Hi Guys! Our family went to Miami, Florida at the end of January and I thought I would share with you the highlights. I like to do my trip recaps here for two reasons- so I remember these trips my family takes and to share with you some tips for traveling with kids. I’ve done two of these before- our trip to Cancun (when Don was 11 months old) and our trip to California (when Don was 18 months old). If you have kids those ages- they have some great tips that made the trip smoothly for us.
For reference, Don was 23 months old for this trip. We decided to go to Miami to visit some friends that moved there recently. 2 other friends also joined us on the trip, so this was a friend trip with one kid :). We scheduled a 6pm flight because Don usually goes to sleep at 8pm and we thought that would give him the most sleep possible. While we were waiting to board, we heard an announcement that the flight was oversold and that they needed 4 volunteers to take a later flight. Because of sky miles, we had only paid $300 for all three of us to fly and they were giving $800 vouchers for each seat (Don had his own seat). Well, you guessed it, we took the later flight. We choose to stay in the airport for the 6 hours until the next flight because we had been dropped off and security is such a pain at the airport. They gave us a food voucher so we had dinner and then Don slept while we waited for our flight. Don was awesome on the flight and slept 90% of it (this post has my best plane tips for little ones that we reused). But when we got to Miami at 7am, he was not happy. We had breakfast and then went to Jungle Island where Don loved feeding the birds and seeing the animals. But when he wasn’t playing he was crying. It was a rough first day.
His face in this photo makes me laugh- haha! His water bottle is from here. We love that it doesn’t leak and has a straw.
We headed to our hotel and loved the location- it was right off the beach and was so cute. My favorite travel tip is to stay in a suite! It takes more work to find one in our budget, but being able to have a second space to play while baby is sleeping is everything. This trip we also tried really hard to stay in beautiful spaces that were inspiring and it was one of my favorite aspects of the trip. We had dinner on the beach with all of our friends and it was SO fun to be in warm Miami with our besties. I’m not going to do a play by play of each day, but here were our favorite things we did (that are totally kid friendly):
Don’s bib is from Copper Pearl. He still drools a ton and we love these for being cute and dry 😉
The Everglades– we took an air boat ride to tour the Everglades. Don was free and they provided him a life jacket. We loved seeing alligators up close (but not too close 😉 ). The boat was smooth and Don loved it. I only wish I had brought him better ear protection (adult ear plugs are provided, but didn’t fit his ears well).
Don’s moccasins are from here and we love them! These are great for traveling and super comfy
My swimsuit is from Rad Swim (so flattering- I love it!)
The Florida Keys– we spent one night and two days in the Florida Keys and we loved it. If I were to do this trip over again I would spend more time there. We loved the architecture of the Colonial candy colored homes. It was just so beautiful and we were obsessed with the pink William Skelton Home that we stayed in. Our friends all stayed with us (the only time that happened on this trip) and we had so much fun! There was a private pool and plenty of space so we could all have our own rooms, but there were rooms big enough that we could all hand out together. It was in walking distance to tons of food places so we walked to dinner. We also rented bikes and loved using those to get around since parking was a pain. There were tornado warnings while we were there, so we didn’t do anything in the ocean. We saw Fort Zachary and loved touring the fort and playing on the private beach. We stopped in the Pennekamp state park in Key Largo for a quick hike. There was a little play place off the water that Don had a blast playing in. We loved eating in the Fish House in Key Largo (get the key lime pie!).
Wynwood– We stayed in the art district of Miami, Wynwood, for a few nights. I blogged about our Air BNB here. We loved walking around seeing the wall murals and taking pictures of them. I would definitely recommend this!
The Beach- We had a full beach day on South Beach. Also since we stayed so close to Hollywood Beach, we went there daily. I actually preferred Hollywood Beach because it was free to park at our hotel (haha, I’m so cheap- but parking in Miami is a pain! And expensive) and was more low key. Walking around South Beach was fun though. We bought Don sand toys and he could have played on the beach all day everyday. We loved eating at Nexxt Cafe on South beach. The food was delicious and the ambiance of the outdoor dining was amazing.
Amelia Earhart Park– We loved taking Don to this part. It has a petting zoo and he is obsessed with goats. There’s also a ton of other things to do and see (hay ride, water skiing). We had dinner at Flanigans and loved it. Don got the Mac and Cheese and gives it two thumbs up 🙂
Travel Tips for 23 month olds (or 2 year olds- I may be in denial haha)-
- When we are home, Don rarely is on my phone or watching TV, but with traveling, sometimes you just need the phone especially when naps are missed. We LOVE YouTube Red for downloading his favorite movies that keep him happy and quiet during dinner out. This is a subscription- you can get the first month free. I think it’s $13 a month after that. It’s TOTALLY worth it for not going over data a million times.
- We had a few long road trips. We would break up the trip and stop in the store. For the first time, I let him pick out his own treats and it seemed to keep him more happy to be able to snack on something he chose. Now excuse me while I cry over my little guy growing up!
- Speaking of snacks, Don loved Pez for this trip. We bought him a Mickey holder and a ton of refills. They are the prefect snack because it takes him time to eat the whole thing, he has to use hand/eye coordination to get them out, and they are relatively clean.
- We tried a leash for Don when we were walking in busy places and didn’t love it. He didn’t like having it on and it seemed more trouble than it was worth. I do have friends who swear by it, so you can try it out (Amazon sells them for $6)
- We bought Don’s favorite toys with us- a mini excavator and dump truck from this set. These were LIFE savers! Because Florida is so warm, we could always find a bit of dirt or sand outside for him to dig in while we waited to be seated for dinner or whatever we were waiting for at the moment.
- Don lived in little sun hats during this trip. We love them for the sun protection and they are cute and can fold nice and compact.
- We love bringing a light muslim blanket with us while traveling- we love this one from Glee Littles. It’s affordable, cute (obviously a factor for me- haha), works for sleeping on the go or on the beach.
We had the best time and were a little sad to come home. We loved Florida (especially during Utah’s yucky winter).
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