When most people think of Miami, Florida, they typically picture sun-drenched Miami Beach, arguably the most popular beach along the Atlantic coast. While Miami is undoubtedly renowned for its white-sand beaches, there’s so much more to the Magic City that keeps locals content and travelers coming back for more — from its vibrant nightlife and spectacular art galleries and boutiques to fabulous restaurants.

Even though there’s much to explore in key hotspots like Coral Gables, Brickell, South Beach, and Key Biscayne, sometimes you just need a change of scenery. If you’ve been contemplating a weekend getaway from Miami but just haven’t gotten around to it, now’s the perfect time for an escape!

Whether you’re planning a romantic sojourn or family adventure, read on to discover 11 of the best weekend getaways from Miami. For your convenience, we’ve organized them by travel distance from Miami so that you can pick the destination that fits both your interests and schedule.

Quick Answer: Best Weekend Getaways From Miami

Are you short on time and looking to stay in the South Florida area? Interested in venturing to the Gulf of Mexico and sunbathing to your heart’s content? How about immersing yourself in history in the northern part of the Sunshine State — or beyond?

No matter your schedule or ideal type of vacation, we have destinations to suit every traveler!

‌Best Day Trips From Miami‌

‌Best Road Trips From Miami‌

  • Best for Thrill-Seeking Families – Orlando
  • Best for Travelers Looking to Blend Fun & Learning – Tampa
  • Best for Culture Enthusiasts – Sarasota
  • Best for History Lovers – St. Augustine

‌Best Weekend Trips From Miami‌

Best Day Trips From Miami

Short on time? If you’re interested in destinations you can mostly reach by car in under two hours, these great spots ought to be atop your list.

Whether you wish to commune with nature or partake in a variety of fun water activities, the sky’s the limit when it comes to things you can do and see. Best of all, there are no airport hassles to contend with!

1. The Florida Keys

  • Perfect for:‌ Boating and fishing aficionados
  • Highlights of the Florida Keys:
    • Mouth-watering food
    • Water sports, boat tours, and snorkeling
    • Parks galore

‌How to Get to the Florida Keys‌

Driving to the Florida Keys from Miami is a breeze. To get to Islamorada, take the Florida Turnpike south toward Key West. Follow U.S. 1 south to the Keys. Key Largo is just 60 miles from downtown Miami. Drive along the scenic Overseas Highway and you’ll reach it in roughly an hour.

‌Things to Do in the Florida Keys‌

Situated along the Florida Straits, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Gulf of Mexico, the Florida Keys beckon you to enjoy scrumptious seafood and wide-ranging opportunities for water sports and activities.

Located just off Key Largo, the largest of the Keys, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary are home to a rich diversity of marine life, not to mention various old shipwrecks. About an hour’s drive away, balmy sea breezes and striking sunsets will put you at ease in Bahia Honda, home to the 524-acre Bahia Honda State Park.

If you’ve got some time to spare, another hour of driving time lands you in what is arguably the most popular of the islands that make up the Florida Keys — Key West. The Little White House, which served as the winter retreat of President Truman, is the only presidential site in all of Florida.

Other key points of interest you don’t want to miss include the Hemingway Home and Museum, which pays tribute to Nobel Prize–winning author Ernest Hemingway; and the Key West Lighthouse, which was first completed in 1825. Lined with ample shops, clubs, and restaurants, Duval Street has been dubbed “The Longest Street in the World” because it stretches from the Gulf of Mexico all the way to the Atlantic Ocean.

‌Where to Stay in the Florida Keys‌

Key West, Islamorada, and Key Largo offer a bevy of oceanfront beach resorts from which to choose in the Florida Keys.

I highly recommend Bayside Inn Key Largo, which sits directly on the splendid coastline. It boasts outstanding amenities including a pool, private beach, and a sushi restaurant.

Bayside Inn Key Largo Book Now

And you can’t go wrong with The Guesthouses at Southernmost Beach Resort. Dating back to 1885, they combine turn-of-the-century Victorian charm with modern conveniences.

Guesthouses at Southernmost Beach Resort Florida Book Now

2. Fort Lauderdale

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  • Perfect for:‌ The avid shopper
  • Highlights of Fort Lauderdale:
    • Tons of shops and restaurants
    • Turquoise waters
    • Beautiful beaches

‌How to Get to Fort Lauderdale‌

Getting from Miami to Fort Lauderdale, its neighbor to the north, is straightforward. If you’re driving, the fastest route is taking on I-95 North. On a good day, you may arrive in little more than 45 minutes, but plan for an hour's drive in the event of traffic or inclement weather.

To get to downtown Fort Lauderdale, simply take the Broward Boulevard East exit.

‌Things to Do in Fort Lauderdale‌

Fort Lauderdale is affectionately known as the “Venice of America” thanks to its extensive canal system. When it comes to the best day trips from Miami, Fort Lauderdale is a must given its close proximity.

I always enjoy shopping and dining on Las Olas Boulevard, which is lined with a broad array of boutiques, shops, and restaurants. Catch some rays at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Beach or explore Florida’s largest collection of native wildlife at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, whose history can be traced back to 1927.

‌Where to Stay in Fort Lauderdale‌

Pelican Grand Beach Resort combines endless Old Florida charm and showstopping ocean views, with a Lazy River and beachside zero-entry pool being big draws among families.

Pelican Grand Beach Resort Fort Lauderdale Book Now

The Pillars Hotel, housed in a 1930s home, is perched right on Fort Lauderdale’s Intracoastal Waterway and a short walk from Las Olas Beach, making it ideal for those who relish sun and surf.

The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale Book Now

3. West Palm Beach

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  • Perfect for:‌ Variety seekers
  • Highlights of West Palm Beach:
    • Botanical Gardens
    • Bustling malls
    • Popular science museum

‌How to Get to West Palm Beach‌

You can make it to West Palm Beach from Miami in under an hour and 30 minutes by via the Turnpike. For a more scenic (albeit longer) route, take A1A along the beach.

‌Things to Do in West Palm Beach‌

Providing a refreshing change of pace from the hustle and bustle of Miami, laid-back West Palm Beach offers something for everyone. The little ones will certainly dig the massive aquarium at the Cox Science Center, while the Flagler Museum and specialty shops along famed Antique Row will awaken the history lover in you.

Mounts Botanical Garden is the largest and oldest of its kind in Palm Beach County. And be sure to get your shop on at The Square, West Palm Beach's premier dining, shopping, and entertainment hotspot. Just a short walk away is Clematis Street, where gorgeous fountains, sidewalk cafes, and old-world architecture evoke a timeless European elegance.

‌Where to Stay in West Palm Beach‌

On my last trip to West Palm Beach, I stayed at and highly recommend The Colony Hotel, a charming British colonial-style boutique property featuring an outdoor swimming pool and an outstanding on-site restaurant.

The Colony Hotel Palm Beach Book Now

Alternatively, pamper yourself at the 134-room Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa, which provides unparalleled Atlantic Ocean views.

Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa Book Now

4. Everglades National Park

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  • Perfect for:‌ Wildlife mavens
  • Highlights of Everglades National Park:
    • Lush greenery
    • Plentiful wildlife
    • Opportunities for canoeing, hiking, and more

‌How to Get to Everglades National Park‌

Everglades National Park has three entrances in as many cities. Drive west from Miami on the Tamiami Trail, otherwise known as U.S. Highway 41. You’ll transition from city to sawgrass in no time.

‌Things to Do in Everglades National Park‌

Covering a whopping 2,400 square miles, Everglades National Park is the third largest park in the lower 48 states. Catch a glimpse of wading birds, wandering manatees, and stoic alligators while surrounded by verdant greenery.

Try your hand at canoeing, kayaking, hiking, or saltwater fishing. Shark Valley, the Snake Bight Trail near Flamingo, and the Long Pine Key Nature Trail are prime areas for bicycling. You can even camp out with friends!

‌Where to Stay in Everglades National Park‌

Want some respite from the wilderness? Call it a night at the Port of the Islands Resort, which features a restaurant, tennis courts, swimming pool, full-service marina, and garden.

Port of the Islands Resort Book Now

Best Road Trips From Miami

Although the Tri-County region is chock full of postcard-worthy places you can reach fairly quickly by car, you might have more time on your hands to venture beyond Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties.

With Florida spanning 65,758 square miles, there’s a wealth of destinations that lie in the northern, western, and central parts of the state. Below we round up the best road trips from Miami, all of which can be completed in under five hours.

5. Orlando

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  • Perfect for:‌ Thrill-seeking families
  • Highlights of Orlando:
    • Walt Disney World
    • Universal Orlando
    • Fun spots beyond theme parks

‌How to Get to Orlando‌

You can drive from Miami to Orlando via Florida’s Turnpike and arrive in less than four hours.

‌Things to Do in Orlando‌

They call Orlando the “Theme Park Capital of the World” for a reason. From the Magic Kingdom and Typhoon Lagoon at Walt Disney World to Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Volcano Bay water park, families flock here year-round for heart-pounding thrills and adventure. But Orlando has far more to offer than just rollercoasters.

When you need a break from Mickey Mouse, explore a bevy of exciting attractions ranging from Madame Tussauds and Gatorland to Discovery Cove and ICON Park.

‌Where to Stay in Orlando‌

There’s no shortage of exceptional accommodations in Orlando to escape the Florida sun and recharge. A few years ago, I stayed at the Park Plaza Hotel, set just north of Orlando in Winter Park. Boasting European-inspired decor, wood floors and furnishings, and some rooms with balconies, the Park Plaza Hotel is popular among honeymooners and a tranquil haven for those seeking respite from the theme park clamor.

Park Plaza Hotel Orlando, Florida Book Now

6. Tampa and St. Petersburg

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  • Perfect for:‌ Travelers looking to blend fun and learning
  • Highlights of Tampa and St. Petersburg:
    • Family-friendly attractions
    • Tampa Riverwalk
    • Dali Museum

‌How to Get to Tampa and St. Petersburg‌

The quickest route for getting to Tampa and St. Petersburg from Miami is via I-75. Only a half-hour drive separates these popular Gulf Coast cities. Keep your eyes peeled for alligators along the way!

‌Things to Do in Tampa and St. Petersburg‌

For those looking to balance educational content with fun-filled activities, look no further than Tampa and its neighbor to the southwest, St. Petersburg. Tampa has a bigger city feel with more attractions within a short walk or drive, including ZooTampa, Busch Gardens, Ybor City, and the Tampa Riverwalk.

St. Petersburg, for its part, is recognized for such beautiful beaches as St. Pete Beach, not to mention the The Dalí Museum, which celebrates the creative genius of one of history’s most eccentric artists.

‌Where to Stay in Tampa and St. Petersburg‌

After a busy day sightseeing, call it a night at the Phantom History House, a one-of-a-kind bed-and-breakfast that centers on the paranormal with eerily themed rooms and a Victorian-style library where guests are regaled with ghost stories.

Phantom History House St. Petersburg, Florida Book Now

If you’d rather be mesmerized by sublime water than spooked, check out the Mediterranean-style Hotel Zamora, which offers superb views of the Intracoastal Waterway.

Hotel Zamora Book Now

7. Sarasota

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  • Perfect for:‌ Culture enthusiasts
  • Highlights of Sarasota:
    • Art museums
    • Golf courses
    • World-class amenities

‌How to Get to Sarasota‌

To ensure the shortest drive from Miami to Sarasota (which in turn translates to more time for fun and sightseeing), take I-75.

‌Things to Do in Sarasota‌

What do you get when you couple mid-century modern architecture with azure waters that look like they’re straight out of a travel magazine? Stunning Sarasota, of course! This fantastic city is home to The Ringling, a 66-acre gem spread over two buildings that houses the world’s greatest collection of circus memorabilia and art.

Alternatively, you can work on your tan at Sarasota Beach, amble around the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, have a bite at St. Armands Circle, tee off at the University Park Country Club, or witness an 1860s courthouse at Manatee Village Historical Park.

‌Where to Stay in Sarasota‌

Sarasota offers a wealth of rentals and other lodging options to suit every budget, such as a cozy Airbnb retreat with modern amenities and a prime location near lovely beaches.

Airbnb rental Sarasota, Florida Book Now

Or you can check out the newly renovated 1950s Golden Host Resort. As if that weren’t enough, many lie near the city’s best beaches.

Golden Host Resort Sarasota, Florida Book Now

8. St. Augustine

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  • Perfect for:‌ History lovers
  • Highlights of St. Augustine:
    • Captivating architecture
    • Flagler College
    • Old Jail

‌How to Get to St. Augustine‌

Your best bet to arrive in St. Augustine in approximately five hours is via Florida’s Turnpike.

‌Things to Do in St. Augustine‌

If you yearn to delve deep into Florida’s Spanish roots, what better place for a road trip from Miami than St. Augustine? Founded in 1565, St. Augustine is the oldest continuously occupied settlement of European and African-American origin in the United States.

Explore the impressive Castillo de San Marcos Monument, the oldest mason fortification in the USA; ride your bike at Anastasia State Park; snap photos of the 165-foot-tall St. Augustine Lighthouse; or enjoy delectable cuisine and live music at St. George Street. Be sure to carve out some time to see the Old Jail and striking Flagler College, both built in the 1890s.

‌Where to Stay in St. Augustine‌

I can’t say enough about the charming St. George Inn, conveniently tucked in the heart of downtown St. Augustine. The family-friendly lodge makes an ideal base from which to explore the Castillo and the surrounding shops and museums.

St. George Inn Florida Book Now

Best Weekend Trips From Miami

Perhaps you want to pass on getting behind the wheel this time around and travel by air instead. Whether history, dining, or nightlife is your thing, a world of possibilities awaits you.

Here are the best weekend trips from Miami that require no more than a two- to three-hour flight.

9. Savannah, Georgia

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  • Perfect for:‌ Sightseers seeking southern hospitality
  • Highlights of Savannah:
    • Irish- and British-inspired pubs
    • Savannah River
    • Old forts and churches

‌How to Get to Savannah‌

You can save time by flying directly from Miami to Savannah. Although connecting fights might be a tad easier on the pocketbook, it means less time for soaking up the city’s spectacular sites.

‌Things to Do in Savannah‌

Start your day off right with a cup of joe at The Coffee Fox, an award-winning craft coffee shop on lively Broughton Street. In the evening, you can watch the sun set over the Savannah River as you indulge in such local favorites as deep-fried chicken at one of the city’s popular eateries.

The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist will leave you in total awe, as will the 19th-century cannons and muskets at Old Fort Jackson. After working up a sweat, be sure to quench your thirst at the quaint Six Pence Pub.

‌Where to Stay in Savannah‌

Southern hospitality, history, and grandeur are sure to envelop you at the Hamilton-Turner Inn, housed today in a Victorian building that dates back to 1873.

Hamilton-Turner Inn Miami, Florida Book Now

If you’re traveling with a group, consider one of the many fine Airbnb apartment rentals available, such as this cozy spot in between Savannah and Tybee Island.

Airbnb rental Savannah, Georgia Book Now

10. Washington, D.C.

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  • Perfect for:‌ Those wanting a slice of Americana
  • Highlights of Washington, D.C.:
    • World-renowned Smithsonian museums
    • Monuments and memorials
    • Cherry blossoms

‌How to Get to Washington, D.C.‌

A nonstop flight from Miami to Washington, D.C. will have you in the nation’s capital in under three hours.

‌Things to Do in Washington, D.C.‌

Washington D.C. is the place to go for expansive museums showcasing everything from space and aviation artifacts to significant relics of the nation’s rich historical past.

Discover an 11-ton African elephant among a wealth of fascinating exhibits at The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History before being blown away by Italian Renaissance-style architecture at the Library of Congress, the largest library in the entire world.

Be sure to check out the 555-foot Washington Monument, Pantheon-like Jefferson Memorial, and revered Lincoln Memorial along the National Mall. And if you visit in the spring, you might just catch a glimpse of gorgeous cherry blossoms in bloom!

‌Where to Stay in Washington, D.C.‌

The beautiful Willard Hotel traces its history to 1818 and counts Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr. among its most well-known occupants. Amenities include a spa, fitness center, and an exquisitely designed French brasserie offering mouth-watering dishes.

Willard Hotel D.C. Book Now

11. Philadelphia

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  • Perfect for:‌ Foodies
  • Highlights of Philadelphia:
    • Philly cheesesteaks
    • Independence National Historical Park
    • "Rocky" statue and steps

‌How to Get to Philadelphia‌

A direct flight from Miami to Philadelphia takes approximately three hours.

‌Things to Do in Philadelphia‌

Which establishment serves up the best Philly cheesesteaks: Pat’s or Geno’s? The debate rages on, but only by sampling them yourself will you be able to weigh in.

The Reading Terminal Market, a National Historic Landmark, has been delighting visitors and locals alike with an incredible selection of locally grown produce, cheeses, and baked goods. But there’s much more to the City of Brotherly Love than food.

Be sure to take a tour of Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution were formally signed; get up close and personal with the Liberty Bell; and visit the Betsy Ross House. And photo opportunities abound, from the popular love sculpture to the Philadelphia Museum of Art — the steps of which Sylvester Stallone’s character ran up in “Rocky III.”

‌Where to Stay in Philadelphia‌

I stayed in the Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District, which placed me within walking distance of the city’s key historical attractions. Everything from the on-site restaurant to the service was first-rate, and I highly recommend it.

Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District Book Now

Miami’s pristine beaches, vibrant nightlife, and stellar restaurants make it an incredible destination in its own right. But once you’re ready for something a bit different — whether a day trip from Miami, a road trip from Miami, or even a weekend trip from Miami — be sure to keep this article handy. Your possibilities are almost limitless!