‘Tis the season to be jolly! And what better way to do that than exploring the many fun and festive things going on in the city this year? From fun holiday pop-up bars to Miami’s first-ever Snow Carnival, here are some holly jolly things to do in Miami this holiday season!
One of the many spectacular light shows you’ll find around Miami this time of year is Fairchild’s NightGarden. This unmissable celebration of light takes over the 83-acre botanic gardens annually, with several beloved installations returning this year, as well as new lights (and snowfall) for the season! Click here to get your tickets to NightGarden.
Seeing as snow is an impossible phenomenon here in Florida, you can experience the closest thing to a flurry of snowflakes, throwing snowballs and going snow tubing here in the city! This magical winter wonderland known as Snow Carnival houses joyful characters like reindeer and a friendly Yeti, festive pathways, snow tubing slides, a dazzling tree and snow much more fun you won’t want to miss out on! Get tickets to Snow Carnival here.
‘Tis the season for holiday bars and one of the city’s favorite taco joints is transforming into a winter dreamland decked out in twinkling lights, festive garlands and drink specials (in partnership with Patrón tequila) to get you into the spirit of the season. Check it out here!
Miami Lakes’ only speakeasy, Santa Diabla, has a Christmas takeover and it’s one even the Grinch approves of! There’s festive decor everywhere you look and exclusive cocktails to be enjoyed, from the Grinch’s Coconut Cup, a dark and white rum with green mint coquito, coconut whipped cream and green sprinkles to the O Holy (Dark) Night with coffee espresso, spiced latte and Ketel One Vodka. Learn more here.
For the first time since 2019, Luminosa is returning to Jungle Island, lighting up 1.35 miles of the park with a kaleidoscope of colors and millions of LED lights, in addition to live acrobatic acts and artisan vendors. This year’s Festival of Lights is set to be larger and more awe-inspiring than ever, with more than 40 stunning lamp scenes crafted by 150 artisans. Find tickets to Luminosa here.
Step into Miami’s most exquisite spaces to experience some of the most treasured holiday classics. This season, you’ll be able to enjoy four different special concerts series including:
It may feel like it’s summer all year long here, but that doesn’t mean we can’t partake in wintery activities like ice skating! The LOOP (Las Olas Oceanside Park) is bringing holiday cheer to Fort Lauderdale for its annual WONDERLAND series. In addition to tons of holiday cheer, a market, performances and photo ops, they’re debuting a 4,000-square-foot ice skating rink, perfect for feeling extra festive! Read more here.
While you’re up in Fort Lauderdale, AirOtic Soiré has returned to Wilton Manors with unbelievable stunts, seductive choreography and incredible costumes — all with a holiday twist! Take a sensory journey to the North Pole, uncover Santa’s secrets and enjoy a modern take on your favorite Christmas classics with a cirque flair. Snag tickets to Naughty AirOtic: A Circus-Style Burlesque Show here.
Take in stunning rooftop views and sip a cocktail while you listen to jazz tunes and soothing bossa nova jingles. Here are two upcoming Concerts Under the Stars at at Elevar Rooftop in Wynwood this season:
❄️ A Very Sinatra Christmas Special at Elevar Rooftop on December 22
❄️ A Very Bossa Nova Christmas at Elevar Rooftop on December 23
For three weekends in December, three Miami Beach buildings will come alive with delightful Christmassy imagery and musical performances! The festive experience, named the Miami Beach Holiday Festival of Lights, will feature cutting-edge projection mapping technology that will play off the buildings’ various shapes in perfect unison with the rhythm of the music. See the full schedule here.
11. Catch a show of Miami City Ballet’s The Nutcracker
The Miami City Ballet is going on the road with George Balanchine’s magical production of The Nutcracker to spread the holiday magic across the 305. This year, the production will be at the Adrienne Arsht Center from Friday, December 15 through Sunday, December 24; the Broward Center in Fort Lauderdale from Friday, December 8 through Sunday, December 10; and at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach starting Thursday, December 28 through Saturday, December 30!
If there’s one thing Miami does a LOT of when the holidays are in full swing, it’s lights. Whether it’s festive displays, the lighting of a giant tree or a street lined with merry and bright twinkling lights, they’re difficult to avoid. We’ve gathered the most anticipated holiday lights returning in full force, from Bayfront Park and Zoo Lights to The Enchanted Place of North Miami. See the full list here.
13. Combine art and partying at Art With Me
Returning to Virginia Key Beach Park ahead of Art Basel is Art With Me. From December 8 to 10, the electronic music and art festival will bring together jaw-dropping installations, top-tier international musicians, craft and organic food vendors, children’s activities and a comprehensive wellness program. On the line-up are 90s dance icons Underworld, Lee Burridge presents All Day I Dream, LA rapper and beatsmith Channel Tres, Francesca Lombardo and more.
14. Watch a holiday flick on a rooftop
Grab your friends, family and other half to cozy up and put a twist on your usual movie nights at Rooftop Cinema Club. Of course, this time of year brings all things holly and jolly, so they’ll be screening festive favorites like Home Alone, Elf, It’s A Wonderful Life and The Holiday. And you already know cooler weather is on the horizon so these are the perfect plans for that!
15. How about a movie by the pool?
Every Friday night in December, The Gates Hotel in South Beach will transform its pool deck into an enchanting open-air cinema featuring classic holiday movies under the sky. Guests can sip on s’mores cocktails and mocktails, indulge in buttery popcorn from the hotel’s popcorn machine and relax on comfortable bean bag chairs while watching their favorite holiday flicks.
16. Shop at the THesis Hotel’s holiday marketplaces
Christmastime is swiftly approaching and many of us have already worked on our holiday shopping lists. If you’re just getting started, that’s what holiday markets are here for! THesis Hotel is hosting two marketplaces in partnership with Herpreneur by Liz: the Fall Bazaar on November 18 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and the Holiday Bazaar on December 13 from 4 to 9 p.m. This is a great opportunity to support local, female-owned small businesses and find great items from unique jewelry to candles to home goods and vegan sweets.
17. Jam out to The Black Keys, Jelly Roll and more at Riptide Music Fest
Good vibes are on the horizon as the ultimate end-of-the-year party, Riptide Music Festival, returns to Fort Lauderdale Beach Park for two days (December 2-3). Headliners The Black Keys and Jelly Roll will be joined by Bleachers, Lovejoy, Cannons, Silversun Pickups, Misterwives, Beach Weather and more.
With its velvety coconut cream, sweet condensed milk, warm cinnamon and a bit (or a lot) of rum, there’s nothing quite like a good cup of coquito to cheer to the festive season. The Puerto Rican delight offers a wonderful way of getting into the holiday season. So grab a bottle at one of these awesome spots and let the coquito flow!