- Aisha Moktadier
Miami has a lot to offer in terms of food, shopping, drinking, nightlife, and the whole club and party scene. But it also has a trove of hidden gems often overlooked for bigger clubs and venues. Try hitting one (or all) of these 10 unusual places while you're in Miami.
Experience the charm of Cauley Square
Cauley Square is filled with tiny shops and restaurants that keep up the old-time feel of this historic railroad village that was established in 1903. Restaurants include the Village Chalet and the Tea Room, and the shops store all sorts of handmade goods, Haitian and African artwork, fresh flowers, gemstones and crystals, and stained glass items. Cauley Square is also often used for weddings and bridal showers, as the village has its very own charm and beauty that gives it almost a “magical” aura.
Cauley Square, 22400 Old Dixie Hwy, Miami, FL, USA, +1 305 258 3543
Have a picnic at Miami Circle Park
The Miami Circle Park is the perfect place to have a picnic or go for a nice walk by the water, but it’s actually so much more than that. The Miami Circle is actually a archaeological site in Downtown Miami that dates back to the Tequesta Indians. When archaeologists carbon dated some burnt wood from the site, they found it has been around for about 1,800–2,000 years. According to Atlas Obscura, “To date, Miami Circle is the only known evidence in the United States of a prehistoric structure built into bedrock.”
Miami Circle Park, Miami, FL, USA
Visit the World Erotic Art Museum
Feeling a little risqué? Looking for an adventure? There’s nothing like taking a trip to the World Erotic Art Museum, which is actually the world’s largest public view collection of erotic art. The collection covers many different mediums, cultures, and lifestyles, ranging from 300 B.C.E. to the present.
World Erotic Art Museum, 1205 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL, USA, +1 305 532 9336
Go for a swim at the Venetian Pool
To discover a beautiful place to swim that is not Miami Beach, head to this lagoon in the heart of Coral Gables. Dating back to 1924, the Venetian Pool boasts caves and waterfalls that look like they’re out of a fairy tale. The best part is that the lagoon is actually filled with with spring water from an underground aquifer, filled and drained daily in the spring and summer. The Mediterranean architecture at this popular summertime spot is not only gorgeous, but incredibly unique.
Venetian Pool, 2701 De Soto Blvd, Coral Gables, FL, USA, +1 305 460 5306
Enroll in a gourmet cooking class at the Biltmore Hotel
Tired of the hype surrounding the restaurants in Miami? Don’t feel like getting in the middle of all the long wait times and table reservations? Learn to be a gourmet chef with classes taught at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables. Cooking classes come in a wide variety of themes, like date night cooking for two, French pastry-making, pasta-making, and even “Oscar award shows.” Those with a soft spot for learning how to make delicious dishes for loved ones – and looking for something different to do in Miami – should stop by the Biltmore Culinary Academy.
The Biltmore Culinary Academy, 1200 Anastasia Ave, Coral Gables, FL, USA, +1 305 445 1926
Crack the code at an Escape Room
Fans of cerebral video games and puzzles will love the real-life version at the Great Escape Room. Escape rooms are interactive games in which players are thrown in to a themed room (a library, game room, etc.) with a time limit, say 45 or 60 minutes, and have to collect clues and crack a code to get out or move on to the next room.
The Great Escape Room, 2315 Le Jeune Rd #200, Miami, FL, USA, +1 786 322 6619
Visit the Frost Art Museum
The Frost Art Museum, located on Florida International University’s campus, is home to a lot of great contemporary art. From sculptures to fashion exhibitions, paintings to photographs, to installations that hang from the ceiling, this museum never fails to deliver. The best part? Admission is free and open to the public.
The Frost Art Museum, 10975 SW 17th St, Miami, FL, USA, +1 305 348 2890
Head to Schnebly’s Winery down south
Schnebly’s Winery is the perfect place for couples to go and have a romantic night full of wine and good food, as well as dancing under the stars. Bring cheeses, meats, and crackers to create personal cheese platters, and choose from tons of delicious, unique fruit wine flavors like mango, lychee, and coconut. A brewery also serves up some amazing BBQ wings and cold brews for those who aren’t that into wine. Either way, Schnedbly’s always delivers a good time.
Schnebly Redland’s Winery & Brewery, 30205 SW 217th Ave, Homestead, FL, USA, +1 305 242 1224
Go to a drum circle on a full moon night
When the sun goes down, the party definitely does not stop. On nights where the moon is low and full, many Miamians break out a few cold beers, dust off their drums, and head to a full moon bonfire to dance and celebrate the elements. Miami Beach is the perfect place to have a full moon drum circle, as the moonlight reflects and ripples on the Atlantic ocean and illuminates the beach. Dance to drums, roast s’mores, and let go of any negative energy from the last month. Meet at 79th Street and Collins to join in on the celebration.
Take a trip to Stiltsville
Miami is known for its beautiful beaches, but for an unusual trip on the water, book a seat on a boat tour to Stiltsville, a group of wood stilt houses. The three-hour cruise begins at Bayside Marketplace and travels to Stiltsville, the Cape Florida Lighthouse, and Key Biscayne. Sunsets out here are beautiful, and coupled with a gorgeous ocean breeze, the whole tour seems surreal and dreamlike.
Island Queen Cruises, 401 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami, FL, USA, +1 800 910 5119