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Pinecrest Gardens: Inexpensive Family Fun in Miami

Updated on September 7, 2012
Splash n Play at Pinecrest Gardens
Splash n Play at Pinecrest Gardens

Miami is full of kid-friendly attractions - the children's museum, zoo and Parrot Jungle, to name a few - but admission to these popular spots can really add up when you're entertaining the entire family. Fortunately, Miami has plenty of fun attractions that don't cost a bundle, and Pinecrest Gardens is among the best.

Wandering the curvy paths of Pinecrest Gardens is like walking through a lush tropical rainforest. You're surrounded on every side by exotic plants and palm trees, and along the way you'll find ponds and water-filled sinkholes with beautiful species of fish and turtles. The gardens manage to look and feel completely natural, so don't be surprised to see spiders building incredible webs among the leaves, not to mention plenty of mosquitoes.

As you near the end of the lushest part of the tropical gardens, you'll find the Splash n' Play water park, open to kids ages 2 to 12. There's no pool here, just fountains spraying and gushing water, so parents can relax on the benches surrounding the play area without having to worry about toddlers falling face-first into deep water. Be aware that the Splash n' Play is one of the few unshaded spots in Pinecrest Gardens, so make sure to bring sunscreen if you plan on stopping by.

Next up, the paths lead to a coral grotto, which looks out over the beautifully landscaped grounds that surround Swan Lake. At this large pond you'll can watch turtles, ducks and various Florida water birds, as well as a gorgeous white swan. This area also features plenty of picnic tables so you can enjoy a great view while eating lunch.

Finally, finish up your visit to Pinecrest Gardens by letting the kids burn off some energy at the playground while waiting for the petting zoo to open. The zoo is small, with just a few pigs, goats and sheep, but kids (and adults) of all ages will delight in their cuteness. Although you can get a glimpse of the animals at anytime, the petting zoo is only open at 10am, 12pm, 2pm and 4pm.

Don't Miss It

Pinecrest Gardens is well-known for its farmer's market, which is held right in the parking lot. The market is stocked with organic produce, exotic spices, freshly-prepared foods, locally-grown eggs, homemade bread and other tasty finds. The market has both a winter and summer season, and is typically open from 9am to 2pm every Sunday, but check the Pinecrest Gardens website to see whether the market is currently open.

Know Before You Go

Admission: $3 for adults, $2 for kids ages 2-17 and kids under 2 are free. Admission with a Splash n Play pass is $3.

Pinecrest Gardens:
11000 S Red Rd, Pinecrest, FL 33156, USA

get directions


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