Zagat named Miami one of the most exciting food cities in America in 2017 and WalletHub added more accolades when it ranked Miami the third-best foodie city in the country in 2018.
If you’re taking a cruise from the Port of Miami this year, we recommend grabbing a meal or two in the city before you set sail. Although the list of restaurants to choose from in Miami is truly endless, we rounded up some of the best spots near the Port of Miami to help you plan your pre-cruise trip.
Start with the closest restaurants to the Port of Miami (including one located right outside of Terminal F) and then explore more in the nearby neighborhoods of South Beach, Downtown Miami, Little Havana, and beyond.
This guide to the best restaurants near the Port of Miami covers cheap eats for budget-minded travelers and top-rated restaurants for the true foodies among us along with unique eateries, health food and vegan spots, rooftop bars, and even a breakdown of the most convenient stops on the route between the Miami Airport and the Port of Miami.
Whatever you’re in the mood for, one thing is for sure: these mouth-watering restaurants in Miami will provide a culinary experience you won’t soon forget!
Closest Restaurants to the Port of Miami
Ready to fuel up for your vacation but don’t have the time or energy to leave the cruise terminals? In that case, the closest restaurant to the Port of Miami is Seaman Cafe. Sitting in front of Terminal F, Seaman Cafe is the only restaurant on Dodge Island where the cruise terminals are located. The casual cafe serves up salads, sandwiches, burgers, and entrees like steak, fish, and chicken wings – click here to see the full menu.
For more variety, you can also visit the nearby Bayside Marketplace. It’s home to 39 more restaurants near the Port of Miami including bars, beer halls, cafes, coffee shops, ice cream spots, and everything in between.
Driving from the Port of Miami to the Bayside Marketplace will take about 10 minutes, but you can also walk from Terminal F in only 19 minutes. From the more remote Terminal A, the trek will take about 40 minutes on foot.
Between the Port of Miami and the Bayside Marketplace, you’ll also find Pucci’s Pizza (a five-minute drive from the Port) and The Deck at Island Gardens (a seven-minute drive) as well.
Cheapest Restaurants Near the Port of Miami
Miami isn’t necessarily known as being a budget vacation destination, but there are still cheap eats in the city if you know where to look. This Eater article lists 15 of the best spots to grab a budget-friendly bite to eat and many of them are under $10 for a filling meal.
The four closest to the Port of Miami are La Sandwicherie in Downtown Miami and Fritanga Pinolandia, El Rey de las Fritas, and La Camaronera in the Little Havana neighborhood.
La Sandwicherie serves up made-to-order sandwiches, La Camaronera is a seafood joint, El Rey de Las Fritas has Cuban food and Fritanga Pinolandia offers Nicaraguan fare.
Even better? La Sandwicherie is open from 9 am to 5 am and Fritanga Pinolandia is open 24 hours, so you can grab a cheap bite to eat near the Port of Miami any time of day or night!
Unique Restaurants Near the Port of Miami
This collection of unique restaurants near the Port of Miami comes courtesy of Zagat. Some of the best on their top ten round-up are El Carajo, cooking up tapas inside a gas station, and Barton G which serves up their mouth-watering fare on whimsical, over-the-top plating that you won’t soon forget.
If you’re lucky enough to time your cruise just right, you can also snag a Dark Dining reservation at Chef Adrianne’s Vineyard Restaurant and Wine Bar. Every month diners enjoy a new themed menu at the restaurant while blind-folded, to heighten their other senses and better savor the flavors and textures of the food.
Afterward, head to the Sugar Factory in Miami Beach for drinks and dessert. The “World Famous Sugar Factory King Kong Sundae” with 24 scoops of ice cream serves 12, but for smaller groups, the extensive menu with unique eats like the Bacon Cheeseburger Milkshake and collection of cocktails designed by Pitbull (the singer, not the dog breed) served up in 60 oz. goblets will have you snapping not-stop photos of your food before you consume it!
Best Health Food and Vegan Restaurants Near the Port of Miami
Many people use vacation as an excuse to scrap the diet plan and treat themselves to anything and everything on the menu for a week or two. If you’re more of a health-conscious traveler, though, don’t fret – it may be difficult to eat clean on your cruise, but it’s never been easier in Miami!
In fact, in South Beach alone you’ll find Pura Vida, Planta South Beach, and Lilikoi Organic Living all within a six-minute walk from each other.
Pura Vida believes “health is the main ingredient to happiness” and offers superfood smoothies, organic juices and wellness shots alongside their food menu to help supercharge your health before you set sail. Lilikoi offers a similar menu in their quest to “support a healthier lifestyle and a more sustainable way to live.”
For vegans, Planta South Beach serves up solely plant-based cuisine every day of the week and offers an unlimited Maki roll and bottomless Sake deal on Mondays as well.
If none of these sound quite up your alley (or you don’t want to venture out to South Beach) check out Jar + Fork in Downtown Miami instead. The fast-casual restaurant serves healthy paleo inspired plates, vegan dishes, cold-pressed juices, smoothies, and desserts that’ll keep you looking and feeling your best before and after your cruise from the Port of Miami.
Top-Rated Restaurants Near the Port of Miami
Start your vacation off with a bang when you dine at the most notable restaurants in Miami. Enjoy Italian fare from the menu curated by Michelin-starred chef Cosimo Cassano at Amare Miami or indulge in Japanese food at Kosushi, the second location of the Michelin-starred restaurant in Sao Paolo, Brazil. Both are conveniently located in South Beach, about 15 minutes driving from the Port of Miami.
If you can’t land a reservation at Amare Miami or Kosushi, browse more options recommended by leading travel publications. Conde Nast Traveler lists the 18 Best Restaurants in Miami (on which Zuma and Joe’s Stone Crab are the two closest to the Port of Miami) and Time Out has another article detailing the 31 Best Restaurants in Miami You Have to Try.
Rooftop Bars Near the Port of Miami
One of the perks of cruisin’ out of Miami is the chance to enjoy the fabulous weather that the city boasts year-round. What better place to soak up some rays than a rooftop bar?
Sip the first few drinks of your vacation in style at the Rooftop at E11even, conveniently located only seven minutes driving from the Port of Miami, or don your swimsuit and splash around at the rooftop pool and bar at the Highbar Rooftop at Miami Beach. Other nearby spots to enjoy skyline views from above the hustle and bustle of the city include Bloom Skybar, Sugar, and Area 31 in Downtown Miami as well.
Restaurants on the Route from Miami Airport to Port Miami
The Port of Miami is nicknamed “The Cruise Capital of the World” because more passengers pass through it every year than other. If you fly into Miami from another US city or anywhere else in the world, you may find yourself craving a bite to eat on the short drive from the Miami Airport to the cruise terminals.
There are a few different ways to get between the two destinations but the route without tolls will take you about 8.5 miles along NW 21st St. and NW North River Drive.
Along the way, you’ll pass by the Capitan River Restaurant and a Salvadoran restaurant called Nueva San Salvador II. When you get closer to the port you’ll also pass one block away from Pucci’s Pizza and a Sushi Sake restaurant as well. There’s also a Groovin’ Bean Coffee Bar and Lounge on the route for a caffeine boost before you set sail.
Whether you have days in the city or are just making a quick trip from the Miami Airport to the Port of Miami, there’s always time to stop for a bite to eat! So, start your vacation with a few tasty treats and try the best restaurants in Miami before your next cruise from the city!
-Di Minardi (that’s me!), travel blogger at Slight North