Experience Miami attractions by boat

If you purchase through a link marked *, we will receive a commission.
Villa in Miami Beach

Experience Miami sights by boat

There are many ways to experience the sights of Miami. One of them is to do this with the boat. These Miami Boat Tour however, it is different! 25 degrees Celsius in early January, bright blue sky and a gentle breeze. This is the weather that awaits us at the Miami Beach Marina in December. "Perfect weather for what we're going to do today," I think. It is unusual to experience something like this on a weekday in the middle of December. I look out over the marina entrance to southeast Miami Beach. There is a Zodiac driving around the curve to the boat filling station.

Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
We experience the Miami attractions in the Zodiac



The sleek boat is somewhat reminiscent of the vehicles used by the cops from CSI Miami. Or with which the drug investigators from Miami Vice use their chases through the waters of Miami undertakings. The older ones among you probably still know Crockett and Tubbs. At the helm is Kimberley Falconer, owner of Ocean Force Adventures. She invited us on a tour of the waters of Miami, She wants to show us the Miami sights from the water.


Sights of Miami and Miami Beach - The Skyline
The Miami Beach Skyline on our Miami Boat Tour


Fast Miami boat tour by Zodiac

After a few minutes, she finally picks us up at the jetty in Miami Beach. Immediately afterwards the journey starts through the waterways of Miami and Miami Beach. Past some of the bridges connecting the island of Miami Beach with the mainland metropolis, drive north through the Intracoastal Waterway. We drive to the artificially created islands. These were piled up during the expansion of the Port of Miami.


Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
This villa belongs to a successful dermatologist - one of the Miami attractions that you can see from the boat


Luxury villas between Miami and Miami Beach

The villas show that it is even possible to profit from waste in Miami. These are lined up on these islands. It's not just superstars like Christina Aguilera who are looking for a bit of privacy away from curious fan-eyes. This house belongs to a dermatologist from Miami Beach. This developed years ago a drug that helped people in the treatment of a skin disease. Kim tells us that he lives in it together with his wife. The two are very popular in Miami because they often donate millions for good causes that benefit the general public.



Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
Miami Attractions - The loading cranes in the container port of Miami

Through the harbor of Miami

We drive past the loading cranes in the container port of Miami through the port region. If another boat comes towards us, it means "gas back". Here we are in the "no-wake" zone, which means that boats must not leave large bow waves. And that's a good thing, because boat traffic is pretty dense here. Because I am usually not exactly seaworthy, I enjoy the calm journey through the harbor waters. Kim meanwhile tells us about the gross register tons that are loaded here every day. It reports which exotic products arrive daily and which tropical fruit varieties leave Florida on board container ships all over the world.


Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
One of Miami's exclusive attractions is Fisher Island - the object of contention for Russian oligarchs


Fisher Island between Miami Beach and Miami

Kim makes the next stop off Fisher Island, a private island that can only be reached by boat. An apartment on this island costs millions. "This was once America's most expensive zip code," she says. According to Forbes magazine, the real estate price on the island was $ 3,85 million for a normal house (no villa, mind you). A few years ago, Oprah Winfrey and Julia Roberts had vacation homes here. The bursting of the real estate bubble in America put an end to this, however. Even in Miami.


Book day trips in Miami here


Kim reports that Russian billionaires like to settle on this island. With their capers, these are of enormous entertainment value for the residents of Miami. One of the most adventurous stories is about Russian oligarchs. Their machinations and disputes are now even preoccupying the American State Department. The story is made even more exciting by the bizarre family circumstances. Several marriages - at the same time and with different wives and children - play a role in them.


You should pack this for a trip to Florida  suitcase

If you purchase via a link marked *, we receive a commission, which we use to run this blog.


Past the docks of the Miami sights

We finally leave the playground of Russian power games and drive past the port facilities of Miami. On some days - Kim tells us - here is a cruise ship behind the next one. We only see container ships today. But they are impressive too. They tower like skyscrapers above our dinghy.


Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
Top Miami Attractions - The New Skyscraper Setting of Downtown Miami


Downtown Miami landmarks

And then we're getting closer to downtown Miami and the areas we know from older and newer television shows. How much the appearance of the skyline of Miami has changed in recent decades, I can see well. After all, the houses that I remember from the nineties have now almost disappeared in the dense population of much higher skyscrapers. The city is growing upwards as the backdrop of the skyline impressively confirms.


Sights of Miami and Miami Beach
Miami views as in the movie - scenery from CSI: Miami


Miami Attractions - Where CSI Miami is Filmed

When we walk around Tequesta Point, Miami's inner city suddenly feels familiar again. If not, as in the years when I was here several times a year. Rather, the view reminds me strikingly of the opening sequence of the CSI Miami television series. In this, a helicopter flies around the high-rise backdrop towards the city. Kim confirms, "Yes, that's where this scene was shot."


A pelican flies past us
A pelican flies past us - he is one of the Miami attractions


Miami Sights Riding the Waves

And then it becomes clear why we sit astride the benches here. Because as soon as we leave the downtown area of ​​Miami, the "no-wake" signs have suddenly disappeared. We can now drive faster. And Kim does too. I just hold on to my baseball cap so that the wind doesn't tear it off my head. Then I try to hold my seat to some extent in my seat. Sometimes it works better, sometimes less well. In any case, it is a fast ride that leads us to the bridge. This connects the mainland with the island of Key Biscayne. We slow down the drive as we pass under the bridge. But after that, the wild ride takes almost ten minutes. Then we reach an extraordinary settlement on stilts, which was built in the middle of the sea.


One of the houses in Stiltsville
One of Stiltsville's Homes - Destination of our Miami Boat Tour


Miami sights - the stiltsville stilt houses

Stiltsville! I've never heard of that in all the years I've known Miami and Miami Beach. A collection of stilt houses at the south end of Key Biscayne. It dates from the time when Florida Frontierland was. This was an area that was still mostly overgrown with bush vegetation. At that time nobody knew exactly what to do with the humid and subtropical marshland in the South of America. This was the main access route of the ships from the Atlantic to the Port of Miami. A trader who wanted to forestall his competitors came up with the idea of ​​his shop in front of the harbor entrance to build. In the middle of the ocean. Here he offered them fresh oranges and other fruit, but also rum and other alcoholic drinks. After that, after weeks on board, the seafarers were starved. Business was not bad, as expected.


Stilt House
Anglers cast their leashes at this strange looking stilt house © Copyright Kimberley Falconer, Ocean Force Adventures


Miami Attractions - From gentlemen's clubs to drug smugglers

Over time, more adventurers came to it. Many built a retreat away from prying eyes for other reasons out here. Among them was a gentlemen's club of the best company. Supposedly, the members retreated in this rather simple accommodation with certain ladies, who should not necessarily get to know the press - and also the married wives. When drug trafficking from Latin America was at its peak, some of the houses were certainly used as drug trafficking centers. On our trip through Stiltsville we only see a few anglers peacefully throwing their rod into the sea from one of the stilt houses, hoping for the big catch.


The Key Biscayne Lighthouse
The Key Biscayne Lighthouse


Rough ride over the waves of the open ocean

We are still laughing in this photo. But shortly afterwards, Kim tells us that we now have to go out to sea to turn around. Only there can we turn to Key Biscayne for the return trip to Miami Beach. "And now the adventure begins," she says dryly. I think to myself: "Heaven! What was the speedy drive from Miami here? ”But she is right. We prefer to stow our cameras in the protective cases provided to protect them from splash water.


Choose your boat tour through and from Miami here


Then it starts! Like a bucking horse, the Zodiac jumps over the ever-growing waves. They come right up to us here. It feels as if we fall into every trough that lies on our way. With loud splashes and splashes of water spilling over the sides of the boat. This is adventure! Thankfully, the wild ride takes only a few minutes before we turn around. This time we return with the waves, again past elegant villas. Some of them included former President Ronald Reagan as well as not-so-well-known drug lords.


Villa on Key Biscayne
Villa on Key Biscayne


Back in calmer waters

Back in the harbor of Miami, we follow boats in front of us in their fairway, which ensures a quiet return journey. I'm glad about that, because the wild tour out on the open sea made me cramp my legs around the seat to at least have a firm hold. Getting up from my seat after arriving in Miami Beach is still not easy for me in the harbor. So I try to relax my muscles before forcing them to put my legs in a straight position. Back on land we finally radiate the bet! What a ride! And what an adventure!


Do you like to travel by motorhome?

  • Do you want to rent a motorhome? Then you will find information and a selection in these  booking options.
  • Check our packing list for campers to see whether you have packed everything for your motorhome tour.
  • In North Miami Beach you can use the Assume River State Park, 3400 NE 163rd St, North Miami Beach, FL 33160, United States


Tips for Florida, Miami and Miami Beach


Travel Arrangements

Ocean Force Adventures
300 Alton Road
Pier E Miami Beach
FL 33139
Phone (305) 372-3388

Parking at the airport

Here you can reserve your parking space at the airport.

Getting to Miami Attractions

Compare and book flights here*. Lufthansa, United and other airlines fly to Miami. From there you can continue your journey by rental car or mobile home.

Rental car

Book here easy and cheap a rental car * for your journey.


Miami Beach Hotels you can also book here.
Miami accommodations * you can also find here.

Travel Guides

Florida Travel Guide * You can also find it on Amazon.de

Excursions and tours to Miami attractions

Powered by GetYourGuide


Miami Attractions
Click on the photo and then save the post on Pinterest.


Do you know this?

Source Discover Miami Sights from the Boat: On-site research with assistance from the Greater Miami Convention and Tourism Bureau. However, our opinion remains our own.

Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs as well as TravelWorldOnline and Kimberley Falconer, Ocean Force Adventures (Miami boat tour)

Experience Miami attractions by boat

Monika Fuchs

Monika Fuchs and Petar Fuchs are the authors and publishers of the Slow Travel and Enjoyment travel blog TravelWorldOnline Traveller. You have been publishing this blog since 2005. TravelWorldOnline has been online since 2001. Your topics are Trips to Savor and wine tourism worldwide and Slow Travel. During her studies, Monika Fuchs spent some time in North America, where she traveled to the USA and Canada - sometimes together with Petar Fuchs - and spent a research year in British Columbia. This strengthened her thirst for knowledge, which she pursued for 6 years Adventure Guide for Rotel Tours and then for 11 years as Study tour guide for Studiosus Reisen tried to breastfeed all over the world. She constantly expanded her travel regions, but curiosity still gnawed at her: “What is beyond the horizon? What else is there to discover in this city? Which people are interesting here? What do you eat in this region?” These are the questions she is now trying to answer as a freelance travel journalist (her articles have appeared in DIE ZEIT, 360° Canada, 360° USA, etc.), among others. travel writer and travel blogger answers in many countries around the world. Petar Fuchs produces the videos on this blog as well as on YouTube. Monika Fuchs from TravelWorldOnline is below Germany's top 50 bloggers in 2021 Other Information about Monika and Petar Fuchs. Recommendations on LinkedIn from tourism experts Further recommendations from cooperation partners and tourism experts Professional experience Monika on LinkedIn

18 thoughts too "Experience Miami attractions by boat"

  1. Hallo,
    That sounds really exciting and you have a very different view of the city. Great tip.
    Best regards,

    1. Hi Anja,

      this is definitely an experience that will be remembered. We would do it again anytime.

      Best regards,

  2. This is really a very different corner of Miami than you always see on TV. Especially the harbor reminded me of the giants and cranes at the harbor of Hamburg. LG, Nina

    1. On certain days, there are several cruise ships in the Port of Miami, from there to the Caribbean. When we were there, however, only merchant ships were in port.

      Best regards,

  3. Dear Monika,
    Just in December I was in Miami Beach and recognized some of your pictures. I have to say that it is a nice place to switch off and sunbathe, but much more unfortunately not. Unfortunately the villas and yachts have not charmed me.
    I did not do a boat tour myself - your experiences on rough seas sound very unique.

    Many greetings,

    1. Dear Stefanie,

      Well, idyll in Europe as you should not expect in Florida. That's really not there. Rather pretty pompous mansions of the super rich. The boat tour was really something special. Even if it was partly bumpy, I would do it again at any time.

      Best regards,

  4. Dear Monika,
    I loved Crockett and Tubbs at a young age just because of the pursuit through Miami - whether on water or on land. With your article I have become almost a bit nostalgic. I like the villa of the dermatologist very much, but I am a little scared of smaller boats; so this insight would be hidden from me. So double thanks for the description of your adventure.

    1. Dear Elena,

      I'm not exactly the bravest, but I really liked the tour. You can see more than the usual harbor cruises. And the experience is much more intense.

      Best regards,

  5. Hello Monika and Petar,

    Since you did a great tour! I only know the normal leisurely tours on small ships with many other tourists; it's comfortable. Such a Zodiac would be something!

    The tour is mainly to completely different places, much further than usual. For example, I have never heard of Stiltsville.

    Best regards,

    1. Hello Barbara,

      the tour with the Zodiac is the only one that goes to Stiltsville. I had not heard of it before, but it's worth the trip.

      Best regards,

    1. Dear Julia,

      There are certainly many more "wild" stories about Miami. These were just a few. That is one of the reasons why we are so fascinated by Miami.

      Best regards,

  6. You brought great impressions! Such a loading port actually looks the same everywhere, reminded me a bit of my harbor tour in Hamburg. By the way, I saw a few days ago that Crockett and Tubbs are "in" again.

    Best regards,

    1. In Miami Beach, the two were never really out. This television series woke the place out of its slumber. Once a retired metropolis, Miami Beach has transformed itself into the hip city of today through the image of Crockett and Tubbs.

      Best regards,

  7. Dear Monika,
    reads after an adventure, but I'm not sure if that would be mine;) However, otherwise I would miss Stiltsville. I had not heard of that before.
    I really liked your pictures
    Best Regards

    1. Dear Simone,

      Stiltsville is definitely worth the drive. That's something special. We were there in good weather and relatively calm sea. Only the ride against the waves that rolled up from the sea was bumpy. But it's worth it!

      Best regards,

  8. Dear Monika,

    A boat trip in Miami sounds pretty exciting. Somehow it is just as I imagined and then quite different. I would also like to do such a boat trip. :)

    Many greetings

    1. Dear Kathi,

      it was exciting too. Especially when it went out to Stiltsville. The waves became higher and the sea rougher. But you only experience that on this tour. There are others who stay in calmer harbor waters. However, next time I would do the same tour again :). That was a great experience!

      Best regards,

Comments are closed.