Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Pembroke Pines, FL

  • Published 2021/11/20

Pembroke Pines is widely known by Floridians as Miami’s suburban area.

However, this small city in Broward County’s southernmost tip continues to grow with its vibrant community.

When World War II ended, many servicemen who retired from the military settled down permanently in Pembroke Pines.

The city grew larger after thousands of Miami-Dade County residents relocated there after being affected by a devastating hurricane in 1992.

From then on, Pembroke Pines continued to grow until it was included in Money Magazine’s “Best Places to Live” in the United States.

With a population of about 150,000 residents, Pembroke Pines is composed chiefly of new families and retirees.

There are so many reasons why Pembroke Pines are preferred by many as a highly livable community.

For travelers, it’s also a fascinating place to explore.

It’s a half commute to Fort Lauderdale and Miami, while it’s an hour’s drive to the west to reach the famous Everglades National Park.

When you’re planning to visit Pembroke Pines for a short vacation, expect a lot of shopping, exploring, along with outdoor and indoor activities.

This small city is packed with malls and shopping centers.

Plus, it has parks, restaurants, and other attractions that will keep you busy the whole day.

It’s a place for fun-loving people and those who want to do leisure and relaxation.

So, what does it have in store for you?

Check out this list of the 15 best things to do in Pembroke Pines, Florida.

Explore the Chapel Trail Nature Preserve

View of Chapel Trail Nature Preserve

Holly Guerrio /

You don’t have to drive to the Everglades to witness Florida’s untamed wilderness since Pembroke Pines has a very similar place to visit.

It is the Chapel Trail Nature Preserve at 19800 Sheridan St, Pembroke Pines, FL.

The Pembroke Pines was once part of the Everglades, but today, the Chapel Trail Nature Preserve is all that remains.

View of Chapel Trail Nature Preserve

Holly Guerrio /

It’s a must-visit place in the city if you want to see wildlife such as turtles, deer, rabbits, alligators, birds, and some animals.

The 450-acre nature preserve was established in the 90s.

Today, it’s one of the most popular places many visit regularly.

There are interpretative signs designated along the nature preserve to ensure everyone has a pleasant experience.

View of Chapel Trail Nature Preserve

Holly Guerrio /

Skate on Ice at Pines Ice Arena

If Florida’s warm weather is a bit too much, head to Pines Ice Arena to cool down.

The Pines Ice Arena is Pembroke Pines’ open ice-skating rink, where you can flex your hidden ice-skating skills or perhaps learn the basics.

Pines Ice Arena is also where Pembroke Pines’ hockey leagues and figure skating competitions happen.

So, chances are, you might catch sports events when you visit there.

The Pines Ice Arena is at 12425 Taft St, Pembroke Pines.

The place’s business hours may differ, so it would be better to check their official website for schedules.

Shop ‘Til You Drop at the Pembroke Gardens Mall

Pembroke Pines is home to several large malls in Broward County.

Many people from Miami drive to Pembroke Pines to shop and unwind, and one of their most favorite places for shopping is the Pembroke Gardens Mall at 527 SW 145th Terrace.

The mall is a certified shopaholic’s haven as it is home to around a hundred shops, from mainstream to specialty brands.

It has a full range of fashion brands, children’s toys, homewares, and anything you can buy in the mall.

After shopping, unwind at the mall’s 20-plus restaurants and bars.

Plus, many stores offer discounted prices and promotions regularly, so keep your eyes peeled for great finds.

Roam Around the Pembroke Lakes Mall

Aerial View of Pembroke Lakes Mall

Felix Mizioznikov /

This mall adjacent to the C.B. Smith Park offers you a complete shopping experience and entertainment from over a hundred-plus stores and restaurants.

If you want to shop and have fun after, the Pembroke Lakes Mall has a cinema that screens the latest movies.

It is where you’ll find major stores such as JC Penny, Macy’s, Sears, and Dillard’s as well.

View of Pembroke Lakes Mall

Blueee77 /

Your visit to Pembroke Pines won’t be complete without roaming around its malls; thus, include Pembroke Lakes Mall on your list.

To visit Pembroke Lakes Mall, it is at 1401 along Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines, FL.

The mall’s operating hours may vary, but it usually opens from 11 am onwards.

Catch Local and Major Events at the Charles F. Dodge City Center

The Charles F. Dodge City Center is where the majority of the activities in Pembroke Pines and its neighboring cities happen.

It’s a spacious 35,000-square-foot multi-purpose facility that regularly hosts concerts, trade shows, expos, and conventions at the heart of Pembroke Pines.

The convention center is also an excellent place to take beautiful photos because of its modern contemporary architecture and design.

Plus, the convention center houses an art gallery called the “Frank C. Ortis Art Gallery and Exhibit Hall,” where cultural and art events are hosted.

This place is packed with regular events, so chances are, you might attend one of its events when visiting here.

To get to the Charles F. Dodge City Center, it is at 601 City Ctr Way, Pembroke Pines.

Watch Entertaining Plays at the Susan B. Katz Theater of the Performing Arts

The Pembroke Pines Theater of Performing Arts operates the Susan B. Katz Theater of the Performing Arts with their regular theatrical plays.

It is where most of Pembroke Pines’ plays and theater acts happen.

The group that runs this place aims to provide their city with inspiring and entertaining theatrical production, which incorporates culture and diversity.

The group has been running the theater since 1993.

To catch some entertaining theater plays in Pembroke Pines, head to the Susan B. Katz Theater of the Performing Arts at the River of Grass Arts Park in 17195 Sheridan Street, Pembroke Pines.

To learn about their upcoming shows, check their official website.

Score a Hole-in-One at the Pembroke Lakes Golf Course

After its 2007 renovation that costs a whopping $7 million, the Pembroke Lakes Golf Course became one of Florida’s premier golf courses.

Today, you can enjoy its magnificent golf course designed by John Sandford.

Test your skills in its 18-hole course or simply appreciate the beautiful landscape of the entire place.

You can also do other things, like swimming, at the club’s pool or playing tennis at its clay court.

Once you’re done with your activities, head to their restaurant for a hearty meal.

To visit the golf course, it is at 10500 Taft St, Pembroke Pines.

To book reservations, visit Pembroke Lakes Golf Course’s official website.

Camp Out at C.B. Smith Park

Tea Party at C.B. Smith Park

Elmo Love, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This 299-acre park in Pembroke Pines is one of the favorite outdoor destinations for locals and visitors alike.

It’s where many Recreational Vehicles (RV) coming from different parts of Florida and neighboring states camp out for the weekends.

The C.B. Smith Park also has the Paradise Cove Water Park, equipped with multiple slides and tubes.

Plus, there are sports facilities for golf, tennis, pickleball, baseball, and fitness facility that you will find here.

If all you want is to relax and have a picnic, they have plenty of picnic tables, benches, and barbeque pits around the park.

To visit C.B. Smith Park, it is along N Flamingo Rd.

Treat Yourself to Delicious Italian Food at Sosta Caffe

The Sosta Caffe is a popular Italian restaurant across Florida.

It already has numerous branches, and one of them is in Pembroke Pines.

They pride themselves on serving freshly sourced local ingredients for their Italian dishes.

The Sosta Caffe is one of Pembroke Pines’ favorite food destinations for authentic Italian comfort food.

The restaurant is famous for its Smoked Salmon Bruschetta, Italian pizza, panini, lasagna, seafood ciabatta, and coffee espresso.

If you’re looking for good-quality Italian food and a place to relax, head to 10800 Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines.

Tour Over South Florida on a Chopper at Tour Helicopter

Tour Helicopter is the name of the actual company that offers flight tours over South Florida.

Based in Pembroke Pines, this company is a popular tourist attraction in the city for its unique and exhilarating experience of touring around South Florida.

You will see beautiful sights around the region that you won’t clearly see on the ground.

If safety is your concern, they have the most experienced pilots and have been in the business for 20 years with zero accidents recorded.

Get to choose between their fleet of aircraft from Robin R44, Mahindra GA8, Cessna Cardinal, and the Bell Long Ranger to take you up in the sky.

To visit Tour Helicopter’s office, head over to 603 SW 77th Way, Pembroke Pines, FL.

You may also visit their official website to learn about rates and scheduled trips.

Walk Your Dog at the Pembroke Pines Dog Park

The Pembroke Pines Dog Park is where most locals and visitors bring their fur family for morning or afternoon walks.

This man-made park is mainly designated as a pet-friendly space in the city.

It is the perfect place to bring your dog with you to play or simply relax.

The park is equipped with obstacles and a playground for dogs to enjoy while there are benches around for the owners to rest.

Plus, you can join the annual Bow-Wow Ween Costume Contest every Halloween, where winning dogs and their owners get exciting prizes.

To visit the park, it is at 9751 Johnson St, Pembroke Pines, FL.

The Pembroke Pines Dog Park opens up from 9 am to 8 pm.

Chug Down Craft Beer at the Brass Tap Craft Beer

With 60 taps of excellent beer and 300 varieties of craft beer from around the world, Pembroke Pines’ Brass Tap Craft Beer is a must-visit place.

The place is not just famous for its booze but also for its cozy and upscale atmosphere.

The place has live music, events, and daily specials, which will surely treat you to a wonderful experience.

They pride themselves as one of the best hangout places in Pembroke Pines, either for parties or other special occasions.

To visit Brass Tap Craft Beer, it is at 624 SW 145th Terrace, Pembroke Pines.

They open from 11:30, but their operating hours differ.

Party at the Café Iguana Pines

If you’re into clubbing until dawn, the Café Iguana Pines in Pembroke Pines is your go-to place.

A very popular club not just in the city but in Broward County, Café Iguana Pines offers a one-of-a-kind experience for party-goers.

You can also order and eat delicious food that is served right to your table while partying.

Try their delicious Caribbean and Latino dishes cooked by their in-house chefs, who serve food even during a late night at the club.

The club is situated in the Flamingo Times Square Shopping Center along Pines Blvd in Pembroke Pines.

The entire club occupies two levels featuring a private bar, several VIP sections, and six bars on its dance floor.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Pembroke Pines is just a stone’s throw away from the “Magic City,” Miami, and another marquee city, Fort Lauderdale.

After you’ve enjoyed every that the city has to offer, head to these adjacent cities for more fun and action.

Get Your Tan at the Fort Lauderdale Beach

View of  Fort Lauderdale Beach

Mia2you /

Compared to Miami Beach, Fort Lauderdale Beach, a 26-minute drive northwest of Pembroke Pines, is a more peaceful and less crowded place to soak under the sun.

The beach itself is stunning, with turquoise blue water and sugar-white sand, and it’s a walking distance of hotels and restaurants.

View of  Fort Lauderdale Beach

Sean Pavone /

Fort Lauderdale Beach also has parties at night, but the place is more known to have family-friendly activities.

Along the shoreline are the palm trees that cover you under the sun.

Ultimately, Fort Lauderdale Beach has no entrance fee.

View of  Fort Lauderdale Beach

Sean Pavone /

Tour Around Miami on a Double-Decker Bus

View of Double-Decker Bus

Fotoluminate LLC /

Miami is everyone’s dream destination for its tropical Havana vibes, white-sand beaches, towering condos, and vibrant nightlife.

It may take many days to thoroughly explore Miami, but you can have a good start by riding the Sightseeing Cruise’s double-decker bus during their city half-day tour trips.

Since Miami is just 30 minutes’ drive south of Pembroke Pines, you should not miss this kind of experience that lets you see the beauty of the city.

View of Double-Decker Bus

taravelworld1971 /

Plus, they also offer another half-day tour on a boat.

This will take you to downtown Miami, Little Havana, Coconut Grove, and the famous Miami Beach.

To book a reservation on their city tour trips, visit Sightseeing Cruise’s office at 305 Lincoln Road Miami Beach, FL.

Final Thoughts

After reading this list, you might probably realize why many people want to settle down in Pembroke Pines.

It’s all about the ultimate convenience.

Pembroke Pines’ vast shopping centers and malls are primarily within walking distance from its residential areas.

It has a nature reserve that is as beautiful as the Everglades and dozens of fun-filled activities that makes your trip here very memorable.

Pembroke Pines is the epitome of what a vibrant suburban city should be.

Don’t forget to refer to this list if you want the ultimate travel experience in Pembroke Pines.

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