In this 2 Days in Miami guide we’re sharing a detailed Miami itinerary plus everything you need to know before you visit Miami, where to stay, the best food and drinks, things to do, and more! Ready to plan your own Miami adventure? Keep on reading!
Before visiting Miami, we weren’t sure what to expect. We had seen photos of South Beach, knew about the nightlife, and had a bucket list item of eating a Cuban sandwich in Miami, but beyond that, we didn’t know much about the city.
And wow, we were very pleasantly surprised! We loved Miami way more than we thought we would. The Cuban sandwich we dreamt of was delicious, the beaches were gorgeous, and the mix of art deco architecture and colorful street art was fun to explore, but what really stood out to us was the culture.
With a strong Cuban influence and population, as well as many other Latin cultures (it’s nicknamed the “Capital of Latin-America”), we felt like we had been transported outside of the US. In our 2 days in Miami we got to see, hear, and taste a culture that was different than our own.
Miami was proof that there are so many incredible cultures here in the United States and that you don’t always have to travel far to have an international adventure. Miami, we’ll be back!
Looking for more things to do in Florida? Check out these guides:
- 18 Things to do in Orlando Besides Theme Parks
- Hollywood Studios
- Magic Kingdom
- 7 Things to do in the Everglades
- One Day in St. Augustine
When to visit Miami
One of the best things about Miami is that it’s a great year round destination! The highs are in the 70s-80s year round, with the lows in the 60s-70s. A couple things to note about specific times of the year:
- Winter: Things can be a bit busier in the winter, with many flocking to Florida (including us!) to escape the cold around the US. The rates may be a bit higher to visit during this time, but if you live somewhere that it snows, it may be worth it!
- Spring: This is both a perfect time to visit weather-wise and the winter crowds have died down a bit, which may mean better deals on travel.
- Summer: The summers can be a bit hot and humid and there are risks of hurricanes, so you’ll need to be flexible in case there is a storm. Things may also be a bit busier due to summer vacations.
- Fall: Hurricane season goes through November, so fall can also be a bit riskier with the weather. But the temperatures are perfect for the beach!
Getting to Miami
If you’re traveling from outside of Florida, then the easiest way to get to Miami is to fly into Miami International Airport (MIA). MIA is a huge airport, with tons of both international and domestic flights on most major airlines, like Delta, American, and United.
However, some of our favorite airlines, like Alaska, Southwest, and JetBlue, only fly into Fort Lauderdale (FLL), which is about 30 minutes north of Miami.
Getting around Miami
Miami is not a walkable city. While some areas look pretty close on a map, they can easily be a 20 minute drive from each other. Our 2 days in Miami guide is designed for those who want to get out and explore the city. We tried to group together items the best we could to minimize travel logistics, but you’ll definitely need to figure out a way to get to and from the major areas.
But we’re here to help! Here are a few of the options for getting around Miami, ranging from free to a bit pricier.
While not the most glamorous way to get around Miami, it is the cheapest! Miami has both a bus system and two pretty awesome public transportation methods that are 100% free: the trolley and the metromover.
The trolley has routes within Little Havana, Downtown and Brickell, and Wynood. These routes stick just to one neighborhood (vs. connecting the neighborhoods), so you’ll still have to find a way to get to the neighborhood, but once you’re there, you can utilize the trolley to get around easier.
Metrobus, Metrorail, and Metromover
Miami also has a Metrobus, Metrorail, and Metromover. The Metrobus is just like your standard city bus, while the Metromover and Metrorail are both rail systems. However, the difference between the two is that the Metrorail covers 25 miles and has a $2.25 fare, while the Metromover focuses more on the downtown and Brickell areas and is free!
Uber or Lyft
If you don’t plan to venture around the city too much or plan to drink and need a safe way to get around, then Uber or Lyft are likely your best bet. It may get a bit pricey, so we recommend looking at their fare estimator tools (Uber, Lyft) to see how much you’d expect to spend when getting around town.
Rent a Car
Warning: driving in Miami is a bit crazy (no offense Miami, we love you!) and you will have to pay to park, but we were able to drive and park our 22 ft Sprinter van just fine, so if we could do it, you can too!
Where to Stay in Miami
There isn’t necessarily an obvious choice when choosing where to stay in Miami. As we mentioned above, Miami is a big city and pretty spread out, but there are a few areas that are not only fun to be in, but would make for a great home base. These areas are all pretty safe, walkable, have lots of restaurants/bars/shops, and are close to many items on our 2 days in Miami guide!
Here’s a little bit of information about each area, as well as some specific places to stay in each.
Wynwood is a trendy, colorful neighborhood north of downtown Miami and West of Miami Beach. The area is known for all of the murals and street art and it’s so much fun to walk around (and take tons of photos). There are some great coffee shops and restaurants nearby too!
South Beach is located on the southern part of Miami Beach, which is an island off of downtown Miami and is known for its art deco buildings, hoppin’ nightlife, and a gorgeous beach. We strolled around this area early one Saturday morning and were in awe of the blue water, huge beach, and the cool architecture!
If you want to enjoy Miami’s nightlife and have a more resort experience, then South Beach may be right for you!
Brickell is Miami’s financial center in the heart of downtown. While that may not sound like a fun area to stay in, it’s one of the hottest areas of town, with tons of high-end condos and restaurants. It’s also close to Key Biscayne and Miami Beach!
- Novotel Miami Brickell
- Hampton Inn & Suites Miami Brickell
- The Vagabond Hotel
- The Guild Downtown | X Miami
2 days in Miami itinerary
Based on our experience in Miami + a lot of research, here’s our suggested itinerary for 2 days in Miami, which hits up all of the must-visit, popular spots, as well as a few lesser known gems!
- Start your day with both Cuban coffee and a pastry at Versailles. This is said to be the most famous Cuban restaurant in the world. Walk up to La Ventanita, a window outside which is a classic way to grab coffee in Cuban culture, to order a strong and sweet Cafe Cubano (a shot of espresso) or a creamy Cafe con Leche. While you’re there, make sure to get a guava and cheese pastry!
- Snap a photo of the Little Havana Mural!
- Later, walk around Little Havana, which was one of our favorite areas in Miami. In the 1960s, tons of Cuban refugees settled in this area and it has become the cultural capital for Cuban Americans. Stroll down Calle Ocho (SW 8th Street) and enjoy the delicious foods, salsa music, and fun vibe this area offers. Some spots we recommend checking out:
- Domino Park: This is where older locals go to play dominoes—it’s super fun to watch!
- Calle Ocho Walk of Fame: This is a little strip of stars for famous Cubans. It’s not very big, but still cool to see!
- We had fun just walking around, without any big plans! There are tons of restaurants, bars, and shops to explore.
- While in Little Havana, grab lunch at Sanguich de Miami. This was our favorite place that we ate at during our day in Little Havana. We got their cuban sandwich (amazing!) and a batido, which is a Cuban milkshake. We got the Batido de Timba, which was guava and cream cheese, topped with Maria cookies, and oh my gosh it was the BEST milkshake of our lives!
- If you’re feeling extra hungry (we won’t judge) or don’t want a batido, then go to Azucar Ice Cream Company on Calle Ocho!
- Spend the rest of the afternoon at the beach! We recommend checking out Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, which costs $8/vehicle and has a lighthouse you can climb to the top of, or visit one of the beaches on Miami Beach!
- For dinner, some good options are:
- If you’re up for it, then go out in Little Havana! Ball & Chain is a world famous live music bar & lounge that opened in 1935 and makes for a fun spot to spend the evening. Check out their live music schedule!
- Have breakfast at Zak the Baker (closed on Saturdays), which is a bakery in the heart of Wynwood making the best cinnamon rolls and chocolate walnut babka. Adam is still talking about them!
If you’re visiting on a Saturday and Zak the Baker is closed, check out The Salty Donut instead. Or go to both, because they are both worth it! 🙂
- Grab coffee at Panther Coffee, which is a great local roaster.
- Later, walk around Wynwood + Wynwood Walls! This area is a photographer’s heaven! There are sooo many beautiful and colorful murals.
While the Wynwood Walls area gets a lot of love, we were surprised by how many murals there were outside of the official Wynwood Walls. We suggest just wandering all of the streets in Wynwood and seeing what you find!
- For lunch, grab tacos at either Tacomiendo or Caja Caliente or head to 1-800-Lucky, which is an Asian food hall!
- Spend the rest of the afternoon laying out at South Beach. We had pretty high expectations for this beach and it was just as beautiful as we imagined!
- Have dinner in South Beach. Some good spots to check out are:
- If you want to go out on South Beach, then here are some bars to check out. Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company, Bodega (bonus: they have tacos!), Drunk Bitch (sorry for the bad word, mom!), and The Scape Goat.
If you have extra time…
Have more than 2 days in Miami or just want some other options? Here’s a list of other amazing places to check out!
- Tinta y Cafe
- El Rey de las Fritas (a classic Cuban street food item!)
- Las Olas Cafe
- Havana 1957
- La Carreta
- Doggi’s Arepa Bar
- The Taco Stand
- El Palacio De Los Jugos
- The Crazy Toston
- El Mago de las Fritas
- The Lobster Shack
- Mojo Donuts and Fried Chicken
- Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop & Cafe
- Santo Dulce! Handcrafted Churros & Ice Cream
- Midtown Creamery
- Taiyaki NYC
- Catch a sports game: Miami Marlins (MLB), Miami Heat (NBA), Florida Panthers (NHL), Miami Dolphins (NFL), and the University of Miami Hurricanes (College Football).
- Lay out at the Venetian Pool, which is a historic public swimming pool open from March 17-November 29.
- Visit the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
- Take a day trip to Everglades
- Venture down to the Florida Keys!
Ready to explore Miami?
Pin this 2 Days in Miami guide to help plan your trip!