Are you wondering what to pack for Florida in March? I recently got a request from a friend to help create a packing list for an itinerary that includes Miami for a few days and then down to the Keys for a few more. I am focusing on that itinerary and you can use this list as inspiration for one of your own!
Important note: This list does not really include trips to theme parks. It is really about enjoying water activities, some sightseeing and loving the Florida weather.
Packing List for a Florida Vacation: Miami and the Florida Keys
Florida is a year-round destination for warm weather and fun in the surf and sun. Whether it be along the Atlantic Ocean side and the Miami scene, relaxation in the Keys, shelling on the shores of Sanibel and Captiva, or driving the western coast of the sunshine state along the Gulf of Mexico, Florida has so much to offer.
I love to pack using my 54321 Travel Capsule Method, and this trip is no exception. You can read all about my method of packing in the linked post (as well as get a printable guide!), but the gyst of it is that you:
- Think through your activities for your trip,
- Research the climate and weather forecast for your destination
- Plan your mix and match 54321 travel capsule wardrobe based on those factors
- Add toiletries and other necessities
Activities in Miami and the Florida Keys
While this trip takes place in almost two different worlds, there is one strong common thread: ocean, sand & sun. Miami is all about the beach scene during the day and the nightlife scene after dark. Truth be told, I am not planning on too many late nights. Even so, this wardrobe can be dressed up for dinner and a night out!
The activities in the Keys are all about the beach and the water, although are much more casual. In either location, there is an opportunity for shopping and some site seeing, so having a pair of comfortable shoes is important.
Weather in March in Miami and the Florida Keys
The average temperature for both locations in South Florida at this time of year is typically temperature lows in the mid 70s, up to 80s and sunny. Even though you will encounter mild temperatures, Florida weather can include unexpected rain showers. It’s a good idea to have a small travel umbrella or packable rain jacket, just in case.
In addition to the air temperature and weather forecast, it is important to think about the water temperature too! The water in Miami in March is often mid-70s, and in the keys it is mid 70s up to 80. I read somewhere that swimming season in the Keys is January through December!
Maimi Style vs Florida Keys Style
The biggest challenge in this travel capsule wardrobe is style. Miami and the Keys are not too far apart in miles. In fact, it’s only 67 miles to Key Largo and 164 if you are going all the way to Key West! They are worlds away in terms of dress code. Miami is all about fashion and the Keys are all about casual.
I approached this travel capsule to be versatile enough that I look nice in Miami, but those same pieces that I dressed up, will also work in the Keys more casual environment.
If you are looking for help with your carry-on packing in general, here are some of the top ShePacksLite posts to get you started!
- How to Create the Ultimate Travel Capsule Wardrobe
- Best Compression Packing Cubes: Pack Like a Pro
- Perfect Your Packing Lite: How to Pack a Carry On for 5 Days
- Women Over 50: Best Clothes to Create the Ultimate Travel Capsule
What to Pack for Florida in March
Start With Your 54321 Travel Capsule Wardrobe:
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Tank 1 | Tank 2 | T-Shirt | 3/4 Sleeve Shirt | Denim Jacket | Jeans | Skirt | Shorts | Joggers | Dress 1 | Dress 2 | Dress 3 | Sneakers | Flats | Sandals | Swimsuit 1 | Swimsuit 2 | Crossbody bag | Beach Bag | Sunhat | Baseball Hat | Cover-Up | Scarf
A Breakdown of your 5-4-3-2-1 Travel Capsule Wardrobe
Both Miami and the Forida Keys will be warm, if not downright hot. So, of your 5 tops, I suggest two tank tops, one t-shirt, one long-sleeved shirt, and a light sweater or jacket that can be mix and matched with your tops and dresses in case evenings bring a breeze.
And remember, the name of the game is mix and match so make sure you are following a color palette that works together!
Think neutrals that can go with your tops. I always like to have a pair of cropped white jeans in case nights get cool and some joggers for lounging, so those are two of my picks. The others are a skort and a pair of shorts.
You can go off color palette here as long as your dresses match your shoes and your light jacket. Bring a beachy sundress, a maxi dress, and one that can be dressed up for a night out!
This is all I ever bring. One pair of sneakers – specifically Taos Stars, one pair of sandals and a pair of flats. I am at the point where my feet do not do well without the right shoes and I KNOW these shoes work. I have walked for hours and hours in the Taos Stars, as well as the NAOTs. The NAOTs double as beach shoes, and the ballet flats can be for a lunch or night out. I specifically do not bring flip flops because they hurt my feet, but you could replace the NAOTs with flip flops for a more casual look.
One bathing suit to wear, one to dry
A crossbody travel bag for site-seeing, and a beach bag.
One casual and one dressy to change up the look of an outfit.
A packable sun hat and a baseball cap.
Cover Up, Scarf/Pareo, Sunglasses, and earrings
Other Travel Necessities For Your Florida Packing List
Hopefully, with the list above, you have a solid idea of what to pack for Florida in March, at least as far as wardrobe is concerned. Now let’s turn to the rest of your packing. In addition to your Travel Capsule Wardrobe, you will need the following items:
- Workout wear
- Running Shoes if you need them (I usually bike in the gym or walk while traveling. Therefore the Taos sneakers are all I need)
- Toiletries , including a good leave-in conditioner after all that salt water.
- Your regular medications
- Reusable Water Bottle
- Electronics and Cords
- A good book or Kindle
- Packing cubes to help it all fit in your carry on luggage.
Finally, do not forget the sun protection for the sunny weather and aloe vera to soothe that skin! The Florida sun is intense and you want to protect against skin cancer for sure.
Use this list as a great jumping-off point. If you are heading down to the Keys and looking for more inspiration, check out this out: