What To Do In Miami After A Cruise & Before A Flight

So you’ve just disembarked from your ship in Miami after a wonderful cruise. Your flight home isn’t until the evening, so you’ve got a day to kill.

Do you spend it sitting and enjoying the sights and sounds of the bustling airport, or do you actually make the most of this opportunity to explore one of the world’s most vibrant cities?

Miami

If you’ve chosen the latter, then this guide will be ideal – here’s a look at some of the best things to do after your cruise in Miami.

What is there to do in Miami after a cruise?

There are plenty of options for things to see and do in Miami after your cruise. The city is famous for its beach and shopping, but it also has excellent food options (including food tours), museums, street art and nature excursions you can enjoy.

There’s something for everyone – kid-friendly activities, gentle tours that don’t involve much walking, and stuff for thrill-seekers, with options that last from just an hour or two to longer adventures if you’ve got a whole day to fill.

It’s worth checking out some of these ideas because they all beat sitting at an airport waiting for your flight number to be called.

The Best Things To Do In Miami After A Cruise

Cultural ideas

Miami is a city that is packed with cultural attractions – from museums to street art. It’s definitely worth taking the chance to explore the beautiful history and iconic sights of the city while you’re in town.

1. Superblue Miami

Estimated duration: 90 minutes

Superblue Miami
photo credit : viator.com

Superblue Miami is one of the top art museums in the city. An immersive experience, you’ll be able to enjoy a host of amazing installations, including a mirrored labyrinth, digital recreations of worlds that are immersed in amazing waterfalls and flowers, and a stunning representation of your own heartbeat, created from 3,000 lights.

It’s not a huge attraction, so it’s a great size for a quick trip if you’ve an afternoon flight, or when paired with another attraction. It’s suitable for all ages.

2. Perez Art Museum

Estimated duration: 2 hours

Perez Art Museum
photo credit: pamm.org

The Perez Art Museum is filled with incredible artworks to enjoy, ranging from fine art and modern painting styles through to sculptures and walk-through art experiences.

As with many art museums, the exhibitions change throughout the year, so if you enjoy the museum after one visit then it’s one to consider coming back to after your next cruise that ends in Miami – there’ll always be something new to enjoy. The museum takes around two hours to walk through, though you can meander if you have more time to kill.

3. Wynwood Graffiti Golf Cart Tour

Estimated duration: 1 hour

Wynwood Graffiti Golf Cart Tour
photo credit: viator.com

The Wynwood district in Miami is known as the warehouse district – but it’s so much more exciting than that. It has become the home of some of Miami’s finest street art, featuring incredible works from local artists that include smaller graffiti pieces and impressive full-wall murals.

This tour is ideal if you can’t walk far or are just feeling tired after your cruise – you’ll ride in a comfortable golf cart, seeing the art at a leisurely pace while you learn all about the architecture and history of the region.

4. Art Deco Walking Tour

Estimated duration: 2 hours

Art Deco Walking Tour
photo credit: viator.com

If you’re feeling active and you’re in the mood for a walking tour of Miami, one of the best options is to tour the Art Deco buildings of South Beach. This guided tour will teach you all about the history of the South Beach region, including the glamour and the seedy mob side.

You’ll learn more about the history of Art Deco in general, see Versace’s mansion, and just get to know the real story of one of the most vibrant neighbourhoods not just in Miami but in the whole of the US.

Relaxing ideas

While a cruise is a wonderful holiday, they can often be action-packed. And maybe, while you have time in Miami, you just want to take things a little easier. These relaxing attractions can help you wind down before you return home.

5. Miami Beach

Estimated duration: As long as you want

Miami Beach
photo credit: visitflorida.com

Miami is of course home to one of the world’s most famous beaches, and if you’ve never been then you can just head down and enjoy the fantastic atmosphere of the sands. Here there will be sunbathers, paddleboarders, jet skiers and more, and yes there will be plenty of people on rollerblades and roller skates along the beach front too.

It’s not a quiet beach, so don’t head there if you want a few hours of peace before you fly, but if you want to soak up the fun ambience of the beautiful sands, and see the local stores and bars while you’re there, then it’s worth spending a few hours exploring.

6. Hotel Resort Pass

Estimated duration: Up to 6 hours

Hotel Resort Pass
photo credit: resortpass.com

While Miami Beach may not be the place to relax in peace and quiet, you aren’t short of options if that’s what you’re looking for. Miami has a host of beautiful hotels where you can buy a day resort pass to escape the hustle and bustle.

Day passes don’t cost the earth, though you may have to pay extra if you want a bed, a cabana or access to the hotel’s spa. However, if you just want to lounge by the side of the pool, sipping a cocktail and soaking up the Miami sunshine, this is a calm way to chill before dealing with the airport.

Family ideas

Travelling with kids? Miami has some great family attractions that can help stave off that boredom that often comes with tired tykes at the end of a cruise.

7. Miami Children’s Museum

Estimated duration: 3.5 hours

Miami Children’s Museum is a fantastic destination for anyone with younger children. Your ticket gets you a 3.5 hour play session where you can wander the museum and let your kids enjoy a whole host of interactive exhibits.

It’s also situated on Wilson Island, really close to the cruise terminals, so you don’t have to travel far to start enjoying all of the fun activities on offer. And then you’re only an 8 mile cab trip to the airport – making this a fantastic choice for restless kids.

8. Miami Seaquarium

Estimated duration: 4 hours

Miami Seaquarium
photo credit miamiseaquarium.com

The Miami Seaquarium is one of the most popular family attractions in all of South Florida. It is home to a wide variety of marine sea life including penguins, sharks, seals, sea lions and all kinds of fish species too.

There are dolphins too, and if you’ve got the budget to spare you can arrange to swim with them – or try one of the other close-up interaction experiences. The seaquarium has all the facilities you need for a full day, including multiple dining options, so this is a great way to spend the time leading up to your flight.

9. Zoo Miami

Estimated duration: Up to 6 hours (including transport)

Zoo Miami
photo credit: zoomiami.org

Another fantastic family-friendly attraction that can keep you busy for the whole day before a night flight is Zoo Miami. Here there are over 3,500 animals to see, with species from across the globe. There are various interactive exhibits and learning opportunities too, as well as a good choice of dining venues.

Just be aware that this is one of the furthest attractions from the port – you’ll need to factor in around 35 minutes’ drive from the cruise terminal, and then another 30 minutes to get to the airport, depending on traffic. So if your flight is mid-afternoon, give this one a miss.

Food-themed ideas

Whether you’re a die-hard foodie who loves to explore other cultures and sample their traditional dishes, or you just like the idea of visiting restaurants and snacking on your last day, these tours could be the ideal time-killer.

10. Little Havana Food and Walking Tour

Estimated duration: 2.5 hours

Little Havana Food and Walking Tour
photo credit: viator.com

Enjoy a guided walking tour of Miami’s Little Havana neighbourhood and get the chance to try some of the best local delicacies from the Cuban restaurants all around. You’ll be able to try dishes like chicken plantain cups, guava pastries and the delicious flan ice cream, and taste the best empanada in the city.

As well as trying the food, you’ll see how Cuban cigars are rolled, meet the local artists and enjoy Cuban music, all whilst learning about the heritage of the neighbourhood and how the Cubans have lived there.

11. South Beach Cultural Food and Walking Tour

Estimated duration: 2.5 hours

South Beach Cultural Food and Walking Tour
photo credit: viator.com

If you like the idea of a walking and eating tour but you want to look beyond just Cuban flavours, then this could be the more wide-ranging excursion to suit. South Beach is home to a fantastic variety of restaurants, and you’ll get to sample little bits of them all, including Cuban, Mediterranean, Colombian, Peruvian and Spanish.

The tour includes a look at the heritage of all of Latin America in Miami, and the way that the culture has helped to define the city. It’s quite an active tour, but one that is packed with great content and that will be a highlight of your entire getaway.

12. Traditional Cuban Cooking Class

Estimated duration: 4 hours

Traditional Cuban Cooking Class
photo credit: viator.com

If you’ve got a little more time to kill before your flight and you don’t mind spending a little more on your food excursion, why not try a traditional Cuban cooking class before you head for home? This works well with an evening flight since you’ll be making your own dinner.

You’ll have a chef taking you through the lesson, and giving you info on the background of the dishes you prepare and the heritage of Cuban food. When the tour is over, you’ll get to take your recipes home with you so you can recreate the food again for family and friends.

Shopping ideas

Have you forgotten to pick up some souvenirs? Or do you just need a bit of retail therapy that’s different from the onboard luxury stores? There are two malls within easy reach of the cruise port.

13. Sawgrass Mills Mall

Estimated duration: Up to 6 hours

Sawgrass Mills Mall
photo credit: viator.com

The Sawgrass Mills Mall is actually a little further outside Miami, and is a good option for Fort Lauderdale too. But the sheer volume of stores you can visit does make it worth the trip, provided you have the time to get back to the airport (it’ll take around 40 minutes).

There’s everything from famous department stores to boutique fashion shops and discount outlets too. Just be aware that if you take an organised tour then you may have to cut it short with a taxi to get to the airport, since the orgnaised transport usually leaves the mall later in the day.

14. Dolphin Shopping Mall

Estimated duration: As long as you want

Dolphin Shopping Mall
photo credit: shopdolphinmall.com

If you want to get your shopping done without being too far from the airport, the Dolphin Shopping Mall is a much better option – it’s just 10 miles from the main entrance to the airport, so you can get there really quickly.

It’s the city’s largest outlet and has over 240 stores, restaurants and more to explore, so you’ll have no trouble finding something to treat yourself to.

Adventure ideas

Still not quite got all that adrenaline-seeking out of your system on your vacation? There are some really exciting things to do in Miami after cruise breaks that can perfectly round off your trip.

15. Jet Ski Rentals

Estimated duration: 75 minutes

Jet Ski Rentals
photo credit: viator.com

A lot of Miami is focussed around South Beach and the connecting islands, so what better way to explore them all than from the water on your own jet ski? You’ll get a boat ride to a launch point and then travel with a guide past Picnic Island to see some of the great views of the city.

It’s a thrilling way to see the sights, and it’s completely safe too. Your instructor will also take some photos of you on the jet ski for you to treasure, or just show off to your friends.

16. Everglades Tours

Estimated duration: 1-5 hours

Everglades Tours
photo credit: viator.com

The Everglades National Park is famous around the world for its unique scenery, and of course its wildlife. There are various tour lengths available, but on all you’ll get the chance to see alligators, iguanas and other wildlife in their natural habitats.

It’s thrilling and a little nerve-wracking on an airboat, but a really interesting experience. Your guide will give you tons of information about the local creatures and how they live.

17. ATV Rental

Estimated duration: 90 minutes

ATV Rental
photo credit: viator.com

If you want to get off the beaten track – especially if you’ve seen some of the main Miami sights before – then consider hiring an ATV and taking a tour of the off-road areas around Miami.

You’ll get to see parts of the coast away from the main tourist spots, and have a thrill-packed time while you do it.

18. Deep Sea Fishing Trip

Estimated duration: 4 hours

Deep Sea Fishing Trip
photo credit: viator.com

No experience necessary – try your hand at deep-sea fishing and see what species you can catch under the tuition of an expert guide. You’ll get a full tutorial on how to use the equipment, and then head out on the boat to see if you can snare kingfish, grouper and snapper.

The boat trip is a scenic ride itself, so you’ll get to relax too – perfect if your partner is the fishing aficionado and you just want to take it easy for half a day.

Luxury ideas

Got some holiday cash left over that you want to spend, or do you just like living the high life? These luxury Miami excursions after cruise holidays are the cherry on top of your fantastic getaway.

19. Cruise of Millionaire Homes

Estimated duration: 90 minutes

Cruise of Millionaire Homes
photo credit: viator.com

This excursion isn’t really a luxury tour in itself – it’s actually quite cheap – but if you’re interested in the luxury lifestyle then it’s a lot of fun. You’ll go on a boat tour around the city, seeing all the multi-million dollar mansions that celebrities own around the islands.

There’s a cash bar on the boat too, along with snacks, so you can take it easy and see how the high life lives, even just for a short break before you fly home.

20. Private Yacht Cruise with Champagne

Estimated duration: 2 hours

Private Yacht Cruise with Champagne
photo credit: viator.com

It’s widely accepted that one of the best ways to see Miami is from a boat – so why not hire your own private yacht for a tour and escape the crowded vessels where seats are at a premium?

You’ll be able to take some stunning photos of the Miami skyline, all while sipping on Champagne and playing your favourite songs through the boat’s sound system. A wonderful, peaceful way to soak up the city.

21. Taste of Miami Helicopter Tour

Estimated duration: 20 minutes

Taste of Miami Helicopter Tour
photo credit: viator.com

If a boat isn’t doing it for you, why not see Miami from the sky? A private helicopter tour gets you right over the best sights, so you’ll be able to tick off Tahiti Beach, Biscayne Bay, Coconut Grove and more.

As well as the city, you’ll be flown over the Matheson County Preserve, where you may get lucky and see manatees and dolphins swimming below you.

Final word

There are so many options in Miami that these are just the best. It’s a fantastic city, with most of the attractions localised close to the centre and all easy to get to with a taxi or an Uber.

Just make sure you don’t dawdle too much and miss your flight!
You’ll also want to check out my guide to storing your luggage in Miami so that you don’t have to carry it around all day while enjoying your final excursions.

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Cruise Mummy

Jenni Fielding is the founder of Cruise Mummy. She has worked in the cruise industry since 2015 and has taken over 30 cruises. Now, she helps over 1 million people per month to plan their perfect cruise holidays.

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