How to Make your Layover at Miami Airport an Unforgettable Experience
A direct flight from your departure airport to your destination would definitely be ideal. Still, if you are up for a layover at Miami Airport, you can make your time at the airport a memorable part of your journey. Even more so, a long layover at Miami Airport will allow you to meet the exotic city or at least some of its top attractions.
Things to Do During a Short Layover at Miami Airport
During a short layover at Miami Airport, you should explore all the services and facilities that Miami Airport has to offer you. Spread into 3 terminal buildings interconnecting via bridges or moving walkways, MIA Airport guarantees a pleasant traveling experience for its passengers. However, you should keep in mind that apart from concourses D and E, and H and J linked airside, transfers between all the other concourses require re-checking into your departure terminal before your onward flight.
Discover the MIA Airport Eating and Drinking Options
Miami Airport houses more than 100 eating and drinking stores. From fancy restaurants to fast-food chains and from cafes and bars to food stations, MIA passengers have plenty of options in their hands. Naturally, Cuban cuisine plays the leading role. Still, there are plenty of alternatives to satisfy all culinary preferences.
The Shop-till-you-Dop Option
If you are a shopping-lover, you’ll be glad to know that Miami International Airport has a wide variety of retail shops. In fact, it hosts more than 120 of them, thus having everything you may need to go on a shopping spree.
The “Online” Layover at Miami Airport
Whether you have unfinished work projects, want to check your social, or even watch a movie, you can benefit from the airport’s free Wi-Fi services. Still, you should take into consideration that free Wi-Fi use comes with in-between ads. If you want an ads-free internet experience, you’ll have to pay a fee.
Exploit Miami Airport’s Spa Amenities
Can you think of a more relaxed way to spend your layover at Miami Airport? Pamper yourself by indulging in top-quality beauty treatments, massages, or even a mani-pedi session.
Exercise or Meditate
Miami International Airport houses a Yoga Room on concourse H, near Door 21. Open from 09:00 am to 09:00 pm Yoga Room is the ideal spot to mediate or stretch yourself between flights. Please remember that it is located landside, meaning that you’ll have to check out and re-pass through security.
Enjoy a Walk
Outside MIA’s Arrivals level, in front of concourse E, you can find a park area with trees, fountains, and comfortable benches. However, it lies in the pre-security area as well.
Opt for a Religious Experience
On concourse D -between International Arrivals and Carousel 22- lies a Chapel, open to everyone. There, you can perform your religious duties or enjoy a spiritual time. Christian services take place on Tuesdays at 07:30 pm, every 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month at noon (in English), and every 2nd and 4th Wednesday in Spanish. Finally, a Catholic Mass is also scheduled every Saturday at 07:00 pm.
Explore the Airport’s Children’s Area
A playground is to be found on concourse E near Gate E5 for MIA’s little passengers. There, children have the time of their lives, while parents keep their peace of mind during their layover at Miami Airport.
Miami International Airport is full of artwork. Scattered around the airport’s premises, magnificent pieces of art are to be found everywhere to create an artistic and elevated atmosphere. What’s more, many exhibitions and events take place from time to time at Miami Airport.
Settle on a Luxury Option
That is one of the plenty of lounge areas lying in all Miami airport terminals. Some of them are available only to members. Still, you’ll find an adequate range of lounges accessible for an extra fee. Enjoy the calm and relaxing environment, and rejuvenate yourself before your next flight.
Sleep During your Miami Airport Layover
Unfortunately, you won’t find designated sleeping areas, while most of the seating has armrests. However, you’ll find carpeted floors on the North terminal, convenient for a few-hour rest.
Check-in to Miami International Airport Hotel
Miami Airport houses an inside-the-terminal hotel -Miami International Airport Hotel- offering day-room packages as well. Nevertheless, the 3-star hotel lies landside. Thus, if you want to check in during your layover, you’ll have to pass through security. Please note that day rooms are dependent on the hotel’s availability.
Our Tip 1: Smoking areas are to be found outside the Arrivals and Departures levels (1st and 2nd floor), across concourses D, E, F, H, and J, as well as inside concourse D on the TGI Friday’s smoking lounge (near Gate D36).
Our Tip 2: Persons with difficulties can head to the Multi-Sensory Rooms situated post-security at concourse D and the H-J connector. There, they can find the calm and quietness they might need after all the airport’s bustling noises.
Our Tip 3: You can download the MIA App and stay updated about all the airport’s news.
Things to Do near Miami Airport
During a long layover at Miami Airport, you should leave the airport and go meet the exotic City of Miami. Depending on the hours you have to spend, you can choose among the top things to do near Miami Airport (or a little bit further from the airport complex!).
Our Tip: Miami Airport is a really busy airport. Thus, you should allow enough time to be back at the airport and check-in stress-free.
Going Downtown is Always a Good Idea
Visiting the city center will allow you to feel the actual rhythm of the city, being a part of its everyday life, at least for a while. Get a glimpse of the bustling and loud heart of the city, wander around, take pics, shop, or enjoy a quick meal. The ride from Miami Airport to Miami downtown usually lasts 20 minutes. However, heavy traffic may raise that time significantly. Thus, you should pay attention to be back at the airport on time.
South Beach is a City’s Must
If you have the time, you should undoubtedly spend some time at the iconic South Beach. Located 12.5 miles (20km) from MIA, you won’t need more than a 25-minute drive (under normal traffic) to get from Miami Airport to South Beach. If you don’t want to simply relax at the beach, relishing the Miami sun and the ocean spreading in front of you, you can walk around the picturesque streets, have a quick bite or a refreshing drink, or do some shopping at Lincoln Road Mall. Head to the one-of-a-kind Ocean Drive -the unique city’s street- or if you are in for a more “historical” experience, visit the breathtaking Holocaust Memorial, only a 10-minute drive away.
Everglades Park is a Lifetime Experience
If time is on your side, don’t overthink it. Everglades National Park resembles none of your previous experiences. Get a good glimpse of Miami’s wild nature and life and a close look at the impressive alligators. Nevertheless, make sure you have time to catch your next flight. The ride from Miami International Airport to Everglades Park is around 1 hour, and each tour lasts about 60 minutes as well.
The “Cuban” Feeling is Closer than You Think
Only a 10-15-minute drive from MIA lies the famous Little Havana, the area that brings the Carribean atmosphere and style a few minutes away from the main airport in Miami, being without a doubt one of the top things to do near Miami Airport. If you want to spend a totally exotic layover, the nearby neighborhood should be your destination. On the other hand, if you want to elevate the time spent in Little Havana, you can opt for a food tour, exploring the spicy gastronomical tradition of the area.
The “Artistic” Alternative
It comes as no surprise that Wynwood Art District is the place to be for travelers wanting to give a more “artistic” character to their layover. Lying also close to the airport, the Wynwood District will amaze you with its galleries and antique shops, its street art and murals, but also with its dining options.
Get a Glimpse of the Opulent Side of Miami
If you want to peek into the city’s luxury side, you can settle on a boat cruise for your layover at Miami Airport. You’ll find organized boat tours around millionaire’s homes and Venetian Islands, checking the celebrities’ mansions while also spotting South Beach from the sea.
Coral Gables is One of the Must Things to Do Near Miami Airport
Lying 20-30 minutes away from Miami Airport, Coral Gables is definitely recommended for your layover time. The elegant district is scattered with Mediterranean-like buildings, radiating an overall luxury feeling. Explore the beautiful mansions, walk along the romantic boulevards, or indulge in the luxury shopping experience or the gourmet cooking scene that is Coral Gables.
Give your Layover at Miami Airport a more “Natural” Vibe
If you want to enjoy some hours in nature, discovering a wide range of rare plant populations and species while getting informed about the natural wealth of Miami, you should head to Flamingo Gardens. Visit the botanical garden and support its team efforts to preserve the area’s natural heritage, as well as nurse the injured animals from the Everglades National Park.
See as Much as you Can, as Quickly as you Can
You have three options to get to know as many of Miami’s attractions as possible without wasting time or adding unnecessary hassle to your layover. To begin with, you can opt for a hop-on hop-off bus ride, exploring the city in a 2-hour tour during which you can hop off the bus wherever and whenever feel like it. Alternatively, speedboat tours are ideal to take a look at the city from the sea. Finally, if you want a more-to-the-point option, you should settle on one of the organized tours, introducing tourists to the different parts of Miami in the most relaxed way.