Miami City Guide: How to Spend 48 Hours in Miami

by Travelbag on 04 March 2015, 15:03PM

Found in South-eastern Florida, Miami boasts year-round sun and a great Latin influence. Within touching distance of Orlando and Key West, there is plenty to do here to fill a couple of weeks. However, it is often a stop-off, and you can pack plenty into a 48 stay in Miami. 

A golden beach can tempt you in, the architecture is attractive and there is plenty of culture to keep you entertained. Arriving at Miami International Airport, you will be just eight miles away from downtown Miami and all the major hotels within the city. It is a marvellous place that is pretty compact, and that makes it easy to navigate from the centre.

Since finding fame in the 1980s hit show ‘Miami Vice’, the city has become one of the places to be in America. From outlets malls to art galleries to sandy beaches to posh nightclubs, there is something for everyone next to the turquoise Atlantic waters. Let’s get started in spending 48 hours unforgettable hours.

Day One

8am – Everglades National Park

The unmistakeable airboats that glide around the Everglades give you the chance to get up close and personal with the alligators, turtles, deer and birds that call this habitat home. There are some areas where you can get a bus or bike tour on land but you have to take a trip out on one of the boats for the most authentic of experiences. 

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1pm – South Beach

Once you’re done with the alligators, take a ride down to South Beach and spend an hour or two walking the palm-lined streets before using the rest of the afternoon to enjoy the sun-soaked beach. An iconic part of the city, it has been graced by stars and celebrities over the years. Use this location to sunbathe, swim or enjoy water sports. In the evening, the luxury bars that line the front become a hive of activity.

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8pm – A taste of Cuba

Reasonable prices and a genuine taste of Cuba, Versailles restaurant is self-proclaimed as the best-known Cuban restaurant in the world. Found in the iconic neighbourhood of Little Havana, it is popular with local Latin expats – and it is easy to see why. The staff are friendly and the selection varied in a friendly, fun atmosphere.

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11pm – Hit the clubs

Miami transforms into a lively city in the evening and in downtown or at South Beach you can choose from an array of nightclubs to dance the night away. Space is a huge and popular nightclub that is known for booking the biggest name DJs and throwing parties that last well after sunrise. Other options include Steam, Nikki Beach Miami and the more intimate Jazid and Flavour.

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Day Two

9am – Cape Florida Light

Head down to the south end of Key Biscane to this 1825 lighthouse that is one of Miami’s great landmarks. Being right on the beach, it is perfect for a morning stroll and, if you’re feeling active, you can tackle the 118 steps to the top where, at 95 feet tall, you get a stunning, sweeping view of the city skyline and the harbour. Spend a bit of time here and consider a walk around the Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Recreation Area for a full morning.

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12pm – Villa Vizcaya

Take in some history with the classic 16th century north Italian-style estate. Now a national landmark, it was built by James Deering in 1916 and is an elegant area with plenty to admire. The architecture is wonderful, the décor exceptional, gardens pristine and the view from the back is breathtakingly beautiful with a vast, unspoilt view.

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3pm – Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens

Make the most of the weather with these beautiful gardens. Discover a great collection of tropical plants here in one of the largest botanical gardens across the whole of the United States. Admission is $20 and it shuts at 4.30pm but it is well worth a wander around some of the 83 acres.

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7pm – Head to Ocean Drive

The Art Deco District on Ocean Drive is an incredible mix of modern architecture and you can take an organised walk or pick out the various colourful and fabulous buildings on offer here. There are boutiques and stores to peek inside too with cafes for a quick sit down. Well worth a couple of hours and, at the top end, you can head to Espanola Way to try some of the best gelato in Miami at Milani Gelateria. As the night falls, the lights come on and the streets come alive with bar, clubs and restaurants so there is ample of opportunity to refuel for the night ahead.

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Click here to read more about Miami.


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