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Biltmore Culinary Academy
Photograph: Courtesy Biltmore Culinary Academy

The best Miami experiences to give as gifts

From museum memberships to cooking classes, surprise your city-loving pals with a Miami experience this holiday

By Virginia Gil
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Shopping for holiday gifts doesn’t have to be stressful, especially when you can turn to your own backyard for inspiration. If a unique gift for Miami lovers, like a functional cell phone case emblazoned with the Downtown skyline, won’t do, perhaps a Miami experience is more the kind of present you’re looking for. Culled from top picks of things to do in Miami and our favorite things to do in winter in Miami, our list of Miami experiences to give as gifts has something for everyone.  

RECOMMENDED: Christmas in Miami

Gift these incredible Miami experiences

Man fishing
Photograph: Unsplash/Clark Young

1. Offshore fishing excursion with Top Gun Fishing Charters

Fishing is one of those quintessential Miami experiences. Still, so many locals have yet to try it. This holiday, gift the angling virgin in your life a spot on a fishing charter, where they’ll get help casting, reeling and cleaning their fresh catch.

Photograph: Unsplash/Clark Young

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Group clinking beer glasses
Photograph: Shutterstock

2. Brewery tour with Miami Brew Bus

Every Saturday, a big air-conditioned bus (the fancy kind with reclining seats) whisks people away to South Florida’s hottest breweries for behind-the-scenes tours and copious amounts of sampling. Tours leave from Union Beer Store in Little Havana, and a pregame brew, a beer snifter or pint and snacks are included for each passenger.

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Key Biscayne kayak adventure tour
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/David Berkowitz

3. Miami Beach kayaking tour

A guided kayaking tour is a gift the entire family can enjoy. Tandem vessels make it easy for little ones to ride while exploring areas of Biscayne Bay and the Miami Beach shoreline you rarely get to see.

Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/David Berkowitz

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Schnebly Redland's Winery
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Duane

4. Wine tasting and tour at Schnebly Redland's Winery

South Florida's only winery is also one of the few properties to produce wine from tropical fruits, including lychee, mango and avocado. Guests can sample these and other unusual varieties during guided tastings and even take home a souvenir glass.   

Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Duane

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iFLY
Photograph: Shutterstock

5. Flight package at iFLY

Things to do Games and hobbies

Give the gift of flight—sort of—at iFLY’s indoor flight chamber, which blasts you into the air and simulates the feeling of free falling. You’ll have an instructor by your side and the whole experience, including the pre-flight training, will last just under two hours. Flight packages start at $69.95 and go up depending on how many flights you want. Gift cards can also be purchased online or in person, making this a no-brainer for last-minute shoppers.

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Stiltsville
Photograph: Courtesy HistoryMiami

7. Sightseeing tour with HistoryMiami’s Dr. Paul George

Things to do Downtown

Curious minds will love a spot on any of Dr. Paul George’s popular city tours, from cruises to Biscayne Bay’s Stiltsville and down the Miami River to guided walks through Downtown. There isn’t a question HistoryMiami’s resident historian cannot answer. Spots fill up quickly but new tours are added each month. 

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Biltmore Culinary Academy
Photograph: Courtesy Biltmore Culinary Academy

8. Cooking class at the Biltmore Culinary Academy

Learn proper knife skills, when to mis en place and other essential cooking lessons at the Biltmore’s esteemed culinary academy. Classes take place in cozy demo kitchens and often wrap up with a yummy meal you make yourself. Bonus: the academy hosts kid-friendly classes for small groups.

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Museum of Ice Cream
Photograph: Katie Gibbs

9. Tickets to the Museum of Ice Cream

Things to do Exhibitions

For the friend obsessed with taking selfies, gift them tickets to the ultimate backdrop: the Museum of Ice Cream. The made-for-Instagram experience opens its doors in the Faena District this December, bringing loads of interactive experiences and rainbow-colored installations, plus new Miami-only flavors for you to sample. 

The Book of Mormon
Photograph: Joan Marcus

10. Gift certificate for a performance at the Arsht Center

Things to do Performances Omni

With one of the best seasons of Broadway Across America to date, and a new production of The Nutcracker this winter, the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts is brimming with talent. Picking just one show to gift is tough, so why not let them choose? A gift certificate is good for a performance, a ticket subscription and a theater membership. Plus, they never expire. 

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Tours make great gifts, too

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