Despite its glamorous and chic vibe, Miami has laid back side with much to offer for families with children.
Get the kids outdoors! Our collection of National and State parks are the gateway to many wonderful sites and adventures, they will get you on the trails, take you snorkeling to the reefs, or kayaking through the mangrove forests...
There is a total of eleven National Parks in Florida, dozens of National Wildlife Refuges, a National Marine Sanctuary, and many many State and County Parks. Our parks are our national treasures, they are great chances for children to engage and learn, and don't forget the Junior programs offered at all National Parks.
And of course the theme parks, water parks, and some fun sightseeing options with kids in mind, Duck Tours, Pirate Boats, Hop On Hop Off Buses...
A Killer Whale, Dolphins, Sea Lions... The Miami Seaquarium is a small marine life park, not far from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is a fun place to enjoy with the family, catch a couple of lively shows, and check out the animals.
The show-stealer and main highlight of the Seaquarium is no doubt, Lolita, the beloved Killer Whale, which has been a resident of the park for over 40 years.
The Seaqurium also offers some very unique activities for children, feeding the seals, playing with dolphins, stingray pools...
What used to be a park known mostly for its gigantic variety of colorful birds has branched out to encompass a wide collection of animals beyond the feathered kind, some unusual and exotic like the white lion, and an array of unique encounters which are one of the main attractions of the park.
The park is small and compact in a beautiful tropical setting right on the bay. Despite its small size, there are a lot of activities, shows, animal encounters, even a beach and a water park, so you can easily spend the whole day.
What sets this park appart is the animal encounters they offer... lemurs, llamas, kangaroos, even baby tigers...
Zoo Miami, formerly Metro Zoo, is a fantastic place for a day out enjoying the animals and the beautiful grounds that are open year-round.
Our favorite activities are riding the safari cycles and feeding the giraffes, and in the warmer months, the kids really enjoy the water slides and splash stations throughout the zoo.
Besides the animals which are naturally the focal point, there is much to keep the entire family busy... interactive encounters, feedings, tram tours, monorail rides, safari cycles, pedal boats, water parks, etc...
Lion Country Safari is about driving through the plains along zebras, rhinos and giraffes... in the comfort of your own car...
as curious ostriches come for a closer look and tap your windshield... herds of eland, blackbucks, buffalos, wildebeest... all roaming freely...
prides of lions, crashes of rhinos... majestic giraffes... It's quite a fantastic drive.
And much more beyond the drive-through safari, there is an entire amusement park together with rides for the little ones, petting zoos, mini-golf, shows, boat rides, camel rides and our favorite activities, giraffe feeding and lory feeding.
In the warmer months, there is a great splash park, water slides and all.
John Pennekamp State Park is mainly famous for the coral reefs and underwater wonders lining the eastern boundaries of the park.
About one hour South from Miami, the park is located in Key Largo in the northern Florida Keys.
It is one of our favorite parks to chill for the day since it offers so much for everyone in the family. The park offers snorkel trips, scuba diving or glass-bottomed boat trips to the reefs. There is canoeing and kayaking, fishing, nature boardwalks and camping.
Everglades National Park is the main gateway to the "River of Grass", with over 1.5 million acres teeming with a diversity of wildlife and many endangered species, it is a unique and special place, and certainly one of the most amazing National Parks we have.
There are three entrances to the Park and four main areas. Where to go and what to do? Kids will want to be on the lookout for alligators, manatees, fantastic birds... and the many ways to see the park: by boat, by foot, by bike, canoe, kayak, trams... Each area is unique and special, check out our guides:
Another thing children enjoy are the airboat rides in the Everglades. There are no airboat tours within the park but there are many options nearby. Also see below our review for Everglades Safari Park which offers airboat tours.
Airboat rides and alligator galore is what this park is about, and tons of beautiful birds, egrets, herons, purple gallinules... from the moment you arrive.
You get to explore the River of Grass on an airboat and then get to enjoy the rest of the park, the exhibits and shows where kids have a chance to hold a baby alligator. Great fun for a half-day.
In one word, FANTASTIC! Lots of splashing, dolphin kisses, flip high fives, water fights... and a wonderful learning experience for the entire family.
There are quite a number of places in Miami or nearby that offer all kinds of programs with differing degrees of interaction, from
simply playing and observing from the docks where you don't even have to get wet, to free unstructured swims, or full-day
research programs, there is something to suit everyone and everyone's budget.
There is an underwater paradise waiting at our doorstep... So strap on your mask and snorkel and head out to the reefs! The reefs? Can we just go off the beach? Truth is, although you can snorkel off any of our beaches, if what you have in mind is crystal clear waters, colorful tropical fish and vibrant corals in abundance, then heading out to the reefs is a must.
The third largest coral reef in the world lines our coastline, about 3 to 8 miles offshore, so no, you CAN NOT swim to it, you have to go by boat, we explore some of the most popular options.
As far as snorkeling off the beaches, while not spectacular, there is still plenty to see. We also share with you some of our favorite places and what
you can expect.
The following make our list for kid-friendly beaches for having great facilities that make it easy and fun for a family outing... grills and picnic areas, lots of fun activities available for the kids, like trails, water-bikes, canoes and kayaks, snorkeling from the beach, etc.
Crandon Park in Key Biscayne has long been a favorite of locals looking for a fun relaxing day with the family.
The beaches, all three miles of them, are wide, shallow, with gentle waves, which makes them a little paradise for kids.
And there is plenty of picnic spots and pavillions, volleyball nets, kayak, paddleboard and bike rentals, kiteboarding lessons, paths
for biking, jogging, rollerblading, and even a Nature Center.
Bill Baggs State Park has predictably made it to the Top Ten Beaches in America for the last ten years running, and this little oasis is barely 15 minutes from downtown Miami.
What's here? Besides the fantastic beach with crystal clear waters, there's the fishing piers, boardwalks and nature trails for wildlife viewing,
biking paths, picnic pavillions and the hallmark and centerpoint of the park, a picture-perfect lighthouse with a colorful history. There is also a marina and
two restaurants and kayaks and hydrobike rentals, bikes, trikes and quad-bikes that will fit the whole family!
Oleta River State Park is a gem tucked in the middle of cosmopolitan Miami, in fact, it's Florida's largest city park. The beach itself is not the main attraction at Oleta though, but the park can really pack it in the outdoor activities and recreation department, there's kayak, canoeing, SUP rentals, mountain biking (yes, really!) with some great 10 miles of off-road trails, and it even offers overnight stays in rustic cabins.
Just down from the hustle and bustle of swanky South Beach, right at the very tip of the island, the vibe here is relaxed and friendly, great for families, kids, even the dog!
In terms of ammenities, this is one of the most "fully-equipped" beaches around. There are lifeguards, showers and restrooms, a snackbar, beach chair and umbrella rentals, picnic tables, volleyball, parasailing, a fishing pier and a myriad of watersports.
The following are fun options for a sightseeing tour of the city, more entertaining for the little ones than your typical bus tour or bay cruise.
Kids love sitting on the open top Hop-On-Hop-Off bus and cruising along the coastline and exploring all the little corners of the city.
See something you would like to explore further? Hop-Off and enjoy! Then get back on to continue exploring.
Gives you more flexibility than a normal sightseeing tour since you go at your own pace, stop for breaks when the
kids are getting tired or hungry then rejoin when you're ready.
This one is a winner with kids. It zips around all the famous landmarks and then plunges in the water for a wade around the bay, the ritzy islands and the yachts and marinas.
The guides are hilarious and will have you singing, laughing and of course quacking through the tour.
Matilda the Musical is a stage musical based on the children's novel of the same name by Roald Dahl. The plot centers on Matilda, a precocious 5-year-old girl with the gift of telekinesis who loves reading, overcomes obstacles caused by her family and school, and helps her teacher to reclaim her life.
When? Several performances April 25 - May 7, 2017
Where? Au-Rene Theater at the Broward Center For The Performing Arts, Ft. Lauderdale
How Much? $48+
When? Saturday May 6, 2017 - 11:00 am and 1:00 pm
Where? Amaturo Theater at the Broward Center For The Performing Arts, Ft. Lauderdale
How Much? $25+
When? June 13 - 25, 2017
Where? Au-Rene Theater at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Ft. Lauderdale
When? Saturday and Sunday July 22 - 23, 2017
Where? Au-Rene Theater at The Broward Center for the Performing Arts
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