For those of us old enough to remember, Homestead is the town that was decimated by Hurricane Andrew in 1992. For the rest, it’s one of the few places left in the 305 with affordable housing (if you’re willing to add an hour or longer to your morning commute). It doesn't have the posh nightclubs of South Beach or the shiny skyscrapers of Brickell, but locals know there’s plenty to do in this oft-overlooked South Dade city. If you’re looking for a break from bar-hopping in Wynwood and sunbathing on SoBe, take the Turnpike south and open up this guide to the best things to do in Homestead.
10. Check Out a Race at Homestead-Miami Speedway
Race fans know there’s usually something going on down at the speedway on weekends. There’s legal drag racing on the occasional Friday night, weekend motorcycle races, and the NASCAR season finale that happens every November. But what many folks don’t know is these events are usually cheap or even free, they often feature food trucks and kid zones, and you can bring a soft cooler with your six-pack of choice free of charge.
1 Ralph Sanchez Speedway Blvd., Homestead; 305-230-5000; homesteadmiamispeedway.com
9. Hang With the Wildlife at Everglades Outpost
Located just down the road from Robert Is Here, this little-known animal sanctuary is home to a wide variety of creatures, including lemurs, panthers, camels, zebras, and parrots. The animals here have all been rescued and are undergoing rehabilitation, and many are eventually released back into the wild once they’re able to fend for themselves. Spend an afternoon strolling around the sanctuary, honing your inner Ron Magill by the tiger area, and channeling your inner Stark near the wolves.
35601 SW 192nd Ave., Homestead; 305-247-8000; evergladesoutpost.org
8. Eat Authentic Mexican Food All Over the Place
Every local knows that Homestead is the place to go to score real-deal Mexican comida
, and many drive down Krome Avenue to hit Tex-Mex joints such as El Toro Taco and Casita Tejas. But if you want flavors that are more authentic, explore further and find places like the exceptionally colorful and friendly La Cruzada, serving a mean plate of chilaquiles and wonderfully strong margaritas. Find the best burrito al pastor in town (and the best salsa bar) at Taqueria Morelia. And for something sweet, you can’t beat the cash-only La Michoacana, just a block east of Krome, where paletas come in flavors like coconut, yellow cherry, and even tequila.
La Cruzada, 331 Park Pl., Homestead; 305-242-6240; lacruzadarestaurant.com
Taqueria Morelia, 1875 NE Eighth St., Homestead; 305-247-0877; taqueriamorelia.com
La Michoacana, 344 Washington Ave., Homestead; 786-243-1139
7. Catch a Live Performance at the Seminole Theatre
Renovated in 2015, the Seminole Theatre is breathing new life into downtown Homestead. The venue began with a notable concert series featuring the Wailers, Jon Secada, and legendary bluesman Charlie Musselwhite. More recently, the theater has partnered with WLRN for live radio-show plays of Plan 9 From Outer Space
and War of the Worlds
. Coming up next are the Rocky Horror Picture Show
and a solo performance by Art Garfunkel, plus comedy shows, plays, and plenty of other events you won't want to miss.
18 N. Krome Ave., Homestead; 786-650-2073; seminoletheatre.org
6. Enjoy Some Brews and Barbecue at Homestead Bayfront Park
You could live in Miami your whole life and never know there’s a beach in Homestead. But those who live in South Dade know all about this secret sandy spot. Sure, it’s got a vibe reminiscent of The Simpsons'
Springfield, with the nuclear power plant in the distance, but hey, it still beats braving the parking fees in South Beach. Bring some burgers (or tofu) for the grills and make a day of it. Then end the afternoon at the onsite La Playa Grill, offering cheap beer and live bands.
9698 N. Canal Dr., Homestead; 305-230-3033; miamidade.gov/parks/homestead-bayfront.asp