Miami is one of the most visited cities in the United States and a tourist destination that has grown tremendously in the past years. This is a complete travel guide including what to do in Miami in 3 days.
Miami is a common stop if you’re going to visit the theme parks in Orlando and while it was once considered a destination for only beach and shopping, cultural activities in Miami have grown a lot and today it is a city with a variety of things to do and places to visit.
In this post you will find:
How to get to Miami
If you’re traveling from another country, you’ll be arriving at Miami International Airport, which is about a 20 minutes drive from the city center.
How to get from Miami airport to downtown:
- Rent a car: Inside Miami airport you’ll find plenty of car rental companies. Rentalcars is the website I normally use to rent a car in the United States and I’ve never had any problems.
- Bus: To get from the airport to Miami Beach you can take the 150 bus that departs every 20 minutes from Miami Airport Station. The journey takes about 50 minutes and costs USD$2.25.
- Metro: If you want to go to downtown Miami you can take the Metrorail. It’s a convenient option if you’re staying in the downtown area.
- Taxi or Uber: The fastest option is to take a taxi or Uber.
- Private transfer: If you don’t want to worry about anything, the simplest thing is to hire a private transfer from/to Miami airport for only USD$15.
How to get around in Miami
Like many other U.S. cities, Miami is a city designed for car users. You can also use public transport to get to some areas but in my opinion the best option is to rent a car.
- Car: To rent a car I recommend using rentalcars.com, a website that compares the prices of all car rental companies and usually offers a lower price. I’ve used it several times in the USA and other countries and never had any problems.
- Bus: There are several bus lines connecting Miami. Learn more here.
- Metrorail: The Metrorail is Miami’s elevated rail system. It has two lines and connects some Miami tourist spots such as Brickell and Downtown.
- Citywide Free Trolley: FREE trolleys which connect some parts of the city. It’s a good way to get around in Miami without spending money. Learn more here.
- Uber: Another way to get around Miami is to use Uber or Lyft.
How many days should you spend in Miami
The number of days you visit the city will depend on your availability and the things you want to do. As a recommendation I would say that you spend between 3 and 5 days in Miami.
If you also want to visit the Everglades, Key West or other places close to Miami, you will need some extra days.
When to visit Miami
The good thing about Miami is that it’s a city you can visit at any time of the year and the weather is always going to be nice.
In summer (June to August) it is very hot. The hurricane season goes from July to October, and although you may travel during this season and nothing may happen, if you don’t want to take the risk, it’s best to travel in another season.
In winter (December to February) the climate is warm (between 17°C and 24°C) and it rains the least.
In spring (March to May) the climate is warm but not as overwhelming as in summer and you can enjoy both the city and the beach. However, avoid traveling during the spring break because there are so many tourists in the city and prices increase considerably.
Where to stay in Miami
Miami is a big city and there are several areas where you can stay.
The best area to stay (especially if you plan on spendin a lot of time at the beach) is Miami Beach. Within Miami Beach you can stay in South Beach which is the most touristy area, full of restaurants and other amenities or in Mid Beach which is quieter but still full of accommodation options.
If you don’t mind being close to the beach you can stay at Downtown Miami, which is less touristy and you’ll still have plenty of accommodation options
Here are some recommended hotels in Miami:
- L Hotel: I stayed at this hotel with my boyfriend and would stay again. It is a boutique hotel located in Mid Beach, just 2 blocks away from the beach. The rooms are very nice and good price for the quality and location of the hotel. View prices for L Hotel on Booking.
- The Confidante Hotel: pastel colors, 50′ décor and direct access to the beach. The Confidante is one of the coolest hotels located in Mid Beach, perfect for beach days. View prices for The Confidante on Booking.
- Generator Miami Hostel: Generator is a modern hostel company that I always recommend (I stayed at Generator Paris and London). Generator Miami offers shared or private rooms in Mid Beach, 2 blocks from the beach. View prices for Generator Miami on Booking.
- Leslie Hotel: One of Miami’s classic hotels located on the famous Ocean Drive street on South Beach. Despite its age, the hotel is very modern and a good choice for those who want to stay on this street full of parties and fun. View Leslie Hotel prices in Booking.
Things to do in Miami in 3 days – Itinerary
Start your day touring Wynwood, a neighborhood characterized by its colorful streets plagued with awesome street art.
Wynwood Walls is a public mural park with art by the greatest artists working in the graffiti and street art genre. Admission is free and it opens daily at 10.30 AM.
A fun way to explore this neighborhood and its murals is to take this 1.5-hour walking tour or this tour by golf buggy.
In addition to street art in Wynwood you will find art galleries, shops and restaurants.
- Miami Design District
There is an art revolution taking place in Miami and this is evident in every corner of the city. Galleries, museums, street art, design objects, etc. Miami Design District is a neighborhood that became popular for its modern architecture, luxury shops and art exhibitions.
The best thing about this neighborhood are the artistic interventions that you will find at window displays and facades of buildings.
Miami Design District is home to the Miami Institute of Contemporary Art, known as ICA Miami. Admission to the museum is free and is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 11 am to 7 pm. More information on ICA Miami’s official website.
- Miami Beach
Spend the afternoon at Miami Beach.
- Key Biscayne
If you are going to spend 3 days in Miami and you want to enjoy the beach days you can’t miss visiting Key Biscayne, an island that is half an hour away from Miami by car and offers one of the best beaches in the city.
It’s a quieter place than famous beaches like South Beach and you can spend the whole day enjoying the sun.
On Key Biscayne Beach you’ll find Cape Florida Lighthouse, built in 1825.
- South Beach
End the day walking along Ocean Drive, Miami’s most famous street where you’ll be able to admire all the Art Deco buildings in the city. This street is crowded at any time as it is full of shops, restaurants and bars.
If you love boat trips, the Miami Beach Marina located in South Beach is one of the top places to visit by boat in Miami.
The House of Gianni Versace where the designer was assassinated in 1997 is located on Ocean Drive. The house is nowadays a hotel: see photos from Versace’s house hotel.
If you’re looking for shops, walk along Lincoln Road and Collins Avenue. If you are looking for a place to dine I definitely recommend going to Española Way, a pedestrian street of only 2 blocks where you will find Latin and Italian restaurants.
- Miami Beach
Start your day enjoying Mid beach or South Beach. If you are interested you can walk along the coast in search of the famous lifeguard towers designed in the 1990’s.
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- Little Havana
In the afternoon you can visit Little Havana, Miami’s Cuban neighborhood where you will find Cuban restaurants, music and dancing.
A must-see in Little Havana is Domino Park, a small park where people of the neighborhood gather to play domino or chess. The main street of the neighborhood is Calle Ocho.
Other things to do in Miami
Other things to do in Miami if you have more than 3 days or want to change the itinerary:
- Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM)
If you’re an art fan, you can’t miss Perez Art Museum, which offers a collection of art from the middle of the 20th century to the present. The entrance fee costs USD$16 for adults. Admission is free on the first Thursday of the month and the second Saturday of the month. More information on the museum’s official website. Admission to the museum is included in the Go Miami Card.
- Phillip and Patricia Frost Science Museum
This museum offers science exhibitions, including an aquarium and a planetarium. A great plan if you’re visiting Miami with children. More information on the museum’s official website.
- MOCA – Museum of Contemporary Art
The Museum of Contemporary Art is located in Miami Beach and features more than 400 works of art. More information on the museum’s official website.
- Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
Villa Vizcaya is a mansion that belonged to the vice president of the International Harvester Company and is nowadays open to the public as Dade County Museum of Art. It is a huge mansion full of art, antique furniture and beautiful gardens. More information on the museum’s official website.
- Bayfront Park
Bayfront Park is a park located in Downtown Miami with great views of the sea and Miami’s incredible skyscrapers.
Brickell is Miami’s financial district, where you’ll see some of the city’s tallest skyscrapers. The main street is Brickell Avenue.
Another important point in Brickell is the Brickell City Center, a new shopping center located in a super modern and luxury building.
- Boat trip
What a better way to see Miami than sailing? There are several boat tours which are not expensive at all and allow you to see Miami from a different perspective.
Click here to book a Miami jet boat tour
- Shopping in Miami
There are many better things to do in Miami but if you’re looking for some shopping, you can visit The Bayside or Sawgrass Mills, Miami’s most-known shopping malls.
If you plan to visit multiple attractions or take several tours, the best option is to get a sightseeing pass. Go City offers the Explorer Pass, which gives you access to many tourist attractions in Miami, depending on the pass you choose (2, 3, 4 or 5 days). Some of the attractions included in the card are: Hop-on Hop-Off Big Bus Miami, Perez Art Museum, Night Bus Ride, Boat Tour, Wynwood Tour, etc.
Click here for more information about the Explorer Pass
I hope this information will help you plan your trip and know what to do in Miami in 3 days! If you have any questions please leave your comment below🙂
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- Info & Tips for planning a trip to Chicago
- West Coast Road trip Itinerary: from Seattle to LA
- The best things to do in New York City
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Really great posts about Miami and one of the best I have read so far. I am heading that way at the end of the month and needed more ideas.