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1 Day in Miami: What To Do, See, Eat and Wear

Ahh Miami, Florida. One of the liveliest and most diverse cities in the United States. This southern city attracts tourists from all over the world to experience its culture, cuban food, nightlife and beach vibes. Even if you don’t have much time and could only spend 1 day in Miami, there’s plenty to do.

It’s the perfect place to immerse yourself in a laid-back beach city where there’s always something going on. Miami is great for couples, groups of friends, bachelorette parties or anyone looking to have an awesome and adventurous time. Between the cuban-inspired cuisine, stunning rooftops, luxury hotels, clubs, museums and street art, there’s definitely something for everyone.

1 Day in Miami

There are so many neighborhoods to explore and with 1 day in Miami, it can be hard to choose between Little Havana and Calle Ocho, downtown Miami,Coconut Grove, Coral Gables…the list could go on and on! One of the best things about Miami is how much there is to explore. Read on for some of the great ways you can experience Miami on a day trip through the city.

Where to Eat in Miami:

Believe it or not, Miami actually has a huge food scene and the best places to eat! Some of their famous dishes include empanadas, cuban sandwiches, stone crab claws and more. Key Lime pie is not just in Key West or the Florida Keys! There’s plenty of places to satisfy the foodie in you and enjoy a great meal in a welcoming atmosphere.

The Local House

The Local House is THE brunch place in South Beach where you’ll have access to a full, delicious menu, happy hour specials, beautiful decor and a bustling restaurant and hotel attached. This quaint little indoor/outdoor restaurant is known for its laid-back atmosphere, delicious food and proximity to the beach.

The menu offers a plethora of choices ranging from brunch, lunch, dinner and happy hour drinks. A few dishes you might want to try include the seafood scramble, avocado toast, key lime pie french toast, caramelized banana french toast, the lobster mac & cheese and the Mahi tacos. As for drink, you’ll get to enjoy hot or iced coffee, mimosas, cocktails for happy hour, you name it. They have everything!

Pura Vida

Pura Vida is the perfect place to grab a healthy lunch in a low-key, classic Miami street-side restaurant. The beautiful surf-themed restaurant is the perfect spot for lunch to grab some health-conscious juices, sandwiches and salads. Pura Vida is beautifully decorated and offers outdoor seating alongside a more local and non-touristy street.

There are SIX locations that offer all-day breakfast including different kinds of breakfast toasts like avocado, salmon and berry as well as bagel sandwiches, fruit salads, açai bowls and overnight oats. I highly recommend ordering the mango salmon bowl or the summer grilled chicken bowl for lunch, as both are excellent and filling choices. They also have fresh pressed juices to help with nutrition and hydration, which is especially great in the Miami heat.

Joe’s Stone Crab Restaurant

One of the most famous restaurants in Miami is none other than Joe’s Stone Crab Restaurant, right off of Ocean Drive. The 100-year, family-owned restaurant has been attracting crowds longer than anyone can remember and it’s obvious why.

It’s a fabulous restaurant in Miami that has created some of the best memories for people when visiting, in general. Whether you’re visiting for a celebration, family gathering, romantic dinner or dinner just because, Joe’s Stone Crab has something for everyone.

As for menu selections, you really can’t go wrong. Popular dishes include stone crab claws, friend chicken, skirt steak and of course, any of their fresh seafood dishes. They also have excellent key lime pie for dessert, an absolute must-try in South Florida.

Where to Go in Miami:

The Beach

Obviously you can’t come to Miami without checking out the beach. If you’re a water adventurer, you can snorkel around the coral reefs and maybe you’ll get to see sea turtles as you swim! You definitely don’t need to get on a cruise ship to see wildlife in their natural habitat!

South Beach aka SoBe as the locals call it, is one of the most popular to visit since it’s in proximity to the Art Deco district with beautiful art deco architecture and historical buildings, great restaurants, and many galleries and nightlife.

It’s definitely the most famous beach to visit in Miami and it’s so easy to get to. Popular beach activities include swimming, sunbathing, bodyboarding and people-watching!

Just above South Beach is the Everglades National Park where you can get guided tours of the everglades. A unique experience, for sure!

Boat Cruise

Taking a classic boat tour of Miami is a great way to see the city from a different angle and experience the blue waters of this magical city. There’s sightseeing cruises, luxury yachts, fishing cruises and party cruises. You can even take a sunset cruise through Biscayne Bay to see the man-made Star Island, home to many celebrities!

If boats aren’t your thing, you can take a walking guided tour or take a Miami bus tour to see the sights of the  Miami skyline!


Rooftop culture is heavy in Miami. There’s restaurants, bars, amazing decor, pool parties and gardens to enjoy while seeing stunning views of the city. It’s highly encouraged to check out at least one rooftop for a cocktail and enjoy the beautiful scenery and atmosphere of Miami.

Serena Rooftop is an awesome option that offers vibrant colors filled with lounges, seating areas, lush greens, delicious food and refreshing cocktails to make for a truly cozy and fun place to hangout.

Lincoln Road Mall

Another great place to visit includes Lincoln Road Mall. It’s a famous for its outdoor seating, entertainment, boutiques and shops, restaurants, bars and theaters, all within a short walk of each other.

Stunning architecture, farmer’s markets, high-end retail and fashion are the highlight of this area, so you’ll want to take your time strolling whether you’re into window shopping or trying on some Miami-style outfits.

What to Wear in Miami:

Now that you know what to do for your 1 day in Miami, what will you wear?! Trendy outfits for Miami include dresses, crop tops paired with pants and/or skirts, bathing suits and cover ups, jeans for cooler evenings and accessories like beach bags, sunglasses, head scarves and jewelry. Dressing lightly is key!

You never know if you’re going to start at the beach and end up watching live music, or take a city tour-in between. Miami is an amazingly alive, vibrant, and thriving city, with an endless amount of things to see and do. And no matter what you do, you’ll have the best time because there is something to do for everyone.

I hope you enjoyed this guide for spending 1 day in Miami. Where will you spend your time in this magic city with limited time? We’d love to hear about your perfect day!

About the Author

Jessica Litras

Jess Litras is an entrepreneur and Travel and Lifestyle Blogger who focuses on building a business online and encouraging women to travel while looking and feeling their best. After working at a start-up company and a corporate company over the last 5 years, Jess has taken a leap of faith to build the life and career of her dreams. She specializes in event planning, blogging, social media, building communities and creating travel guides. When she's not traveling, you can find her cuddled up on the couch with a good book or true crime show.