As the Holiday season approaches, Miami beckons with a vibrant tapestry of experiences that promise to make this time of year truly special. It’s a season of celebration, and in the Magic City, the festivities are nothing short of magical. We are excited to extend an exclusive invitation to you and a guest to explore two of Miami’s most dazzling light displays: the triumphant return of Jungle Island’s Luminosa Festival of Lights, gracing the city once again after a hiatus since 2019, and the enchanting Nights of Lights at Pinecrest Gardens. These radiant spectacles are just the beginning.
Miami’s holiday spirit goes beyond the twinkling lights, and we encourage you to immerse yourself in a whirlwind of unique events and cultural experiences. From towering Avian Oasis sculptures to the melodic enchantment of Tropical Nights Live, the interactive FRIENDS™ Experience, and the dynamic ‘Bounce’ exhibit at Oolite Arts, the city has something for everyone.
These occasions are not just about the sights and sounds; they promise captivating visuals and cultural enrichment, ensuring they will be the highlights of your fall and winter events and holiday coverage. In this article, we’ll take you on a journey through these remarkable experiences, where Miami’s magic truly comes to life. So, join us as we explore the wonders that make Miami a must-visit destination during the holiday season.
Miami Beach Festival of Lights
This holiday season, locals and visitors alike can experience a series of dazzling spectaculars of music and light as the Miami Beach Holiday Festival of Lights takes to South Beach December 1 through December 23. Presented by the Miami Beach Classical Music Festival (MMF), a nonprofit dedicated to providing affordable, world-class musical instruction and groundbreaking performance experiences to young artists and the South Florida community, these first-of-their-kind live musical performances will feature cutting-edge projection-mapping technology where intricate lighting designs and captivating visuals overlap, turning some of South Beach’s most iconic building façades into interactive exhibits with vibrant imagery.
AVIAN OASIS by The Myth Makers (Nov. 18 – May 19)
Discover the magic of six towering bamboo-crafted bird sculptures, designed to evoke the memories of Franz Scherr’s Parrot Jungle. These majestic structures, including a vibrant bunting, a wise owl, and a magnificent peacock, promise to captivate visitors of all ages. Join Pinecrest Gardens for the exhibit’s grand opening on Saturday, November 18, 2023, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and let these “flights of fancy” be your new feathered friends. Free with admission to Pinecrest Gardens. Located at 11000 Red Road, Pinecrest. Visit www.pinecrestgardens.org.
NIGHTS OF LIGHTS FESTIVAL (Dec. 9 – Jan. 6, 6-9 p.m. Thurs.-Sun. & select Wednesdays)
Step into a world of wonder as Pinecrest Gardens transforms into a winter paradise illuminated by thousands of twinkling lights. Journey deep into our enchanted forest and be mesmerized by activities such as a pajama party, live holiday performances, photos with Santa Claus, and shopping at our seasonal gift bazaar. Whether you’re looking for a festive cocktail, a beer-tasting experience, or simply to be enchanted by the festive atmosphere, mark your calendars for a truly magical experience. Tickets range from $12-$23. Located at 11000 Red Road, Pinecrest. More information and tickets at www.pinecrestgardens.org.
LUMINOSA FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS AT JUNGLE ISLAND (Nov. 21 – Feb. 28, open nightly)
Miami’s Jungle Island welcomes back the enchanting Luminosa Festival of Lights. Explore a 1.35 mile radiant jungle of three-dimensional, hand-crafted lanterns, lighting up the night with a kaleidoscope of colors and themes ranging from the enchanting wildlife of Jungle Animalia to the mystical depths of Atlantis. Marvel at the craftsmanship of over 150 artisans, with displays made from silk, steel, and millions of LED lights that illustrate legends, heroes, and cultural sagas. Open Sunday to Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday & Saturday from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m., at Jungle Island, 1111 Parrot Jungle Trail, Miami, home to Treetop Trekking Miami. Tickets for adults, children, students, seniors, and military are available, along with special rates for groups. Tickets go on sale soon at www.jungleisland.com.
TROPICAL NIGHTS LIVE (Nov. 17, 8-10 p.m.)
Savor a vibrant evening of music and culture at Pinecrest Gardens with the kickoff of the 2nd annual Tropical Nights Live from the Banyan Bowl. On Friday, November 17, celebrated Argentinian pianist, Anibal Berraute, will mesmerize audiences with his fusion of tango, Uruguayan candombe, traditional folklore, and American jazz. Enjoy a memorable night under the stars, starting at 8 to 10 p.m. on November 17 at the Banyan Bowl in Pinecrest Gardens, located at 11000 Red Road, Pinecrest, 33156. Single tickets are $35-$45 or purchase a series subscription. www.pinecrestgardens.org/
The FRIENDS™ Experience in Miami (Though Mar. 24)
Experience the magic of the FRIENDS™ series like never before! From Monica’s kitchen to the renowned Central Perk’s orange couch, immerse yourself in reimagined sets that have shaped the TV era. Pose by Rachel and Monica’s purple door, lounge on Chandler and Joey’s recliners, or recreate Ross’s unforgettable “pivot” scene. This unique experience, suitable for fans of all ages, runs through March 24, 2024. Tickets start at just $27.50 each. Located inside the Treats Food Hall on the third level near Center Court (19501 Biscayne Blvd., Aventura, FL 33180). Hours are Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m., Fridays from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Purchase tickets at www.friendstheexperience.com/
Oolite Arts Presents ‘Bounce’ Exhibit (Through Jan. 21, 2024)
Hop over to Oolite Arts to check out the new “Bounce” exhibit. Curated by the esteemed Storm Ascher in her Miami curatorial debut, this exhibition captures the vibrant spirit of movement, drawing inspiration from Miami’s iconic club scene. Witness art that embodies the energy of ‘bounce,’ featuring works from international and local talents, including Oolite Arts’ residents and alums. FREE. Open daily from noon to 5 p.m. through January 21, 2024. Located at 924 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL 33139 www.oolitearts.org/bounce | 305-674-8278