With warm turquoise waters, swaying palms, and pristine beaches, the islands near Miami offer the perfect tropical getaway. For Miamians, these islands are right in their backyard, just a short boat ride away for a day trip or weekend escape.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: The island closest to Miami is Key Biscayne, located just south across the Rickenbacker Causeway.

An Overview of Islands Near Miami

When it comes to beautiful islands, Miami, Florida is in close proximity to some of the most stunning ones in the United States. From the famous Florida Keys to the popular South Florida Barrier Islands, there is no shortage of options for those seeking a tropical escape.

Miami’s Proximity to the Florida Keys

The Florida Keys are a string of islands stretching about 120 miles off the southern tip of Florida. Key West, the southernmost point of the continental United States, is located just 90 miles from Miami.

The proximity of the Florida Keys to Miami makes it a convenient destination for both locals and tourists alike. Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, the Florida Keys offer a variety of activities and attractions, including snorkeling, fishing, and exploring the beautiful coral reefs.

Popular South Florida Barrier Islands

South Florida is also home to several stunning barrier islands that are within easy reach of Miami. One of the most popular is Miami Beach, known for its vibrant nightlife, beautiful beaches, and iconic art deco architecture.

Just a short drive from downtown Miami, Miami Beach offers a wide range of accommodations, restaurants, and entertainment options.

Another popular barrier island near Miami is Key Biscayne. Located just south of downtown Miami, Key Biscayne is known for its pristine beaches, lush parks, and outdoor recreational activities. Visitors can enjoy biking, kayaking, or simply relaxing on the beach while taking in the breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.

For those looking for a more secluded and tranquil island experience, Fisher Island is an exclusive private island located just off the coast of Miami. Accessible only by ferry or private boat, Fisher Island offers luxury accommodations, a private beach club, and world-class amenities.

Whether you’re looking for a vibrant and lively island atmosphere or a secluded and peaceful retreat, the islands near Miami offer something for everyone. So, pack your bags and get ready to explore the beauty and charm of these incredible destinations!

Key Biscayne – The Island Nearest to Miami

Situated just south of downtown Miami, Key Biscayne is the island closest to the bustling city. With its pristine beaches, picturesque parks, and luxurious accommodations, it’s no wonder that Key Biscayne is a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike.

Location and Geography of Key Biscayne

Key Biscayne is located on the eastern coast of Florida, separated from mainland Miami by Biscayne Bay. The island is approximately seven miles long and two miles wide, offering visitors a compact yet diverse range of attractions.

Its proximity to Miami makes it easily accessible, with a short drive or bike ride across the Rickenbacker Causeway.

One of the unique features of Key Biscayne is its natural beauty. The island is home to Crandon Park, a sprawling beachfront oasis that boasts miles of sandy shores, crystal clear waters, and lush greenery.

Visitors can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities such as swimming, kayaking, and picnicking while taking in the breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Beaches and Parks on Key Biscayne

Key Biscayne is renowned for its stunning beaches and well-maintained parks. Crandon Park Beach, with its calm waters and gentle waves, is a favorite spot for families and sunbathers. The beach also offers amenities such as picnic areas, barbecue pits, and playgrounds, making it an ideal destination for a day of relaxation and fun.

Another popular attraction on the island is Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park. This park is home to one of the most beautiful beaches in the area, with its white sand, turquoise waters, and iconic lighthouse.

Visitors can explore nature trails, go fishing, or simply unwind under the shade of palm trees.

Staying and Dining on the Island

Key Biscayne offers a range of accommodation options, from luxury resorts to cozy beachfront rentals. Visitors can choose to stay in world-class hotels that offer stunning ocean views, top-notch amenities, and easy access to the island’s attractions.

When it comes to dining, Key Biscayne does not disappoint. The island is home to a variety of restaurants that cater to all tastes and budgets. From fresh seafood and authentic Cuban cuisine to international flavors and trendy cafes, Key Biscayne has something to satisfy every palate.

For those looking to indulge in some retail therapy, Key Biscayne also has a selection of boutique shops and upscale stores. Visitors can browse through local art galleries, shop for designer clothing, or pick up unique souvenirs to remember their trip.

Other Notable Islands Close to Miami

Virginia Key

Located just south of Miami Beach, Virginia Key is a small island that offers a peaceful retreat from the bustling city. With its pristine beaches and lush vegetation, it’s a popular destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

The island is also home to the Virginia Key Beach Park, which features picnic areas, bike trails, and even a historic carousel. Visitors can enjoy a day of swimming, kayaking, or paddleboarding in the crystal-clear waters of Biscayne Bay.

For those interested in marine life, the Miami Seaquarium is located on Virginia Key and offers a variety of interactive exhibits and shows.

Star Island

Located just off the coast of Miami Beach, Star Island is known for its luxurious mansions and celebrity residents. This exclusive island is accessible only by boat and offers stunning views of the Miami skyline. Many celebrities, including Madonna and Gloria Estefan, have called Star Island home.

Visitors can take a boat tour around the island to catch a glimpse of these extravagant homes and perhaps spot a celebrity or two. It’s truly a one-of-a-kind experience that allows you to see how the rich and famous live.

Fisher Island

Situated just south of Miami Beach, Fisher Island is one of the most exclusive and private islands in the area. Accessible only by ferry or private boat, this island is home to a number of luxurious residences and a private club.

Fisher Island offers a wide range of amenities, including a golf course, tennis courts, and a marina. The island also boasts beautiful beaches and pristine natural surroundings, making it a perfect getaway for those seeking privacy and tranquility.

Elliott Key

Elliott Key is the largest of the islands in Biscayne National Park and is located about nine miles east of Homestead, Florida. This uninhabited island is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

Visitors can explore the island’s hiking trails, go snorkeling in the surrounding coral reefs, or simply relax on the beach. Camping is also allowed on Elliott Key, providing a unique opportunity to spend a night under the stars.

With its untouched beauty and diverse ecosystems, Elliott Key is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to escape the city and immerse themselves in nature.

For more information about these islands:

Visiting the Islands Near Miami

When planning a trip to Miami, visitors often overlook the fact that there are several beautiful islands located just a short distance from the city. These islands offer a unique escape from the bustling city life and provide an opportunity to relax and unwind in a picturesque setting.

Whether you’re looking for a day trip or a longer stay, the islands near Miami have something to offer for everyone.

Transportation to the Islands

Getting to the islands near Miami is relatively easy, with various transportation options available. One of the most popular ways to reach these islands is by ferry, which provides a scenic and enjoyable journey.

The ferry services operate from several points in Miami and offer convenient schedules for visitors. Additionally, private boat rentals are also available for those who prefer a more personalized experience. Some islands even have their own marinas, making it easy for boaters to dock and explore.

Best Times to Visit

The islands near Miami can be enjoyed year-round, but the best times to visit may vary depending on personal preferences and weather conditions. The winter months, from November to March, offer pleasant temperatures and a quieter atmosphere, making it a great time to escape the cold weather up north.

Spring and fall are also popular seasons, with mild temperatures and lower tourist crowds. However, it’s important to note that summer can get quite hot and humid, so visitors should be prepared for the weather.

Activities and Attractions

The islands near Miami offer a wide range of activities and attractions to suit different interests. From pristine beaches and water sports to hiking trails and wildlife encounters, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Snorkeling and diving enthusiasts will be delighted by the vibrant underwater world surrounding the islands, while nature lovers can explore the lush vegetation and observe unique wildlife species. Additionally, many islands have charming towns with art galleries, boutiques, and delicious local cuisine to explore.

Where to Stay

For those looking to extend their stay on the islands near Miami, there are various accommodation options available. From luxurious beachfront resorts to cozy bed and breakfasts, visitors can find a place that suits their preferences and budget.

Some islands even offer vacation rentals and camping facilities for a more adventurous experience. It’s recommended to book accommodations in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to ensure availability and secure the best deals.


With the beautiful Key Biscayne just minutes away, Miamians don’t have to go far to enjoy a tropical island escape. The keys and barrier islands scattered around the Miami area each have their own unique landscapes, activities, and vibe. Take a day or weekend to explore Virginia Key’s trails, visit historic Star Island, or relax on Elliott Key – Miami’s islands offer natural beauty and discovery right off the coast.

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