A short drive (or bike ride) from Downtown Miami, the Historic Virginia Key Park is a fine place for a dose of nature, with a small but pretty beachfront and playgrounds for the kids (as well as a carousel). From time to time there are concerts, ecology-minded family picnics and other events. Coming from Downtown Miami, this is the second park entrance on the left (just past the entrance to the Virginia Key Beach North Point Park).
In the dark days of segregation, this beachfront, initially accessible only by boat, was an official 'colored only' recreation site (African Americans were not allowed on other beaches). Opened in 1945, it remained a major destination for African American communities (as well as Cubans, Haitians and many others from Latin America) seeking to enjoy a bit of the Miami coastline. It was popular until the early 1960s when the city's beaches were finally desegregated.