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Claiming to be the biggest street party in the world, and undoubtedly the biggest Hispanic bash in the United States, Carnaval Miami offers two weeks of concerts, parades, family entertainment, sport, art exhibits and ethnic food and culminating in the massive 'Calle Ocho' street party and parade. Organised by Little Havana's Kiwanis Club in aid of needy children, Carnaval attracts a million fun-lovers who swarm through 23 city blocks. More than 40 stages are placed on intersecting avenues, from which emanates merengue, salsa, pop and Caribbean music. Food kiosks line the streets, and four blocks are devoted entirely to children's entertainment. For more information phone (305) 644 8888 or email
Coconut Grove Arts Festival
The charming village of Coconut Grove south of downtown Miami on Biscayne Bay becomes the setting for a premier outdoor fine arts festival during February each year, attracting more than 150,000 people to view the works of more than 330 contemporary artists, ranging from photography and sculpture to jewellery, painting and woodwork. Visitors can meet and chat with the artists, sample delicious cuisine, and enjoy live entertainment and music.
Dade Heritage Days
The Dade Heritage Trust is committed to 'preserving the best of the past for the future,' and one way this organisation has found to do this is the six-week annual line-up of events designed to stimulate awareness of and celebrate the architecture, culture, environment and people of Dade country. The programme of more than 100 events draws visitors and locals alike to take part in walking and bicycling tours, browse local crafts and gift boutiques, admire historic and architectural exhibits, watch historical re-enactments and attend lectures or film shows. For more information phone (305) 358 9572 or email
Having become a well-entrenched tradition over the past 20-odd years, the Miami Carnival is a cultural festival with a Caribbean-Latin flavour, providing a day of family fun and frolics that attracts about 50,000 people. Focus of the carnival is a colourful parade featuring steel bands, performers and dancers in flamboyant costumes, live bands and huge decorated floats. Spectators can enjoy food stalls and all sorts of allied outdoor festivities.
King Mango Strut
Not to be missed! Calling itself the "Weirdest Parade in the Universe", and boldly claiming to "put the NUT back in Coconut Grove", the King Mango Strut is a wild and irreverent parade, that draws vast crowds of fun-loving spectators from all over Miami and its surrounding areas. The spirit of the King Mango Strut is significantly tongue-in-cheek. Parody is the order of the day, and participants are willing to poke fun at anything and everything. Nothing is off-limits, and in the name of good satire, the boundaries of good taste are often pushed. Visitors to Miami would be ill-advised to miss this spectacle; described by the official website as "the wackiest event in South Florida (not counting the elections)".
Ultra Music Festival
The Ultra Music Festival is an outdoor electronic music festival, held annually during the Winter Music Conference in Miami, Florida. The festival has grown so much in recent years, that it has become one of the highest-grossing music festivals anywhere in the world - and a veritable Mecca for electro heads everywhere. Consisting of 16 stages, involving 300 DJs, and with an expected attendance in excess of 150,000, tickets are bound to be scarce on the ground. Book now to avoid disappointment, and stock up on plenty of sleep.