16 outstanding adventures for a family vacation in Miami

If you're looking to experience an amazing adventure with culture, animal and wildlife experiences, thrill rides, public art installations, and outstanding shopping and dining, you'll find it all just a few steps from your Miami family resort or accommodation. While you're here, you can swim in an oasis under a cascading waterfall, visit the Lost City of Atlantis, learn to sail, or just relax under the warm sun in the soft, white sands.

You can find family attractions in Miami to suit just about any need. A Miami family vacation offers colorful art installations, great food, and even a shopping mall with a 60-foot tower slide. Check out these outstanding adventures for family attractions in Miami.

Get wet at water parks and beaches

Water parks and beaches on your Miami family vacations can be a great way to enjoy the sun while getting in plenty of laughs. From relaxing at a waterfall oasis to riding pulse-pounding waterslides, you'll have a great time with the entire family. Most of these attractions offer kids' play areas like shallow pools and even soft-play features for the younger ones under 5.

Take a dip in the Venetian Pool waterfall oasis

The Venetian Pool is located just a few minutes outside of downtown Miami and is a unique aquatic attraction that brings thousands to the area every year. It's been here since 1923, dug from a coral rock quarry, and a lot of the original rock has been used in the pool's design and decor. It's filled with natural spring water and fed by a natural aquifer, and you can explore cave grottos and waterfalls on-site.

It's a great place to splash and have fun on your Miami family vacation, and while the kids play in the pool, the grown-ups will love relaxing under the shade of palm trees or strolling across the famed bridge.

Head for the Tidal Cove Waterpark

The Tidal Cove Waterpark is located within one of the Miami family resorts and offers a full water park experience with towering and pulse-pounding waterslides, Flowrider virtual surfing, waterfalls, wave pools, a lazy river, and, of course, acres of swimming pool area. The water park even offers a special Kids' Cove where the little ones can safely enjoy fun water adventures with slides and rides just for them.

This water park is a full-featured family experience where you can spend whole days doing anything from exciting adventure thrills to relaxing under the shade of palm trees. There's something for everyone to be found here.

Visit Atlantis itself at the Neptune Memorial Reef

You can find plenty of family attractions in Miami related to the Atlantic coast, and the Neptune Memorial Reef is one of the most unique and interesting. Here, you can take a tour boat to view shipwrecks off the shores of the Florida Coast, but you can also go snorkeling or scuba diving to see a lifelike, life-sized replica of what the lost city of Atlantis might have looked like, deep under the waves.

While you're there, you can move through the sunken columns, statuary, and roadways of Atlantis while viewing thousands of marine creatures of every size, shape, and color. Many of these structures are actual memorials to real people who have passed on.

Enjoy surf, sand, and rides at Crandon Park Beach

If you're looking for family attractions in Miami, Crandon Park Beach and the greater Crandon Park community are fantastic options. In this area, you can enjoy 2 miles of sandy shoreline lined with palm trees, clear and warm blue waters, and a family-friendly environment to relax in.

If you want a bit more excitement, though, you can walk to the Family Amusement Center to find rides and games. You can head for a roller rink for skating and even take a guided tour of the community for wildlife viewing.

Learn to sail at Matheson Hammock Park

Matheson Hammock Park is another family-friendly beach with plenty of things to do just minutes from your kid-friendly resorts in Miami. It's an artificial beach structured around a human-made reef, so there are no waves to speak of, making it safe for swimming. You can also find good eats right on the beach at the nearby restaurant or snack bar.

For greater adventure, head for the park's marina, where you can sign up for sailing lessons and learn how to sail a boat on the Atlantic waters.

Check out the arts and culture community

Miami is famed for its arts and cultural community, and whether you're visiting a formal art museum or walking the streets to see public art installations, you'll see colorful, engaging, and diverse representations of the entire culture of the city all around. You can find public art on display in the squares, head for mural museums that celebrate the art of graffiti, and even celebrate the Cuban influence on Florida culture.

Visit the Miami Art Deco District

The Miami Art Deco District is a unique attraction that's sure to thrill the whole family and isn't far from Miami Beach family resorts. Particularly along Ocean Drive, you'll get tons of photo opportunities to light up your Instagram feed with colorful buildings in the pure Art Deco architectural style.

This district has over 800 different historical buildings, and you can book a guided tour to learn all about the history. The area is a designated National Register Historic District. While you're here, be sure to visit the Art Deco Museum to learn all about the storied history of this art and architecture style and the historic conditions during which it developed.

Get inspired by the Wynwood Walls

Another artistic inspiration the whole family can enjoy not far from your kid-friendly resort in Miami is the iconic outdoor art installation called Wynwood Walls. This attraction is best described as an outdoor urban art graffiti museum. Here, you can see murals created by fine artists and street artists from all over the world.

Also nearby are the Wynwood Walls Museum, Wynwood Walls Shop, and GGA Art Gallery. At these places, you can learn all about the walls and their history, shop for souvenirs, and view other works of art by the same artists who created the walls.

Walk the rows of Little Havana

Family-friendly resorts in Miami can be found within easy distance of many different and unique cultural neighborhoods, like Little Havana. This neighborhood is known as the heart and soul of Miami's Cuban immigrant population, and it's one of the areas that make this region such a culturally diverse and dynamic destination.

In Little Havana, you can find everything from cigar shops and rum bars to art galleries and music venues. You can walk outdoor markets filled with fruit and produce stands as well as prepared foods serving up Cuban delicacies. Catch free live music performances in local parks and see public art displays. It's a colorful and wildly fun option for a family vacation in Miami.

Let creativity go wild at the Miami Children's Museum

If you have kids under the age of 10, travel a short distance from your Miami family resort to check out the Miami Children's Museum. The interactive exhibits here are designed to encourage children to be curious about the world around them and to get involved with science and discovery, and to encourage interest in the arts, community, culture, and communication.

In sections like the Construction Zone, the Castle of Dreams, the Cruise Ship, the Glass Lab, All About Art, and the Health & Wellness Center, kids can explore just about any area of the world they like. It's a great option for younger kids to safely learn while they play.

Have an up-close wildlife experience

For a family of animal lovers, there are plenty of wildlife encounters to experience on a Miami family vacation. You can head to the local zoo to see exotic species of big cats and rare birds, or you can take a tour of the Everglades to see menacing alligators in their natural habitat. You can even head for an aqua park to see real orcas in a live show and swim with dolphins.

Take a tour of the Florida Everglades

A trip to explore the Florida Everglades is very much like visiting an entire alien world. You can book a tour to travel down the legendary River of Grass, considered one of the modern wonders of the world. The Everglades are a World Heritage Site, an International Biosphere Reserve, and a Wetland of International Importance.

On your travels here, you can witness massive cypress trees rising over 135 feet tall and spanning 40 feet around. You can catch sight of huge Florida alligators winding their way through the waters or lounging in the sun. This is a one-of-a-kind experience to take from your Miami family resorts.

See exotic animals at Zoo Miami

Visiting Zoo Miami is a great way to experience local and exotic wildlife in recreated natural habitats. The zoo is among the largest in the nation, let alone in Florida, and takes full advantage of Florida's subtropical climate to care for animals from areas like Asia, Africa, and Australia that would be more difficult to maintain in other areas of the States.

Animals here are grouped according to their geographic home, so you'll get to experience the ecology of different areas of the world as you wander through. The zoo covers nearly 750 acres, features 4 miles of walking paths, and has over 3,000 animals from more than 500 species, from lions and giraffes to flamingos and Komodo dragons.

Get face-to-face with dolphins at Miami Seaquarium

The Miami Seaquarium is one of the oldest oceanariums in the nation and was founded in 1955. Here, you can get up close and personal with a wide variety of sea life like dolphins, rays, and sharks, and you can see an exciting killer whale show. As far as family attractions in Miami go, this is certainly an unforgettable experience.

Not only can you see these creatures, but you can also go swimming with dolphins, pet a ray, and hang out with seals and penguins. You can even take an underwater walk through a tropical, living coral reef.

See a living barrier reef at Biscayne National Park

Biscayne National Park is dedicated to preserving the natural Biscayne Bay offshore barrier reefs. As you adventure through the park's natural lagoon, you might catch glimpses of dolphins and sea turtles. You can take a guided tour to get the best opportunity for a safe animal encounter or explore the many recreational activities in the park.

While most of the park is water, you can walk through an ancient mangrove forest where you just might feel the wisdom of ages as you make your way beneath the towering trees. You can also go on an underwater archaeological trail to view the many shipwrecks throughout the park.

Go shopping and dining

A time-honored pastime on any vacation, whether it's steps away from Miami family resorts or anywhere else in the world, is to go shopping. Miami has a range of unique shopping and dining experiences from vast indoor malls to outdoor shopping centers full of boutique shops and live entertainment. Shopping can be a wonderful way to while away the day and have fun with the family.

Ride the tower slide at Aventura Mall

If a unique shopping experience is on the docket for you, head out from your Miami Beach family resorts and take a trip to the Aventura Mall. Not only will you find over 300 of the most popular and well-known brands in the world, but you'll also find a range of great eateries, services, and, of course, the Aventura tower slide.

The tower slide rises 60 feet in the air, is open to the public, and offers a pulse-pounding ride down its twisting corridors. You can also explore the vast Arts Aventura Mall collection with more than 20 museum-quality sculptures and art pieces by renowned, iconic artists.

Spend days exploring Miami shopping districts

If you're looking for a great combination of big-box stores, independent boutique shops, and fine dining next to quirky cafés, you'll want to explore the many shopping districts in Miami. Whether you hit Collins Avenue in the Ocean Drive Shopping District, Espanola Way at the Washington Avenue Shopping District, the Lincoln Road Shopping District, or the famed Miracle Mile, you're sure to find all the souvenirs, arts, crafts, and other items you want.

These walkable districts offer not only quality items and opportunities for window shopping, but they're also a foodie's dream. Between upscale establishments, takeaway food trucks, and sidewalk bistros and cafés, you're sure to find family restaurants in Miami to fit your needs.

Check out the outdoor shopping opportunities

Your family vacation in Miami isn't complete without the right outdoor shopping opportunity. Among the more famed places to explore here is the Shops at Sunset Place. This vast outdoor shopping mall offers dozens of big-name shops, independent stores, options for dining, and entertainment experiences for the whole family.

Other options for outdoor shopping in Miami, however, include places like City Place Doral, the Bal Harbour Shops, and The Falls. All of these offer plenty of options for finding that perfect keepsake of your trip, taking in some great live entertainment or a movie, or grabbing a bite to eat.