Explore a world of free things to do in Miami, from music and movies to self-guided and free Miami walking tours and more.
Miami has a reputation for being notoriously expensive but you don’t have to spend much to have a great time in the Magic City. Aside from Miami’s many public parks and beautiful beaches, this city is full of free activities, you just have to know where to look.
Our list of the best free things to do in Miami will help you live it up without spending a cent. We have also added things to do without breaking the budget. Let’s start saving money!
Also, don’t forget to book one of the most affordable walking tours in Miami Beach, our Must See South Beach Tour.
Soak Up the Sun in South Beach
With 825 miles of sandy coastline in the sunshine state of Florida, it’s almost a crime if you come to Miami and don’t go to the beach.
South Beach, aka SoBe, is a picture perfect 4-mile strip of coastline and is one of the most famous beaches in the world, and it’s free. If you are new to South Beach and want to see all the action, it’s best to start on Ocean Drive near Lummus Park.
After the beach, take a stroll up Ocean Drive, a touristy strip full of electric neon lights and people watching. Grab a bite at one of these Best Places to grab food after the Beach.
Walk the Pier at South Pointe Park
South Pointe Park is at the southernmost point of South Beach and offers up a more relaxed and quiet waterfront area compared to the more hectic Lummus Park on Ocean Drive.
Have a picnic at the park, watch the yachts and other watercraft enter and leave the Port of Miami and the marina. There’s even a playground which includes a water fountain.
Take a walk across the 450-foot long pier, it offers the best views of the city, the marina, and it’s one of the best places to watch the sunset.
Take a Tour Through the Art Deco District
South Beach is an Art Deco paradise. In fact, South Beach has the largest collection of Art Deco architecture in the world.
Most of these structures were built between 1934 and 1940. However, South Beach wasn’t always this glamorous. It once was riddled with high crime and vacant buildings.
It wasn’t until the 1980s and 1990s when TV series Miami Vice revived the city and popularized the Art Deco district.
Take our Must See South Beach Tour to learn more.
Go shopping at the Lincoln Road Mall, which is a pedestrian lined street just a few blocks from the Art Deco District. It’s a grand shopping boulevard lined up with stores, boutiques, restaurants and cafes.
Watch the Art Deco Turn from Day to Night
There is nothing more iconic Miami than the neon lights of the Art Deco District at sunset. Stroll along the many bars and restaurants.
Check out our list of Miami’s Ten Best Old School Restaurants.
Capture Street Art of Wynwood
What was once a neglected garment manufacturing district in the 1970s, Wynwood has now transformed into the main art district of Miami.
This outdoor museum, called the Wynwood Walls, showcases large-scale colorful murals created by some of the world’s most talented street and graffiti artists.
Aside from street art, Wynwood offers craft breweries, art galleries, boutiques and hipster cafes, many in old warehouses.
If you are looking for a tour, check out this free self-guided walking tour of Wynwood mural district, which guides you through each mural with a background on each of the works.
If you don’t feel like exploring Wynwood on your own, you can book a paid tour of the area with one of Miami’s Best Graffiti Guides.
Wynwood Art Walk
Every second Saturday, Wynwood becomes one big block party. Thousands of visitors come for art, food, music and culture for the Wynwood Art Walk.
Starting at 6pm and extending throughout night, the party kicks off with live music, food trucks, market stalls and pop-ups.
There are also 400 businesses, including local galleries, studios and retail shops, that open their doors after hours to the public. You can find out more about the Wynwood Art Walk here.
Take a Ride on the Metromover
The best way to navigate downtown Miami from a different vantage point is via the Metromover.
Created in 1986, this is Miami’s free mode of public transportation. Although it is a popular mode of transportation for locals, it’s also a great activity for tourists.
The 4.4 mile mover connects to 20 different stations, from the Financial District in the South to the border of Edgewater in the North.
The Metromover does not travel into Miami Beach (South Beach) or Wynwood, and only stays in the greater downtown Miami area. Also, the Metromover is not to be confused with the Metrorail, which is a paid mode of transport.
Check out the Metromover map of stations for more details.
Tap into Your Inner Yogi with a Yoga Class at Bayfront Park
Bayfront Park is a 32-acre public park located in the heart of downtown Miami overlooking Biscayne Bay.
Every day, they offer yoga classes of all different varieties at the Tiny Hills Pavilion, which are all free or donation based. You will have to bring your own yoga mat, water, and towel.
Check out their website to view the yoga schedule as well as other happenings at the park.
After your yoga class, take a stroll through Bayside Marketplace, a 2-story open-air shopping center full of restaurants, shops and live music.
Experience Cuban Culture on Calle Ocho in Little Havana
Walking into the neighborhood of Little Havana on Calle Ocho, you will find a cultural museum filled with authentic Cuban coffee shops, Cuban eateries, and fresh-squeezed fruit juice stands.
Head over to Maximo Gomez Park, also known as Domino Park, where you will see local gatherings drinking cortado, rolling cigars, and playing a number of domino and chess tables.
As you stroll down Calle Ocho, take note of the pink marble stars which is also known as the Calle Ocho Walk of Fame. This version of the Hollywood attraction highlights Latin American celebrities, with the most famous being the salsa singer Celia Cruz.
Explore on your own with this self-guided tour of Little Havana.
Take a Free Trolley Around Miami Beach
Travel around Miami Beach for free with the Miami Beach Free Trolley. Download the app to view maps, routes, connections and tracking information. Get it on Google Play or download it on the Apple Store. The free trolleys have different routes that go to South Beach, Mid Beach, as well as North Beach. There is also Collins Express route.
The citywide trolley service operates 15 hours a day, from 8 am to 11 pm, 7 days a week. The service frequency is approximately a 30-minute average along each route. All trolley vehicles are even bicycle friendly, with 2 racks available for storage.
It’s a great way to explore the whole length of the island.
Explore Everglades National Park
Everglades National Park is a 1.5-million-acre wetland that is a must-see when visiting Florida.
Explore the abundant wildlife with hundreds of different animal species, including the West Indian manatee, leatherback turtle, and famous American alligator.
The city of Homestead, which is about a 1-hour drive from Miami, made it possible to visit the park for free. Hop on their free guided trolley ride from Historic Downtown Homestead straight to Everglades National Park.
If you are looking for a tour, check out this post on Best Everglades Tours.
Get the Go Miami Card
While the Go Miami Card is not free, purchasing the card will allow access to countless attractions, which will save you time and money.
The All-Inclusive Pass gives you access to 30 different attractions. These attractions include the Hop-On-Hop-Off Big Bus, the Miami Sea Aquarium, the Miami Zoo, an Everglades Alligator Farm & Airboat Tour, a Biscayne Bay Boat Cruise and many more.
They also offer an Explorer option and a Build Your Own Pass option as well.
FREE ATTRACTIONS AND MUSEUMS
Institute of Contemporary Art Miami
ICA is the Miami Design District’s hip contemporary art space where it is free to explore seven days a week.
Known for new fresh talent and giving museum exposure to under-recognized artists, ICA Miami presents contemporary works across six galleries and a 15,000-square-foot sculpture garden.
Admission to ICA is free of charge, however, advance tickets are highly recommended for guaranteed entry. Guests who arrive without tickets may be unable to enter based on building capacity.
Second Saturdays at Pérez Art Museum Miami
Downtown’s modern and contemporary Perez Art Museum waives admission all day every second Saturday of the month, and gives visitors access to family-friendly interactive programs, as well as guided tours and guest performances from 11am to 3pm.
After browsing the collections inside, head to the museum’s back steps to enjoy the breezy 180-degree views of Biscayne Bay.
Located in the heart of the Art Deco District, the Wolfsonian was established in 1986.
The museum has a collection of 180,000 items of propaganda art and design including furniture, textiles, works in glass, ceramic and metal, medals, rare books, ephemera and periodicals from 1850 to 1950.
Friday nights at the Wolfsonian are free from 6pm-9pm. Also, free for Florida residents every day.
Live Jazz at the Museum of Contemporary Art
The Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami hosts free outdoor concerts at the public square adjacent to the museum on the last Friday of each month at 8pm.
This event has been billed as South Florida’s longest-running free outdoor jazz concert series with local and national jazz acts performing on the outdoor stage. It’s a rain or shine event since 1999.
As a bonus, admission to the museum on jazz night is free between 7pm-10pm. Donations are appreciated.
Bear Cut Nature Preserve
Just 7 miles outside of downtown, you will find Bear Cut Nature Preserve.
Hike or bike along the 3.5-mile waterfront trail, ending with a stunning backdrop of downtown Miami. Be sure to bring water, snacks, bug repellent and sunscreen.
Architectural Walking Tours of Brickell
Free walking tours of Brickell on select Saturdays. Starting at 10am, meet at Dade Heritage Trust’s offices.
The guided tours explore the old and new architecture of one of Miami’s earliest neighborhoods, Biscayne Bay and the Miami River. Free with required registration. Donations are accepted.
Check out the Dade Heritage Trust website to register and for the calendar of programs and events.
Latin Dance Lessons at Ball & Chain
Opening in 1935, the famous Ball & Chain Bar and Lounge in Little Havana has become one of the best bars in Miami. With a jazz and salsa filled calendar, any time is great to pop into this iconic club.
Led by a rotating team of pros, the free salsa and bachata lessons kick off at 9pm weekly on Thursdays featuring Latin music, salsa dancing classes, and DJ sets.
Beginners are welcome, no partners needed. Be sure to check their Instagram for the latest offerings. Arrive early to enjoy their 2 for 1 mojitos during happy hour 4pm-7pm.
The historic club also hosts free concerts throughout the week in its back patio bandshell shaped like a pineapple. See the Ball & Chain calendar for details.
Intercontinental Hotel Miami Salsa Friday
Head to the Bluewater Rooftop café at the InterContinental Miami on the first Friday of each month where salsa night heats up at 9pm.
Enjoy drink specials along with complimentary salsa lessons by professional salsa dancers and instructors accompanied by a live band. There is even an on-site cigar roller. Entrance is free. Check out the next dates here.
On the third Friday of every month, Little Havana opens its doors for the monthly block party known as Viernes Culturales (Cultural Fridays) starting at 12pm on Calle Ocho (8th Street between 14th and 17th Avenue).
Enjoy live music, works by over 30 local artists, savor a delicious dinner or a Cuban Cafecito at one of the various restaurants. Go bar hopping from Ball & Chain to Bar Nancy, or just find a bench and people watch.
Miami is home to several free performances depending on the night of the week. Every Tuesday night at The Corner is jazz night from 10 pm – 1 am. There’s always a different mix of musicians. Check their Instagram account for the latest calendar of events and their cocktail of the week.
While the Anderson hosts free live jazz on Wednesday nights at 9pm. Find free nightly jazz performances in the lobby of The Betsy Hotel as well as the intimate bar at Lagniappe. Find the complete listing of free jazz in Miami here.
Open Air Concerts and Cinema at SoundScape Park
From October through May, the façade of the Frank Gehry-designed New World Center doubles as a concert and movie screen, while adjacent Soundscape Park, a 2.5-acre public space, serves as its alfresco theater. Watch movies on a 7,000-square-foot wall.
The New World Symphony concerts and free SoundScape Cinema Series offer live classical music performances and movies throughout the season.
The Cinema Series at the park is held each Wednesday at 8pm, rain or shine. Each film screening is free to the public and does not require a ticket.
Pack a picnic, a blanket and a chair. See the New World Symphony Wallcast events for program details.
Miami Beach Culture Crawl
The City of Miami Beach is working alongside some of the best cultural institutions to provide a night of free experiences.
Every third Thursday of the month starting in October from 6pm to 9pm, Miami Beach offers backstage tours, exhibitions, free film screenings in the park and more.
All events are free unless otherwise noted. The majority of the programming is accessible by foot and by bike, but the city will also offer dedicated free trolleys (the white ones) that will drop you off and pick you up at the dedicated stops.
Miami Beach on Stage
This is the city’s largest free outdoor performing and visual arts program. Miami Beach presents live performances and temporary art installations in parks and public spaces throughout the city.
The diverse programming includes music, movies, and dance. Check out information about the July-September 2022 season here.
CHEAP ACTIVITIES IN MIAMI
Citi Bike Miami
The most unique way to see the city of Miami is by bicycle and the Citi Bike Program makes it easy with its bike-sharing rental system.
Bike rentals cost $6.50 for one hour or $10 for 2 hours.
Climb the Cape Florida Lighthouse at Key Biscayne
If you are looking to explore outside of South Beach, then head over to Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park to visit the Cape Florida Lighthouse.
You can climb the 109 steps to the top of this lighthouse that once guided mariners in the 1800s, and take in the incredible views of Miami. Visitors may tour the lighthouse with tours taking place at 10AM and 1PM. The tower is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Free with park entry. Parking is $8 per vehicle.
Kayak or Standup Paddleboard at Crandon Park
Crandon Park, located on the northern edge of Key Biscayne, offers all sort of fun activities: kiteboarding, tennis, biking/walking trails, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking and more.
An hour rental for a double kayak starts at $20.