Are you thinking of spending Christmas in Miami and want suggestions of where to go and what to do? If, so you are in the right place. In this article, we will show you how to make the most of Christmas in Miami including things to do in Miami during Christmas, Christmas events in Miami, and what to expect from Miami in December.
We know not everyone’s ideal Christmas includes sea surf and sand but for those who do Miami is the perfect place for you. While Miami is perhaps most famous for is its beautiful beaches and stunning South Beach architecture what a lot of people don’t know is it goes all out for Christmas.
Miami at Christmas really is magical. The whole place is decorated with light and flowers, the weather ranges from 26°C to 17°C and the atmosphere is friendly. Oh, and if you are lucky you might get to see a surfing Santa.
Miami in December is also less crowded, there is less traffic and the atmosphere is much more laid back than in the busier summer months,
So if you fancy swapping snow for sand, your Christmas tree for a decorated palm tree, and Christmas at home for Christmas on the beach then Miami might be the place for you. Christmas in Miami beach really is like no other.
So let’s pack the Christmas presents, the sun cream, and a bikini and see what Christmas in Miami has to offer.
12 Festive Ways To Celebrate Christmas in Miami
Stoll Through Santa’s Enchanted Forest
Considered as the World’s Largest Holiday Theme Park Santa’s Enchanted Forest opens towards the end of October early November to early January. This is a Florida tradition that has been going for 37 years.
It’s one of those things to do in Miami in December that all the family can enjoy and with special places for couples to. it really is for everyone. You will find a light show, Christmas Karaoke, holidays displays, mistletoe land, and the tallest Christmas Tree in South Florida.
You will also find fairground rides which the children have unlimited access to for 30 minutes, a Candy House, a magical mini train set, and an elf writing school. Reindeers and ice princesses have also made appearances in the past.
For the more adventurous there are magic shows, a freestyle motocross event, an aerial performance, a circus, thrill rides for big and little kids, animal shows, and a carnival.
Let’s just say there is a lot to do here it is definitely one of the things to do at Christmas in Miami.
Enjoy The Winterfest Boat Parade
One of the most popular Christmas events in Miami the Winterfest Boat Parade really is something not to be missed. You will need to head to Fort Lauderdale, which is situated on the north side of Miami but trust us it is well worth it.
Now in its 50th year, the parade in 2021 takes place on December 11. It starts in the downtown area at 6.30 from Stranahan House traveling East along the New River in Fort Lauderdale to the Intracoastal Waterway as it continues North to Lake Santa Barbara in Pompano Beach.
If you are wondering what it is well it’s boats all festive but that seems a little bit of a simple explanation for this spectacle. The parade takes about 2 and 1/2 hours and is a sheer delight.
You can view the parade from multiple locations such as bridges and the downtown area. This is a great way to spend your Miami holidays. Events like these are why Christmas in Miami is so unique.
Visit The Deering Estate
Deering Estate is a historic environmental and archeological preserve on Biscayne Bay. During December the home is decorated all out for Christmas by award-winning designers.
Stroll around the grounds with hot chocolate and cookies while carolers singing in the background, This really is a full-on Christmas experience.
There are also events for children with Santa and his elves visiting. The Estate also has grown-up events like Mistletoe and Martinis so check the dates before you go.
If you want to celebrate Christmas in Miami style this is the place for you.
See The Christmas Tree At Bayfront Park
With the biggest Christmas tree and the best lighting shows Bryant Park is always worth a visit. the lighting of the 52-foot tree starts Miami’s Christmas celebration.
The tree is of course beautifully decorated with lights and flowers in tree Miami style. The tree is lit the day after Thanksgiving and stays there until early January.
A visit here is one of the things to do in Miami for Christmas.
Marvel At The Vizcaya Museum & Gardens
If you fancy mixing your Miami with some Italian charm then head to Vizcaya Museum & Gardens. To say this place is stunning is an understatement.
Located in the Coconut Grove area of Miami the estate is entirely surrounded by subtropical forest along the shores of Biscayne Bay. The main House harks back to a fledgling Miami between 1914 and 1922.
The gardens are among some of the most elaborate in the States reminiscent of gardens created in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Italy and France. This place truly is a marvel.
At Christmas, this place knows how to do it right. It goes all out for its holiday evenings which take place in the beautiful gardens with activities in the house.
If you are in Miami at Christmas you need to head here for sure.
Take A Trip To Santa’s Drive-Thru Village
Head to the North Pole only it’s in Miramar. Whether you have children or not you will love this experience. It normally runs from the beginning of December until the 23rd.
It’s actually quite hard to describe this attraction. On arrival, you are greeted by a light show and elves and then you drive through a magical snow-filled world.
You will see all sorts of sights including the Elves’ Toy Factor, Mrs. Claus’ Village, the North Pole, and Singing Carolers’ Town. Also be prepared for Reindeers, angles, and Santa.
Admission is 48.99 per vehicle and it is well worth a visit. Miami in December would not be complete without a visit here.
Take Part in A Chinese Festival at Jungle Island
With a name like Jungle Island, why wouldn’t you want to visit? Open from November you will wander through over 13 acres of illuminated trails decorated with over one million lights.
This place really has a vibe like nowhere else. As well as the light show there are Chinese acrobats and live music.
Luminosa has four distinct parts all inspired by Floria scenes. It’s honestly incredible just so beautiful and unique. We can’t imagine anyone who wouldn’t enjoy it.
Christmas in Miami doesn’t get much cooler than this place
Visit A Christmas Market
A visit to Wynwood Market is a treat any day but at Christmas, it’s extra special. A 75,000 square foot open-air venue in the heart of Wynwood.
The Market offers a unique selection of everything from art to cocktails all to the backdrop of live music. It brings together the best of all Maimi local produce and talent.
It’s a place to eat, drink, shop dance, and meet friends. The atmosphere is great, the vendors one of a kind, and it’s brimming with festive fare and ambiance.
Have Christmas Dinner Out On The Town
You might be on vacation but you still want your Christmas Dinner. Miami has lots of places to choose from and caters to lots of different tastes and needs.
Icebox Cafe is a beautiful fresh looking restaurant with food to match, Jaya at the Setai offers a Jazz brunch, Toscana Divino offers an Italian tasting menu, Café La Trova offers Christmas with a Latin feel, and The Deck at Island Gardens offers Christmas Dinner on the waterfront.
Whatever your preference and budget you will find a Miami restaurant to suit. Have a traditional meal at one of the many hotels, soak in the atmosphere at South Beach, enjoy a fish meal or go all Cuban the choice really is yours.
Marvel at Zoo Lights
Zoo Miami lights up over the festive season with over a million lights. We really recommend making this one of the things you do over Christmas in Maimi.
The zoo has animal-shaped lights throughout the park as well as a huge tree, carolers, and a whole host of other festive activities. And you can see Santa and enjoy milk and cookies.
Zoo Lights runs from the end of November and they have special days and nights so check the website before you do. Ugly sweater day is our favorite.
The display is beautiful and breathtaking and well worth a visit.
Enjoy Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker
There is something so incredibly comforting about the Nutcracker and watching it performed by the Miami City Ballet is just beautiful.
The performance is stunning and manages to somehow weave in essential elements of Miami life. The ballet has run for 30 years and runs from mid to late December.
If you want to see this classic tale of sugar plum fairies and toy soldiers then make sure you book early as tickets sell fast.
Take Part In The Miami Shores Living Nativity
Fancy really getting in the Christmas spirit then how about a trip to a live, open-air reenactment of the Christmas Story? There are live donkeys, camels, goats, and sheep, this really is the whole deal.
It takes place at the Miami Shores Presbyterian Church and is free to attend although bringing canned goods for donation is encouraged. The show only takes place for a couple of days so check with the church when it is on.
A great way to give to the local community and also take part in something very festive.
Christmas in Miami really is a special experience. Whether you just take it easy on the beach, join in the local celebrations or enjoy the local attractions the holidays in Miami will be a memorable vacation.
Whatever you choose to do in Miami in December we know you will have an incredible time. Please come back and let us know how your vacation went.