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The best waterfront bars in Miami to check out right now

Sidle up to one of the best waterfront bars in Miami and enjoy your booze with a side of cool ocean breeze

Written by
Jackie Gutierrez-Jones
,
Sara Liss
&
Falyn Wood
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It’s a Miami-specific conundrum: so much water surrounding us, yet so few spots to actually enjoy it. But thankfully there are many places that have been taking advantage of their waterfront locations for years and a few newer ones that have popped up recently to maximize that al fresco potential. And we understand that when you’ve found a favorite watering hole—like one of the best bars in Miami—it’s tough to stray. But if a killer Miami happy hour deal won’t sway you to try something new, perhaps a round of drinks while you watch the sun setting over South Beach will. We indulged in the views and the chilled beverages to do the lord’s work and bring you this list of the best waterfront bars in Miami.

Best waterfront bars in Miami

  • Restaurants
  • Overtown
  • price 2 of 4

The Wharf has been packed with well-dressed Miamians since it opened on the Miami River back in 2017—it even spawned a Fort Lauderdale sibling that opened in 2020. In addition to booze, the outdoor bar is dotted with a selection of food trucks—the focal point being the beloved Mojo Donuts. The casual atmosphere wins every time: astroturf and picnic benches encourage mingling. There’s boat parking available for nautical folk too but anyone is welcome to enjoy some champagne during the day or liquor and dancing at night.

  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • North Bay Village
  • price 3 of 4

A complete renovation of the sea wall and deck in 2014 gave this 30-year-old North Bay Village standby a new lease on life. Patrons here can kick back with a pitcher of beer, wings and oysters while taking in unobstructed views of the Miami sunset over the water. Umbrellas and palms provide a fair amount of shade for sports fans taking in the latest match on one of the flatscreen TVs. Plus, unlike many spots on this list, the onsite marina offers boat docking free of charge.

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There’s much to love about this sprawling, 120,000-square-foot, indoor-outdoor mega-venue with eight food outlets and six bars, which bills itself as an entertainment destination on the Miami River. It really is a choose-your-own-adventure type of place whether you’re looking to sip cocktails in a clubby environment, chill in a beer garden or tackle Friday afternoon drinks with work friends while watching the Brickell bridge open and close. Open only Thursday through Sunday though, so save this spot for weekend revelry.

  • Restaurants
  • Mediterranean
  • Belle Isle
  • price 2 of 4

The bayside deck of The Standard Spa, Miami Beach plays host to a hippie-chic bar scene with unrivaled views of the water. The bar menu here is as light as the vibe, with fresh salads and veggie snacks like cauliflower with tahini emulsion and garlicky broccolini. It isn’t rare to spot a school of dolphins frolicking in the bay while downing a few glasses of sangria and frosé—that is, if you’re not too distracted people-watching at this enclave for the ultra-hip.

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  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • Coconut Grove
  • price 2 of 4

Located on a marina, this popular Grove hangout is a sweet spot for cold beers, stiff drinks and casual seafood. Thatch-roofed, open-walled miniature tiki huts surround a stage from which reggae and calypso bands do their damnedest to persuade the diners and drinkers to dance. On Friday afternoons find a rowdy happy hour crowd (heavy with thirsty UM kids) eagerly slurping up strong frozen drinks. For a more family-friendly vibe, come on the weekends, order a basket of fried seafood and a pitcher of beer for yourself and send the kids off to dance to the live music.

  • Restaurants
  • Greek
  • East Little Havana
  • price 3 of 4

This Greek dream makes its home along the Miami River in a 100-year-old converted fish market. A partially covered deck with tied-back white curtains and ivy-wrapped columns sets the scene for the simple, yet rustic Mediterranean fare that’ll accompany date night rounds of ouzo tinged with fresh-pressed juices. While the main bar is tucked inside the charming rustic environs of the restaurant, the view from the outside bar makes the decision to take your cocktail al fresco a no-brainer.

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Nestled in Edgewater, Amara boasts spectacular bayfront views and a sprawling deck dotted with tables, sofas and low-slung lounge chairs. The beachy, mid-century setting is secondary only to chef Michael Schwartz’s menu of hyperlocal, Latin-inspired fare. On weekdays, warm up your evening with Amara’s rooftop happy hour from 5 to 7pm. The Gin-ca and Tonic made with rhubarb and ginger liqueur will run you $6 and might just have you kicking off your sandals and dipping a toe in the sand as you take in the sunset.

  • Restaurants
  • Mediterranean
  • South Beach
  • price 3 of 4

As part of a $20 million dollar property-wide transformation, the Mondrian South Beach recently unveiled this polished stunner of a pool deck with a restaurant, bar and lounge that features eye-popping views of Biscayne Bay (and the mega-yachts that float by). The oversized thatched hut is festooned with rattan lanterns and cushioned chairs making it the ideal backdrop for drinks like the Raspberry French 75 made with Absolut ELYX, fresh raspberry, lemon and prosecco. Pro tip: make sure to settle in a half-hour before sunset.

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  • Bars
  • Sports Bars
  • Eastern Shores / Oleta
  • price 2 of 4

Sure, they’ve got more than 20 TVs posted up around the joint—but none of them hold a candle to the view of the Intracoastal Waterway at this laid-back watering hole in North Miami Beach. Dive-bar delicacies like chicken wings and potato skins sidle up to beer and frozen adult beverages, making this a favorite spot to catch a Heat or Marlins game. This isn’t just any sports bar—the 700 seats, fifty-space boat dock and a sunny pool deck (did we mention there’s a pool?) make sure of that.

  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Brickell
  • price 2 of 4

Classic Americana on the water—that pretty much sums up the feeling at this lively Brickell joint. Red, white and blue adorns the outdoor patio that overlooks the Miami River. Beer is the way to go here, with an impressive roster of craft brews on tap—and if you can tear yourself away from the waterfront view, there are self-serving beer tap tables inside and house-made soft pretzel bites once the munchies strike.

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  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • South of Fifth
  • price 3 of 4

Floating on the waterfront docks of the Miami Beach Marina, this longtime favorite gets lively during happy hour and on the weekends. The straw-thatched tiki hut bordering the pool offers a stunning view of yachts docked on the Atlantic while their infamous frozen Pain Relievers and Miami Vice cocktails take the sting out of a tough day at work. On weekdays from 4 to 8pm, happy hour kicks in with steep discounts on their raw bar (think peel-and-eat shrimp, oysters and clams), beer and wine.

  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • East Little Havana
  • price 4 of 4

Nestled within a post-industrial warehouse next to Kiki on the River, this waterfront enclave features an outdoor lounge on a wood-lined deck that juts out onto the Miami River. Here, a see-and-be-seen crowd watches the sun set on the Downtown skyline with glasses of champagne and white cranberry-peach Blossom Martinis in hand. Live music echoes throughout the deck as boats cruise the river and plates of thinly sliced crudos accompany the cocktails coming out from behind the bar.

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  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Miami
  • price 2 of 4

Perched on the waters of Biscayne Bay right off the Rickenbacker Causeway is a massive tiki hut that beckons thirsty locals with hurricane glasses filled with frosty rum runners, margaritas and Mai Tais. Looking for a nosh to soak up some of the boozy concoctions? The menu is replete with bar favorites—nachos, wings, quesadillas—with items like gator bites and fried avocado offering a twist to the usual fare. A deck festooned with faux parrots, brightly painted wood and the odd carved coconut or two provides a breezy perch for enjoying the tipples while the bay ripples beyond.

  • Bars
  • Hotel bars
  • Miami Beach
  • price 3 of 4

This lively, bi-level spot in the Fontainebleau Miami Beach channels a sun-splashed, South of France vibe—crisp whites, vibrant teals and an ocean view that’s hard to beat. The upper level overlooks both the pool and the ocean—the perfect spot for lounging back with a crisp glass of rosé (or a pitcher of their eponymous punch) and a plate of oysters while watching the bar scene light up with chic patrons chatting amidst DJ-spun tunes.

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  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • Omni

This waterfront bar and seafood grill might be housed inside a Marriott Hotel, but the relaxed vibes and expansive views of Biscayne Bay and the Miami skyline will make you feel like you’ve made it to paradise. Monday through Friday from 5 to 8pm, enjoy happy hour specials like $6 well cocktails and mango rum jerk chicken wings for $9. Your view from the waterfront deck also offers prime people-watching, as drunken passengers return from their boat days and attempt to regain their land legs.

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