Miami has many personalities, but the most obvious one is beckoning you to spend lots of money, whether it’s a luxury rooftop spa at the Delano or a designer clutch at Versace. Accommodation by itself can drain your budget, so it always helps to have free entertainment ideas in your pocket. Here’s what you can do to enjoy Miami without shelling out for every activity and still save funds for that day-trip to the Everglades.
Go dancing at Bayside. Every night there’s free live music in downtown Miami, right on the water at the Marina Stage. The genres spread far and wide, so check here for listings, and you might be treated to some very danceable salsa or merengue. This spot attracts many types: families, kids, couples, singles, you name it, and the vibe is pure fun for all ages.
Wander down Calle Ocho. Eighth Street is the main drag of Little Havana, one of the country’s largest Cuban communities. There are many places to eat, shop, see local art, and grab a café con leche, plus there’s usually a lively social gathering in Domino Park. You’d be well served to save your appetite for Versailles, which is way west on Calle Ocho, possibly further than you care to walk, but there are plenty of buses running down this corridor.
Give yourself an Art Deco walking tour. These well-preserved buildings from the 1920s and 30s comprise Miami Beach’s signature look, and if you like this aesthetic at all, you won’t be able to stop snapping photos. Check in at the Art Deco Welcome Center, then head down Ocean Avenue. This little stretch is one of the most tourist-heavy on Miami Beach, but once you learn a little about the architectural style, you’ll be spotting elements of it everywhere.
Run the Miami Beach Boardwalk. It’s not necessary that you literally run down the boardwalk, but it’s a beautiful place for some cardio. Some people rent bikes and cycle the wider southern portion, or you can just stroll, all the way up through Mid-Beach. The boardwalk is sandwiched on either side by upscale hotels and the white sands of the Atlantic, and it’s nestled by palm trees with shady benches (great for people-watching). For nature enthusiasts, there are periodic plaques explaining the local flora.
What do you do for free in Miami?