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Family Travel Files Ezine Family Vacations Resource
Miami Family Vacations Include Dolphin Encounter, Camel Rides, and Beach Time.  From Zoo Miami adventures and Parrot Jungle bird antics to big splashes at the Seaquarium and the small discoveries at the Miami Children’s Museum, Miami has an energizing and engaging side for families. Zoo Miami Giraffe Feeding Family Fun

Urban and definitely tropical, Miami has fun stuff to do with the kids. Discover parrots, pirates, and monkeys. Wiggle your toes in the sand at Crandon Park. Sign up for salsa lessons or kick back and relax.

Count birds of a feather.
 Nestled between Downtown Miami and South Beach on Watson Island, Parrot Jungle Island is a world-class animal theme park and entertainment destination. Started by an Austrian immigrant in 1936, the park was centered around the concept that the birds would “fly free”; and now Parrot Jungle is the home for 1,100 tropical birds as well and many beautiful and exotic plants and flowers, and is home to the best trained bird show in the world. Really the most fun with kids - strolling the grounds and feeding the birds. Bonus Points: Not just parrots anymore, within the complex you will also find a variety of tropical species including snakes, turtles and lizards. To showcase the interesting variety of residents the staff has created a Jungle Adventure Encounter, details at the website. (Parrot Jungle Island 1111 Parrot Jungle Trail, Miami, Florida, 33132. (305) 2-Jungle Miami Camel Rides for Kids

Explore the wild kingdom. Rated one of the top 10 zoos in the U.S., the 300-acre cage free Miami Metro Zoo showcases more than 1,300 animals, representing more than 400 species. The zoo features Wings of Asia Aviary, Dr. Wilde's World, a children's zoo, wildlife carousel, guided tram tours, and zookeeper talks. This is the location of Toad Stool and interactive zoo adventure. Hunt poison dart frogs; see and Emperor Scorpion; find a glass lizard; learn cockroaches hiss. Within the zoo complex it is possible to ride a camel; feed a giraffe; connect in Quetzal’s World with a costumed storyteller. Take a virtual African Safari in the Wild Earth Jeep Simulator. Drive your own jeep through herds of elephants and prides of lions while the passenger takes pictures of the adventure and, best of all, get a printout of the pictures. Bonus Points: A new multi-lingual audio tablet guide called Tours That Talk is now available to visitors at Amazon & Beyond.  The audio tour provides visitors with interesting information about the animals and their habitats adding an educational dimension to any visit.  (Miami Metro Zoo 12400 SW 152 Street, Miami, Florida, 33177. (305) 251-0400 or
Get your feet wet. The Seaquarim is th ehome of Flipper the dolphin, Lolita the killer whale, Roc the crocodile, and Maime the manatee. Enjoy 38 acres of entertainment, great shows and exhibits at the Miami Seaquarium on tropical Key Biscayne. This venue features exciting shows, great exhibits and enjoyable, educational presentations in a beautifully landscaped park overlooking Biscayne Bay. Bonus Points: The Park features an exciting two-hour program which allows guests to slip into a wetsuit and enter the world-famous Flipper Lagoon for an up-close encounter with dolphins. From time to time they also offer “Trainer for a Day” sessions, ideal for older teens. Need to know: There is a discount admission coupon on the website. (Miami Seaquarium 4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, Florida 33149. (305) 361-5705 or

Meet with a dolphin. We’re not talking football it’s much better than that. The Dolphin Encounter program at Miami Seaquarium’ Dolphin Harbor provides guests with the chance to get in the water with friendly, intelligent and graceful dolphins. The experience works well for families with school aged children because it is shallow water program no stress for any participants.  The unique experience also includes an in-classroom educational presentation and admission to Miami Seaquarium. Tough the experience is offer daily reservations are required. (Miami Seaquarium 4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, Florida 33149. (305) 365-2501 or

Monkey around with the family. Explore the wilds of South America, Asia and Africa in South Florida in the Monkey Jungle. Witness crab-eating monkeys diving for treats or delve into the lush, tropical Amazonian rain forest filled with hundreds of exotic monkeys. The park also contains one of the richest fossil deposits in Southern Florida, with more than 5,000 specimens. New exhibit includes rare Amazon parrots, the Cameroon Jungle and the Mandrill Baboons. Bonus Points: Not just for monkeys anymore, Wings of Love Foundation, a non-profit organization, operates a sanctuary for tropical birds that have been displaced or can no longer be cared for by their owners. The birds are housed in huge, free-flight geodesic domes onsite. Need to know: They offer an admission discount coupon on their website. (Monkey Jungle 14805 Southwest 216th St. Miami, Florida, 33170. (305) 235-1611 or Children's Museum Carnival Cruise Ship
Play, learn, imagine, and create with your kids. Any place that enables parents or grandparents to share thinking and learning is great for everyone. Miami Children’s Museum (MCM) does just that with contemporary flare. Located on Watson Island, the 56,500 square-foot MCM includes 14 galleries including Castle of Dreams where you can climb through a two-story sand castle and see sands from around the world, The Bank featuring a six-foot piggy bank and a design your own money element and The Television Studio where you can become a camera operator, news anchor or a weather reporter. They maintain hundreds of bilingual, interactive exhibits; conduct programs related to arts, culture, community and communication. The atmosphere is inspiring for adults as well as youngsters. The engaging exhibits encourage families to play, learn, imagine, and create together. Bonus Points: Checkout the quirky mascot - Michimu whose shapes and colors have many meanings.  Not to be missed: No visit will be complete without at least a stop in the Kidsmart Educational Gift Shop where education and fun synergize. (Miami Children's Museum 980 MacArthur Causeway Miami, Florida 33132. (305)373 -KIDS (5437) or

Content researched and posted by Nancy Nelson-Duac, Curator of the good Stuff for the Family Travel Files. Images provided by Miami Seaquarium, Miami Zoo, and Miami Children’s Museum. Copyright updated 2015.

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