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Visiting Bayfront Park Miami: What to Know Before You Go

by Roslie Casanova
Published: Last Updated on
Bayfront Park bay walk view with palms trees, boat and building in background in Downtown Miami Florida

An urban oasis in the heart of downtown Miami, Bayfront Park Miami is an essential stop. Since it first opened over a century ago, Bayfront Park has offered an entertaining space for locals to enjoy religious meetings, athletic activities, social gatherings, and even political rallies.

This gorgeous green park is a dreamy destination to get away from it all while being in the center of the top attractions in Miami.

The iconic park hosts countless concerts, festivals, holiday celebrations, and some of Miami’s biggest events of the year, from the popular Ultra Music Festival to 4th of July celebrations to Christmas events and the New Year’s Eve orange drop.

Beyond the events, Bayfront Park is an incredible spot to soak in the sun and take in the endless buzz of Miami on any given day of the year.

Ready to plan your perfect day exploring this Miami hidden gem? Here is everything you need to know to plan your Bayfront Park visit.

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Bayfront Park Florida: What to Expect

Whatever time of year you decide to visit Miami, it is well worth checking the Bayfront Park events calendar to see what’s on. Even without concerts, celebrations, or sporting events, this picturesque park is well worth exploring.

Get a breath of fresh air as you wander down the winding walkways and sunny coastline. Snap selfies in front of the sparkling fountain, tropical rock garden, and highly Instagramable waterfall as you take this corner of downtown Miami.

Is Bayfront Park in Bayside Marketplace?

Bayfront Park is just beside Bayside Marketplace, near Maurice A. Ferré Park. While Bayfront Park isn’t inside Bayside Marketplace, it is within walking distance to the north of the park. So, you can easily plan to visit both of these beautiful spots on the same day!

Bayside Marketplace is a sun-soaked open-air shopping mall nested beside Biscayne Bay. There are 140 international and local stores, alongside over 50 different carts and kiosks.

If you are looking for for souvenirs or one of the best places for shopping in Miami, make a beeline for this picturesque waterfront spot.

Planning Tip: Still on the fence about when to come to Miami? Keep reading insider travel tips on our post When is the Best Time to Visit Miami? How to Choose the Perfect Season.

How Big is Bayfront Park?

Bayfront Park Downtown Miami Florida bay walk view with palms trees, people and bridge in background

This waterfront park spans 32 acres alongside Biscayne Bay. While you can walk the approximately one-mile loop around the park in less than 20 minutes, it is well worth planning at least an hour to explore.

There is a popular walking path that will bring you through the highlights, or you can just wander around. The paved path is wheelchair-friendly, stroller-friendly, and dog-friendly so bring the whole crew.

Where Do You Park for Bayfront Park in Miami?

There are a few Bayfront Park parking options nearby. You can go for a municipal street parking lot on Biscayne Boulevard or the Bayside Marketplace parking garage. If you are okay with walking a bit farther, Miami Avenue is a good option for inexpensive downtown parking.

Is Parking Free at Bayfront Park in Miami?

Nope. Parking at the Bayside Marketplace garage or one of the municipal parking lots isn’t free. Free parking in downtown Miami is pretty much non-existent. Most parking garages in the area offer an average rate of $5 to $10 per hour of parking, but it may vary depending on demand.

Metromover in Downtown Miami Florida

If you are staying in one of the hotels near Bayfront Park Miami, consider leaving your car onsite and hopping on the Metromover, free Miami Trolley, or a ride share.

Insider Tip: When visiting Miami, consider downloading the Parkopedia app or keep the link handy on your phone to save yourself the headache of searching for a parking spot. Just note, however, that while their downtown Miami parking guidance is reliable, it is still crucial to pay attention to on-street signs.

Make a note of the restrictions and pricing that varies based on the day and time. Also, if you opt for a parking lot, be aware that the price per hour usually doesn’t include tax.

Can You Swim at Bayfront Park in Miami?

While the park is located along the bay, there is no beach for swimming. Leave your swim gear at the hotel, or head to South Beach for some of the best swimming in Miami.

Love beaches? Hope over to our ultimate guide to the best beaches in Miami.

Things to Do in Bayfront Park Miami

There are countless things to do in Bayfront Park, Miami. Beyond the incredible concerts at the amphitheater, there is a range of free things to do along with oh-so-worth-it Miami bucket list items. Let’s take a look at the best of the best.

Bayfront Park Miami Tropical Rock Garden

Free Things to Do in Bayfront Park

Bayfront Park is a great place to be on a sunny day, and you can enjoy an entire afternoon without spending a dime. All you need to enjoy the picture-perfect Bayfront Park is a good pair of walking shoes.

As a bonus, you can get to the park on the free Miami Metromover. Just get off at the Bayfront stop across the street from the park.

Insider Tip: Check the weather before you plan your day in the park. The weather in Miami can quickly turn during the summer, so it is worth looking up the forecast before you go.

While tourists often think Miami is the ideal summer destination, the Atlantic hurricane season runs from June through November. The wet season in Miami runs from the middle of May to the middle of August, so plan ahead to make sure you don’t get rained out.

Bayfront Park Free Yoga

There’s no doubt that movement-focused exercise like yoga can provide incredible benefits, giving your physical health and energy levels a generous boost.

At Bayfront Park, yoga experts and novices alike gather together, creating an inspiring and welcoming atmosphere where everyone can exercise while enjoying views of Miami’s spectacular coastline.

The instructor-led classes are donation-based, making it one of our favorite free things to do in Miami. Bring your mat and claim a spot of grass near the Tina Hills Pavilion.

Tina Hills Pavilion at Bayfront Park Miami

Here’s what to know before joining the next Bayfront Park yoga class.

  • The classes are held on Monday and Thursday at 6 pm and do not require any reservations.
  • You must be over 18 and sign a waiver to participate.
  • Bring your equipment – come prepared with at least a yoga mat, towel, and water to stay hydrated.
  • The outdoor classes are available on a first-come-first-serve basis — so the sooner you arrive, the better.

Unique Miami Experiences Planning Tip: Looking for something to get your adrenaline going after a relaxed day in the park and a chill yoga session? Why not test your acrobatic skills at the Flying Trapeze School? It is a true bucket list experience in Miami. Fly through the air and learn from the masters for an unforgettable day out.

Photoshoots and Picnic at Bayfront Park

Want to make a full day of it? Pack a picnic and bring your camera. There are impressive memorials scattered throughout the park. The monument dedicated to the Challenger space shuttle crew is well worth the walk for any would-be astronaut. Isamu Noguchi, one of the premier sculptors of the past century, designed this striking piece as well as the Light Tower and the Slide Mantra.

War Memorial Bayfront at Bayfront Park Miami

To dive a bit deeper into the local culture, keep your eyes peeled for the other iconic memorials like the Centennial Time Capsule, World War II Veterans’ Memorial, Mildred & Claude Pepper Fountain, as well as the statues of Claude Pepper, Julia Tuttle, and Christopher Columbus.

Bayfront Park Miami Bayview

As you explore the park, you will encounter unforgettable Port of Miami and Biscayne Bay views. It is well worth totting your camera to get shots of these or, at minimum, be sure to plan plenty of time for selfies.

Wander by the yachts moored along the walkway as you watch the world pass you by from the waterside. When you make your way up to the park’s northern side, you’ll come across Bayside Marketplace and the Skyviews Miami Observation Wheel.

Admire Sprawling Miami on the Skyviews Miami Observation Wheel

View of waterfront attraction with tour boat and ferris wheel

Forget rooftop restaurants! Towering over the city at almost 200 feet tall, the Skyviews Miami Observation Wheel is an iconic Miami spot. This sleek Ferris wheel situated directly along the coastline easily has one of the best panoramic views of Miami.

Soak in the Biscayne Bay views and the downtown Miami skyline from a glass gondola in the sky. Once you’re at the climax of this incredible ride, you’ll have an unforgettable view of all the bustling crowds and understated beauty that define this spectacular city.

If you’re only spending a day in Miami, this is easily one of the best things to add to a limited itinerary.

👉 Book your Skyviews Miami gondola ride in advance here!

Bayfront Park Events

Jam Out at the Bayfront Park Miami Amphitheater

On top of the regular free things to do at Bayfront Park, you’ll find a range of events at the Bayfront Park Miami Amphitheater.

The amphitheater has hosted many notable artists and Bayfront Park festivals including, Ultra Music Festival, one of the world’s best electronic music celebrations.

Before you visit Miami, explore the full calendar of Bayfront Park concerts to check out the upcoming lineup of events.

Luckily, making reservations to see your favorite artists is easy! After purchasing tickets, guests have various seating options, including assigned seating with a surcharge or access to the large stretch of grass surrounding the stage at no extra cost.

Concessions are plentiful, and most accept cards and cash, so you won’t have trouble securing things like drinks and rental chairs.

Bayfront Park Holiday Village

As for December in Miami, Bayfront Park turns into a winter wonderland. Bayfront Holiday Village has everything from holiday runs to ugly sweater contests to photos with Santa to a Santa Paws Dog Park.

Looking for more activities for the whole family? Hop over to our post Family Activities in South Florida: Top 45 Things to Do in Miami with Kids.

Bayfront Park Miami Restaurants

rotisserie chicken, fries and salad on white plates on table
Pollo y Jarras

When it comes to outstanding restaurants near Bayfront Park, there are plenty of new and familiar tastes to explore. There are dozens of restaurants within the vicinity.

You will find plenty of restaurants at Bayside Marketplace with everything from grab-and-go picks like Five Guys to artisanal gelato to premium pizza to fresh seafood to cool daiquiri bars.

Some of the best restaurants surrounding the Bayfront Park include Asian delights like Manila Kantina Buffet Asian Food alongside Latin favorites like Toro Toro and Pollo y Jarras.

Want to linger out in the Florida sun? You are going to love our Guide to the Best Outdoor Dining in Miami (& Drinks with a View).

Bayfront Park Miami Hotels

Looking for a hotel with an ocean view in downtown Miami? The Bayfront Park neighborhood is a fantastic option. Let’s take a quick look at a few central hotel picks.

Buildings around Downtown Miami Bayfront Park
  • InterContinental Miami: Nestled directly between the park and the bay, you’ll find the four-star hotel. With suites featuring living rooms, kitchens, and media rooms, it’s an excellent option for families and groups. And you’ve got to love the rooftop pool!
  • YVE Hotel Miami: This three-star pick is a comfortable spot in an excellent location for a low-cost downtown Miami hotel.
  • Mint House Miami Downtown: This chic boutique hotel has every from cozy studios to spacious three-bedroom apartments. If you want home away from home in Miami, this is the place to be. 
  • The Elser Hotel Miami: When it comes to luxury Biscayne Bay hotels, this prime spot will have you feeling like a royal.

Downtown Miami Tours

Once you have explored Bayfront Park, it’s time to explore the wider area. To truly see the best of Miami, go with a local. Here are a few of our favorite adventures.

green speed boat tour on water

Bayfront Park Miami: Takeaway Message

When exploring downtown Miami, you won’t want to miss Bayfront Park! It is a name-your-own-adventure oasis with something for everyone. If you wish to dance the night away at a concert or decompress with yoga in the park, this is one of Miami’s best spots.

City activity around Bayfront Park Miami

Here are some additional tips for visiting Bayfront Park:

  • Visit during the week: The park is less crowded during the week, especially during the morning and early evening.
  • Check the schedule: There are often concerts, festivals, and other events happening at the park. Check the schedule before you go to see if there is anything that interests you.
  • Bring a picnic lunch: There are a few food vendors in the park, but it is more affordable to bring your own lunch.
  • Wear comfortable shoes: There is a lot of walking to do in the park, so wear comfortable shoes.
  • Bring sunscreen and a hat: The sun can be strong in Miami, so be sure to bring sunscreen and a hat to protect yourself.

Lost in a sea of options? Let’s talk! Beyond sharing tips on our favorite local spots, did you know that we offer a South Florida travel planning service? Tell us about the trip you’re dreaming of, and we will hand-select every last detail to create your perfect escape.

Planning a trip to Miami? Here are some other resources you might find helpful:

Ultimate Downtown Miami Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Make the Most of Your Visit

Miami Packing List: What to Bring on a Beach Vacation

20+ Charming Places to Stay in Miami: Best Hotels, Neighborhoods, & More

10 Fascinating Miami Tours for Sightseeing: Exploring Miami’s Cultural Highlights

Insider’s Guide to 15 Popular Miami Neighborhoods

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