20 Top Things to Do With Kids in Miami, Florida

Miami may have the reputation of being a nightlife capital with sizzling nightclubs and bars teeming with party people, but it also is a mecca for kids.

The beaches are an obvious kid-friendly top spot. Add to that the multitude of other child-friendly activities—museums, a fanciful castle, a Renaissance villa, a spring-fed pool, animal parks—that make Miami an amazing spot to enjoy a family vacation.

There is so much to do, that you might even consider buying a Go Miami Card which can save you up to half off of many of the gate prices.

01 of 20

Commune With Animals at the Zoo

Miami Zoo

Sandra Leidholdt/Getty Images

12400 SW 152nd St, Miami, FL 33177, USA
Phone +1 305-251-0400

Zoo Miami is fast becoming one of the best zoos in the nation. Its climate allows it to keep a wide variety of animals from Asia, Australia, and Africa like no other zoo in the country. One of the first free-range zoos in the country, the exhibits are entirely cageless. Animals are grouped according to their geographic territory and animals that live together peacefully in the wild are placed in exhibits together.

02 of 20

Have Fun at the Children's Museum

miami children's museum

Rudy Sulgan/Getty Images

980 MacArthur Causeway, Miami, FL 33132-1604, USA
Phone +1 305-373-5437

The Miami Children's Museum is a must-see destination. The museum's motto is "Play, Learn, Imagine, Create." The motto shines through in the wide variety of interactive exhibits that allow children to explore everything from a supermarket to a television studio. Children pick up valuable lessons along the way.

03 of 20

See Tropical Birds on Jungle Island

Parrot at Jungle Island

TripSavvy / Jamie Ditaranto 

1111 Parrot Jungle Trail, Miami, FL 33132, USA
Phone +1 305-400-7000

Jungle Island, formerly known as Parrot Jungle, was relocated near Miami Beach and offers visitors a fun, educational opportunity to get an up-close look at tropical birds in replicas of their natural habitats. The attraction routinely hosts field trips and offers frequent educational programs.

There's more than Parrots at Jungle Island. Learn about reptiles, monkeys, tigers, and more. For the thrill-seeker, there is a wind tunnel where you can practice your flying skills, an escape room, and an exciting zip line adventure.

04 of 20

Learn About Sealife at the Seaquarium

Miami Seaquarium

Lonely Planet/Getty Images

4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, FL 33149, USA
Phone +1 305-361-5705

The Miami Seaquarium is located in the heart of the tourist area between downtown Miami and Miami Beach. The Seaquarium features an outdoor aquarium show with dolphins and Lolita, the killer whale, as well as exhibits of sea turtles, seals, sea lions, and manatees.

There are touch tanks, dolphin encounters, and a natural mangrove forest you can walk through. And when you need a rest, there are several dining and snack areas in the park.

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05 of 20

Hit the Beach

View from South Point Park Pier

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

Miami’s beaches offer a great opportunity to get some exercise or just enjoy some time in the sun. Children can make sand castles and splash in the low tide pools atBill Baggs Cape Florida State Park or run away from the crashing waves in South Beach.

06 of 20

Visit the Everglades

Everglades canoe

Stefanie Grewel/Getty Images

40001 State Hwy 9336, Homestead, FL 33034, USA
Phone +1 305-242-7700

With 1.5 million acres of swamps, saw-grass prairies, and sub-tropical jungles, Everglades National Park is one of the most unusual public parks in the United States. Located on the southern tip of Florida, the park is home to 14 rare and endangered species, including the American crocodile, the Florida panther, and the West Indian manatee. A large portion of the park is primitive, explored only by adventurists and researchers—but visitors have ample opportunity to walk, camp, fish, and canoe.

07 of 20

Explore the World of Science

Installation outside of the Frost Science Center

 TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

1101 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132, USA
Phone +1 305-434-9600

The $305 million Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science facility is located in Museum Park in downtown Miami. You're bound to find a learning adventure for the whole family. The museum features a three-level aquarium with a 31-foot-wide clear oculus to view of sharks and South Florida reef fish. A 250-seat planetarium takes visitors into outer space and beneath the ocean with 3-D projection.

08 of 20

Laugh in Monkey Jungle

Monkey Jungle

Monkey Jungle

14805 SW 216th St, Miami, FL 33170, USA
Phone +1 305-235-1611

"Where the humans are caged and the monkeys run wild" is Monkey Jungle's motto. This park in southern Miami-Dade County allows humans to walk through carefully constructed wire pathways while many species of primates scamper above your head, swing through trees, and interact with each other in ways difficult to observe in captivity. Keep your eyes open; you never know what's hanging above you.

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09 of 20

Visit Coral Castle

The Coral Castle

Psyberartist/Flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0

28655 S Dixie Hwy, Homestead, FL 33033, USA
Phone +1 305-248-6345

Tour an enchanting sculpture garden in Homestead, just south of Miami, carved out of limestone. From 1923 to 1951, one man single-handedly made a 1,100-ton coral rock castle. Today you can do a self-guided tour with audio stands along the way or take a docent-guided tour of the property.

10 of 20

Explore the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens

Gardens at Vizcaya

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

3251 S Miami Ave, Miami, FL 33129, USA
Phone +1 305-250-9133

For children who are captivated by the opulence of a world that could create Beauty and the Beast, the fairy-tale architecture of Vizcaya, a waterfront Italian Renaissance-style villa, will capture the imagination. You can tour the house and children will want to try to get lost in hedge maze labyrinth. 

The Discover Vizcaya audio tour is an educational way to learn about Vizcaya’s history and native plants in the gardens. The museum also offers a series of monthly Family Programs that are free to the public with museum admission.

11 of 20

Swim in the Venetian Pool

Venetian Pool, Coral Gables
Matt Kieffer/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0
2701 De Soto Blvd, Coral Gables, FL 33134, USA
Phone +1 305-460-5306

Venetian Pool in Coral Gables is perhaps one of the most beautiful swimming pools in the world. The freshwater pool formed in a coral rock quarry is fed by an underground spring. It is complete with waterfalls and cave-like grottos. Go when it's hot since the water has a tendency to be cold.

Built in the 1920s, it had been a place to see and be seen. Movie stars like Esther Williams and Johnny Weissmuller of Tarzan fame regularly stopped by to enjoy the swimming, gondolas, and orchestras.

12 of 20

Learn Miami History

Exterior of History Miami

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

101 W Flagler St, Miami, FL 33130, USA
Phone +1 305-375-1492

HistoryMiami offers an array of exhibits, featuring the 10,000 years of history that has transpired in Miami. The museum offers family fun days with crafts, music, and storytelling the second Saturday of every month.

You can also join one of 30 coach, boat cruise, and eco-walking tours to explore the waterways, neighborhoods, architecture, and history of Miami. Learn about and explore Little Havana or check out the interesting history of Stiltsville, where a series of colorful wooden houses were built on the flats of Biscayne Bay inside Biscayne National Park.

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13 of 20

Take in a Show

Exterior of Adrienne Arsht Center

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

1300 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132, USA
Phone +1 305-949-6722

The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts is known for bringing Broadway shows to Miami. While some of those shows are great for kids, there are special children's performances like puppet shows and kid-friendly musicals. During the summer, the Arsht center brings older kids together for Camp Broadway, a theater camp for children ages 10 to 17.

14 of 20

Climb a Lighthouse

Bill Baggs Cape Lighthouse

TripSavvy / Jamie Ditaranto

At the Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park on the southern tip of Key Biscayne, you'll find beautiful sandy beaches with picnic facilities, kayaking, and opportunities to explore nature.

Kids will love climbing up the stairs to the top of the 65-foot tall Cape Florida Lighthouse, the oldest standing structure in the greater Miami area.

15 of 20

See the Colorful Murals

A mural at Wynwood Walls

TripSavvy / Kristjan Veski 

266 NW 26th St, Miami, FL 33127, USA
Phone +1 305-576-3334

At Wynwood Walls, kids will get inspired by the colorful murals. It's a free outdoor museum with over 80,000 square feet of wall art by well-known muralists and plenty of parklike setting for stretching your legs.

After enjoying the murals, stop by the Wynwood Kitchen & Bar where you can sit outside and share some Latin-inspired small plates with the kids.

16 of 20

Play at Pinecrest Gardens

Pinecrest Gardens

y Ebyabe/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 3.0

11000 SW 57th Ave, Pinecrest, FL 33156, USA
Phone +1 305-669-6990

Pinecrest Gardens was once the location of Parrot Jungle but it's now a park with tropical landscaping, a playground, a petting zoo, and a water playground. The gardens hosts events like concerts, farmer’s markets and outdoor movie nights. Families will get the most out of the gardens by springing for a Splash 'N Play Pass so bring swimsuits for the little ones.

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17 of 20

Ride the Trolley

Miami Trolly

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

The Miami Trolley is a fun way to get to know the area without wearing out the smallest children in your group, especially if you are visiting for the first time. The free trolleys run until 11 p.m. and take you to many Miami attractions. It's a hop-on, hop-off type of adventure the kids will love. The Trolly Tracker on their website can tell you what the wait will be for the trolley at any particular stop.

18 of 20

Take a Duck Tour

Tour Miami on land and in the water without leaving the tour vehicle. Duck Tours South Beach runs amphibious vehicles for a fun 90-minute tour. On the tour, you'll see (and dip into) Biscayne Bay, find out about Miami history, and ride by some celebrity homes.

19 of 20

Soak in the Culture of Little Havana

Domino Park

TripSavvy / Taylor McIntyre

Miami, FL 33142, USA

Miami is a multi-cultural city and the best place to enjoy the Latin scene is in Little Havana. Older kids will love the colorful art and everyone will enjoy Cuban food. El Jardin, an outdoor food court between 15th and 16th Avenues, is a great place to have a family-friendly lunch.

On Calle Ocho (8th street) between 17th and 12th Avenues, stroll by the art galleries, enjoy some casual dining, and take in a fun festival like the Calle Ocho Festival.

Pro tip: Artsy kiddos will love the vibrant mural painted outside of the Cafeteria Guardabarrenco and you can treat the whole family with exotic ice cream flavors at Azucar Ice Cream Company.

20 of 20

Learn Native History

Miccosukee Indian Village, Miami, Florida

miroslav_1/Getty Images

Mile Marker 36, US-41, Miami, FL 33194, USA
Phone +1 305-480-1924

At Miccosukee Indian Village, kids will learn about the Miccosukee tribe by seeing the museum's artifacts and exhibits, seeing authentic crafts, and trying Native foods. There are also airboat rides that take you through the Everglades to an Indian camp and a safe "alligator encounter."

The tribe hosts the annual Miccosukee Indian Arts and Crafts Festival, annually in late December. Enjoy the arts as well as Native American dancers including hoop dancers.

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20 Top Things to Do With Kids in Miami, Florida