14 Best Day Trips From Miami | Ultimate Guide (2024 Guide)

Looking for the top day trips from Miami? We have you covered in this post with the 14 best Miami day trips to add to your itinerary!

If you’re spending time in the vibrant, fabulous city of Miami, there are so many incredible things to see and do.

Downtown Miami has museums, restaurants, clubs, and attractions galore. And gorgeous places like South Beach and North Miami Beach are heavenly places to soak in the sun.

But if you have a day or two to spare, consider a day trip outside the city!

Southern Florida is packed with coral reefs, pristine beaches, walking trails, golf courses, and so much more. There are bustling cities, charming small towns, and plenty of state parks and national parks to explore.

On any of these Miami day trips, you can dive into the lush natural beauty and enticing culture of the Sunshine State.

Though Miami has enough excitement to entertain travelers for days and days, any of these fun day trips are a refreshing way to experience more of South Florida.

So escape the city and try one of these incredible day trips from Miami!

Check out our ultimate 3 days in Miami itinerary if you need some ideas for your stay!

The 14 Best Day Trips From Miami

From road-tripping down to the stunning Florida Keys, to scuba diving in beautiful coral reefs, to visiting the shopping haven of West Palm Beach, here are some of the best day trips from Miami!

All of these day trips are within a few hour’s drive of downtown. Your best option for exploring South Florida and around is renting a car so you can plan your own itinerary.

If you don’t want to rent a car, there are some amazing guided tours you can take as well. Whether you’re renting a car or going on tours, it’s super accessible and easy to explore these gems of Florida.

The best way to get around is to rent a car and explore on your own! We recommend Rental Cars, which has the largest range of vehicles for the best value on the market.

West Palm Beach

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 70 miles
  • Driving time: 1 hour

Located just over an hour’s drive north of Miami, West Palm Beach is known for its beautiful beaches, vibrant arts scene, and upscale shopping districts.

Visitors can start their day by exploring the pristine shores of Palm Beach, with its soft white sands and turquoise waters, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, or simply taking a leisurely stroll along the shoreline.

For those seeking a cultural experience, a visit to the Norton Museum of Art is a must, showcasing an impressive collection of European, American, and Chinese art. Do some shopping at the Palm Beach Outlets, or explore the boutiques, restaurants, and cafes of downtown West Palm Beach.

In addition to its natural beauty and cultural attractions, West Palm Beach is also home to the vibrant Clematis Street. This bustling thoroughfare is the heart of the city’s entertainment district and is filled with lively bars, nightclubs, and live music venues, perfect for those looking to extend their day trip into the evening.

For nature enthusiasts, a visit to the Mounts Botanical Garden is highly recommended, offering a serene escape with its diverse collection of tropical and subtropical plants. Another popular attraction is the Palm Beach Zoo, where visitors can get up close and personal with a wide range of exotic animals.

West Palm Beach
Clematis Street in West Palm Beach always lights up at night!

Everglades National Park

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 40 miles
  • Driving time: 47 minutes

Embarking on a day trip from Miami to Everglades National Park offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the breathtaking natural wonders of Florida’s iconic wetland ecosystem.

Located just a short drive west of Miami, the park is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers alike.

Visitors can explore the vast expanse of the Everglades by embarking on a thrilling airboat tour, gliding through the expansive marshes and mangrove forests while keeping an eye out for alligators, wading birds, and other native species.

The Shark Valley Visitor Center is another must-visit spot in the Florida Everglades. Visitors can embark on guided tram tours or rent bicycles to explore the park’s iconic 15-mile loop road. After checking out the trails at Shark Valley Visitor Center, explore more of the country’s largest subtropical wilderness!

Everglades National Park boasts an array of captivating hikes and scenic overlooks. The Anhinga Trail, a popular trail for visitors, meanders through a freshwater marsh and offers the opportunity to observe alligators, turtles, herons, and other fascinating creatures up close.

With its remarkable biodiversity and breathtaking landscapes, Everglades National Park is one of the best day trips from Miami.

Key West

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 164 miles
  • Driving time: 3 hours

Another one of the top Miami day trips is Key West. Though you could easily spend multiple days here and it may be better suited as a weekend trip, many travellers make the trek to Key West in just one day. It’s too gorgeous of a spot to miss!

Situated at the southernmost point of the continental United States, Key West offers a unique blend of tropical charm, historical sites, and a lively atmosphere. The drive from Miami to Key West is a scenic journey along the Overseas Highway, with breathtaking ocean views and the opportunity to cross the iconic Seven Mile Bridge.

Once in Key West, visitors can explore the colorful streets of Old Town, known for its charming pastel-hued houses, art galleries, and lively bars. The famous Duval Street is a bustling hub of activity, lined with restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues.

Or take a leisurely stroll along the historic Key West Harbor or visit the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum, where the famous writer once resided.

Key West is also famous for its stunning sunsets, and a day trip wouldn’t be complete without witnessing this magical moment. Mallory Square is the perfect spot to catch the sunset spectacle, with street performers, local artisans, and a lively atmosphere as the sun dips below the horizon.

Take to the water by visiting a stunning local beach or joining a snorkeling and dolphin-spotting eco-cruise! Whatever you choose to do with your time in Key West, it is one of the most beautiful places in South Florida.

Find more amazing things to do in Key West here!

Key Largo

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 67 miles
  • Driving time: 1 hour and 10 minutes

Key Largo, known as the “Diving Capital of the World,” is another one of the best day trips from Miami. The main attraction in Key Largo is its spectacular underwater world. The John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, the first underwater park in the United States, is a must-visit destination for snorkelers and divers.

Here, visitors can explore the colorful coral reefs teeming with marine life, including vibrant tropical fish, sea turtles, and even the occasional encounter with a majestic manatee.

For those who prefer to stay dry, join a glass-bottom boat tour and observe the vibrant reefs and underwater wonders without getting wet. Key Largo’s gorgeous beaches, such as Cannon Beach and Harry Harris Park, offer serene spots for sunbathing, picnicking, or simply enjoying the breathtaking ocean views.

In town, visitors can indulge in fresh seafood at waterfront restaurants, browse charming boutiques and art galleries, or simply relax and soak in the laid-back atmosphere that the Florida Keys are renowned for.

The stunning natural landscapes, underwater wonders, and island charm make Key Largo a captivating destination for a day trip or a longer getaway from Miami.

READ MORE: Check out our guide on all the best things to do in Key Largo!

Key Largo
Dive into the lush natural beauty of Key Largo!

Biscayne National Park

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 38 miles
  • Driving time: 45 minutes

Biscayne National Park, located just south of Miami, is a hidden gem and an aquatic paradise of South Florida. Spanning over 170,000 acres, the park is primarily composed of vibrant coral reefs, crystal-clear waters, and a diverse array of marine life.

The Maritime Heritage Trail offers a fascinating glimpse into the park’s rich maritime history, showcasing submerged artifacts and shipwrecks that provide a glimpse into the region’s past. It’s a haven for snorkeling and scuba diving!

Kayaking and boating are also popular activities in the park, providing opportunities to explore the mangrove forests, islands, and shallow bays teeming with wildlife.

Aside from its marine wonders, Biscayne National Park also encompasses a portion of the unique and fragile Biscayne Bay ecosystem. The park’s islands, such as Elliott Key and Boca Chita Key, offer beautiful sandy beaches, picnic areas, and hiking trails, allowing visitors to appreciate the natural beauty of the area.

Wildlife enthusiasts can spot a variety of bird species, including herons and ospreys, as well as manatees and sea turtles in the park’s waters. Due to its vibrant wildlife and many opportunities for adventure, Biscayne National Park is one of the best Miami day trips for nature lovers!

Read next: The 20 Best Things To Do In Miami

Fort Lauderdale

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 30 miles
  • Driving time: 32 minutes

Fort Lauderdale, often referred to as the “Venice of America,” is a vibrant coastal city located just north of Miami. Renowned for its stunning beaches, bustling waterfront promenade, and upscale shopping and dining options, Fort Lauderdale offers a perfect blend of relaxation and entertainment.

The main attraction in Fort Lauderdale is its pristine coastline, featuring golden sandy beaches that stretch for miles. Visitors can bask in the sun, take a refreshing swim in the turquoise waters, or indulge in various water activities such as jet skiing, paddleboarding, fishing, or parasailing.

Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard, also known as “The Strip,” is a lively hub lined with beachfront restaurants, cafes, and bars, making it a great spot to grab a bite to eat or enjoy a vibrant nightlife experience.

Beyond the beach, Fort Lauderdale boasts a thriving arts and culture scene. The city is home to the NSU Art Museum, which showcases a diverse collection of contemporary and modern art, and the Bonnet House Museum and Gardens, a historic estate surrounded by lush tropical gardens.

For those seeking a high-end shopping experience, Las Olas Boulevard offers a charming array of boutique shops, art galleries, and sidewalk cafes. Additionally, the city’s extensive network of canals and waterways provides the perfect setting for a relaxing boat tour or a romantic gondola ride.

With its beautiful beaches, cultural attractions, and vibrant atmosphere, Fort Lauderdale is one of the easiest day trips from Miami for city lovers.

Looking for more things to do in Fort Lauderdale? Check out our complete list here!

Big Cypress National Preserve

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 46
  • Driving time: 50 minutes

Another one of the best, nature-filled day trips from Miami is Big Cypress National Preserve. Located just west of Miami, this national wildlife preserve is a remarkable and expansive wilderness area that showcases the unique and diverse ecosystems of the Florida Everglades.

Spanning over 700,000 acres, this preserved region is home to a rich tapestry of cypress swamps, freshwater marshes, pine forests, and prairies. Visitors to Big Cypress National Preserve can immerse themselves in the beauty of nature by exploring its extensive network of trails, perfect for hiking, bird-watching, and wildlife spotting.

The preserve is known for its abundant wildlife, including the elusive Florida panther, alligators, white-tailed deer, and a myriad of bird species.

Additionally, visitors can embark on scenic drives, such as the Tamiami Trail, that offer breathtaking views of the expansive wetlands and allow for unforgettable encounters with the natural wonders that make this preserve truly exceptional.

So if you’re looking for a serene getaway from Miami Dade County, Big Cypress National Preserve is a stunning spot to visit on a fun day trip from Miami.

Big Cypress National Preserve
Connect with the wilderness in Big Cypress National Preserve.

Coral Castle

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 35 miles
  • Driving time: 28 minutes

A short and easy getaway from Miami is Coral Castle. Located in Homestead, Florida, this extraordinary and mysterious structure has captivated visitors of all ages for decades. Built by a Latvian immigrant named Edward Leedskalnin, the castle is a stunning feat of engineering and craftsmanship.

What makes Coral Castle truly remarkable is the fact that Leedskalnin single-handedly carved and sculpted over 1,100 tons of coral rock to construct the entire complex.

The castle features intricate stone carvings, towering megalithic structures, and mysterious stone arrangements that have puzzled experts and fueled speculation about the methods used by Leedskalnin to create such a masterpiece.

Today, visitors can explore the grounds, marvel at the massive coral formations, and delve into the enigmatic history of Coral Castle, making it a must-visit destination for those intrigued by the wonders of human ingenuity and the mysteries that surround this architectural marvel.

Marco Island

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 106 miles
  • Driving time: 1 hour and 50 minutes

Marco Island, located near the Gulf Coast of Florida, is a picturesque and idyllic destination that is easily one of the best day trips from Miami. Known for its lovely white sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, and relaxed atmosphere, Marco Island is a haven for beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

Travelers can spend their day lounging on the soft sands of Tigertail Beach or South Marco Beach, soaking up the sun, and taking refreshing dips in the turquoise waters. For those seeking adventure, there are plenty of water activities to enjoy, including kayaking or paddleboarding through the lush mangroves.

Nature enthusiasts can explore the island’s unique ecosystems by taking a scenic boat tour through the Ten Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge, where they can spot dolphins, manatees, and a variety of bird species in their natural habitat.

Marco Island also offers opportunities for upscale dining, shopping, and relaxation. The charming Marco Island Historical Museum provides insights into the island’s rich history, showcasing exhibits that highlight the Calusa Indians and the area’s early settlers. The island is also known for its high-end resorts and spa retreats, offering a chance to indulge in some pampering and relaxation.

As the day winds down, a spectacular sunset over the Gulf of Mexico is a must, with various waterfront spots providing a serene and awe-inspiring backdrop. Marco Island’s beauty, ambiance, and range of activities make it an ideal day trip destination from Miami for those seeking a tranquil coastal retreat.

Marco Island
Make sure you catch the sunset while visiting Marco Island!

Bahia Honda State Park

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 129 miles
  • Driving time: 2 hours and 25 minutes

Another one of the best day trips from Miami is Bahia Honda State Park, located in the Florida Keys. Known for its stunning beaches, clear turquoise waters, and diverse marine life, Bahia Honda State Park is a haven for beachgoers and snorkelers.

Snorkeling in the park is a must-do activity, as the park is home to vibrant coral reefs that provide a home for many sea creatures. Bahia Honda State Park also offers boat rentals and kayak tours, allowing visitors to explore the surrounding waters and discover hidden coves and mangrove forests.

In addition to its aquatic wonders, Bahia Honda State Park offers scenic nature trails that wind through lush vegetation and provide opportunities for wildlife spotting. The park’s observation tower provides panoramic views of the surrounding landscape, including the iconic Old Bahia Honda Bridge, a historic landmark that serves as a reminder of the park’s rich history.

Picnic areas and barbecue grills are available for visitors to enjoy a leisurely outdoor lunch, while the park’s concession stand offers snacks, beverages, and rentals for beach equipment. Bahia Honda State Park provides a rejuvenating escape into the enchanting world of the Florida Keys!

Planning to explore more of the Sunshine State? Check out our list of the 25 best things to do in Florida!

Jonathan Dickinson State Park

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 95 miles
  • Driving time: 1.5 hours

Jonathan Dickinson State Park, located in Hobe Sound, Florida, is a hidden gem that offers a diverse range of activities to enjoy on a day trip from Miami. The park encompasses over 11,500 acres of pristine wilderness, featuring picturesque pine forests, scenic waterways, and abundant wildlife.

Visitors can explore the park’s extensive trail system, which caters to hikers, bikers, and equestrians. Canoeing and kayaking enthusiasts can paddle along the Loxahatchee River, Florida’s first federally designated Wild and Scenic River.

Fishing, camping, and picnicking are also popular activities in the park, providing opportunities for relaxation and immersion in nature.

With its tranquil atmosphere, natural wonders, and abundant recreational opportunities, Jonathan Dickinson State Park is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts seeking to reconnect with Florida’s diverse and captivating landscapes.

Delray Beach

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 53 miles
  • Driving time: 50 minutes

Another one of the best day trips from Miami is Delray Beach. With its clear blue waters and powdery white sand, this bustling coastal city offers the perfect setting for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports.

Visitors can stroll along the scenic Atlantic Avenue, lined with trendy boutiques, art galleries, and inviting sidewalk cafes. The downtown area comes alive in the evenings, with a bustling nightlife that includes live music, theaters, and a wide range of dining options, from casual seafood joints to upscale restaurants.

The city is also home to a vibrant arts community, with numerous galleries and the popular Arts Garage, which hosts live performances and art exhibitions.

Additionally, the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens offer a serene and immersive cultural experience, with beautifully landscaped gardens and fascinating exhibits that showcase Japanese art and history.

Beyond the beach and cultural attractions, Delray Beach offers opportunities for connecting with nature as well. The nearby Wakodahatchee Wetlands is a nature reserve and boardwalk that allows visitors to observe a variety of bird species, turtles, and alligators in their natural habitat.

Golf enthusiasts can enjoy a round of golf at one of the many world-class golf courses in the area. So no matter what you’re into, Delray Beach offers something fun and exciting for you!

Wakodahatchee Wetlands
The Wakodahatchee Wetlands are a highlight of Delray Beach.

Fort Myers

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 157 miles
  • Driving time: 2 hours and 20 minutes

Take a day trip to the west coast of South Florida with a visit to Fort Myers! This charming and vibrant city is known for its beautiful beaches, historical sites, and lively downtown.

The area boasts stunning beachfront destinations like Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel Island, where visitors can soak up the sun, swim in the Gulf of Mexico’s turquoise waters, and indulge in various water activities such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and fishing.

In addition to its breathtaking beaches, Fort Myers is steeped in history, with the winter estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford serving as popular attractions. The historic downtown district is a hub of activity, featuring a lively River District with eclectic shops, art galleries, and a diverse culinary scene.

With its mix of natural wonders, historical significance, and vibrant atmosphere, Fort Myers offers a delightful destination for those seeking sun, culture, and relaxation on Florida’s southwest coast.

Check out our complete list of the best things to do in Fort Myers!

Naples

  • Distance from Downtown Miami: 126 miles
  • Driving time: 2 hours

Located just under two hours from Miami, Naples, Florida is a captivating coastal city that offers a unique blend of cultural charm, and upscale living. Situated along the Gulf of Mexico in southwest Florida, Naples is renowned for its beautiful beaches and breathtaking sunsets, as most Florida destinations are!

Naples is also home to a vibrant arts and culture scene, with numerous galleries, theaters, and music venues showcasing local talent and world-class performances.

Additionally, the city is famous for its luxurious golf courses, upscale shopping districts like Fifth Avenue South and Third Street South, and an array of fine dining establishments that cater to a variety of culinary preferences.

The Naples Botanical Gardens showcase an impressive collection of tropical plants and vibrant gardens, while the Naples Pier is a favorite destination for fishing and strolling along the shoreline. For those seeking a taste of history, the Historic Palm Cottage and the Naples Depot Museum provide fascinating insights into the city’s past.

Beyond its stunning beaches and cultural allure, Naples is a haven for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers. Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park and Clam Pass Park are popular spots for nature lovers, offering opportunities for birdwatching, picnicking, and kayaking. You can also go on a dolphin and manatee-spotting boat tour!

With its blend of natural beauty, cultural offerings, and luxurious amenities, Naples is a true paradise for those seeking a sophisticated coastal retreat.

Wrapping Up

Though you could easily spend all your time in South Florida soaking up the culture and excitement of Miami, these day trips outside the city are a great way to explore the beauty of the USA’s southeast corner.

From the sandy shores and reefs of the Florida Keys to the metropolises of Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, there is something for everyone in South Florida.

And if you have more time to spare, there are so many more Florida attractions that can be accessed on a day trip! You can visit the theme parks of Orlando, such as Disney World and Universal Studios, or the beaches and museums of Tampa on a day trip from Miami. Even the famous Kennedy Space Center is within reach.

Many of these locations are better suited to weekend trips from Miami since they are at least a 3-hour drive away, but they are doable on an ambitious day trip. But if you don’t want to drive far, any of these 14 incredible day trips from Miami are well worth your while!

DISCLAIMER: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links, which means if you book accommodation, tours or buy a product, we will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. These commissions help us keep creating more free travel content to help people plan their holidays and adventures. We only recommend the best accommodations, tours and products that ourselves or our fantastic editorial team have personally experienced, and regularly review these. Thanks for your support, kind friend!

Gabby Boucher

Gabby Boucher

After four years of working in hospitality, volunteering abroad and travelling for fun, Gabby has developed a knack for budget travel and admiration for different cultures. Her travels have taken her through the cloud forests of Ecuador, into the villages of eastern Europe, across the islands of Thailand, and to the beaches of New South Wales, Australia, where she is currently living with a working holiday visa. She plans to continue her adventures around the world for as long as possible. Follow her on her blog, and on Instagram.

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