Miami is the jewel of South Florida and is famous for the Art Deco architecture of Miami Beach, the Cuban vibe of Little Havana, its nightclubs and restaurants, and its high-rise glam. If you're on vacation in Miami, you might be thinking it would be a good opportunity to take a road trip to other spots around Florida. Or if you live in the Miami area, you might be looking for a short getaway or a weekend escape.
Whatever you may be looking for, Florida offers an abundance of attractions scattered across the state. The only question is how far you're willing to drive to reach them. Here are the estimated distances and driving times from Miami Beach to other major cities in Florida from the panhandle to the Keys. Your choice of route and traffic conditions could cause slight variations from these estimates, which are calculated from downtown Miami.
Fort Lauderdale is only 31 miles away from Miami and takes 35 minutes to drive to. It's more than doable to drive up to Fort Lauderdale for an afternoon or evening and the city offers plenty of great restaurants and bars, as well as unique attractions like the Jungle Queen cruise around Millionaire's Row or the mermaid shows at the Wreck Bar.
West Palm Beach is 73 miles north of Miami and takes about one hour, 20 minutes to drive to. Here, you'll find super sandy beaches, luxury hotels, great shopping, and fine dining, as well as attractions like the Norton Museum of Art, Manatee Lagoon, and PB Catch, one of the best restaurants to eat stone crab in Florida.
The furthest of the Florida Keys and the most southern point of the continental U.S., Key West is 168 miles southwest of Miami Beach and it will take you about three hours, 30 minutes to drive there. Many Miami visitors enjoy taking day trips to Key West simply because the long drive along U.S. Highway 1 is so scenic and there's plenty to do and see when you get there from literary history to Cuban coffee tasting. If you have less time to work with, you can reach Key Largo in about an hour and 30 minutes.
On the west coast of Florida, Naples is 128 miles west of Miami Beach and it will take you about two hours, 10 minutes to drive clear across the peninsula through the Everglades and Big Cypress Natural Preserve. Naples has a reputation for being even more luxurious than Florida's east coast beaches and the city's opulence is a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of life in Miami, especially during the off-season when crowds are light.
Further north on Florida's west coast, Sarasota is 225 miles away from Miami and it would take you at least three hours, 45 minutes to drive there. Just south of the Tampa area, this city offers wonderful beaches, arts, and culture in a laid-back atmosphere, in addition to a vibrant gay nightlife scene. You can also visit major attractions like The Ringling Museum or the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.
All the way up the east coast, it would take you at least four hours, 15 minutes to drive the 263 miles to Daytona Beach from Miami. If you're a fan of NASCAR, then you already know that you can catch a race at Daytona International Speedway, but this popular spring break destination also boasts some of Florida's most beautiful beaches.
To get to Tampa on the west coast of Florida, you'll have to drive 283 miles northwest from Miami which will take you about four hours, 30 minutes. Tampa is the third-largest city in Florida. It's a young, vibrant city with an active outdoor life. Besides the beach, other interesting attractions include the oldest restaurant in Florida (dating back to 1905) and the Busch Gardens theme park.
Home of Disney World and Universal Studios, Orlando is one of the most popular cities for visitors in Florida, but it's 237 miles north of Miami and it would take you at least four hours to drive there. Whether you're traveling with kids or not, there's something for everyone in Orlando and there's more than just theme parks.
Not far from the Georgia border, Jacksonville is 348 miles north of Miami and it would take you five hours, 30 minutes to drive there. The city has the largest population of Florida cities, although it also happens to be the largest city by geographic size in the United States. Jacksonville is a favorite destination for golfers, but you may also be interested in visiting the charming Amelia Island, which is just 20 minutes away from Jacksonville and has some excellent resorts.
To drive the 484 miles from Miami to the state capital of Tallahassee, it would take you at least seven hours, 30 minutes. A full day's drive, but just one hour, 25 minutes if you fly, Tallahassee may as well be in another state. Far from Miami's Caribbean vibes, Tallahassee is more like the Old South, exuding southern hospitality with its oak-lined streets and stately grandeur.