Much of Miami life revolves around the water, and its marinas offer a wide variety of activities, including sport fishing and scuba diving. The city is also famous for its Seaquarium: a 38-acre marine-life attraction where you can swim with dolphins and seals, or take an underwater journey round a tropical reef.
Of course, many visitors come simply for the beaches. South Beach (SoBe to those in the know) is an entertainment hotspot with hundreds of bars and clubs open into the small hours, while other stretches of beach, such as Virginia Key, offer a more relaxing experience. Marine Stadium Marina, owned by the City of Miami, offers easy access to Virginia Key Beach, while the modern Sunset Harbor Yacht Club lies in the heart of South Beach.
Just south of downtown Miami, but a world away from the hustle and bustle, is the tropical island of Key Biscayne. Here, you can dock at No Name Harbor in the south of the island and explore the Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, with its historic lighthouse, hiking trails, and outstanding natural beauty.
Sailing around Miami involves exploring the stunning Biscayne Bay—a shallow lagoon where freshwater and saltwater combine to play host to an abundance of life. Protected on the west by Miami and on the east by the northern Florida Keys, the bay makes an ideal ecosystem for young fish, crustaceans and shellfish. When yachting in this area, you may also catch sight of pelicans and manatees.
Miami is also an ideal base from which to sail south and explore the Florida Keys, an archipelago of 1700 islands home to coral reefs, loggerhead turtles, and dolphins. Sailing is the perfect way to experience this natural wonder, though yachters should take care not to damage the fragile reefs when navigating these waters.
Miami has a tropical monsoon climate, with mild winters, hot summers, and a wet season from May until mid-October. During these months, expect high humidity and thunderstorms, which can come as a welcome relief when temperatures are soaring. In summer, the Miami Beach water temperature averages around 30º, and even in winter they top 20º. Sailing is not recommended during August and September, the Cape Verde hurricane season, but the rest of the year offers ideal conditions.