15 Free Things to Do in Miami

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Sparkling beaches, sizzling heat, flavorful food, a vibrant, welcoming vibe. It’s almost like all good things are found in Miami. Known as the Magic City, this south Florida community has plenty of secrets — and one of them is that you don’t need deep pockets to enjoy it. 

We at Wanderu are all about saving you money, which is why you can turn to the Wanderu app for the cheapest deals on bus and train travel. We also believe that you can have a memorable, fabulous vacation in places like Miami while sticking to a budget!

From beaches and outdoor activities to renowned art collections and indulging in some salsa (the food and the dance!) in the iconic Little Havana neighborhood, we’ve got plenty of suggestions for free things to do in Miami.

It’s always a good time to head south, but we recommend March through May as the best time to visit Miami. With the exception of spring break, these months are typically less crowded not to mention less hot and humid but there’s still enough sun to enjoy the beach and other outdoor activities. 

Now let’s explore how to live the high life in Miami while keeping your budget low, with 15 free things to do in Miami.

FOOD & SHOPPING

Bust outside of Domino Park

Infrogmation of New Orleans / Flickr

1. Domino Park in Little Havana

1444 SW 8 St.
Miami, FL 33135
9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Many Little Havana locals are Cubans who have made this Miami neighborhood their home away from home. Vendors at open-air markets sell fresh fruits and vegetables to the beat of lively Latin music and Spanish speakers of all stripes can always find eager conversation here. 

The vibe alone is one of the most fun free things in Miami, but head to one of the most iconic spots in Little Havana: Domino Park, a place where locals and tourists alike gather for drinks, chats, and friendly games of dominoes. Gameplay is typically reserved for members, however, it’s a longstanding tradition that anyone over the age of 50 who presents themselves is always welcome to pull up a chair for a free game. 

2. Bayside Marketplace

401 Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL 33132
10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Mon - Thurs)
10 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Fri - Sat)
11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Sun)
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Yes, you can definitely hit the retail therapy a little hard at Bayside Marketplace, but even just visiting without buying anything is one of the best things to do in downtown Miami. The shopping mall offers dozens of shops and restaurants, and importantly, an inviting respite from the sun. 

Bayside Marketplace is also home to the Sky Views Miami ferris wheel, overlooking sparkling Biscayne Bay — home to the renowned Key Biscayne Beach and Biscayne National Park. Its location on the bay also makes it a popular launch point for boat tours. Save on parking by coming from Port of Miami and taking the free Coral Way Trolley to the mall.

3. Dolphin Mall

11401 NW 12th St.
Miami, FL 33172
10 a.m. – 9 p.m. (Sun to Fri)
11 a.m. – 8 p.m. (Sat)
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Dolphins aren’t just the local football team. The open-air Dolphin Mall is home to nearly 250 outlet shops and restaurants, as well as dozens of entertainment options and even some colorful murals for photo ops.

With a staggering 1.5 million square feet of space, the mall also frequently hosts special events and celebrations for the community, such as weekend artisan shows and Hispanic Heritage Month. It’s free to both enter and park at Dolphin Mall.

MUSEUMS

Jim Bowen/ Flickr

4. The Bass Art Museum

2100 Collins Ave.
Miami Beach, FL 33139
12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Weds - Sun)
12 p.m. to 9 p.m. (Third Thursdays)
Free from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. every third Thursday
Closed Mon - Tues
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: The Bass Art Museum is one of the best art museums in Miami. It’s also one of the only places in the city to see such a large collection of contemporary art. Take in works spanning several different media types, all designed to challenge and expand your concept of art. The bold and unconventional displays depict everything from language to religion to food. 

In addition to the exhibits, The Bass hosts several events throughout the year such as art talks and kids’ art classes. This art museum also hosts regular free admission and family days, perfect if you’re trying to find free things to do in Miami.

5. Miami Children’s Museum

980 MacArthur Causeway
Miami, FL 33132
10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. & 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Open Daily
Free second Saturdays for children with disabilities
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: At the Miami Children’s Museum, science and art combine forces to give kids an enriching, engaging experience in a 50,000-square-foot building on Watson Island. In order to ensure all children have the opportunity to explore and learn, the museum hosts Sensory Saturdays each month. During these fun family events, children with disabilities can explore the museum in a quiet, relaxed setting – for free. 

The Miami Children’s Museum also hosts educational programs throughout the year to reach kids through learning and playing, making it a great way to enjoy Miami on a budget for families.

6. HistoryMiami Museum

101 W Flagler St.
Miami, FL 33130
10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Weds - Sun)
Closed Mon - Tues
Free every second Saturday
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: This is a haven for history buffs, as it’s the largest history museum in the entire state! HistoryMiami Museum is proud to keep the memory and magic of south Florida alive through its archives, preserved items, and informational galleries that chronicle Miami’s earliest days. 

The core exhibits are always on display to take visitors on a journey starting 10,000 years ago with south Florida’s first inhabitants, all the way up to the present-day wonders and Miami-made innovations. Thanks to free admission one Saturday each month, this downtown museum is one of the best ways to experience Miami on the cheap. 

7. Holocaust Museum Miami Beach

1933-1945 Meridian Ave
Miami Beach, FL 33139
9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: The Holocaust Museum Miami Beach is one of the best and certainly most meaningful free museums in Miami. Established in 1985 by a group of Holocaust survivors, the museum is home to the Memorial Wall, which has the names of thousands of Holocaust victims and their families etched into it. 

Visitors can take a self-guided tour through the memorial, accompanied by the museum’s free interactive app and an informational brochure. While this is technically one of the free museums in Miami, a small in-kind donation is recommended for tours. Group tours are also available on a first-come, first-served basis with a reservation. 

8. Earth n Us Farm

7630 NE 1st Ave
Miami, FL 33138
Hours vary
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Continue your tour of free and cheap things to do in Miami in Little Haiti, where Earth n Us Farm teaches adults and children alike all about caring for the Earth and its inhabitants. 

A farm and animal sanctuary, Earth n Us welcomes visitors to feed and interact with the array of animals, which includes goats, pigs, and birds of all kinds. The farm is run by volunteers who live onsite, and there’s even a unique treehouse available for short-term stays. There are also a variety of community events at the farm, including outdoor yoga classes, potlucks, volleyball games, drum circles, and pop-up food events with food trucks and local restaurants. 

9. Miami Beach Boardwalk

46th St. and Collins Avenue
Miami Beach, FL 33140
Open 24 Hours
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Many beaches have boardwalks, but nowhere else on Earth will you find the famed Miami Beach Boardwalk. It stretches on for seven miles, starting at South Pointe Park and winding its way north to the Surfside border. The Boardwalk is always free to enjoy, making it one of the best things to do in South Beach Miami. 

There are also several restaurants to check out along the boardwalk, including Osteria del Teatro and A Fish Called Avalon. You can park on 7th Street or Collins Avenue for a small fee, and you can take your bike on the pathway south of 21st Street. Alternatively, local Miami buses offer inexpensive transportation options and eliminate the hassle of parking.

10. Cinema Series at SoundScape Park

400 17th St.
Miami Beach, FL 33139
Park open 8 a.m to 9 p.m. daily
Movie nights free every Wednesday
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: SoundScape Park lights up with a new movie every Wednesday night from October to May, as part of the Cinema Series. Hundreds of locals crowd around the 7,000-square-foot projection wall to watch the weekly film that always starts at 8:00pm. 

Attendees don’t need any sort of ticket or reservation and it’s BYOP (Bring Your Own Popcorn). This is one of the best cheap things to do in Miami, especially for a creative date night or as a fun family night out. The movies shown via Cinema Series are always family-friendly, and you can sign up for the free Miami Beach Arts & Culture Newsletter to see what’s playing ahead of time.

11. Crandon Park

6747 Crandon Blvd
Key Biscayne, FL 33149
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: If you don’t go to the beach, is it really even a trip to Miami? (The answer is “no.”) That’s exactly why you need to visit one of the beaches that comprise Key Biscayne Beach. 

One of the best is at Crandon Park, where you can paddleboard, picnic, and kayak in the calm waters. There are affordable rentals onsite, or you can bring your own inflatable kayak or SUP. Parking costs a nominal fee; however, you can avoid this by taking a slight detour. Take Crandon Boulevard until you reach Heather Drive, next to Village Green Park. Park at Village Green for free, then walk or ride your bike a few minutes to the beach. 

12. Bayfront Park

301 Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL 33132
Open 24 Hours (Tues - Sun)
7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Mon)
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Built in 1896, Bayfront Park has numerous open green spaces, walking paths, beach areas, and lush gardens. These postcard-worthy sights are free Insta likes just waiting to happen.

Located on Biscayne Bay, Bayfront Park spans 32 acres of downtown Miami and is home to plenty of traditional outdoor park activities. Kids can enjoy the sprawling playground area, while  adults have the opportunity to attend frequent concerts in Bayfront Park’s waterfront live music venue. It’s totally free to get to Bayfront Park on the Metromover light rail system.

13. Kitetober Kite Festival

10800 Collins Ave.
Miami, FL 33154
Kitetober Festival
12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Fourth weekend in October
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: The Kitetober Kite Festival draws hundreds of people to Haulover Park every October, to gaze up at the giant kites soaring in the sky. Colorful kites shaped as everything from fish and octopus to scuba divers and famous characters make appearances at the festival, and visitors are always encouraged to bring their own kites. 

One of Kitetober’s most beloved traditions is the homemade kites representing various countries throughout the world, intended to showcase Miami’s diverse spirit and global influence. When the wind dies down, head to the food trucks and enjoy live music at the park. This is a locals’ favorite when it comes to fun free things to do in Miami! 

TOURS

14. Biltmore Hotel

1200 Anastasia Ave.
Coral Gable, FL 33134
Hours vary
Free tours Sundays at 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: As part of the National Historic Landmarks registry, the Biltmore Hotel sits on over 150 acres of pristine land in Coral Gables. The Biltmore is all about elegance and luxury, as evidenced by the Egyptian cotton duvet covers, gemstone chandeliers, and velvet fabric adorning each of the rooms. 

While there are a number of ways to experience the Biltmore’s luxury (we’re talking dining in one of the restaurants, sipping samples in the winery, horseback riding, or just spending the night), the hotel’s free tours let you enjoy the ambiance without emptying your wallet. 

Held twice every Sunday, tours take you through the gardens and grounds for free. Note this tour doesn’t include admission into the Biltmore House, but admission starts at just $8. 

15. Art Deco Walking Tour

1001 Ocean Dr.
Miami Beach, FL 33139
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Open Daily
Official site

WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT: Put on your sneakers and grab your binoculars for the Art Deco walking tour. Most visitors start at the Art Deco Welcome Center and follow a self-guided audio narration around Miami’s famed historic art deco district, full of unique architecture and intricately designed buildings. For the free version, you can take a self-guided tour around the neighborhood and check out the cool structures on your own schedule. 

The Magic City is hot and happening, and there are a surprising number of ways to enjoy it on a budget. 

We at Wanderu believe travel should be accessible to people of all budgets, which is why the Wanderu app brings together the best bus and train deals all in one place — so you can buy tickets to somewhere new for less.

And if you’re looking for more budget-friendly recs, we’ve got free guides to San Antonio, Los Angeles, Boston, and more.

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About the author
Taryn Shorr

Taryn Shorr

A classic Type A personality, Taryn's favorite aspects of travel are the planning and meeting new people. She's most drawn to the mountains and has a knack for quickly finding the best happy hour in new destinations. When she isn't writing for Wanderu or traveling, Taryn runs her own blog, Chasing Trail.