South Beach Weekend Itinerary
Are you headed to South Beach?
Oh, that place has the most wondrous things lined up; you can take walks, bike rides, explore architecture, go to the beach, and lots more. If you’re hoping for the perfect weekend itinerary, then look no further because here is how to make your weekend getaway at the South Beach your best yet.
Here is the South Beach weekend itinerary from a local
Start off your morning by taking a walk or riding a bike, as that’s the best time to do it. South Beach can get pretty hot during the day, and it wouldn’t be a romantic thing to be sweating in the heat while pushing yourself to walk or ride more, so it’s best to do it while the sun’s still playing hide and seek with the clouds and the roads aren’t crowded yet, and so you can get a little bit of that early morning wind.
Boardwalk at the Beach
Of course, you have to hit the beach, so don’t waste any time and head over there on the first day. The wooden boardwalk of the beach extends from 21st to 47th street and offers breath-taking views of the ocean on one side and dramatic Art Deco hotels on the other. Since renovations are still undergoing and there are plenty of buildings that haven’t been retouched, you get a very strong Pompeii vibe amidst the memories of diving boards and peach walls.
Art and Architecture in South Beach
Just along the beach is Miami’s famous Art Deco district that holds a lot of promise for tourists and citizens who are obsessed with art and architecture. Lined with buildings decorated in hues of pastel, which date back to the 1920s to the 1940s, and designs that reminiscence ships, the Art Deco district is a beautiful glance in the past. You can even get in on great walking tours of the district offered by the Art Deco Welcome Center starting each day at 10:30 AM.
Hop off the boardwalk and sit down on the cool shore of the free public beach and listen to the soothing sounds of waves hitting the white sand while you munch on snacks from the nearby cafes.
Ocean Drive and SoFi (South of 5th Street)
Continue relaxing by escaping to the ocean drive, where a peculiarly entertaining scene awaits you. Picture kids working off their hangovers at the cafes, bachelorettes prowling for a gallon of frozen margaritas, and busloads of lost tourists in search of the Versace mansion. Before you get over the chaos, you’re greeted by hostesses of nearby restaurants wielding menus from restaurants that offer two-for-one drink specials.
The SoFi area strikes differently; looking like a gated resort but one that’s open to everyone, SoFi gives off posh vibes through its display of gleaming condos owned by proud, wealthy second-home owners. Looking more European than your average Daytona Beach-at-spring-break, SoFi is a place where socialization begins; just as downtown Manhattanites joke that they get nosebleeds north of 14th Street, SoFi residents have taken to saying that there is no reason to go above Fifth to socialize anymore.
Brunch at the Big Pink
You’ll be hungry by the time you reach SoFi, so join the locals in their brunch-time gossip at the Big Pink, a nouveau diner that functions like a general store. Sip on a chilled iced tea and munch on delicious sandwiches before heading to view the gorgeous sunset.
There are a couple of great restaurants nearby, but Smith & Wollensky or Monty’s South Beach are a preferred spot, where your ears can pick up on strains of “Y.M.C.A” or Bob Markey if the wind is in the right direction.
For a more adult-friendly time, move to Nikki Beach Club and crack open a few cold ones or opt for some chilled Piper-Heidsieck to lighten your mood. For a more entertaining time, tune in with the women working there who engage in turquoise Pocahontas-fringed bikini dances to the delight of guests.
Crabs at the Joe’s Stone Crab
SoFi is no more legendary than Joe’s Stone Crab, which gave the drive the lift it needed to rise from the ashes of urban decay. For decades, the only worthwhile destination for tourists and citizens alike was this diner where a line of gleaming Cadillacs would give away the presence of a full house. While more restaurants popped up along the shore and multimillion-dollar apartment condos began to tower South Beach in the mid-1990s, Joe’s Stone Crab retained its authentic glamour and still is worth a visit. So, pick up some crab from this iconic spot where people make a beeline hours before opening, and after the maître d’, head to South Pointe Park for some sunset.
A stone’s throw from SoFi is South Pointe Park, where a reality-defying sunset awaits. Though the park itself has had a $22 million facelift, the best sights are in the water, and the grassy expanse and promenade at the tip of South Beach have made it a town square of sorts. Gaze down Government Cut, the channel between the Atlantic and the Port of Miami, toward the fast-changing downtown skyline.
Finish the experience by watching the sunset, accompanied by cute dogs roaming around and music streaming from nearby yoga and aerial yoga parties. You might even get an occasional glimpse of salsa dancing.
After dark, when the sun-kissed passers-by are but shadows, it’s time for another walk, this time to check out Ocean Drive’s Art Deco hotels like Colony, Boulevard, and Starlite illuminated in neon blue, pink, and red. Go shooting among the stars to Collins Avenue and tour the classic bars of hotels like Delano with mysterious, intimate corners or the blue-hued Fontainebleau for a boisterous setting before settling in at your hotel for a cozy night.
After breakfast from your hotel, you’ll be looking for a place to work out but ditch the gym and hop on to the beach for an outdoor and, better yet, oceanfront workout. A recommended place is the oceanfront stretch marked by a sign that says 17th Street Beachwalk, and you can work out to your heart’s content among runners, roller-skaters, cyclists, Segway-users swishing by.
You have to shop when you’re on vacation, right? Shop and stroll at the outdoor pedestrian retail stores between Alton Road and Washington Avenue and choose between South Beach must-haves like crystal embellished Havaianas flip-flops, sarongs of tropical hues, and other knick-knacks. For a light snack or even a proper lunch, you’ll find lines of coffee shops, ice-cream parlors, bars, and clubs, and for more exploration, await art galleries and retail chains including Anthropologie, Madewell, and Kiehl’s. (; A great excuse to pack light. For Miami packing tips and list – read this blog
Lincoln Road Farmers Market
On the weekend, the infamous Lincoln Road transforms into a versatile Farmers Market where you can get everything and anything; from great food sizzling on the grill to fresh ingredients, you’ll have plenty to fill your basket. Honestly, you’ll easily spend the entire day just there!
A Taste of Spain
Don’t leave South Beach without wandering over to Española Way, a stretch of shops and restaurants with Spanish-colonial architecture as reinterpreted in 1925. Once a destination for gamblers like Al Capone, the street reminisces Mediterranean villages of Spain and France and is similar to New York’s Little Italy, only a little cleaner and daintier. Of course, let your tastebuds travel through Spain while you take in the heavenly aroma.