Family Travel

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15 Best Beaches in Miami for Families (Pet-Friendly Too!)

Explore the top 15 family & pet-friendly beaches in Miami! From Crandon Park to South Beach, find the perfect spot for sun, fun, & adventure. Ideal for travelers.

Tobi Miles
July 1, 2022
15 Best Beaches in Miami for Families (Pet-Friendly Too!)

Miami is a quintessential American beach destination located in Southern Florida. The metropolitan area is considered the gateway to Latin America, conveniently perched directly on the Atlantic Ocean.

Miami has famed nightlife that drives in troves of tourists each year. However, the city is also incredibly family-friendly and welcoming for children of all ages. Particularly if you are looking for coastal attractions. There is no shortage of family-friendly beaches to visit located in and around Miami.

There's white-sand oases on the outskirts of the city like Homestead Bayfront Park Beach to more bustling destinations like 85th Street Beach, it is impossible to be bored in the city. Miami beaches have a lot to offer for kids of all ages.

Although Miami may have a notorious party scene, a family vacation to the city can be both exciting and safe. Beyond the nightclubs dotting the coastline, families can expect stunning beaches, tropical pools, and even some kid-approved attractions.

If you’re a parent planning a family vacation to this Southern Florida hotspot, be sure to check out at least one of these beaches.

Enjoy These Beaches In Miami With Your Family

1. Crandon Park Beach

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Crandon Park Beach is a stone's throw away from the city on the barrier island of Key Biscayne. Key Biscayne is easily accessible by car or bus. The island itself has a lot to offer for those looking to get out of the city, but Crandon Park is the most family-friendly beach on the Key and possibly in all of Miami.

Need more to do beyond lounging around on white-sand beaches and playing in the surf? Crandon Park Beach is known for its watersports and outdoor activities.

On the ground, you can check out the biking and hiking paths, tennis courts, and even skateboarding areas. For all of the aquatic adventurers out there, the island also offers access to kiteboarding, canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling, wakeboarding, sailing, and surfing.

The beach itself spans two miles and cabana rentals, picnic pavilions, and concessions can be found up and down the coastline. If you need a break from the sun, the beach also offers an amusement center.

2. Matheson Hammock Park

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Matheson Hammock Park in the Coral Gables neighborhood of Miami is a tranquil nature reserve with 630 acres of coastal land to explore. The park is home to some interesting Floridian topography such as hardwood forests and mangroves.

There is also a unique atoll pool on park grounds - a man-made seawater pool directly on the coastline. This is a great place to take young children who love the ocean but may be slightly too small to enjoy the waves on their own.

The North end of the Park is a fully operational marina. They even offer a boating school for visitors to learn all about operating a watercraft. When the day comes to an end, dine at the waterfront restaurant Redfish offering modern sea-fare and American bites.

3. Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park

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Beyond miles of breathtaking Atlantic coastline, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park has plenty to offer families. Climb to the top of the historic Cape Florida lighthouse built in 1825. You can even take one of the guided tours if you’re looking to learn about the island’s history.

During the day, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park offers plenty of outdoor recreation from boating to hiking. By nightfall, Biscayne Bay is nationally renowned as one of the best sunsets in the country. Stay all day to catch this breathtaking spectacle before heading back to your Miami accommodation.

Related Read: Best Time To Visit Florida

4. South Pointe Beach

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South Pointe Beach is located at the most southern tip of Miami and offers sprawling city views in this urban respite. Beyond the skyscrapers of downtown Miami, you can also see Fisher Island and the cruise port.

The park is 17 acres and offers walking paths, green spaces, and a splash pad located on the edge of the Atlantic. South Pointe is the perfect family destination for a handful of reasons, but the water playground and jungle gym are certainly a draw.

It is also a great place to take a stroll. The park features a promenade and a sprawling pier. This is an idyllic place to watch surfers and boaters enjoying the waves off of South Beach.

5. Hobie-Windsurfer Beach on Virginia Key Beach

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Hobie Beach is such a popular windsurfing destination in Miami, that the nickname “Windsurfer Beach” stuck. Windsurfer is now a part of the beach’s official name on the Miami Beach tourism board.

No windsurfing experience is necessary to enjoy Hobie Beach - they have offered rentals and lessons from skilled instructors for over 25 years.

If you’re not seeking this type of adventure on your family vacation, visit Hobie Beach for the picturesque views of the downtown Miami cityscape and peaceful, sandy shores.

Traveling with dogs? Hobie is known for being the most pet-friendly beach in Miami so furry friends are more than welcome.

Related Read: 50 BEST Places To Visit In March In The USA

6. Oleta River State Park Beach

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Oleta River State Park is a state-protected estuary on the outskirts of Miami. The park is home to more than 1,000 acres of mangroves, tidal pools, and winding saltwater streams.

Beyond the idyllic white-sand beach, there is plenty to do in this urban park. If you’re looking for a leisurely visit, the park offers plenty of picnic areas. There are also boardwalk paths through the wildlife.

Looking for watersports? Oleta River State Park is the perfect destination. Rent a kayak, stand-up paddle board, mountain bike, canoe, and more to see the park by wheel or paddle.

The water here is calm, so it is the perfect place for beginners looking to test their hand at gentle aquatic adventures.

7. North Shore Open Space Park

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This park is the most Northern point of Miami. Compared to the often bustling South Beach and the Miami Keys, North Shore is possibly the least-visited beach.

It is the perfect destination for families looking to get away from crowds and enjoy a less populated coastal destination.

North shore doesn’t offer much by way of watersports, dining, or other amenities. However, if you are purely looking for a place to lounge around on the sand and play in the waves this may be your favorite beach in Miami.

Bring along a chair, a book, and a cooler, and enjoy the peace. The beach still has lifeguards on duty. This helps parents feel more at ease letting their kids go for a swim in the tide.

8. Lummus Park Beach

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Lummus Park is a stretch of coastline located along the iconic Ocean Drive. The park’s beach is an ideal place for sunbathing and swimming. It boasts lifeguards on duty for much of the day and chaise lounge rentals.

Want to work out while on vacation? Lummus Park is popular among runners and walkers. There are also a handful of outdoor gyms for free use.

Beyond the beach and recreation, Lummus Park is home to the Miami Beach Art Deco Welcome Center where you can learn about the arts and architecture of Miami.

9. Homestead Bayfront Park Beach

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Homestead Bayfront Park is located just south of Miami, making it an oceanic oasis away from the city. This park is known for being among the most family-friendly of the Miami beaches.

It offers plenty of attractions for all ages such as a shallow atoll pool, a full-service marina, and miles of coastline to lounge on.

The atoll pool is a particular draw for young families as small children can enjoy the seawater in a shallow, protected swimming area. La Playa Grill, located within the park, is a popular family-friendly restaurant.

10. 85th Street Beach

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85th Street Beach is on the quieter side when it comes to Miami Beaches, however, plenty of lifeguards still walk this coastline to ensure water safety.

The beach is known for calm waters and soft, sandy lounging areas. It’s a tranquil place to swim or spend the day lounging around. 85th Street Beach is also close to the popular Bal Harbour Village, offering plenty of shopping and dining options.

Related Read: 20 Best Clear Water Beaches in Florida

11. South Beach

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When visitors consider South Beach, family-friendly may not be the first adjective that comes to mind. The stretch of coastline is one of the most popular in the city and offers plenty to do for travelers of all ages.

By day, South Beach is an inviting destination for lounging on the sand, playing in the surf, and strolling the coast for shopping and dining. South Beach has a large number of lifeguards, making it a safe and well-attended place for children to swim.

By night, the clubs dotting the strip liven up. Adults can grab a drink along one of the many beach bars and take the kids to one of the many restaurants up and down the coast for a bite to eat.

12. Hollywood Beach

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Hollywood Beach is outside the city located between Miami and Fort Lauderdale. It is a quieter destination perfect for families trying to escape the bustling metro area.

The beach offers a Broadwalk in the style of a promenade which stretches for 2.5 miles along the coast, making it the perfect place to run, walk, or bike. The beach itself offers plenty of aquatic attractions such as surfing, fishing, and paddleboarding.

Right off the Broadwalk, families can find the Hollywood Beach Theatre, an outdoor water playground designed specifically for children. Parrot Heads rejoice, Jimmy Buffet’s popular Margaritaville is also located in Hollywood Beach.

13. Haulover Park Beach

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Haulover Park is north of Miami Beach and encompasses a 1.5-mile stretch of coastline. The park is a popular place to fly a kite and even offers kite-building workshops year-round. Beyond the beach, Haulover Park also features a 9-hole golf course, a dog park, and tennis courts to check out.

14. 21st-45th Street Beach

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21st-45th Street Beach is one of the more popular stretches of coastline in the city and is close to many of the hotels and resorts located in downtown Miami.

It offers the white sandy beaches and blue waters that Southern Florida is known for without having to travel all too far from the metro area.

While you’re here, be sure to check out the gorgeous Bass Museum of Art. The museum features modern art and unique exhibits.

Related Read: 20 Best Family-Friendly Beaches in Florida

15. Fort Lauderdale Beach

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Fort Lauderdale is located just above Miami and is a popular destination for travelers of all ages. The sand is so soft here that it is nearly a powder, and the water tends to be transparent.

It is a great place to check out some marine life through snorkeling and diving. Those who prefer staying above water can rent a kayak, stand-up paddleboard, or canoe.

Tobi Miles
Article updated:
March 28, 2024
A nomadic wordsmith savoring the world's flavors and penning stories that turn every journey into an epic.
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