip out of your visit!

3. Brickell

brickell miami

Miami’s famous financial district, Brickell makes you feel like you are suddenly transported to anywhere in Manhattan. Brickell is not just about skyscrapers and financiers. It’s also home to fine dining restaurants and nightlife scenes.

This part of the city even has its own Metro Mover, which is an elevated train. This transport system connects you to attractions like the American Airlines Arena. Best of all, for free!

Pro tip: Don’t forget to visit Brickell City Centre for shopping and dining and then take a stroll in the neighborhood. You’ll probably bump into bars with amazing bay views and happy hour deals.

4. Port Miami

miami port

The Port of Miami is famous for being the largest passenger port in the world. More than five million cruise ship passengers pass through the Miami Port every year.

On top of that, this port has one of the largest cargo operations in the United States. The merchandise that arrives here supplies not just Florida, but the whole country and even neighboring countries.

5. Shopping

eighth street station

One of the things that excite tourists the most is Miami’s shopping scene. Miami is the gateway to the whole country. As a result, they have some of the best retail prices and a good variety of brands.

Some of Miami’s most famous shopping malls are Dolphin Mall, Aventura Mall, Dadeland Mall, and International Mall.

Pro tip: If you are looking for the absolute best deals, go to the Sawgrass Mills Mall. You’ll probably need the whole day to go round it and still, you’ll want to go back the following day. That’s how good the prices are!

Looking for a more upscale experience? Visit Bal Harbour Shops or the Shops at Merrick Park.

6. Bayside Marketplace

miami bayside
Image credit: Phillip Pessar

Bayside has a little bit of everything you need for a fun day with the whole family. This spot, right at the bay, has a bohemian atmosphere and lots of stuff to do.

Bayside is where you want to take a boat tour if you ever find yourself in Miami. But don’t forget to be there early, so you can be back on time for the live music shows.

7. Miami Beach

miami beach shack

Miami Beach is an insular city. This means it’s an island, and it’s connected to Miami by bridges. It’s famous for its art deco buildings and its lengthy beaches.

If you are ever in Miami Beach, there are two spots that you definitely can’t miss: Ocean Drive is the ideal place to have lunch and some cocktails before heading to South Beach. Moreover, Lincoln Road is a commercial street where you can find restaurants, bars, and upscale shopping.

If putting on a swimsuit and getting tanned is not your ultimate type of plan, head over to South Pointe Park. There you can rent a bicycle or take a stroll to the pier.

8. Animal interactions

seaquarium

Miami is known for being the only city in the United States surrounded by parks: The Everglades and Biscayne National Park. The first one is mostly swampy, and the second one is an aquatic ecosystem. But you don’t have to leave the city to see animals.

Visit Zoo Miami, one of the largest zoos in the country. This zoo is known for having species from all around the world. When you visit, you’ll have a great time at all the shows and rides the place has to offer, but wear comfortable shoes and get ready to walk a lot.

If you went to Zoo Miami and keep wanting more animal interactions, visit Jungle Island. It’s a tropical theme park with bay views where people can interact with different species like lemurs, flamingos, and sloths. They have shows featuring animals and a wide range of attractions, including an escape room.

Can’t get enough of animals? Then visit the Miami Seaquarium. You’ll experience wildlife in a completely different way. In addition to exhibits, they offer experiences such as swimming with dolphins and seals.

9. Wynwood Walls

wynwood

Located in one of Miami’s up-and-coming neighborhoods is Winwood Walls, an outdoor museum of graffiti and street art. Artists from around the world have contributed to the creation of this amazing, artistic space.

Bars, restaurants and ice cream shops surround the museum, making it perfect for spending a relaxed afternoon with friends or family.

10. Little Havana

calle ocho
Image credit: Phillip Pessar

Cuban immigrants trying to escape Castro’s regime created Little Havana. They decided to build a neighborhood that reminded them of home.

Little Havana is like a small piece of Cuba within Miami. The delicious food and famous cigar make this area a must-see.

If you ever find yourself in Little Havana, make sure to go to Calle Ocho, and, if you’re hungry, go to Cafe Versalles and order a traditional sandwich with Cuban coffee. Just be careful: it may come in a tiny cup, but it’s very strong.

11. Extreme sports

helicopter at the bay
Image credit: Brandon Perdeck

If you are a thrill-seeking person, make the most of your stay in Miami by practicing some extreme sports. These are some sports activities that the city has to offer:

  • Machine gun shooting range at the Design District
  • Skydiving in Homestead
  • Fly boarding at the beach
  • Paddling, snorkeling and kayaking at Oleta River State Park
  • Wakeboarding at Amelia Earhart Park

12. Celebrity homes

casa casuarina

Miami is the birthplace of famous people like Jason Derulo, Sean Kingston, Eva Mendes, and Steve Aoki. Due to its great weather and tropical scene, Miami is the home of many more celebrities.

One of the most famous celebrities to have ever lived in Miami is the late Gianni Versace, who built a mansion called “The Villa Casa Casuarina” in South Beach. In 1997, he was assassinated at the entrance to his home. You can stay at Versace’s mansion for less than $600 a night.

If entertainment is your thing, hop on a boat tour that will take you to Star Island and other prime spots where celebrities have their mansions.

13. Miami’s nightlife

ultra miami

Miami is famous for its nightlife scene. There’s a wide offer of clubs, lounges with sea views, wine bars, live concerts, and everything in between to match your mood. Plus, this city celebrates Miami Music Week every March, a week of music events like the famous Ultra Music Festival.

Your night will start early, at five in the afternoon, watching the sunset and enjoying the deals at American Social’s happy hour. Then, head over to Downtown Miami and take your pick at any restaurant. Your night is just starting.

Mary Brickell Village is a great spot to visit after dinner. There are plenty of bars to choose from, all serving delicious drinks and hookahs. Don’t want to go home just yet? Go to one of Miami’s famous clubs like LIV, E11even, Story, or Space.

14. Perez Art Museum

perez art museum
Image credit: Maciek Lulko

Miami is overflowing with culture. It’s home to many museums, observatories, and parks.

Perez Art Museum, located in Downtown Miami, is a contemporary art museum that displays artworks from the XX and XXI centuries from different nations.

During your visit, don’t forget to enjoy the waterfront views at the restaurant. And, on your way out, visit the bookstore and the gift shop to find unique items.

15. Christmas in Miami

santas enchanted forest
Image Credit: Claudia Brauer

If you are planning on visiting Miami for Christmas, you’ll find many holiday attractions, like Christmas ballet or Jungle Island’s lantern festival.

Most importantly, the world’s largest holiday theme park happens to be set in Miami. This winter wonderland opens from November to January. Attractions include hundreds of rides, roller coasters, Christmas shows, and life-sized holiday displays.

miami skyline night

Now that you know what Miami is known for, come to visit and let us know how you like it!

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