There are plenty of reasons to want to spend time outdoors in Miami right now.
The sun is shining. The temperature is degrees cooler than usual. The sun feels like a friend, not an enemy.
And yes: literally everyone seems to have been exposed to COVID and is struggling to breathe in your general direction.
But do not worry. If you want, you can still hang out in South Florida without cramming into a crowded room with a group of random strangers with questionable hygiene practices.
Here are some suggestions to get you out:
Visit the Everglades
Just down the road from Homestead is an outdoor world of wonder and alligators. Walk the Anhinga trail boardwalk. Visit the fascinating Nike Missile Historic Site and learn how we nearly exploded during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Head to Flamingo to rent a kayak or canoe and look for the elusive saltwater crocodiles. Or load up your bike and head west on Eighth Street to Shark Valley for a quick 15 mile loop to the lookout tower. You can also be lazy and take the tram. No judgement. Remember that you will need a mask to enter the visitor centers.
40001 State Hwy 9336, Homestead for Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center; 36000 SW Eighth St., Miami for Shark Valley; www.nps.gov/ever/index.htm
Shake it up at Robert is Here
It’s worth the wait for this institution’s strawberry and lime masterpiece, but be sure to try the other flavors as well. You will be surrounded by other people, but you can keep your distance or wear a mask if the line gets a bit dense. Take the kids to the petting zoo to feed the goats too.
19200 SW 344th St., Homestead; robertishere.com
Stand in line at Knaus Berry Farm
Look, you said you wanted to be outside. Might as well wait a few hours to bring home the best cinnamon rolls in Miami. The spring closing date will be here before you know it.
15980 SW 248th St., Homestead; knausberryfarm.com
Take selfies at Wynwood Walls
Wander among the murals and snap a ton of photos to show your loved ones living in the Frozen North (New Jersey) how much better life is in Miami (LOL). Going is no longer free, however; you need a ticket.
266 NW 26th St, Miami; museum.thewynwoodwalls.com
Travel back in time in Vizcaya
Boasting the glow of being named one of America’s finest stately homes, the Mediterranean gem Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is close to home but able to transport you back in time, even if you stick to the 10 acres of outdoor gardens. .Remember that you must buy your tickets online before your visit.
3251 S. Miami Avenue, Miami; vizcaya.org
Commune with the plants at the Fairchild Tropical Garden
With 83 acres of gardens, you can’t help but drift away from others. Fairchild is a great place to stretch your legs and get ideas for your garden and/or help you decide to hire a landscaper.
10901 Old Cutler Road, Miami; fairchildgarden.org
Meet the Kampong
The nine-acre former home of botanical explorer Dr. David Fairchild is one of five not-for-profit National Tropical Botanical Gardens, with collections from Southeast Asia, Central and South America, the Caribbean and other tropical regions. Open only by reservation from Tuesday to Friday.
4013 Douglas Road, Miami; ntbg.org/gardens/kampong/
Take the tram to Fruit and Spice Park
This 37-acre public park celebrates everything that makes the historic Redland area special, with over 500 varieties of exotic fruits, herbs, spices and nuts. It’s retro fun.
24801 SW 187th Ave., Homestead; redlandfruitandspice.com
See the lights at Pinecrest Gardens
If you’re looking to get out of the house at night, head to this garden to see ‘Forest and Field of Light’, a work by British installation artist Bruce Munro, featuring over 6,000 stemmed glass spheres illuminated by fiber optics across almost two hectares. Until June 2022.
11000 Red Road, Pinecrest; pinecrestgardens.org
Brave the waterslides at Tidal Cove
If the water isn’t too cold for you, buy a day pass to this Aventura water park and have fun on the slides. Beware of the Aqua Drop. If that’s too wild for you, go down the lazy river instead.
JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa, 19999 W. Country Club Drive, Aventura; www.tidalcovemiami.com
Shop at the Redland Flea Market
This family-friendly weekend flea market sells just about anything you can imagine, from plants to produce to jewelry and more. There’s a kids’ area and an indoor farmer’s market, but if you want to stay outdoors, that’s not hard to do.
24420 S Dixie Hwy, Princeton; redlandmarketvillage.com
Take a paddle tour at Oleta State Park
Get your dose of fresh air on a paddle board or in a kayak or canoe (you can rent them at the park). Or hop on your bike and test out some of the mountain bike trails in this park.
3400 NE 163rd St. North Miami Beach; www.floridastateparks.org/OletaRiver
Eat your way around the world at the Yellow Green Farmer’s Market
If there’s a kitchen missing at this huge open-air market, which underwent a renovation and expansion last year, we’re not sure which one. You dine on vegan curry, Ethiopian cuisine, BBQ and more, or just sip a beer at one of the outdoor bars and watch the world go by. Weekend only.
3080 Sheridan Street, Hollywood; ygfarmersmarket.com
Bask in the sun at the beach
Sometimes you forget it’s here, but it’s heaven – if you can find a parking spot.
This story was originally published January 19, 2022 1:49 p.m.