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Get off the beaten path and visit Miami’s hidden gems!

You choose the stops and which areas you want to see most!

  • All city tours are private
  • 2-3 great stops per sightseeing tour
  • Sorry!  Manatees hard to find until November.   
  • Best tours are customized to your groups interests

Most Popular Tour Stops

Manatees

Manatees are pretty much gone until November. Best chance is the lighthouse, maybe my best stop even without manatees. Six spots along the city tour route and no manatees in April.

Art

Wynwood and the Design District make for Miami’s hippest area. Wynwood Walls is a great stop, but don’t miss Wynwood’s back streets. And world class private art collections make for unique stops.

History

Where old and new Miami collide! See two-thousand-year-old Tequesta sites surrounded by ultra-modern Brickell high rises. I always drive the Key Biscayne Bridge to look back at Downtown and beautiful Biscayne Bay.

Neighborhoods Visited

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Wynwood, Design District and Little Haiti

Wynwood was once a Puerto Rican neighborhood where Boricuas worked in the now dormant garment factories. Miami Native was the first sightseeing guide to take visitors to Wynwood over a decade ago.  Wynwood is bordered by:

  • Ultra Chic Design District
  • Historic Buena Vista neighborhood
  • My old Curley High school
  • Little Haiti
  • Morningside historic homes (time permitting)

Warning:  Wynwood lost its buzz a little with the Pre-registration and a fee now required. However, next door, the Museum of Graffiti is a great new addition to the area. 

Recommended time: 45-90 minutes

Coconut Grove + Key Biscayne Bridge

The image of Miami I most want you to remember!

Sites include:

  • The real Scarface hotel
  • Vizcaya
  • Madonna and Stallone’s houses
  • Peacock Park
  • Christmas Park
  • Barnacle State Park
  • Plymouth Congregational
  • El Jardin
  • Marjory Stoneman Douglas house
  • Grove Cemetery
  • Many Black historical Coconut Grove sites

Recommended time:  30-45 minutes

My two-favorite alternative stops lie in this area, the Key Biscayne Lighthouse and Kampong Gardens, both with tricky opening hours.

Chinese VIllage in Coral Gables
Coral Gables
  • Biltmore Hotel
  • Venetian Pool
  • Chinese Village (my favorite)
  • German, Italian, Dutch West Indies, French villages
  • Marjory Stoneman Douglas home
  • Matheson Hammock
Recommended time:  30-60 minutes

Downtown & Brickell

Where old Miami and new Miami collide!  One of my best stops!  

The Miami Circle dates back 3000 years surrounded by ultra-chic modern skyscrapers and a spectacular tribute to Native Americans by designer Philipe Starck.
Miami was a village of 3-5000 inhabitants when the first known Spaniard arrived in 1549. Now the third largest skyline in the US. 

Recommended time:  20 minutes

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South Beach

Ocean Drive opened back up to cars after two years closed.  Still, some of the best sites in South Beach are pedestrian only.  I love to end the tour at South Pointe Park just before sunset.  The vibe is awesome.  Bien Miami!  

South Beach is the largest concentration of Art Deco in the world.  A geriatric ghetto when I was a kid.  The biggest excitement being the Saturday Dog track race,  Then came the preservationists, followed by models and hipsters, and Miami Vice, turning South Beach into an art deco and cultural playground. 

Sites include:

  • Lincoln Road
  • 1111 building
  • Espanola Way
  • Ocean Drive
  • Versace mansion
  • New World Symphony park
  • Star Island mansions
  • Millionaires row for mid beach guests.  Extra time for South Beach.  
Recommended time: 45 minutes up to 90 minutes

Little Havana & Calle Ocho 

This stop is not my best stop, but its my most requested stop.

Truth is Little Havana has not been Cuban for decades.  Pictured is a Little Havana synagogue built in the 30’s, that had a Catholic cross placed on the Star of David in the 60’s bc most Cubans are Catholic, then renamed Iglesia Bautista Renacer in the 90’s bc most Central Americans are evangelical.  Preceding those groups were the Tekesta tribe and the Bahamians, w all their shotgun homes now gone. 

I previously avoided this touristy spot bc of the tour buses and cars flying by @ 40 MPH, plus the fact that i don’t want any commission from the cigar stores.  But the stop has gotten better, with some great sandwiches and Cuban coffee.  

To do this area right, Miami High, Shenandoah, Grove Park and Riverside should be included.  

Recommended time:  30 minutes. 60 minutes if Grove Park + Shenandoah 

Art Deco former synagogue in Little Havana

Perez Museum and other great drop off spots.

  • Perez Museum with guided tour $10 each
  • Biscayne Bay boat ride $10 each
  • History Miami museum $8 each
  • 1111 Building and Lincoln Road
  • Smith and Wollensky for sunset
  • Brickell City Centre
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Key Biscayne and others alternatives sites

The following sites have their own guides, some free, some extra $$$, that add a special touch.  

  • Key Biscayne lighthouse w guided tour @ 10 and 1 p.m. My best stop
  • Kampong Gardens $15 per person (another one of my best stops)
  • Barnacle State Park guided tour
  • Deering Estate
  • De la Cruz Art Collection

Rates per person . $65 pp for standard 4 hour tour.  Min 4 passengers. 

For couples $80/hour w a 2.5 hour minimum.  I stop the clock for lunch or museum stops. 

I have very good reviews of groups charged hourly, it makes the tour more relaxed.  I also do not charge for lunch stops, the sunset party in South Pointe park, or museum stops.  

Recommended starting times are 9:30 and 2:00 p.m. 

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