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Fun weekend getaways from Miami

Make this year the year you embrace the weekend getaway. These 5 ideas for fun weekend getaways from Miami are perfect if you’re keen to keep your travels within the Sunshine State.

A beach in Florida with a view of Miami buildings in the background the the text overlay saying, "Fun weekend getaways from Miami."

While Miami may be paradise for millions of visitors, as a local, you sometimes need to get away from paradise to find your own version of the word.

For Miamians, that may be challenge, given there’s so many beautiful beach towns and coastal communities up and down both coasts.

Do you stay on the Atlantic Ocean and find a destination to explore?

Or do you head across the state and find a new spot along the Gulf of Mexico?

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Luckily, you can’t be wrong either way.

Cape Canaveral

Road approaching Space Center at Cape Canavera;

About a four-hour drive north of Miami, Cape Canaveral, takes you down a path of the past.

Home to major space launches involving the Apollo and Space Shuttle missions, Cape Canaveral is home to NASA and all its history.

A visit to the Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex takes you on a tour based on each mission.

From Saturn V rockets to the Space Shuttle Atlantis, you’ll enjoy taking in the sights and information about the American space program.

While the area may be best-known for the space program as part of the Space Coast, there’s more to the area to explore. The Brevard Zoo offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience of taking a guided kayak tour through its African zone, where you’ll see giraffes, rhinos and more as you quietly paddle along the Nyami Nyami River.

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You can also take a self-guided tour through the Florida area where you’ll see animals native to the state.

Not to be outdone by attractions, the area is home to outstanding shopping and dining.

Historic Downtown Melbourne offers shopping at places such as Cottonways, home to cotton gauze clothing, and Art and Junk Gallery, which offers a variety of art and jewelry.

With about two dozen restaurants, it’s easy to find something to satisfy most palates, ranging from sushi and Asian to a sports bar and restaurant.

Since you’re looking for a fun and relaxing weekend, it’s vital to find the perfect hotel or inn for accommodation.

Enjoy your stay at Lost Paradise Inn, a Cocoa Beach bed and breakfast featuring bungalows with a riverfront view, as well as a view of the ocean from your balcony. 

Tampa

A view of downtown Tampa

A walk along the riverfront is a must when visiting Tampa.

Located near downtown, the view is truly inspiring, especially at night when overhangs and other structures light up glowing in reflection against the river’s water.

Tampa is home to some unique architecture and downtown showcases it.

From Middle Eastern-looking turrets on the campus of Tampa University to an interesting design at the police memorial, you’ll find the attractions intriguing at the very least.

Climb aboard the SS American Victory Merchant Marine vessel and see what a World War II naval ship looks like.

Standing on deck, you’ll be amazed by the view.

Next door to the ship is the Florida Aquarium.

With family-friendly attractions, including penguins and Florida-native animals, you’ll enjoy the walk and views of sea life.

Zoo Tampa at Lowry Park Zoo is a fun place to take a walk and see animals from primates to koalas.

The zoo is well-laid out and offers interesting look at dozens of animal from around the world.

If you’re interested in a look at big cats, reserve a spot at Big Cat Rescue.

Working with all types of cats, such as mountain lions, cheetahs, jaguars and bobcats, Big Cat Rescue homes animals that shouldn’t be raised in a domestic environment or are from a circus or show. 

Tampa is also home to Ybor City, which offers a look at Cuban life in the US mainland.

Stop by a cigar shop and watch cigars being freshly made.

Stroll along storefronts and feel like you’re in Havana.

Reserve a table at the Columbia Restaurant, where you can dine like movie stars and celebrities have done for more than a century. With elegant dinners, including steak and fresh seafood, you’ll appreciate the dining experience.

Once dinner is done, the lights go down and then dancers take the stage, performing outstanding moves as they dance the Flamenco.

A dinner at the Columbia is truly an experience.

You may want to book a stay at the Godfrey Hotel and Cabanas Tampa, where you can enjoy a luxurious waterfront experience at a reasonable rate.

Located in the Rocky Point neighborhood, the hotel has 276 rooms and suites.

Florida Keys

A colorful street in Key West

Of course you must spend the weekend in the home of Jimmy Buffett, right?

You’ll want to take advantage of the beautiful views in the area, which includes a tour of Fort Jefferson at Dry Tortugas National Park.

The fort was once used as a prisoner-of-war camp during the Civil War. To get there, book a ride on the Yankee Freedom III ferry.

Spend a day at the Key West Historic Seaport, where you can take in water sports, shop, dine and just have a fun, memorable experience.

Known for its role in spying, US-Cuban diplomacy and more, the Hellings Museum tour takes you through one of the few brick buildings in Key West and along for a ride on its interesting history.

You can also take in the sights of Key West, including the southernmost spot in the United States, on a guided Key West walking tour.

Or, if you want to explore the area on your own, take a self-guided walk.

Enjoy a visit at one of the most unique botanical gardens in the country with a trip to Key West Tropical Forest and Botanical Garden.

The botanical garden is home to trees and plants native to the Keys, Cuba and the Caribbean. It’s also acts as a wildlife refuge. 

Since you’re in Key West for a fun getaway, combine a little history with that fun by visiting Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park.

As the southern-most state park in the United States, Fort Taylor, as locals call it, is home to the historical fort.

After checking out a little history, head to one of the best beaches in Florida for some fun in the sun, swimming, snorkeling or even fishing.

Lie your blanket down on the warm sand and enjoy some time in the sun.

As far as accommodation goes, the Garden House bed and breakfast is the perfect spot to spend your weekend.

With only a handful of rooms available, you’re guaranteed an intimate experience.

Located only a few blocks from attractions, such as Ernest Hemingway’s favorite bar (visit just to say you’ve been where Hemingway was), the bed and breakfast offers a beautiful backdrop to a wonderful destination.

St. Petersburg/Clearwater

Salvadore Dali museum in Florida from the outside at sunset.

A weekend trip to St. Petersburg/Clearwater should include a visit to the beach and pier. You may never even need to step inside during your tour of the area!

Check out the sidewalk art then stroll around the marina, admiring the dozens of sailboats and other vessels harbored.

Stop by the Morean Arts Center and take in the Chihuly collection.

The colorful blown-glass art exhibit by Tacoma (WA)-based artist Dale Chihuly will amaze and impress you as you view everything from giant glass balls in a boat to a garden of glass art.

A few blocks away, the Salvador Dali Museum’s building is a place of wonder, with a classic rectangle design enhanced with a geodesic glass bubble, known as “Enigma.”

Inside the museum, which opened in 2011, the permanent collection includes Dali’s prints, photographs, sculptures and paintings. The museum also hosts special exhibits.

Clearwater takes you to the beach and pier.

Clearwater Beach is the perfect spot to enjoy the Gulf’s white sand as you relax in a beach chair or lay on a blanket, where you can have fun people watching and swimming.

It’s well-known for beautiful sunsets; it’s how the area got its name – Sunsets at Pier 60.

Beachcombers gather along the pier to watch the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico.

Not only it is an impressive sight, mix in some romance as you sit on the benches, holding hands and watching the sun set in the west.

The pier is also a popular spot for people to fish from, which attracts pelicans, gulls and other birds. It’s common to have a brown pelican only a few feet from you, hanging out on the pier’s top rail, or maybe strolling along to see what people fishing may have in their buckets.

Nearby stores offer an opportunity to “surf” indoors and look for unique souvenirs like miniature gator heads.

The St. Petersburg/Clearwater area offers unique choices for accommodation.

You can choose from chain hotels or bed and breakfast inns inland or along the shoreline.

Less than a 20-minute drive from Clearwater Beach, Sand Glo Villas offers a cozy stay near the water. With only 11 villas, you’re guaranteed privacy during your visit.

Naples

View of Naples Florida, with boats in the water docked by the houses - a fun weekend getaway from Miami.

As you enjoy a two-hour drive to Naples, you’ll pass through Florida’s everglades.

Not many places across the country offer an opportunity to drive through beautiful wetlands.

Once in Naples, you may think you haven’t left Miami, because of the beautiful buildings, high-end stores and beautiful people.

However Naples more than lives up to its reputation as part of the Paradise Coast, with immaculate pastel storefronts, shopping and fantastic dining options.

While you’re less than a 30-minute drive from amazing Marco Island and its beaches and sights, you may want to focus on exploring Naples on this trip.

Move past the shopping districts and check out exquisite art works at Eydel Fine Arts gallery. With unique and contemporary pieces available for viewing, you’ll appreciate the visit.  

Enjoy a walk through the Naples Botanical Garden consisting of nearly a dozen individual gardens and a reserve.

You can view flora native to the area, while taking in all of the garden’s beauty.

A visit to the Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens takes you on a safari featuring lions, lemurs, spider monkeys and more, all with a backdrop of palm trees and other Florida plants and flowers.

A weekend visit to Naples mixes opportunities for shopping, golf and a little culture. Cap your visit by staying at the Cove Inn on Naples Bay Waterfront Hotel.

Offering a boutique-style stay, the Cove Inn is located on the south end of the beach.

While others flock to Miami for their getaways, Miami-area residents know they have their options for wonderful getaways of their own.

Fun weekend getaways from Miami

From Naples’ beach and culture, to a walk among the stars at Cape Canaveral, South Florida is home to some amazing weekend trips.

As you head out on your fun weekend getaway from Miami, enjoy your travels and have a great time!

Want greater connection in your relationship?

Then you'll want this freebie.

It's called The KISS Connection and it's a FREE 4-step everyday practice that will bring back that loving feeling.

Hit the pink button to grab your free copy today.

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