Located in South Florida, with gorgeous beaches, lush wildlife, and rich history, Miami is a city that keeps on giving. It’s little wonder then that there’s plenty to do in Miami for couples, and that includes gay couples too! Nightclubs and beaches are an easy sell to young and fun-loving gay men, but there’s definitely more to the city than just that if you take the time to explore South Beach.
Miami’s had a prominent gay nightlife scene going back to the 1930’s and attracts more than a million LGBTQ+ visitors a year, making it one of the world’s gay meccas. Miami Beach Pride is an enormous annual event, and equality laws exist to protect the local community. The area even has the Miami-Dade Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce to help fund and support LGBTQ+ businesses in the city!
If you’re planning to spend Valentine’s Day in Miami, there are plenty of fun, romantic activities and date ideas available for you and your partner, whether they’re into thrills, nightlife, adventure, or culture. Here are just fifteen of the most romantic things to do in Miami!
Miami Beach isn’t called the “Gay Riviera” for nothing – there’s plenty you can do out on the sands. The beach at 12th Street and Ocean Drive is the most popular gay beach in Miami, just across the street from the Palace Restaurant and Bar, another gay hotspot. The Winter Party, North America’s biggest gay beach party, takes place here in March!
But don’t limit yourself, there are plenty of romantic things to do in Miami Beach, which is packed to the brim with dining, nightlife, and tons of beach activities. It’s also really near most of the other activities on this list! Take in as much of it as you can, as it always has more to offer.
You won’t be hard-pressed for date ideas in Wynwood, and it’s a great spot to take your dates who are art lovers. Just west of the beach and north of Downtown Miami, Wynwood is Miami’s cultural and creative playground. Called by some as “one big art installation”, it’s best known for its contemporary and street art, with dozens of the best art galleries selling pieces by some of the world’s most talented street artists.
If your date’s the artsy type, check out the Wynwood Walls, the Museum of Graffiti, or the Margulies Collection at The Warehouse, and take in all that culture. If you want to party, there are plenty of flashy bars and clubs that you can dance the night away at.
Want to party in Little Havana? Well then, you better know how to salsa! The dance originated in eastern Cuba before finding its way over to Miami. It’s fast, it’s eclectic, and it’s sure to get the blood-pumping. Honestly, it can be a little intimidating to watch the experts go at it, so why don’t you make a night of it and get some salsa dancing lessons?
Salsa Fever Miami and Salsa Mia on South Beach offer lessons every night so you don’t miss a beat! When you’re feeling the groove, head on over to Ball & Chain or Cubaocho in Little Havana – America’s hub of Cuban culture – and put your hips to the test! When you’re all danced out, the town is a great place to have some authentic Cuban dishes while listening to some live music.
Is it a bit of a cliched beach activity? Maybe. Is it still a ton of fun? Absolutely. Plenty of beaches around the world offer parasailing activities, but none soar above the blue waves of Key Biscayne and show off the breathtaking Miami skyline!
If you or your date has safety concerns, don’t fret. The captains and crew of major parasailing companies are USCG approved, emergency trained, and won’t even fly you out if the wind looks too strong. Plus, you can get your photos taken together while doing some high flying. What more could you ask for?
Like the idea of going out on the water but at a more relaxed pace? Perhaps paddleboarding is your thing! Calmly cruise around the waters of South Beach, and even reach places like Monument Island.
Is paddleboarding your date’s favorite thing to do ever? Rent a pair of paddleboards for a week! Want to enjoy the moonlight? There are nighttime paddleboard tours, complete with glow-in-the-dark boards! For an extra romantic vista, take a sunset tour and experience breathtaking ocean views. Companies like Miami Beach Paddleboard can provide equipment and teach you how to do it!
World Erotic Art Museum
We’ll admit, this one’s a little on the nose for date ideas, but hear us out. Located on Miami Beach, the World Erotic Art Museum started as a side hobby of its owner, Naomi Wilzig. Initially just buying “conversation pieces” for her son, it evolved into five books on erotic history, and a collection too big for her home that she had to build a museum to store it all.
Stop by if your date’s an art or history buff. The museum has twenty rooms and over 12,000 square feet of erotic art, from ancient erotic artifacts to erotic art by luminaries like Dali, Rembrandt, and Picasso. There are plenty of phalluses, sexual paintings, fertility shrines, and more!
Art Deco District Tour
Take a look at Miami Beach’s history where you’ll find the largest collection of Art Deco buildings in the world! An art movement that started in the 20th century, Miami Beach rose right when the movement was peaking, resulting in the iconic Miami style that we know and love today.
Go on a walking tour from the Art Deco Welcome Center and see there’s more to Miami than its nightlife! Miami’s Art Deco district is full of these historic buildings, and you can visit some iconic hotels where movies like Scarface were filmed.
We could all use a nice spa day. If you’re looking for a date where you can unwind and relax, then definitely take a look at South Beach’s wide selection of spas where you can just let yourself go. It’s a fantastic experience, and all you have to do is, well, nothing!
Some well known spas include exhale in Downtown Miami, the âme Spa & Wellness Collective at the JW Marriott Miami, and The Standard Spa at Miami Beach. Get your absolute fill of massages, saunas, pools, facials, salons, and a romantic dinner or two at a waterfront restaurant on Biscayne Bay.
Miami Skydiving Center
Jumping out of a plane and screaming at the top of your lungs might not sound romantic per se, but if your date is into something a little more extreme, then head on over to the Miami Skydiving Center at the Miami Executive Airport. Fly two miles above the city, taking in the sights of the Miami skyline, before freefalling for 40 seconds at a blistering 120 miles per hour!
It’s certainly not for the faint of heart, but it’s definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you can look back on for years and years to come. Just make sure your partner’s into it, or you’ll remember it for all the wrong reasons.
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
Across from Biscayne Bay, you can visit Coconut Grove, home to the famous Vizcaya Museum & Gardens – a national historic landmark that was once the winter home of the industrialist James Deering.
It was built as a subtropical Italian villa in a beautiful Mediterranean style. The house itself is filled with artifacts collected from all over the world, from ancient times to the Renaissance to modern art. It’s been perfectly restored to its former beauty, and it’s a wonderful place to sightsee and have a stroll together. You can have lunch at the Vizcaya Cafe and Shop, too!
You’ll find very few places in the world with a nightlife as wild and vibrant as Miami. We’ve already talked about the salsa dancing and parties at Wynwood, but if you’re looking for romantic things to do in Miami at night, the real show’s over on Miami Beach.
Big late-night clubs like LIV at the Fontainebleau are a non-stop blast of live music, and there are many spots like it. If you’re looking for something more LGBTQ+ catered, you have to stop by Twist South Beach, which has been a popular nightlife spot for more than 25 years. And don’t forget the bar at Hotel Gaythering, which is also a central hub for gay vacationers. Whether you hit up a rooftop bar to see the city lights or go party by the water, you can be sure to find fun things to do wherever you go!
Expanded in 2017 to the tune of $214 million, the Aventura Mall is one of the premier shopping destinations in Greater Miami, filled with art, food, and of course, shopping.
Upscale boutique brands like Hermès, Gucci, and Cartier can be found, along with attractions like their two-story Apple store and a 34,000 square-foot Zara. There are AMC movie theaters, and its new expansion wing is filled with art from world-famous creators like Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone and the Haas Brothers.
The 93-foot “Aventura Slide Tower” is a huge landmark in the mall and is an actual slide that’s open on Fridays and Saturdays. It’s a whopping nine-story ride to the bottom! It’s one of those unusual date ideas, but it can still be a good time if you don’t have the budget for it.
Gay and Lesbian Walking Tour
The LGBTQ+ community has always been a staple of Miami life, so why not take a trip down memory lane and explore Miami with the MDPL’s Gay and Lesbian Walking Tour? This on-demand tour will show you the many contributions that lesbians and gay men have made to Miami Beach and only costs $25.
Pass by the Palace Bar on Ocean Drive, the Breakwater Hotel, and the Villa Casa Casuarina among other notable spots. It’s only a one to two hour walk but even locals may be surprised at how much they can learn about Miami’s LGBTQ+ history!
Everglades National Park
Some dates call for a little adventure! Head on down to the Everglades National Park, 1.5 million acres of protected wilderness from around Lake Okeechobee to the Florida Keys, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. See and experience the subtropical mangroves, swamps, rivers, and oceans that make up this diverse ecosystem.
If fun’s the first thing on your mind though, there’s plenty to do! There is the iconic Everglades airboat ride, camping, hiking, kayaking, and more! It’s great if your date’s the outdoorsy type – trust us, getting a little down and dirty is a great way to get a little closer.
Key West Day Trip
It’s not in Miami, but if you have the time, take a day trip down to Key West, a very popular romantic destination and famously LGBTQ+ friendly town.
Alexander’s Guesthouse is a gay-owned retreat space that primarily serves gay and lesbian customers. Going around Key West is very easy to do on foot, and it’s easy enough to head to popular places like Pepe’s Cafe for a romantic lunch.
Many establishments are gay-friendly or gay-owned, so you’ll be more than welcome there. At the end of the day, watch the sunset together at Mallory Square, where you’ll surely find lots of other gay and straight couples spending time together. Finally, go and party with the drag shows at Aqua and the 801 Bourbon Bar. It’s more than worth the detour!
There are many more romantic things to do in the city that we couldn’t fit on the list, so don’t be afraid to go off the beaten path and explore the town. You’re sure to see that no matter where you go, you’ll run into people who are fun-loving, warm, and welcoming. Not to mention, they’ll know how to throw a party.
Have a good time together this Valentine’s Day in one of the gay capitals of the world. We hope that we’ve given you some great date ideas for your romantic getaway in Miami!
***Disclaimer: There is a good chance that this post contains affiliate or sponsor links. If you make a purchase through them, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you (for which we are extremely grateful).
Also, while we do our best to highlight LGBTQ-friendly destinations and businesses, info provided is based solely on personal experience and recommendations by community partners. We hope that nobody experiences discrimination or homophobia while visiting Florida, but we make no guarantees. Please inform us if you experience discrimination or homophobia while visiting any destination so we can make updates to our recommendations.