Miami, Florida is a popular destination for the arts and beaches. But it’s also well located to explore other parts of the state. Once you’ve had your fill of sun, hit the road to these nearby locations. All of these day trips from Miami are at or less than two hours away. It’s easy to pick up your rental car downtown or at the airport and return to your hotel in the evening.
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Biscayne National Park
Distance from Miami: 1 hour
Biscayne National Park is just off the coast from Miami and is one of the most underrated national parks. The island features untouched coral reefs and barrier islands. The mangrove forest and islands are accessible by guided boat tours from North Key Largo, about 30 minutes from Homestead. There are also areas to explore near the visitor’s center.
Visitors to the island of Elliot Key can see wildlife like dolphins and turtles in the lagoon or visit the Maritime Heritage Trail, an area of dive sites that include shipwrecks. Boca Chita Lighthouse is one of the must-see landmarks.
Distance from Miami: Depends on area, but 1 to 1 hour 40 minutes
The Everglades is one of the most unique national parks in America and is only one of two everglades in the world. It includes over 1 million acres through three counties. Homestead is the area closest to Miami, which is home to quirky attractions like Coral Castle and Robert Is Here fruit stand. You can also catch a NASCAR race or enjoy local wines and beers at Schnebly Winery.
You can also experience the Everglades from the western side from Everglades City. The Everglades run alongside the Big Cypress National Preserve. This park has ranger tours and is an international dark sky park, perfect for stargazing. There’s also a Seminole Indian reservation home to the Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum, which tells the history of the tribes in the region.
- Full day Everglades, Big Cypress and 10,000 Islands, Airboat and Boat Ride
- Private Islands of the Everglades Air Boat Tour
Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood
Distance from Miami: 45 minutes
Fort Lauderdale was named for a fort established during the Second Seminole War. Today, it’s a popular cruise port and is where many megayachts and ships are docked. Some people consider Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood to be an extension of Miami, especially as it can be easier to fly into their airport. Skip the car rentals and traffic and instead take the Brightline train in 30 minutes.
The Sawgrass Recreation Park is a popular spot for airboat tours if you don’t have time to make it into the Everglades. The Bonnet House Museum & Gardens is one of the area’s stunning waterfront homes, designed in the Caribbean style. You can also browse the shops on Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale’s version of Rodeo Drive. Hollywood has one of Florida’s best beaches so bring your towel.
- Venice of America Fort Lauderdale Cruise
- Fort Lauderdale Historical Tour
- Fort Lauderdale Craft Beer Tour
- Las Olas River Cruise & Food Tour
- Hollywood Beach Segway Tour
Distance from Miami: 2 hours
Located on Florida’s southwestern coast, Naples has been a popular vacation spot since the 1800s. Originally inhabited by the Calusa Indians, it was later “discovered” by the Spanish. You can get there by driving through Alligator Alley or the scenic route on Highway 41, also known as the Tamiami Trail.
Known for its fishing, dolphin spotting, and shell hunting, the area has many outdoor activities. Spend time on Naples’ white sugar sand beaches or head over to Marco Island. Naples also has a number of wildlife refuges to spot native species. A boat tour of the Ten Thousand Islands is another unique day trip option.
- All-day Paddle Board rental in Naples Florida
- 10,000 Islands Ultimate Shelling Kayak Adventure Tour
- Gulf of Mexico Sunset Cruise from Naples
- Ten Thousand Islands Adventure Boat Tour
The Palm Beaches
Distance from Miami: 1 hour 30 minutes
West Palm Beach and the Palm Beaches overall are known as a playground for the rich and famous. Railroad tycoon Henry Flagler established a place for his employees to live who were working at hotels in Palm Beach and Lake Worth, including The Breakers that exists today. His original railroad is gone, but today visitors can also take the Brightline train from Miami to West Palm Beach.
The Palm Beaches are known for golf and shopping, including luxury stores and vintage shopping. The Palm Beach Outlets and Antique Row are popular. Wander the historic districts of these areas that date back to the 1920s or tour one of the Gilded Age mansions.
The Florida Keys
Distance from Miami: Depends on where, but 3.5 hours maximum
The Florida Keys are one of the most popular day trips from Miami, especially the Upper Keys. It’s entirely possible to road trip from Miami to Key West in one day, but it’s better to stay overnight. Instead, enjoy the laid-back culture of Key Largo and Islamorada. Be sure to save room for the must-eat dishes like key lime pie!
In the Upper Keys, visitors can see the African Queen, which is docked here. John Pennekamp State Park offers snorkeling and diving to the famous “Christ of the Abyss” underwater statue. Admire the wildlife at the Laura Quinn Wild Bird Sanctuary, The Turtle Hospital, and the National Key Deer National Wildlife Refuge.
- 4-Hour Snorkel Charter from Key Largo
- Key West Day Trip from Collins Avenue in Miami Beach
- Key West Shipwreck Treasure Museum