Gay Vacations in Miami, Florida

Night over Ocean Drive in the Art Deco District in Miami, Florida
Ocean Drive in Miami's Art Deco District, Florida (Rene Frederick/Digital Vision/Getty)

Miami Highlights

  • Throw in a cruise. The Port of Miami is the world's busiest cruise ship port, and many LGBT cruises leave from here to the Caribbean. If you want to experience both Miami and beyond, this is a great way to do it.
  • Consider going in summer. Sure, Miami can be humid and possibly rainy in summer, but hotel prices are way down, the crowds are smaller, and you’ll feel much more like a local. And temperatures between winter and summer are not as different as in other parts of the U.S. No wonder summer is slowly becoming an in-the-know time to go.
  • Rent a scooter. If you're staying in South Beach, rent a scooter to enjoy Miami's great weather. Parking a car is a pain in South Beach, and you really won't need one unless you plan to spend time off the island of Miami Beach.

Miami–rap stars, muscle beach dudes, sexy Latinas, Art Deco hotels, streams of European tourists, all under the swaying palm trees–is nothing less than one of the world’s great metropolitan scenes. The Art Deco jewel hotels of South Beach, once decrepit, are now home to visiting supermodels and music producers. New ones are opening all the time, while luxury condo high-rises are everywhere. Ocean Drive, the drag that fronts the sand in South Beach, is brimming with trendy outdoor cafes where posh cars roll on by. Perfect gay bodies adorn the beach at 12th Street and Ocean in the latest swimwear, and gays are such an integral part of the scene you couldn’t imagine Miami without them.

South Beach (separated from the Florida mainland by Biscayne Bay) used to be gayer than it is today, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find a lot of guys at the homo beach at 12th Street. Downtown Miami, once a boring business district, is now home to luxury hotels and condos, as well as huge nightclubs, many of which have gay nights. (Fort Lauderdale, with its plethora of gay bars, is where a lot of Miami gays go for nightlife too.) The Design District north of downtown is an area that gay couples are buying up homes in and gentrifying, and you’ll also find gays living around Lincoln and Alton roads on Miami Beach. South Beach's pedestrian-only Lincoln Road Mall has some of the best shopping in Miami (there’s also good shopping on Collins between 5th and 10th streets). Other general areas worth checking out are Coral Gables (Miami's high-rent neighborhood, with elegant hotels and dining) and Little Havana (home to a Cuban population and some gays).

Attractions are aplenty across Miami – from the grand Vizcaya Museum and Gardens (home of Thanksgiving’s gay circuit White Party) in north Coconut Grove; the Miami-Dade Cultural Center (with its eclectic Miami Art Museum); and the Wolfsonian-FIU Museum (with its energetic collection of everything from propaganda posters to Art Nouveau furniture). Miami hosts a slew of worthwhile gay and lesbian events, including the Winter Party in March, a LGBT film fest in late April, the hot lesbian Aqua Girl party in May, and the gay men of color party, Sizzle, a five-day event over Memorial Day weekend.

Published: 16 Jul 2008 | Last Updated: 9 Aug 2012
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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