Miami’s best spots for a family-friendly weekend

Family Weekend is quickly approaching, and with it comes the chance to show off your home away from home to the people you love. But with classes piling on the work, it can be hard to find the time to plan a truly great itinerary. Before your family arrives on Thursday, use these recommendations as a road map for a uniquely Miami experience they’re sure to love.

Thursday and Friday

Your parents can only walk around the lake so many times, so while you’re in class on Thursday and Friday, send them to hang out at the iconic local bookstore Books & Books on Miracle Mile. For a funkier breakfast option, they can try the Australian-inspired Threefold Cafe on the Mile – the avocado toast and breakfast fried rice are unlike any other fare in the city.

Or they can grab a cold brew at the trendy Panther Coffee in Wynwood. A walk around the Art District is a great way to spend the afternoon and out-of-towners will surely be amazed by the mural-covered buildings.

At lunchtime, get the best bread in Miami at Zak the Baker’s cafe, which is right around the block. If you’ve had your fill of Wynwood, head to the Grove to sample one of the creative burger offerings at LoKal or a decadent Miami brunch at Greenstreet Cafe, where they offer indulgent red velvet pancakes and banana Nutella French toast.

For dinner, meat lovers should head to Swine Southern Table & Bar on Miracle Mile for a smokehouse feast, while vegetarians can sample the veggie dishes at Blue Collar in the MiMO district (although there’s plenty for carnivores to devour, too).


Miami offers plenty of family-friendly activities beyond the requisite campus tour and picture at the U. Of course, there’s the football game against Nebraska on Saturday at 3:30 p.m.

However, if your parents aren’t ready to brave the tailgates, there are other options. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is perfect for a morning stroll, or if your guests are more historically inclined, Vizcaya Museum & Gardens offers a stunning respite from the city.

After a long day exploring Miami, a delicious dinner is a must. Check out Whisk, tucked away behind Sunset, for a comfort food fix, or the nearby Station 5 for inventive American fusion. To experience Miami’s food truck craze, try Burger Beast’s Street Food Festival at Magic City Casino, with dozens of vendors, live music and performances.


To give your family a taste of a Miami staple at a bargain price, check out Divino Ceviche on Miracle Mile, which offers $20 all-you-can-eat ceviche for Sunday brunch.

Families from colder climates are often clamoring to visit the beach. So, while South Beach may seem like the obvious place to visit with your family on Sunday, a less crowded, more scenic location is Crandon Park on Key Biscayne. Alternately, head to the Venetian Pool just a few miles from campus and enjoy the beautiful facility and pristine water.

Art aficionados can start at the Lowe on campus, but for those craving more, a visit to the Pérez Art Museum should do the trick.

Once you’ve explored Miami, finish off an adventurous weekend with your loved ones by taking them out to a 305-themed spot: Little Havana. Grab some Cuban food at renowned tourist favorite Versailles. Or try Exquisito, conveniently located a short walk from Azucar, one of the area’s best ice cream shops.


September 16, 2015


Madelyn Paquette

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