Weekend Guide To Things To Do In South Beach

January 14, 2024

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Things To Do In South Beach, Florida

Welcome to the vibrant city of Miami, where the sun always shines, and the fun never ends. In this Travel & Leisure Magazine guide, we are going to take you through an incredible weekend in Miami’s South Beach, known for its stunning beachfront and iconic art deco historic district. Start your day by exploring the colorful art deco buildings and the heart of South Beach, immersing yourself in the rich history of the area.

For a unique experience, visit the Jewish Museum of Florida, located in the heart of South Beach. Discover hidden gems in the Holocaust Memorial and delve into the city’s artistic side with visits to the New World Symphony and the Miami Design Preservation League.

Feel the ocean breeze as you indulge in water sports and paddleboarding along the beachfront. Kayaking enthusiasts can explore the crystal-clear waters while taking in the breathtaking views of cruise ships and palm trees. If you’re in the mood for a tranquil escape, head to Soundscape Park, a green space in the heart of South Beach, perfect for people-watching and enjoying live music during happy hour.

As the sun sets, immerse yourself in the vibrant Latin and American vibes of South Beach. Explore eateries offering delicious Cuban cuisine and grab a bite at a trendy hotspot like Mac’s Club Deuce. Continue your evening at a beachfront boutique hotel, offering stunning views of the ocean and the iconic Versace Mansion.

For nightlife enthusiasts, Miami’s South Beach comes alive with DJs spinning beats in lively venues. Don’t miss out on the nightlife scene at Wynwood, where you can dance the night away in a lively atmosphere.

Whether you’re drawn to the bustling city life or the serene beachfront, Miami’s South Beach has something for everyone. Plan your unforgettable weekend filled with water sports, cultural exploration, and delicious eats in this lively and diverse part of America.

SEE ALSO: Where To Eat, Shop & Stay In Downtown Miami

So, put on your sunscreen, grab your hat, and let’s dive into the best things to do, where to stay and eat in South Beach, Miami.

Things To Do On South Beach

Art Deco in South Beach Miami

Sightseeing on Art Deco

Miami, an ever-evolving city with a vibrant American spirit, is adorned with stunning Art Deco architecture that has endured the test of time. South Beach, particularly on Collins Avenue, boasts the largest concentration of Art Deco buildings globally, forming the iconic Art Deco Historic District. Amidst the hustle and bustle, explore the heart of South Beach, where over 800 structures narrate the city’s rich history.

As you stroll along, the Jewish Museum of Florida and the Holocaust Memorial reveal poignant stories. Dive into the cultural tapestry with the New World Symphony at the New World Center, celebrating live music in an oceanfront setting. Discover hidden gems like the Mac’s Club Deuce, a historic hotspot for happy hour and a taste of Latin vibes.

For water enthusiasts, South Beach is not just a beachfront; it’s a hub for water sports, kayaking, and paddleboarding, offering stunning views framed by palm trees. The soundscape park adds a touch of green space amidst the lively atmosphere.

Whether you’re into boutique hotels or iconic eatery experiences like Versace‘s former mansion, Miami caters to diverse tastes. Engage in people-watching at the lively square feet of Mango‘s Tropical Cafe or catch a Latin rhythm at a salsa hotspot.

Looking for a break? Wynwood, known for its street art and the Miami Design Preservation League, is a short distance away. As the sun sets, the city comes alive with DJs spinning beats, creating a dynamic atmosphere, especially at the vibrant Hotel South Beach.

Miami, a city that seamlessly blends the old and the new, invites you to explore its culture, history, and lively energy. Whether cruising through the streets or soaking in the Latin vibes, this city offers an unforgettable experience in the heart of America.


Take an Art Deco Walking Tour

If you’re interested in learning about the history of the art deco architecture, book a walking tour with a travel guide. The tour will take you through the Miami Beach Architectural District, where you’ll learn about the city’s past, its famous residents, and the buildings that make Miami such an iconic destination.


Take photos on Miami Beach

Miami Beach is a must-visit destination on any trip to Miami. With its white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and colorful lifeguard towers, Miami Beach is a photographer’s dream come true. Make sure to pack water, sunscreen, and a towel before heading to the beach, and don’t forget to snap some photos to remember your visit.



Escape from the heat and immerse yourself in a world of lines, dots, and letters at Artechouse. This new art museum is a virtual playground of four dimensions: X (horizontal), Y (vertical), Z (depth), and T (time), with locations in DC, New York, and Miami. The XYZT exhibition will be on display through Labor Day weekend, while the installation platform on the second floor changes every few months. Currently, it features Fractal Journeys. Tickets are $24 for adults and $17 for children.

Tickets: adults $24 and children $17.

736 Collins Ave, Miami Beach, FL, miami.artechouse.com


Bike down Espanola Way

Española Way is a historic street between 14th and 16th street on Miami Beach that’ll make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The vibes are laid-back, and you’ll find some of the best Cuban food in the area. Take a bike ride down Española Way and explore the quaint shops, restaurants, and art galleries.


The Wolfsonian

Located in the heart of the Art Deco District in Miami is The Wolfsonian – a museum, library, and research center that uses its collection to illustrate the persuasive power of art and design. The Wolfsonian has over 180,000 objects, including furniture, ceramics, posters, textiles, and rare books, and is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in design.

1001 Washington Ave


Shopping on Lincoln Road

If shopping is your thing, then Lincoln Road Mall is a pedestrian road on 16th and 17th Street that’s filled with 200 designer boutiques, local shops, national retail stores, art galleries, and nightlife. Whether you’re looking for high-end fashion or unique souvenirs, Lincoln Road has it all.


Miami Beach Botanical Garden

South Beach is known for its beautiful beaches, but it’s also home to the Miami Beach Botanical Garden. The garden underwent a $1.2 million landscape renovation designed by South Florida landscape architect Raymond Jungles and is a serene oasis in the middle of the city. With its lush gardens, beautiful sculptures


Lummus Park

This 74-acre public, urban park in Miami Beach on the Atlantic Ocean runs alongside South Beach’s legendary strip, Ocean Drive, and has been the backdrop for many TV and film scenes. Whether you’re looking to sunbathe, people-watch, or just take a stroll, Lummus Park is the perfect place to do it.


World Erotic Art Museum

A little different from your typical museum but leave it up to Miami to create something completely unique. 


Art Basel in Miami Beach

One of Miami’s hottest events every year is the Art Basel and this year it falls on June 18 – June 21, 2020. Art Basel is a premier art show of modern and contemporary art that attracts people from all over the world.


The Bass Museum

If you’re not here during Art Basel but still want to see some contemporary art, go to The Bass. This historic art deco space featuring diverse art, artifacts & sculpture garden, plus films & lectures.


Bike on the Miami Beach Boardwalk

The Miami Beach Boardwalk begins at 46th Street and continues south to 23rd Street. Most hotels in this area offer complimentary bikes so I like biking down the boardwalk!


Miami Children’s Museum

If you’re looking for a family-friendly activity, visit the Miami Children’s Museum on Jungle Island.


Miami boat tours

I’ve taken Duck Tours in Austin and it’s a fun way to explore the city. Duck Tours in Miami is a 90-minute day trip that goes past Lummus Park and down Ocean Drive, then it’s wheels up and into Biscayne Bay for the amphibious vessel.


Havana 1957 in Espanola Way South Beach Miami

Colorful lifeguard towers in South Beach in Miami Beach

Best restaurants in South Beach

The Local House in South Beach on Miami Beach

The Local House – located inside the Sense Beach House, The Local House on Ocean Drive is the cutest, chic, ocean-themed restaurant. I ate brunch there and the lobster benedict and banana pancakes were so good. The tropical garden cocktail with fresh watermelon juice, gin, and rosemary was so refreshing from the Miami heat!

Havana 1957 – the very first restaurant that I ate when I visited Miami for the first time was Havana 1957 so it holds a special spot in my heart. A trip to Miami isn’t complete until you eat Cuban food so I usually try to dine here every time I visit Miami. Order the chicken and rice with a coconut mojito. 

Puerto Sagua – if you get late-night cravings for Cuban food as I do, go to Puerto Sagua. It’s been open since 1962 and the food isn’t overpriced.

Las Olas Cafe – another Cuban restaurant! If you see people standing on the sidewalk scarfing down croquettes and drinking cafecitos, you’re in the right spot. 

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila – this cute Mexican spot serves tacos, burritos, and tequila. I loved the elotes and salsa & chips but was disappointed to see hashbrowns and cheese in my barbacoa taco. 

La Sombra – I didn’t get a chance to here but I did stop in to take a photo of this plant-filled restaurant. 

Bacon Bitch – this cheeky restaurant caught my eye while I was shopping between stores on Collins St. The line was too long so I didn’t eat here. 

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar – If you’re craving some good old Southern comfort food, Yardbird is the place to go. Their fried chicken and waffles are a must-try, and their extensive bourbon selection will make any whiskey lover happy.

Byblos – For a taste of the Mediterranean, head to Byblos. This upscale restaurant serves modern Middle Eastern cuisine in a chic and elegant setting. Don’t miss their famous lamb ribs and the roasted cauliflower with harissa and tahini.

Joe’s Stone Crab – A Miami institution since 1913, Joe’s Stone Crab is a must-visit for seafood lovers. Make sure to try their famous stone crabs, served with Joe’s signature mustard sauce, and save room for the key lime pie.

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila in South Beach, Miami

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila in South Beach Miami

Bacon Bitch Restaurant in Miami

Best Hotels on South Beach

Sense Beach House on South Beach in Miami Beach


I stayed at Sense Beach House on this trip and loved this beachy hotel that is right across from Miami Beach, next to the art deco, and walking distance to so many shops and restaurants. There are 18 nautical-themed rooms and I was surprised to find the room nice and spacious.

Sense is located on 4th St and Ocean Dr so right down the street from the art deco district and South Pointe Park. I spent most of my time lounging on the rooftop terrace and pool and then walking across the street to Miami beach. The Local House is located on the first floor and was popping with both hotel and non-hotel guests. 


  • Complimentary bicycles
  • Rooftop swimming pool
  • Private balconies – ask for a room with a private terrace
  • Complimentary yoga classes
  • Complimentary evening wine

These are all included in the resort fee of $20.52 per night. Most hotels located around Miami beach have a resort fee. 

400 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach, FL, sensebeachhouse.com

SEE ALSO: Weekend Getaway To Four Seasons Miami


Sense Beach House on South Beach in Miami Beach

The Local House in South Beach on Miami Beach