Miami Aqua Tours’ fleet of three Coast Guard–certified vessels sweeps away passengers on holiday parties, evening voyages, and picturesque tours of Miami’s coastline that depart seven times a day. Boats, including the company's Island Princess, embark from Bayside Marketplace, cruising along Miami’s glittering coastline as the downtown buildings wistfully wave goodbye. Tours float past Star Island’s majestic celebrity mansions and weave around the Venetian Islands as seafarers gaze into the ocean beyond, searching for lost treasure or the keys to the captain's jet ski. Alternatively, passengers can stroll from port to starboard aboard a schooner or a 58-foot pirate ship on Saturday and Sunday during the daytime or on scenic sunset tours. While drinking in nautical breezes, customers can sip liquefied libations from the ship’s bar as tour guides narrate Miami’s tell-all memoir in both English and Spanish.
Though roller skating may be symbolic of life in the '50s, the staff at Super Wheels Skating Center has incorporated the tunes, TVs, and technology of today to bring this American pastime in to the 21st century. DJs spin a choice of more than 400,000 songs through the rink’s digital sound equipment, serenading guests as they show off their moves and finally embrace their wheel transplant. In order to offer more than just skating, the staff created a super arcade filled with interactive games and sprinkled the facility with 20 high-definition TVs and five giant screens that broadcast entertainment as well as live texts from guests and overprotective mothers.
Outside of open-skate hours, the rink puts on a range of events, including private parties, beginning and pro skating lessons, and special times for skaters 11 and younger. The facility’s concession stand offers food for all ages, including futuristic Dippin’ Dots, fried appetizers, Latin pastries, and pitchers of O’Doul's.
As Luis Niño programmed the printer for another press run, all he could hear was the ocean—the waves rolling against the boat's hull, the wind whipping across the sails. After navigating waters from the Florida Keys to the Bahamas for years as a recreational sailor, he dreamed of one day captaining his own ship, eventually taking the leap and launching Sailing on Biscayne Bay.
Today, Captain Niño and his wife, first mate, and professional photographer Mabel welcome passengers with English and Spanish salutations as they board the Dorinda, a Tartan 34 sailboat. They charter two- or three-hour, half-day, and full-day sails through Biscayne Bay along Miami, Brickell, and Key Biscayne. Luis and Mabel entertain guests with drinks and snacks and can also arrange a catering menu.
It's easy to forget amid all of the concrete and neon, but Miami is an ancient place. Eons before the first modern residents began to move into the Coconut Grove cemetery, indigenous people were shielding themselves from the elements using the region's natural rock ridge and sunless tanning salons. Today, Ghost Tours Miami visits the restless spirits that have gathered here over the centuries, including the specters in the windows of the Coconut Grove Playhouse. Pirates, pilots, gangsters, and those too close to gangsters have all met their ultimate fate in this tropical cove, and the photographs and stories of spooked tour guests testify to their continued presence.
Manned by a U.S. Coast Guard–certified crew, a Thriller SuperCat 55 power catamaran safely whisks patrons away on Thriller Miami Speedboat Adventures' 45-minute voyages that trek all the way into the Atlantic Ocean. After shipping out from Bayside Marketplace, captains navigate the vessel through Biscayne Bay, South Beach, and the Miami Gold Coast, granting guests sweeping views of Fisher Island, Miami Beach, South Beach's Art Deco district, and the towering Miami skyline. Conversant guides narrate each excursion, pinpointing sites of historical interest as they pass by and helping visitors identify multimillion-dollar dwellings owned by celebrities such as Shaquille O'Neal, Gloria Estefan, and Count Chocula.
Inside the massive Kendall Ice Arena, skaters from across the blade-running spectrum hone their skills in programs for hockey players, figure skaters, and beginners just finding their ice legs. Students can start out in the arena's US Figure Skating Basic Skills Program, which helps novices develop a foundation strong enough to support Olympic dreams or applications for Antarctic citizenship. The curriculum then branches off into special classes, including offerings for hockey, figure skaters, and synchronized pairs. When class is out of session, the rink slings open its doors to the public, filling up with families, first dates, and other glide-enthusiasts.