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Things to Do in Homestead, Florida: A First Time Visitor Guide

by Roslie
Published: Last Updated on
Schnebly Redland’s Winery and Brewery, Homestead Florida

Just 35 miles southwest of Miami, you’ll find a spacious suburb known as Homestead, Florida. Despite its distance from the downtown Miami core, there are plenty of fun things to do in Homestead, including some of the region’s natural beauty and most cherished landmarks.

Sandwiched between the Florida Everglades and the Atlantic Ocean, it’s the perfect opportunity for a day trip from Miami when you need a break from the city’s urban congestion.

In 1898, the South Dade area was populated by homesteaders, and farming became a way of life. Thanks to Henry Flagler’s extension of the railroad from Miami to Key West in 1904, farmers once constricted to traveling by way of the Homesteader’s Trail were now able to transport their produce throughout Southern Florida.

Homestead, Florida Landscape

Many of those who’d helped build the railroad stuck around and built a life for themselves, and in 1913 they founded the city of Homestead, making it the second-oldest city in Miami-Dade County.

Now, Homestead is a bustling community of families with many things to see and do, including national parks: Biscayne National Park and the Everglades National Park.

What is there to see in the area? You might be surprised.

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Things to Do in Homestead and Redland, Florida

Explore Redland

One can’t discuss Homestead country without including Redland, the rural, major agricultural area north of Homestead named for its rich copper red soil, and where you’ll find many of the area’s points of interest.

Homestead Florida Knaus Berry Farm

Redland is not just any farming community but the bread and basket of South Florida, with working farms and nurseries with exotic fruit trees, herb growers, ornamentals, and more.

In addition to agriculture, you will find products from the lush farms almost anywhere you look, including specialty stores, roadside stands with jellies, bakeries, open-air restaurants, and even filling stations.

Robert Is Here Milkshakes and Smoothies Stand

Be sure to include Redland in the mix and take in local wonders like Cauley Square, Knaus Berry Family Farm, and Redland’s Schnebly Winery, all of which I’ll touch upon later.

Zoo Miami

Zoo Miami Florida signage

Zoo Miami is the largest and oldest zoological garden in Florida. The zoo sits on nearly 750 acres of land near the intersection of Southwest 152nd Street and U.S. 1, about 12 miles southwest of downtown Miami.

Home to over 3000 animals, including over 30 endangered species, Zoo Miami, is the only sub-tropical zoo in the continental United States. Creatures are placed in enclosures alongside animals that would typically coexist in the wild. Also, like their wild counterparts, the animals are maintained in surroundings that closely resemble their native habitats.

In addition to being a major Miami tourist attraction, Zoo Miami is an active participant in wildlife conservation and education. The zoo has launched several successful breeding programs for endangered species and works with other zoos and organizations to help protect animals in the wild.

Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Zoo Miami is also involved in research. It has partnered with several universities to study the behavior and ecology of some of the zoo’s animals.

Wat Buddharangsi Buddhist Temple

Wat Buddharangsi Buddhist Temple building

The Wat Buddharangsi Buddhist Temple is located on five acres surrounded by fruit farms. Visitors can’t miss the elaborate gold details and intricate roofline. Inside, visitors find red carpets and a 23-foot Buddha sculpture transported all the way from Bangkok.

Guests from all nationalities are welcome as long as they follow temple etiquette, including conservative dress, shoe removal in the temple, and respect towards artifacts.

Plan your visit around celebrated festivals and special occasions to experience authentic Thai culture and cuisine.

Address: 15200 SW 240th St., Homestead, FL 33032

Top tours and activities to add to your Homestead itinerary

Action, Adventure, and Alligators

Monkey Jungle

Monkey Jungle offers fun for the entire family. Established in 1935 by animal behaviorist Joseph DuMond, Monkey Jungle is a discovery center and eco-show park affiliated with the DuMond Conservancy for Primates & Tropical Forests.

Animals live in a 30-acre environment that mimics their natural habitat. Guests are greeted by the Java troop of over 90 monkeys upon entering, but the excitement doesn’t stop there.

Monkey Jungle is home to over 300 primates, most of which run free on the preserve, and guests get to watch and learn all about them during their visit.

Address: 14805 SW 216th St, Miami, FL 33170

Biscayne National Park

If nature and adventure are more your style, then Biscayne National Park is your ideal destination. The park is home to coral reefs, islands, and mangroves that blend, creating a diverse wildlife ecosystem.

At Biscayne National Park-Dante Fascell Visitor Center, you’ll find maps, wildlife exhibits, educational films, and walking paths along the water’s edge with stunning views of Biscayne Bay and the mangrove coastline.

Biscayne National Park Homestead, Florida

Snorkeling, scuba diving, boat launch, sailing boats, and walks along the boardwalk are just a few outdoor activities available at Biscayne National Park, and one of the amazing ways to experience South Florida outdoors.

There are no entrance fees for Biscayne National Park. Tours are available, but as a national park, you can also explore on your own. Explore the trail and stop at the picnic tables for lunch.

Address: 9700 SW 328th St, Homestead, FL 33033

Everglades National Park

Visiting Homestead allows you to see the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Everglades National Park. The protected natural habitat is home to an incredible number of wild animals in shallow bays, mangroves, and swamps.

Everglades National Park Shark Valley Trail

At the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center, you’ll find information about the park, educational displays, and films, along with a series of walking trails just a short drive from the visitor center.

The Everglades is a wetland. Bring sunscreen and insect repellent to protect against the sun’s rays, mosquitoes, and other biting insects, particularly in the summer.

Local Tip: If visiting Homestead in the winter, the city offers the free Homestead National Parks Trolley with service to the Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park, and Homestead Bayfront. The best part? The park admission fees are waived for those on the trolley!

  • The free National Park Trolley service is available every Saturday and Sunday (from December through April, at Losner Park in Downtown Homestead, Florida. Located: 104 N. Krome Ave., Homestead, FL 33030.
  • If driving your own vehicle, free parking is available near the Homestead National Park Trolley stop at 1 Washington Avenue, Homestead, FL 33030. You can park there and join the trolley to the parks.

Everglades Alligator Farm

A trip to the Everglades wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Everglades Alligator Farm. South Florida’s oldest alligator farm, it’s the perfect place to learn about alligators (and their differences from saltwater crocodiles), watch feeding demonstrations, and catch your first airboat ride exploring the River of Grass.

Everglades National Park Airboat Ride Homestead Florida

Admission Costs and Operating Hours: The all-inclusive package price is $28 per adult and $21 per child. They are open daily from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Address: 40351 SW 192nd Ave, Homestead, FL 33034

Homestead Bayfront Park

And, of course, another great reason for a day trip to Homestead is to get away from the crowd. Away from the throngs of tourists, experience a local beach at Homestead Bayfront Park.

Relax and explore the natural atoll pool adjacent to the bay, take a boat out, or linger over a long picnic.

Admission Costs: There is a per-car entrance fee of $5 during the week and $7 on the weekend, a boat ramp access fee of $13 on weekdays, and $17 on weekends. It is important to note that the park does not allow flotation devices at these beaches.

Address: 9698 SW 328th St, Homestead, FL 33033

Family Fun, Farm Animals, and Fresh Food

Coral Castle

Homestead offers families several fun places to explore and see unique creations, as you’ll find at Coral Castle. There’s a bit of mystery behind its construction, and the awe-inspiring work will leave you amazed.

Coral Castle Homestead Florida
Photo Courtesy of Michelle Maria / Unsplash
  • Built by Edward Leedkalnin, the sculpture garden is constructed entirely out of coral limestone. 
  • The stones are held together without mortar.
  • The weight of each one sitting atop another keeps the structure together. 
  • It is so skillful that no light passes through the joints. 
  • The stones have not shifted even over the decades. 
  • The objects made from single pieces of stone that weigh, on average, 14 tons each. 

The mystery is how Mr. Leedkalnin accomplished this feat without using any heavy machinery.

Admission Costs and Operating Hours: Coral Castle museum is open daily. Admission is $18 for ages 13 and up, and children ages 7-12 are admitted for $8. Tours are available Sunday – Thursday from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Admission Costs and Operating Hours: Coral Castle museum is open daily. Admission is $18 for ages 13 and up, and children ages 7-12 are admitted for $8. Tours are available Sunday – Thursday from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Address: 28655 S Dixie Hwy, Homestead, FL 33033

Fruit and Spice Park

Located in Redland, Fruit and Spice Park is a lush sub-tropical garden with over 500 varieties of exotic fruits, herbs, spices, and nuts from around the globe.

The recreational and educational park and botanical gardens arranged by regions, including Africa, Australia, and the Mediterranean, offer a better understanding of the relationships between people and plants.

The only public garden of its type in the United States, it offers year-round tours guided by experts and classes and workshops.

Expect a fair amount of walking when exploring this park. Strollers are permitted, and tour vehicles are accessible to those with disabilities.

Admission Costs and Operating Hours: Park admission is $10 per adult and $3 for children ages 6-11, and it’s open seven days a week, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day).

Address: 24801 SW 187th Ave, Homestead, FL 33031

Cauley Square Historic Village

In the early part of the 20th Century, this area began as a shipping area connected to the railroad. It expanded to incorporate warehouses and housing for workers in the area.

Rescued from disaster more than once, Cauley Square Historic Village has survived hurricanes and economic downturns but thrives in Redland today.

Lush Garden House Cauley Square Historic Railroad Village Homestead Florida

With creative interest, the area was developed into a shopping area, restaurants, and acres of lush tropical gardens. It now serves not only as a commercial location but is a popular venue for weddings, conferences, and social events.

Stroll through the tiny streets, visit the enticing shops, select a restaurant, particularly the popular Tea Room, and absorb the scenic pleasures of the quaint Cauley Square Historic Village.

Check their calendar for special programs for holidays like Christmas, Easter, and Valentine’s Day and expos for antique cars, fashion, and live music.

Address: 22400 Old Dixie Hwy, Miami, FL 33170

Knaus Berry Farm

Another popular stop among visitors to Homestead and Redland area is the famous Knaus Berry Farm.

Knaus Berry Farm Homestead, Florida Bakery

What started as a small roadside stand selling strawberries has grown to a world-class bakery, produce garden, and ice cream shop featuring cinnamon rolls, cookies, and shakes.

Knaus Berry Farm Homestead, Florida cinnamon rolls to go

While closed for the summer, Knaus Berry Farm is a great place to find delicious sweets alongside fresh vegetables and, of course, their delectable strawberries throughout the fall, winter, and spring months.

Knaus Berry Farm Homestead, Florida U-Pick Strawberry and Tomatoes

Join the line of shoppers and chat for only a few minutes, and you will find yourself among locals and visitors alike. Make it your new tradition to line up for the indescribably delicious cinnamon rolls that people are willing to wait hours for. You can thank me later.

Operating hours during the season: Knaus Berry Farm is open Monday to Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. They are closed on Sunday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day.

Address: 15980 SW 248th St, Homestead, FL 33031

Robert is Here

Another local fave is Robert is Here fruit stand. At this family-owned business, you’ll find rare and exotic fruits and vegetables, most of which are grown on their farms.

Robert Is Here Homestead Florida Front Entrance

Fun for the younger crowd featuring farm animals, a playground, and picnic areas. It has expanded to include a petting area that includes cows, pigs, and emus. They even have a koi pond and aviary.

Robert Is Here Homestead Florida Produce

Try a range of fresh tropical fruit, along with unique treats like key lime pie and milkshakes. Packaged products include jams, jellies, marmalades, sauces, salsas, dips, relishes, mustards, seasonings, etc.

Robert Is Here Guanabana (Sour Sop) Milkshake Smoothie

Their milkshakes and smoothies are made to order, free of artificial colors or preservatives. Our go-to’s are the mango-passionfruit and the guanabana smoothies.

Robert is Here is the perfect pit-stop on the road to Key West or elsewhere within the Florida Keys.

Operating Hours: Open seven days a week, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day). On weekends and holidays, Robert is Here hosts live musicians to entertain you while you shop.

Address: 19200 SW 344th St., Homestead, FL 33034

Exotic Flowers, Wine, and Hidden Gems

RF Orchids

RF Orchids have been growing their lush tropical garden of flowering orchids at their nursery in Homestead for over 50 years. They are the experts on caring for this breathtaking plant. Vibrant colors and tantalizing scents make each species of orchid unique.

Operating Hours: Open from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Tuesday – Sunday, and closed on Mondays

Address: 28100 SW 182nd Ave, Homestead, FL 33030

Schnebly Redland’s Winery and Brewery

Schnebly Redland’s Winery offers wine enthusiasts the opportunity to taste the tropics surrounded by paradise. Sit and relax as you listen to the waterfall cascading down the rock wall as you sip a summertime favorite, sparkling lychee.

Schnebly Redland’s Winery and Brewery

The wines are made from local fruits, as are the beers. For brewskies, try Jack O’Spades or Miami Winter Ale. They offer tasting events and tours of both facilities.

They also offer online purchases of both wine and beer products and ancillary items like tap handles.

To make it even better, they have a restaurant that serves both lunch and dinner. Sundays mean brunch with a special offer of only $25 per person for unlimited mimosas and beermosas through the dining experience.

Address: 30205 SW 217th Ave, Homestead, FL 33030

Homestead History, Shopping, and Culture

Homestead-Miami Motorplex

Our last stop takes us to the Homestead-Miami Motorplex, located on-site of NASCAR’s Homestead-Miami Speedway. This outdoor go-kart venue offers racing excitement seven days a week, year-round.

Designed by professionals, this adrenaline-pumping racetrack offers kart rentals where you’ll strap in and race at speeds up to 45 mph on the 0.3-mile, three-turn circuit. Kart owners can bring their own ride and race on the 0.7-mile, 12-turn circuit.

Operating Hours: Open Wednesday – Sunday, excluding a few major holidays; hours vary depending on special events – check their website for track availability

Address: 1835 SE 38th Ave, Homestead, FL 33035

Redland Market Village

Homestead Florida Redland Market Village

Every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, you can catch the Redland Market Village, which combines both a flea market and a farmers’ market for a range of cool items. And, speaking of cool, if you find you just need a little AC while you’re shopping, you can head into the market’s indoor section to find produce and fish.

Even if you’re not shopping for fresh produce or baked goods, you’ll find clothing, jewelry, automotive items, gifts, and even pets. It all stretches across nearly 30 acres and also includes a kids play area, live music, and more than 20 food trucks to grab a meal or even some ice cream to beat the Florida heat.

Address: 24420 S Dixie Hwy., Redland, FL 33032

Harris Field

Harris Field is a public park located in the heart of Miami, Florida. The park is home to various sports and recreation facilities, including a baseball field, football field, basketball courts, soccer fields, and playground. Harris Field is also home to a number of community events and programs throughout the year.

Florida Keys Outlet Marketplace

Homestead is home to the Florida Keys Outlet Marketplace, where you’ll find all your designer favorites. This open-air mall offers the best in clothing stores, shoes, fashion, and kids apparel.

There are five restaurants to choose from and an outdoor playground making this a fun, family-friendly place to visit in Homestead.

Address: 250 E Palm Dr, Florida City, FL 33034

Historic Town Hall of Homestead

The Historic Homestead Town Hall Museum was created to honor the memory of Thomas Alexander Campbell, for whom Campbell Drive is named.

Built-in 1917 served as Homestead’s town hall and now houses videos, historical pieces, and photographs tracing Homestead’s history.

Admission and Operating Hours: The museum is free to the public and is open Wednesday through Saturday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and hours during Homestead’s special events.

Address: 41 North Krome Avenue, Homestead, Florida 33030

Homestead Station

Homestead Station is a welcome addition to the revitalization of downtown Homestead. This family entertainment complex contains a movie theatre, bowling alley, and arcade in addition to the much-needed transit center and parking garage connecting Homestead to Greater Miami via the metro train system.

Address: 4 S Krome Ave, Homestead, FL 33030

Restaurants in Homestead, Florida – Where to Eat

Homestead has an eclectic mix of ethnic foods, and choosing where to dine when you visit Homestead may be the most challenging part of planning your trip.

Of course, there are the standard coffee shop and fast-food giants around every corner and the usual big chain restaurants we all love. But you haven’t driven all this way for the same old thing.

Due to the area’s farming industry, there is a large migrant population, with many starting local businesses, including restaurants rivaling many of the places you’ll find on South Beach. If you’re into Mexican food, then a stop by one of the many local restaurants is well deserved.

El Puerto de Vallarta Mexican Seafood Homestead, Florida

Come hungry and check out a few of these renowned Homestead eateries:

  • El Puerto de Vallarta Mexican Seafood $$ – This is our go-to (seafood-centered) Mexican spot in Homestead
  • La Quebradita Mexican Restaurant Grill $– authentic Mexican dishes with generous portions
  • Taqueria Morelia $ – Stop for gas and pick up fresh, simple, and tasty tacos all in one-stop
  • Yardie Spice $$ – stellar Caribbean cuisine with warm and friendly service
  • Shiver’s BBQ $$ – classic smoked barbecue in Homestead
  • Four Eight Restaurant and Lounge $$ – serves an upscale menu of brunch, lunch, and dinner

Local Food Gems: Best Places to Eat in Miami
Must-Try Foods in Miami (and Where to Eat Them!)
Your Guide to the Best Outdoor Dining in Miami

Is Homestead Florida Safe?

Homestead is generally considered safe. Overall, the city is relatively safe compared to other places in Florida. If you are concerned about safety, it is always best to take precautions and be aware of your surroundings.

It is always a good idea to travel in groups and be aware of your surroundings when traveling in unfamiliar areas.

What to Do in Homestead: Final Thoughts

From its humble beginnings in agriculture to its decimation by Hurricane Andrew, Homestead has fought back against adversity to become the thriving small town-big city, a melting pot of culture, character, and love of community.

The next time you desire a road trip, Homestead will offer you some interesting sights to see, food to eat, and beverages to enjoy.

The next time you desire a road trip, Homestead will offer you some interesting sights to see, good food trucks and restaurants, and beverages to enjoy.

Homestead and Redland Itinerary Map

Headed to the Florida Keys? Check out 101 Bucket List-Worthy Things to Do in the Florida Keys!


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