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The best fall events in Miami for a full season of fun—no sweater necessary

From immersive experiences to music and food festivals, the best fall events in Miami make the most of friendlier weather

Falyn Wood
Virginia Gil
Written by
Falyn Wood
Contributor
Virginia Gil
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At last, the earth’s axis is tilting in Miami’s favor. It’s fall, the glorious time of year when hazy, hot summer days give way to cooler temperatures and soft breezes. It’s around this time you’ll find many Miamians doing the actual most, donning puffy sweaters and boots in 80 degrees, making the pilgrimage to Homestead to pose in a Miami pumpkin patch and spicing all their lattes in a vaguely crazed attempt at compensating for the fact that the leaves here don’t change colors. It’s also a great time to enjoy being in Miami before the high season sets in and snowbirds descend on Miami Beach. Fall in Miami is when the city really starts to come alive with things to do, from Wynwood to Coral Gables. Whether you’re up for a music festival on an island, a full week of literary events or a family-friendly craft beer adventure, Miami has it this fall. Take notes: Our guide to the best fall events in Miami has arrived.

RECOMMENDED: Miami events calendar

Best of the city under one roof

  • Time Out Market

Do you need a break from dating apps? Are your digits—and your brain—totally fatigued from all the swiping and scrolling? We get it, and we want to help you meet someone IRL. Rather than an awkward set-up, we’re giving you the chance to pick out your potential love interest from a pool of eligible singles.

You’ll make your way around Time Out Market Miami, striking up conversations with fellow speed daters for 5 minutes or less before moving on to the next person. If your mini date is a dud then it’s on to someone else until you find your match. Your ticket to the speed-dating experience includes a drink plus access to happy hour pricing from 7 to 10pm should you need a little extra liquid courage. 

  • Things to do
  • Classes and workshops

Swing by Time Out Market Miami for a special Thanksgiving edition of our monthly kiddo art workshops. Kids of all ages are invited to celebrate the fall harvest as they learn to make a crafty corn decoration for their holiday table. Plus, grown-ups and their little ones can give their home libraries a boost—or pass on tomes they’ve read and loved—at the community book swap happening simultaneously. Your ticket includes all materials and a complimentary mimosa for the parent.

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  • Time Out Market
  • South Beach

Spend your Sundays going from backbends to brunch at Time Out Market Miami. Ocean Life Studio instructors teach a family-friendly yoga class starting at noon. Suitable for all ages and fitness levels, the session comprises lessons in movement, breathwork and forming a stronger mind-body connection. Following the complimentary class, students can stick around for bottomless mimosas, champagne specials and more delicious Sunday things. Everyone is encouraged to bring a mat or towel.

Fall events in Miami

  • Things to do
  • Festivals

The Miami Book Fair celebrates its 38th edition with a hybrid virtual and in-person event this November. Author presentations, mind-expanding conversations and even more innovative ways to honor the written word are planned for 2022. Livestreamed and live readings—produced in both English and in Spanish—are scheduled to run November 14 through the 21, while the annual street festival is slated to take place on November 20 and 21 along the Miami-Dade College downtown campus. Spend the week shopping new and pre-loved tomes, introducing your little ones to Miami's greatest literary event and mingling with the likes of Lauren Groff (Matrix) Jean Hanff Korelitz (The Plot) and Amor Towles (The Lincoln Highway), among other best-selling authors in attendance.

  • Things to do
  • Festivals

Love food festivals but wish they left you feeling a little less, uh, bloated? Well, health nuts will certainly appreciate Seed Food and Wine Week, a plant-based food and wine festival that won’t have you in a sodium coma for months to come. There are events spread throughout the week, everything from a grand tasting village to smaller workshops and panels featuring a whole bunch of vegan all-stars. Grab a ticket to one event—like Thursday’s plant-based burger battle—or snag an all-access pass to all of the above. Various locations

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  • Things to do

Returning for a second year, this drive-through haunted house experience rolls into Aventura on most evenings in October. Horrorland is a totally contactless, immersive horror game where guests get to participate from their cars. You’ll drive up and while going at an unhurried three miles per house watch as a freaky horror movie unravels around you. Monsters, ghosts, zombies and all kinds of frightening creatures will jump up when you least expect it as you make your way through seven themed passages. Think a creepy carnival, a zombie apocalypse and a Christmas nightmare. The whole thing takes about 35 minutes—if you can handle it.

 

  • Things to do
  • Exhibitions
  • Miami

One of the best things to come out of Art Basel 2018 was a video of Kanye West talking to a tree. It wasn’t another psychotic break, thankfully. The rapper was spitting it back to Archimedes, the creepily captivating talking tree at NightGarden, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden’s psychedelic neon playground. The pop-up exhibit returns for its second year, taking over a portion of the 80-acre property and turning it into an illuminated wonderland. Think technicolor mazes, scavenger hunts led by virtual fairies, an enchanting snowfall experience, glowing dandelion fields and, yes, the infamous talking tree. Sounds fun, huh? We agree. 

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  • Things to do
  • Festivals

Celebrate locals’ best, tastiest and most inspiring contributions to the city during this daylong festival dedicated to all things 305. Expect a jam-packed day of performances and insightful presentations that highlight Miami’s incredible diversity: from flamenco and Ukrainian dances to marimba music demonstrations to live painting and more. Expect food, performances and a great outdoor vibe. 

  • Things to do
  • Concerts

The edgy dance labels Life & Death and Innervisions return to Virginia Key Beach for their annual fest, featuring multiple stages and moments that “will awaken the deepest of your senses,” according to organizers. This year's lineup includes Caillet and DJ Tennis, and tickets are now on sale and available based on entry time, starting at 6pm. Missed the electro-dance fest? Spring for the All Along Pass, intended for “free spirits and day dreamers” with the stamina to groove all day and night. Remember to pace yourself: The party doesn’t stop until 7am the next day.

 

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  • Things to do
  • Festivals

Art Basel, which stages three major fairs each year—in Hong Kong, Basel and Miami Beach—focuses on modern and contemporary art and puts more than 200 leading galleries and 4,000 artists from across the globe in front of the art world’s top curators, museums and collectors. Returning to its home at the Miami Beach Convention Center for the 2021 edition, the showcase comprises five sections: Galleries (works from leading galleries), Edition (editioned pieces), Nova (works created within the last three years), Positions (dedicated to emerging artists) and Survey (works created before the year 2000). The weekend of Art Basel has become a major draw for Miami, with parties, satellite fairs and major events being held in conjunction with the show—have fun celebrity-spotting.

  • Things to do
  • Play spaces
  • Aventura

Do you have a serious sweet tooth? Are you, like so many of us, on a constant quest for your next fix of digital accolades in the form of likes, comments and reposts? Get your cameras ready: Miami Sweet’s glistening candy jungle, massive pineapple pit and other over-the-top interactive confections are taking over Aventura Mall’s third-level Treats Food Hall all holiday season long. Crafted by global candy artist Jackie Sorkin (who once starred in a TLC reality show called “Candy Queen” so you know her stuff is camera-ready), Miami Sweet already delighted us last year as Candytopia, and now it’s back with a new twelve room sugar-coated adventure. Ogle iconic pop art installations done up made up entirely of candy, walk through a Versace-themed sugar gallery and sway with samba dancers in the Candy Carnival room. Oh, and did we mention you can swing from giant ice cream sandwiches too? It’s happening! Look, but please don’t lick the impressive edible candy art and bring on all the super-sweet selfies.

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  • Things to do
  • Event spaces
  • Downtown

Netflix and Fever have teamed up to create a thrilling theatrical event called Money Heist: The Experience, based on the smash-hit, Spanish-language show by the same name (and also known as La Casa de Papel). The action-packed, immersive experience puts participants at the center of a thrilling heist very similar to what unfolds during the show's current season. Participants will join Lisboa’s notorious gang of thieves, donning the iconic red jumpsuit and Salvador Dalí mask as they try to make it to the other side. Easy enough, right? Expect astounding visual effects and unexpected plot twists. 

 

  • Things to do
  • Festivals

Picture a battalion of gourmet chefs cooking the top heritage beef, pork, lamb and all kinds of succulent meats, sommeliers pairing fine wines with delectable dishes and teams competing in a culinary showdown to see who will be crowned the Prince or Princess of Meat. From parillada stations and multiple Cajas Chinas to over-the-top dessert stations, all that and more is going down at this annual extravaganza, and it’s going to be delish.

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  • Things to do
  • Markets and fairs
  • Hialeah

Some big changes are on the horizon for the world’s largest holiday theme park (at least according to the website): In 2021, after 37 years at Tropical Park, Santa’s Enchanted Forest is moving to Hialeah Park. Folks can expect to find much of the original Santa’s reimagined at its new home, 100 East 32nd Street, including millions of twinkling lights, lots of carnival rides and only-in-Miami experiences.

The county-fair-meets-winter-wonderland is chock-full of roller coasters, amusement rides, carnival games, photo ops with Santa and his helpers and an assortment of fair food—think fresh doughnuts, funnel cakes and more. All of the vendors will be back when the 38th annual Santa’s Enchanted Forest returns this fall, plus a few surprise acts for opening weekend.

  • Things to do
  • Festivals

How much beer can you put down in a few hours? Take your best shot at this one-day brew fest featuring more than 100 beers from over 30 craft breweries across Florida. It’s a fun afternoon packed with educational seminars, home-brew presentations and one-of-a-kind beers. Proceeds from the festival benefit FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management and its Brewing Science program.

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  • Things to do
  • Concerts
  • North Beach

Get ready to jam out to some of the biggest names in improvisational rock and funk at the brand-new festival at North Beach Bandshell. The North Miami Beach Festival lineup includes Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, The Motet, Marco Benevento, TAUK, and more. As you're grooving by the Atlantic Ocean, make sure to hit up the yummy local food vendors that will be there to nourish your body and soul.

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