Family Vacation Fun
- Nature Walks (and Wades, Too).
A naturalist-guided outing at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center in Crandon Park takes guests across coastal hammocks, tidal pools, butterfly gardens and hands-on marine exploration in the Bear Cut Nature Preserve.
- Park Plays.
An ever-shifting offshore sandbar protects Crandon Park’s 2-mile lagoon-style beach from crashing surf. Swimmers can easily paddle out to the sandbar, then walk or wade along its length; farther out, kite boarders can test their stand-up skills against the ocean breezes.
- Meet Your Match.
Book a few hours of play at Crandon Tennis Center. The home of the Miami Open houses more than two dozen hard and green clay courts, open for adults and juniors. The nearby full-service pro shop offers lessons, equipment, apparel and restringing services.
- Try the Tequila.
Guests of The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami enjoy complimentary tequila tastings at 6 p.m. daily at Cantina Beach. Learn how to discern nuances among different types with the help of the resort’s “tequiler,” who also shares facts and dispels some myths about the spirit.
- Join the Counter Culture.
The breakfast options are plentiful at Donut Gallery Diner, a 45-year fixture in Harbor Plaza. The only thing you won’t find on the menu? Doughnuts. (The restaurant opened in 1972 in what had been a donut shop.)
- Get Some Space.
Venture into mainland Miami for early entry to the Frost Museum of Science. In the Planetarium, viewers take a virtual trip into outer space via an immersive 16-million-color, 8K visual system.
- The Great Estate.
Step back a century and explore Vizcaya. Industrial heir James Deering’s Italianate estate, built in the early 1900s for an estimated $26 million, now is a National Historic Landmark open for tours of the 38,000-square-foot main house, 10 acres of formal gardens and a collection of 2,000 orchid specimens.
- Club Med.
Continue your Mediterranean-inspired moment with dinner at Costa Med Bistro + Wine, where specialties include carpaccio di manzo, squid-ink risotto with calamari, and Milanese-style entrecôte.
- Current Affairs.
Hobie Beach, just off the Rickenbacker Causeway, attracts thrill seekers willing to trade plentiful sand dunes for the perfect waves. These waters are made for windsurfing, kayaking, water-biking or sailing a catamaran.
- Into the Light.
Tuck into modern-coastal fare at Lightkeepers, an oceanfront restaurant that brings island history to life. Enjoy the decadent Sunday brunch that offers something for everyone, from a chilled seafood selection to a make-your-own-waffle station.
- Play Time.
Enroll the kids in a Ritz Kids resort experience, where they’ll be swept away by everything from coral reefs and forests to recycling and sustainability.
- Train Dolphins and Seals.
Become a marine mammal trainer with a behind-the-scenes experience at Miami Seaquarium and spend the day working side by side with dolphins and harbor seals. Or affix your state-of-the-art diving helmet and take an underwater walking journey through a 300,000-gallon tropical reef, where divers feed stingrays and fish.
- Cantina Cuisine.
The oceanfront Mexican restaurant at Cantina Beach offers sophisticated takes on traditional favorites, including snapper ceviche and ahi tuna tacos. Pair any dish with the perfect tequila or margarita with the guidance of tequiler Heriberto Oviedo, who trained in the agave-growing regions of Mexico.
- Late Night Snacks.
Pick up a few of your favorite munchies for a family movie night at Key Pantry, an open-style marketplace café at The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne.
- Dock Holiday.
Rent one of the Stiltsville structures in Biscayne National Park for an all-day getaway. The seven secluded homes rise on pilings above the sand shoals, roughly 1 mile south of the tip of Key Biscayne. Access to the buildings is available by boat — and permit — only.
- Surrender to Serenity.
Retreat back to The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Key Biscayne. The Power Hour body treatment includes salt and oil exfoliation and a back massage to reawaken the senses, while the After Sun Ritual soothes and nourishes skin with cooling and moisturizing oils and extracts. Teen Pampering treatments are available for the older kids in the family, too.
- Burgers on the Beach.
Featuring plush sofas and cabanas, a gourmet burger selection and a wide array of champagne and rose, Dune Burgers on the Beach has something to please every palate. Enjoy a juicy burger will soaking in the ocean views.
- It’s a Snap!
Capture a magnificent memento — a stunning family portrait by The Photography Concierge — during the “golden hour” just after sunrise.
- See the Light.
Tour the lighthouse at Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park. The tower saved more than sailors; during the 1800s, escaped slaves would rendezvous there for travel to safety in the British Bahamas.
- Sail at Sunset.
Charter an evening cruise. The concierge at The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami will arrange a catamaran tour of Biscayne Bay complete with wine, beer, sodas and snacks.