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Unique Miami Must-See Spots!

It’s no secret that there’s an abundance of sights and activities awaiting travelers in Miami. From vibrant Little Havana and the decorated Wynwood Walls to the amazing Art Deco architecture prevalent in Miami Beach, the city offers a myriad of distinctive experiences. So today, we decided to curate a list of some of our personal favorite must-see spots for your next Miami adventure!


Opened in 1924 as “Venetian Casino,” Venetian Pool was created from a 4-acre old coral rock quarry, abandoned in 1921, and is the only swimming pool listed on the National Register of Historic Places! The pool was founded by George Merrick as part of the development of Coral Gables and is the largest freshwater pool in the U.S with its’ 820,000 gallons of spring fed water refilled every day. The pool features two waterfalls, cave-like grottos and a café offering a fun experience for the entire family.


Initially built in 1916 as the winter home of the affluent businessman James Deering, Villa Viscaya encompasses 34 exquisitely decorated rooms, formal gardens, a mangrove shoreline, a hardwood hammock, and a historic village that once supported the estate. Today serving as a public museum, Viscaya remains a cultural treasure enchanting visitors from throughout the world. Visitors such as Pope John Paul II (1987), President Ronald Reagan (1987) and Queen Elizabeth II (1991) have enjoyed the splendor and majesty of Villa Viscaya as one of Miami’s must-see attractions Unique Miami Must-See Spots!


Located at Bill Baggs State Park on the south end of Key Biscayne, The Cape Florida Lighthouse is a time capsule containing an immense amount of history. Built in 1825, the lighthouse was used to guide sailors around the Florida reef, helping avoid an unfortunate accident. Today, it is a cultural landmark with its’ place on the National Register of Historic Places. Spend a day at Cape Florida Beach and enjoy a tour of the lighthouse Thursday-Sunday at 10am and 1pm. Unique Miami Must-See Spots!

Clubs to get your GROOVE on while visiting Miami, FL

There are many things Miami is known for that attract visitors from all over the world. The great beaches, amazing Cuban culture and food, Art Deco architecture and design and, of course, our beloved Miami sports teams and hall of fame players all offer something for travelers to the Magic City. There is so much to do in Miami, but nothing beats our amazing nightclubs and hot spots!! Here are a few of our favorite spots to GET YOUR GROOVE ON while visiting Greater Miami.

Ball & Chain

First opened in 1935, today’s version of Ball and Chain offers hot, live Latin and Jazz music where luminaries like Billie Holiday, Count Basie and others frequented during its’ 1950s heydays. In its latest revival, the storied bar combines the old-world charm of a classic Cuban nightclub with a tropical-themed ambiance represented by its lush open courtyard and Pineapple Stage all in the heart of Little Havana. Voted best mojito by #NewTimes Readers, Ball and Chain has a full menu of Cuban favorites and is open until 3am Friday and Saturdays.

Their website:


The world’s only 24/5 nightclub, Club E11even features a cast of top performers and DJs, outstanding food and drinks, private VIP rooms and five-star service. Voted as a “Top-50 Club in the world” by DJ Magazine and ranked #6 in the “World’s Top-10 New Year’s Eve Celebrations” by Yahoo Travel, Club E11even is one of the most sought-after venues for both public and private events not just in Miami but throughout the world! Open Wednesday – Sunday all day and night, you can get your groove on anytime at Club E11even.

Their website:


Voted as one of Miami’s 100 Best Bars by #New Times Magazine, Blackbird Ordinary is in the heart of Brickell and features some of the best libations in Miami. Open until 5am, 7 days a week, Blackbird Ordinary is a magnet for locals featuring live music “under the stars” every Friday during Happy Hour and free drinks for the ladies every Tuesday night until 1am. Great music to dance and amazing cocktail creations make Blackbird Ordinary a perfect spot to get your groove on while in Miami.

Their IG Page:

Top Breakfast Spots in South Miami

South Miami has expanded a lot over the last decade, with many local businesses setting up shop in the area. This would be the driving reason that led to SoFLA Vacations opening our newest addition “The Sunset Inn” in South Miami. One of the best things about The Sunset Inn, is how it’s within walking distance of so many fantastic restaurants and bars. Lately, we’ve been getting a lot of questions about this. Questions like “What’s good around here?” or “What places would you recommend?”. Fear not, for SoFLA Vacations is here to give you the inside scoop with our very own personal favorite breakfast spots!

Casa Cuba

If you’re looking for a quality hispanic breakfast that embodies the culture of Miami, Casacuba is the go to move. Their croquetas are some of the best in Miami, and I highly recommend their cafe con leche with Cuban toast. They have a beautiful outdoor terrace where you can enjoy your food, and in addition to their breakfast, they have a wonderful lunch menu.

Deli Lane Cafe

Established in 1988, South Miami’s Deli Lane Cafe has stood the test of time for a reason. Along with the wonderful venue, Deli Lane Cafe is a wonderful place to sit outside and have a delicous, fresh breakfast, brunch, or even lunch. They have a diverse menu, which should cater to anyone no matter what you’re craving!

Cecile Bakery + Cafe

Rumored to have the best croissants in South Miami, Cecile Bakery + Cafe is a delicious French bakery that makes for the perfect place to grab a quick bite and coffee in the morning. From the pastries, to smoothies, everything here is delicious. They also have great salads & sandwiches if you’re looking to get an early lunch, or if you’ve got a sweet tooth, try their locally made gelato and sorbets!

The Salty Doughnut

The Salty Doughnut has some of the best sweets you can get in the morning. They have baked goods, perfectly crafted coffee, and most of all… a really freakin’ good donut! Starting out as a pop up in Wynwood, The Salty Doughnut has ascended beyond the local scene and into new territory due to it’s fantastic, ever changing menu. Located right around the corner from The Sunset Inn, this is a place you have to try at least once during your stay.

5 Best Beaches in South Florida

Whether it’s winter, summer, spring, or fall, it’s always a good time to go to the beach in Miami, FL! Home to some of the best beaches in the country, Miami is a tropical paradise that seems like something taken straight out of a movie. The pristine coastlines, the vibrant blue Atlantic ocean water, the palm trees that decorate the beaches… it truly does seem like movie magic but it is indeed real. If you’re a local, you most likely already know where all the good beach spots are, but if you’re not, they might be a lil tricky to find. Have no fear, we are here to help with the five best beaches in South Florida!

Lummus Park Beach

When people think of Miami, they tend to think of South Beach. This is Miami Beach at it’s peak. Located on the eastern side of Ocean Drive, Lummus Park is a great place for all out fun in the sun. Things like sunbathing, swimming, beach volleyball, and so much more! There’s also a boardwalk across the street filled with wonderful bars, shops, and restaurants.

South Pointe Park Pier

If tourists and locals can agree on one thing for sure, it’s that South Pointe Park is a fantastic and stunning beach. Located on a 17-acre park, South Pointe Park has boat loads of activities such asdesignated picnic areas, playgrounds, and a fishing pier.

Haulover Beach

Located between Sunny Isles and Bal Harbour, Haulover Beach has stunning landscapes that you will most likely end up photographing before you leave. This is also a great beach to go to if you have a dog, as they have a designated dog area between lifeguard stations #2 and #3.

Surfside Beach

Surfside is a small beach town that has their own view of paradise. Located between North Beach Oceanside Park and Bal Harbour Beach, Surfside Beach has pristine clear shores with upscale resorts over its near mile long shore. This is a wonderful beach to go relax at.

Sunny Isles Beach

Sunny Isles is two miles of pure beaches, nightclubs, upscale hotels, and tons of delicious restaurants. Their local beach, Sunny Isles Beach, has a well maintained shoreline and provides easy access to events, attractions, and some luxury resorts.

5 Hot New Restaurants in the Grove

The Grove is full of Art, Entertainment, Stores, Restaurants, and a rich history. Known as the oldest neighborhood in Miami Dade County, Coconut Grove has only gotten better over time. In addition to the newly renovated Cocowalk, the Grove has also seen a rise in new businesses opening up to the public. To pay homage to our local businesses, here are five new restauraunts you need to try the next time you’re in Coconut Grove!

Bayshore Club

Built right along the water on the historic Dinner Key site, Bayshore Club has a lot going on. From live music, to happy hour, to the 2$ oyster mondays, Bayshore Club is always up to something. Try their delicious seafood as you sit in this gorgeous outdoor venue.


Narbona is so much more than just a restaurant. Located in the newly renovated Cocowalk, this family owned & operated Uruguayan restaurant also has a Market, Butcher, and Bakery located inside. The food is fantastic, and you must try their Gelato icecream!

The Key Club

The King of Miami Nightlife is back with his latest hit… The Key Club. Known for creating club LIV, as well as restaurants Komodo and Planta, David Grutman’s latest restaurant is a all-new take on the classic American bar and grill. Whether it’s Brunch, Dinner, or Happy Hour, you will be leaving The Key Club extremely satisfied.


From the team behind popular South Beach restaurants Byblos and Meet Dalia, Amal is the newest (and most delicious) modern interpretation of traditional Lebanese food here in The Grove. Enjoy the breathtaking ambience, signature cocktails, and delicious Lebanese cuisine.


Coming over from South Beach, the Bodega’s newest location is right here in Coconut Grove! Although they serve mouth watering Mexican Cuisine, Bodega is also a great place to go for a drink. They have multiple floors to house their taco shack, lounge, and bar.

Top 3 Best Water Excursions For Your Next Miami Vacation

Virginia Key beach park aerial shot, great place for water excursions
Historic Virginia Key Beach Park

Looking for some fun and relaxation on the water during your next Miami vacation? From dinner cruises and kayak tours on Biscayne Bay to airboat rides in the Everglades, SoFLA Vacations has you covered! Here are the 3 best water excursions for your maiden voyage…

Whether you want a day, dinner or sunset cruise, Happy Cruises is your key to a great day on the water! Captain Derek will take you anywhere in Miami your heart desires, Vizcaya, Downtown Miami and Brickell, Millionaires Row, Key Biscayne and many more prime locations! Sailing out of Dinner Key Marina in Coconut Grove (walking distance from SoFLA Vacations’ units in the Hotel Arya), accessing the boat is very simple and straightforward. Book with Captain Derek for all your Miami cruise needs and leave happy, guaranteed!

Maybe you’re looking for something more lowkey and tuned into nature, if so Virginia Key Outdoor Center will take you back to a time when Biscayne Bay was a natural paradise. Explore the mangroves and hidden coves along the beautiful island of Virginia Key on a kayak or paddleboard. Solo and guided options are available. Or rent a mountain bike and venture into the mangroves on the shady and winding trails.

Okay, so you want an authentic Florida experience, Alligators, sawgrass and one of the most pristine wildernesses in the United States, The Everglades…then Everglades Airboat Expedition is for you! Just off of Tamiami trail west of West Kendall, Everglades Airboat Expedition offers a unique tour of the Everglades, up close and personal. Witness the animals in their natural habitat and marvel at this ancient landscape. From flying across sawgrass to slowly drifting through tree draped waterways, you will get the true Florida experience, one you’ll never forget!

The Perfect Night Out In South Miami

To have the perfect night out, one thing must be true, by the end of it you wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere else.

While staying at the Sunset Inn in South Miami, the perfect night out is right around the corner. Not only will you enjoy a comfortable and quiet stay, but you will also have access to tons of boutique shops and the beautiful, historic downtown area. With wonderful restaurants, bars, ice cream shops and movies, your options are endless.

First stop: Dinner is an obvious first stop for your night out, nobody wants to be hangry while trying to enjoy themselves. And while on vacation it’s always nice to try the local food, after eating the same meal prepped food everyday it’s time to give your taste buds a vacation too. While in Miami it’s a requirement to have authentic Cuban food, and adjacent to Sunset Inn is the exquisite Casa Cuba. Featuring indoor and outdoor dining, Casa Cuba is a full-service Cuban restaurant with breakfast, lunch, dinner and even pastries! My personal favorite is the ropa vieja with black beans and rice, and of course maduros.

Second stop: After dinner, dessert is in order. Casa Cuba features delicious Cuban desserts, but if you’re feeling like getting a good old fashioned ice cream cone look no further than Whip’n Dip Ice Cream Shop. There’s nothing like a rich and creamy ice cream cone to put your hunger to rest and with warm weather year-round it’s always a good choice.

Last stop: AMC Sunset Place 24 theaters is a perfect place to end the night, a good movie in a historic building will be the cherry on top. Go see the newest releases only a short walk from your hotel. Or if the night is young…Bougainvillea’s Old Florida Tavern is a rustic dive bar with tons of selection, great specials and live music. Come meet your new best friends (for the week) and get a feel for being a South Miami local.

3 Best “Hidden Gem” Attractions while vacationing in Miami!

Discover hidden gems on your next Miami vacation while staying with SoFLA Vacations
Venetian Pool in Coral Gables in a great Hidden Gem
Pictured above: The spring fed Venetian Pool in Coral Gables

There is so much to do and see when vacationing in the Greater Miami area. Everyone knows about the amazing white sand beaches, airboat rides in the Everglades and world-famous nightclubs but what about the not-so-well-known attractions? Here is our list of some of the best “hidden gems” to experience while vacationing in the Greater Miami area in 2022.

  • Venetian Pool/Coral Gables – A beautiful oasis inspired by Mediterranean architecture, the Venetian Pool is a unique part of Miami’s history! This former rock quarry was turned into the Venetian Pool in 1924. Large enough to hold 820,000 gallons of fresh water from an underground aquifer, the pool draws water from artesian wells and features a historic edifice earning a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, and the perfect destination for a great family day of frolick while visiting Miami.
  • Deering Estate – One of the truly most idyllic spots in Miami is the Deering Estate, an area that was created to preserve Charles Deering’s 1920s-era property. From its picturesque location on the South Dade coast, the Deering Estate Features historical buildings, mangrove forests, tropical Rockland, and much more. From canoe tours to butterfly walks to guided museum and natural area tours, the Deering Estate has diverse activities and special events for the whole family to enjoy on your next Miami Vacation.
  • Gold Coast Railroad Museum – One of Miami’s very best-kept secrets is the Gold Coast Railroad Museum. An absolute highlight when it comes to family-friendly attractions Miami, the Gold Coast Railroad Museum is located in southwestern Miami adjacent to Zoo Miami. It features over 40 historic railcars, perhaps most notably of all, the presidential railcar built in 1928 called the Ferdinand Magellan that was used by Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and Ronald Reagan.

Experiencing these hidden gems will make your next Miami vacation a memorable one.

Best Miami Events for Spring/Summer 2022

Music festivals, art shows, sporting events and more, The Magic City is know for hosting some of the most spectacular events year-round. From the Super Bowl to Art Basel to Miami International Boat Show, events occur in Miami that are known around the world! Here are our choices for the “can’t miss” events when visiting the Greater Miami area this Spring and Summer:

Ultra Music Festival

The Spring kicks off as party people from around the world descend on Miami as the Ultra Music Festival takes over Bayfront Park in Downtown Miami March 25-27. This 3-day electronic dance music festival features over 150 entertainers from around the world performing on 7 stages with music, pyrotechnics, lasers and confetti enhancing the performances. If you like music and energy, this is a can’t miss Miami event.

Deering Bay Seafood Festival

Love munching on the delectables from the sea? Then you won’t want to miss the 16th annual Deering Bay Seafood Festival April 10th from 10am-6pm on the grounds of the Deering Estate in Southern Miami-Dade. This family-friendly event features all the great treasures of the sea, chef demonstations, live entertainment and kids activities while exposing visitors and the South Florida community to the historic Deering Estate.

F1 Miami Grand Prix

Rev up your engines and check-out the inaugural Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix taking place May 6-8 on the grounds of Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. The action will be split across all three days as the greatest car racers in the World compete with Practice on Friday, Qualifying on Saturday and the Grand Prix on Sunday. The newly constructed Miami International Autodrome is a temporary circuit that features a 3.36 mile track with 19 corners and an anticipated average speed of 140mph. Fast and exciting racing on the streets of Miami!!

Miami Swim Week

My dream job? How about towel boy for Miami Swim Week! Why not, I mean it features the most beautiful women in the world modeling the latest swimwear fashion in a series of ticketed events from July 14 – 21 at various venues throughout Miami Beach. It surely gets hot and steamy for fashion lovers at the 2022 Miami Swim Week.

So remember, when traveling to the Greater Miami area this Spring or Summer there is an event for your food-, music-, art- or sports-loving side!

Where to See Christmas Lights in Coconut Grove

If you’re taking a visit to South Florida this holiday season, you’re in luck! Miami has some of the best Christmas lights around. There are plenty of places to see spectacular drive-thru light shows when staying at a South Florida Vacation Rental. These shows have been rated some of the best things to do in Miami over the holiday season. 

The Enchanted Place of North Miami is a South Florida fan favorite. Since 1988, it has been a community effort, with neighbors in the area decorating their homes with flashy Christmas lights. Not only can you drive-thru and see the lights, but you can also pose for photos with Santas, Christmas trees, and snowmen with your entire group. Find this light show at 1800 NE 137th Ter in North Miami. 

Zoo Light at Zoo Miami is another favorite, especially when staying in Coconut Grove vacation rentals. This show features almost one million animal-shaped lights. Families are welcome to walk through the park and admire the lights while hopping on a carousel ride or two. You’ll also get to see and hear carolers, and an amazing 26-foot LED tree. Want a family photo with Santa? He’ll be there too – with milk and cookies!

Santa’s Spectacular: A Drive-Thru Musical Extravaganza is Miami’s first Christmas drive-thru. Get a look at Santa, Mrs. Claus, North Pole Elves, and Rudolph. It’s a spectacular light show you don’t want to miss! The show runs from November 28 to December 23. Tickets cover the costs of one vehicle for six people and will run $45 per vehicle.