Miami is one of the best cities to visit in the world, even if we do say so ourselves. When visiting our hotel in Miami Beach, we’d love you to enjoy the city like the locals do, and really take in as much of Miami’s culture as you can. That’s why we’ve pulled together a list of the great, unique, local spots to visit in Miami.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the must-do tourist attractions, and forget about the hidden gems, or local recommendations, that are worth doing throughout your visit. There are plenty of wonderful things about Miami, but here are a pick of our favorite spots to add to your itinerary, if you want to live like the locals do.
Before its $2.5 million revitalization project in 2017, making it a pedestrian only street, Española Way was built to serve as an artists’ colony back in the 1920s, modeled after romantic Mediterranean villages in France and Spain. Now, it is a completely immersive, wonderful experience, where you can eat, shop, drink, and relax.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 32 minute walk, 16 minutes on public transport, 9 minutes via taxi or car
Of the many piers that you’ll find in Miami, South Pointe Pier is perhaps one of the most relaxing, with lovely views over the water. Plenty of people will fish from this pier, so if you fancy your go with a rod, this is your spot. There are stations for cutting bait and washing fish along the pier, and some seating that allows you to sit back and relax whilst casting out.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 1 hour walk, 29 minutes on public transport, 16 minutes via taxi or car
Book a tour and graffiti experience, or simply wander the area yourself, On the second Saturday of each month, the Wynwood District of Midtown is full of art galleries, gastro pubs, and live bands. Many bars even offer free cocktails to passers by, to try and gather up crowds.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 50 minutes on public transport, 21 minutes via taxi or car
A stunning, 120-year old oak tree lines this outdoor shopping destination. Known as the Bodhi ‘wish tree’, based on a Buddhist tradition, you’ll find the area lined with local businesses, boutiques, and gardens.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 1 hour and 7 minutes on public transport, 17 minutes via taxi or car
In Little Havana, you’ll find so many hidden gems. The Tower Theatre is an iconic piece of Miami Art-Deco architecture that opened its doors in 1926. Back in the day, this spot was popular with those watching American movies to learn English. But now, under sensitive restoration, you can kick back with classic cinema snacks, and enjoy an array of titles – from independent films to blockbusters, shown in both Spanish and English.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 1 hour and 18 minutes on public transport, 25 minutes via taxi or car
A beautiful lighthouse on Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park on Key Biscayne, this defunct lighthouse tells nautical stories of Caribbean slave smuggling, and other poignont parts of history. A park ranger conducts tours a few times a week, so you can learn about the history of the site, and climb the 109 steps.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 41 minutes via taxi or car
Stiltsville in Miami is made up of stilt houses in the waters of Biscayne, towered over the water. You can book a boat tour that ventures through the area, about a mile off the coast of Biscayne National Park, and learn all about what it’s like to live in a house surrounded by water.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 42 minutes via taxi or car
See the resident Florida alligators up close and personal, but from a safe distance, of course, at the Everglades Safari Park. A guided airboat tour will take you through the lush vegetation so that you can learn all about the exotic wildlife that inhabits it, watch an alligator wildlife show, and take the jungle walking trail.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 51 minutes via taxi or car
You’ll always find locals lined up in an orderly queue outside of this eatery in the Miami Modern District. The restaurant prides itself on serving delicious food, that people actually want to eat, such as shrimp and grits, delicious French toast and great eggs.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 46 minutes on public transport, 17 minutes via taxi or car
Since the 1950s, when these shows began, the world-famous Wreck Bar has become a historic destination where you can watch the beautiful mermaids frolic around, while enjoying a tropical cocktail and eating fresh seafood.
Distance from Freehand Miami: 49 minutes via taxi or car