If you’re looking for a fun-filled one day in Miami, look no further!
There are so many things to see and do in Miami that it can be hard to know where to start — especially if you only have one day!
But don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. I live in South Florida, and I’ve spent a day in Miami several times, so I know all the best spots.
In this 1 day in Miami guide, I’ll take you to all the best places to see and things to do so you can take in all the best sights and attractions.
Ready to dig into this Miami one day itinerary? Let’s go!
In This Post:
One Day in Miami: What to See and Do
I know that one day isn’t enough time to explore everything that Miami offers, but I guarantee that you’ll have a great time trying!
Morning Itinerary for a Day in Miami
To make the most of your one day in Miami, it’s important to wake up early and get started right away because this is a jam packed guide!
Grab Cuban Coffee in South Beach
We’ll start this 1 day in Miami guide by grabbing a Cuban coffee in South Beach.
South Beach, also known as SoBe, is one of the most popular areas in Miami and it’s where you’ll find some of the best coffee shops, restaurants, and beaches.
Cuban coffee is a must-try when you’re in Miami. It’s essentially a dark roast espresso with a lot of sugar, and it’s delicious! It’s especially delicious in iced latte form.
There are plenty of great coffee shops in South Beach that serve Cuban coffee, but the best is Puerto Sagua.
It’s a no-frills small Cuban diner with amazing coffee and breakfast.
Take the Coffee to Go and Enjoy It at South Beach
Once you have your Cuban coffee in hand, take it to go and enjoy it while walking along South Beach.
South Beach is one of the most beautiful and best beaches in the USA with its white sand, turquoise water, and towering palm trees.
Since you only have one day in Miami, you don’t want to spend too much time at the beach, but it’s worth it to take a quick stroll and enjoy the views.
Explore the Art Deco Historic District
After you’ve had your coffee and enjoyed the beach for a bit, it’s time to explore the Art Deco Historic District.
The Art Deco Historic District is one of the most unique parts of Miami with its pastel-colored buildings and contemporary art deco architecture.
Besides the pops of color, these buildings also have quirky ornamentation and unique geometric shapes.
You can also visit the Art Deco Welcome Center, which has exhibits on the history of the area as well as a museum.
Some of the must-stops within the Art Deco District are Miami Beach Post Office, Leslie Hotel, Breakwater Hotel, and Waldorf Towers Hotel.
Make sure to stop by the famous pastel-colored lifeguard towers; they make for great photo ops!
Wander Around Ocean Drive
Moving on with our one day in Miami itinerary, it’s time to wander around one of the most famous streets in Miami — Ocean Drive.
When you watch tv shows or movies set in Miami, chances are you’ve seen Ocean Drive.
Ocean Drive is a street that runs along South Beach and is known for its art deco colorful buildings, restaurants, and cafes.
One of the most popular things to do on Ocean Drive is people-watching. You’ll see locals and tourists alike walking, rollerblading, and biking up and down the street.
The best part about wandering around Ocean Drive is that there’s no specific route. You can just wander and explore as you please!
This street is dotted with restaurants and cafes, so it’s the perfect spot for you to grab lunch or an afternoon coffee for a pick-me-up.
Walk Around Espanola Way
After you’re done exploring Ocean Drive on this one day in Miami guide, it’s time to walk around Espanola Way.
Espanola Way is a pedestrian-only street that’s lined with Mediterranean Spanish and French-style houses, restaurants, and cafes.
It’s one of the most beautiful and romantic spots in Miami, so it’s perfect for a leisurely stroll.
Espanola Way also has plenty of great restaurants and cafes to stop at for a bite.
Afternoon Itinerary for 1 Day in Miami
Wow, the morning flew by fast, didn’t it?
Now it’s time for the afternoon portion of our one day in Miami itinerary!
Marvel at the Wynwood Walls
The Wynwood Walls are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Miami, and it’s easy to see why.
The brainchild of artist Tony Goldman, the Wynwood Walls is an open-air gallery that showcases the work of some of the world’s most talented street artists.
Since its inception in 2009, the Wynwood Walls have become a mecca for art lovers from all over the globe.
And, it’s not hard to see why. The graffiti-style murals and installations are truly one-of-a-kind.
What’s more, the street art on the walls is constantly evolving; new murals and installations are added on a regular basis, ensuring that there’s always something new to see.
The Wynwood Walls truly is one of the most unique things you’ll see during your one day in Miami.
👉 This Wynwood Graffiti Golf Cart Small Group Tour is the way to go to see these gorgeous murals in a short amount of time since you only have 1 day in Miami.
Escape the Busyness for a Bit at Key Biscayne
After a morning and afternoon of exploring Miami’s vibrant neighborhoods, you might be ready for a break from the hustle and bustle.
If that’s the case, then Key Biscayne is the perfect spot for you.
Key Biscayne is a small island located just off the coast of Miami, and it’s one of the best Florida shelling beaches.
The island is home to beautiful sandy beaches, nature preserves, restaurants, a lighthouse, and two parks (Crandon Park and Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park).
It’s the perfect spot to relax for a bit and enjoy the tranquility of nature.
Grab a Cocktail in Brickell
Brickell is one of the most popular neighborhoods in Miami, and it’s a financial district.
Known as the “Wall Street of the South,” you’ll actually feel like you’re in New York City rather than Miami.
Besides being home to a thriving business district, it’s also home to trendy restaurants, luxury hotels, and upscale shopping.
After a day of exploring, grab a cocktail at one of Brickell’s many bars or rooftop lounges and admire the stunning Miami skyline.
Evening Itinerary for a Day in Miami
The sun is setting and that means it’s time for the evening portion of our one day in Miami itinerary!
Watch the Sunset From a Boat
There’s no better way to end a day in Miami than by watching the sunset from the water.
There are a number of companies that offer sunset boat tours, and they typically last around 2 hours.
During the cruise, you’ll enjoy the stunning view of the Miami skyline as the sunset.
👉 This sunset catamaran cruise is the perfect way to end a perfect day in Miami!
Enjoy Dinner in Miami Beach
After a day of exploring, you’re sure to have worked up an appetite.
As anyone who’s been to Miami Beach knows that the restaurant scene here is truly incredible.
Whether you’re in the mood for fresh seafood, Latin-inspired dishes, or good old-fashioned American comfort food, you’ll find plenty of options to choose from.
And with so many restaurants to choose from, it can be tough to decide where to eat.
However, one thing is for sure: no matter what you’re in the mood for during your one day in Miami, you’ll be able to find a great meal in Miami Beach that will satisfy your hunger.
Some of my favorites in the area are Yardbird Table & Bar, Stubborn Seed, and CVI.CHE 15.
Explore the Clubs and Bars
Last but not least, no trip to Miami would be complete without exploring the nightlife scene.
South Beach is one of the most popular nighttime destinations in the city, and it’s easy to see why.
The area is home to a plethora of rooftop bars, clubs, and lounges that are perfect for dancing the night away to live music.
Whether you’re looking for a laid-back bar or a raucous club, you’ll find plenty of options to choose from in South Beach.
Even if you don’t drink alcohol, you can still find amazing mocktails at the clubs and bars.
How to Get to Miami
Getting to Miami is simple, no matter where you’re coming from.
The city is served by two major airports: Miami International Airport and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.
From there, you can rent a car or take an Uber to wherever you’re staying.
You can also do a Florida road trip and work your way down to Miami.
Miami is also a popular cruise ship destination, so many visitors come into the city via one of the many cruise ships that dock there.
When to Visit Miami
The best time to visit this bustling Sunshine State city is from November through April.
The summer months in Miami are brutal with high humidity and temperatures that often exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
It feels like a sauna when you’re outside, and it’s not much fun sightseeing and walking around.
Summertime is also the rainy season and hurricane season in Miami, which also makes for an unpleasant experience.
The months from November through April have moderate temperatures and minimal rain, which makes for perfect weather for exploring the city.
Where to Stay for Your 1 Day in Miami Getaway
When visiting Miami, Florida, there are a number of great places to stay in many different bustling areas of the city.
Here are some of the areas and hotels I recommend to ensure you are properly located for a day in Miami.
South Beach: South Beach is the best area to stay in Miami because it’s centrally located and close to all of the best things to see and do.
Brickell: Brickell is brimming with bars and restaurants and is one of the most popular areas to stay in Miami.
Downtown Miami: Downtown Miami is a great area to stay in if you want to be close to the action.
How to Get Around Miami
The best way to get around during your one day in Miami is via car. You can rent a car, drive your own car down, or use Uber.
If you’re only spending one day in Miami, getting around via Uber is doable. But, if you’re spending more than one day, you should rent a car.
Not only will you have the freedom to go wherever you want and whenever you want, but it’ll also be cheaper than taking an Uber.
I recommend using DiscoverCars to book your car rental. They have no hidden fees, and they compare prices from several companies so you can get the best deal.
👉 Check rates and availability for your rental car in Miami with DiscoverCars.
👉 If you’re not renting a car, this city tour of Miami covers all of the must-sees, and it also includes a boat tour. It’s the easiest way to see all the hotspots without missing anything on your Miami one day itinerary and you don’t have to worry about transportation.
What if You Have More Than a Day in Miami?
I know that this is a one day in Miami guide, but I wanted to give you a few ideas of what you could do if you have a spare day or two or you’re able to swing a USA weekend trip here.
If you have more than one day in Miami, I recommend adding the following activities to your Miami itinerary.
You can also switch out the above recommended activities for some of the below.
Visit Vizcaya Museum and Gardens: This 70+ room waterfront villa once belonged to John Deering. Located on Biscayne Bay, it’s one of the most popular activities on any Miami itinerary. You could easily spend a couple of hours exploring the grounds and gardens.
Relax at Biscayne Bay and walk around Bayside Marketplace: Biscayne Bay is one of the most beautiful spots in the Miami Beach area. Take a walk around Biscayne Bay and then explore Bayside Marketplace. This outdoor mall is one of the best places to find souvenirs. It also has plenty of restaurants for you to stop in and get a happy hour drink.
Explore Coconut Grove: Coconut Grove, also known as the Grove, is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Miami. It’s a great place to walk around, do some shopping, and eat at one of the many restaurants.
Eat your way through Little Havana on a food tour: The Little Havana neighborhood is the perfect place to experience Cuban culture and learn about Cuban influences on the city. This guided tour will help you get a taste of all the good Cuban eats around Miami.
Stroll along Calle Ocho Walk of Fame: While you’re in Little Havana, walk down the Calle Ocho Walk of Fame. This is a one-of-a-kind attraction that celebrates Hispanic culture and features tributes to some of the most famous Hispanic celebrities.
Go on a Miami to Key West drive: This is one of the most popular getaways from Miami and will consume your entire day and there’s no way it’s possible with only one day in Miami. The Miami to Key West drive takes you through some of the most beautiful scenery in Florida. Be sure to stop at one of the many attractions along the way. If you have a weekend in Key West, even better — you’ll get to explore this charming island in more depth.
Take a day trip to Everglades National Park: Enjoy some of Florida’s natural beauty and see alligators, turtles, and other wildlife in their natural habitat at Everglades National Park. Go on an airboat ride or take a nature hike through one of America’s best national parks on the East Coast.
Ship ’til you drop on Lincoln Road: Lincoln Road is one of the best shopping destinations in Miami. You’ll find everything from high-end stores to local boutiques. There are also plenty of places to eat and drink along Lincoln Road so that you can refuel after a day of shopping.
Wander around Miami Design District: The Miami Design District is one of the best places to see art and architecture in the city. This area is also home to a variety of shops, art galleries, cafes, and more. You could easily spend a couple of hours exploring everything that the district has to offer.
See various art deco buildings on a Miami South Beach Art Deco Walk: This one-hour walking tour takes you to some of the most iconic art deco buildings in Miami. You’ll learn about the history and architecture of each building as you go.
See Lummus Park: This popular park is in Miami South Beach and is the backdrop in several popular tv shows including Miami Vice and Burn Notice. It’s a beachfront park so you can relax under the palm trees and listen to the waves crash.
One Day in Miami Final Thoughts
One day in Miami is a great way to see all that the city has to offer.
With plenty of amazing things to see and do, you can pack a lot into just 1 day in Miami.
From incredible beaches to world-class shopping and dining, Miami has something for everyone.
This list will help you plan the perfect Miami one day itinerary, no matter what your interests are!
Have you spent one day in Miami? What were your favorite things to do there? Share them in the comments below!
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Disha Smith is the founder of Disha Discovers. She quit her job in 2017 to travel the world to explore new cultures and experience new adventures. She has since been to 95+ countries and counting and has lived in South Africa, Thailand, Croatia, and Australia. She has done all kinds of travel ranging from luxury to budget backpacking, and her mission is to inspire others to discover their own sense of adventure and to help them plan a life full of meaningful experiences through travel.