Boating, whether on sailboats, powerboats, luxury yachts, WaveRunners, or Windsurfers, is a passion in Greater Miami. The Intracoastal Waterway, wide and sheltered Biscayne Bay, and the Atlantic Ocean provide ample opportunities for fun aboard all types of watercraft.
The best windsurfing spots are on the north side of the Rickenbacker Causeway at Virginia Key Beach or to the south at, go figure, Windsurfer Beach. Kite surfing adds another level to the water sports craze.
Bayshore Landing Marina. This bustling Coconut Grove marina is home to dozens of boat slips and plenty of companies that provide yacht or fishing charters. It also has a lively seafood restaurant called Monty's that's great for viewing the nautical eye candy. 2560 S. Bayshore Dr., Coconut Grove, Miami, FL, 33133. PHONE: 305/854-7997. www.bayshorelanding.com.
Haulover Marine Center. It may be low on glamour, but this marina, with a bait-and-tackle shop and a 24-hour marine gas station, is high on service. 15000 Collins Ave., north of Bal Harbour, Miami Beach, FL, 33154. PHONE: 305/945-3934. www.haulovermarinecenter.net.
Miami Beach Marina. Near the Art Deco District there is plenty to entice sailors and landlubbers alike: restaurants, charters, boat rentals, a complete marine-hardware store, a dive shop, excursion vendors, a large grocery store, a fuel dock, concierge services, and 400 slips accommodating vessels of up to 250 feet. There's also a U.S. Customs clearing station and a charter service, Florida Yacht Charters. Picnic tables along the docks make this marina especially visitor-friendly. 300 Alton Rd., South Beach, Miami Beach, FL, 33139. PHONE: 305/673-6000. www.miamibeachmarina.com.
Club Nautico. You can rent 18- to 34-foot powerboats and 52- to 54-foot yachts through this national boat rental company with two Miami locations. Half- to full-day rentals range from $399 to $3,600. Miami Beach Marina, 300 Alton Rd., #112, Miami Beach, FL, 33139. PHONE: 305/673-2502. www.club-nautico.com. Crandon Park Marina, 4000 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne, 33129.
Playtime Watersports. All types of boat rentals are available from this company, but a regularly scheduled evening sunset cruise through Biscayne Bay departs nightly at 6:30 pm from Maribella Marina in downtown. Maribella Marina, 801 Brickell Ave., Downtown, Miami, FL, 33131. PHONE: 305/216-6967. www.playtimewatersport.com.
Sailboards Miami. Rent paddle boards and kayaks or learn how to windsurf. These friendly folks say they teach more windsurfers each year than anyone in the United States and promise to teach you to windsurf within two hours—for $79. Open Fri.-Tues. only. Mile 6.5 on Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne, FL. PHONE: 305/892-8992. www.sailboardsmiami.com. OPEN: Fri.-Tues. 10-6.