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What to Pack for Art Basel Miami Beach 2023

Travel Tips | Mike Sheridan | November 26, 2023

It’s about to get arty-farty in South Breach as Art Basel Miami Beach runs December 8–10, 2023. This annual modern art collection pulls in a whopping 80,000 visitors and rakes in around $500 million in sales. But, that’s just scratching the surface! Basel is not only about the jaw-dropping artwork and fancy events, it’s also about the buzzing social scene in South Beach throughout the week.

To make the most of it and be ready for anything at Art Basel, you gotta have these five things with you at all times:

A good guide to the fairs.

Every year brings new satellite fairs to compliment the original Art Basel offering in Miami Beach’s Convention Center. The only issue is that the area has grown, and now Wynwood’s Context and downtown Miami’s River Art Fair are draws of their own. To know what’s on when, for how much, and how to direct your Uber/Lyft there, try the Miami New Times‘ guide. Also, save time to check out Art Gaysel, dubbed the “Queerest Art Fair.” Taking place at the popular gay-owned and operated Hotel Gaythering on Lincoln Road, it will showcase more than 30 artists who identify as LGBTQIA+ from all around the world.

Good shoes.

In short, this means no flip-flops. Even poolside hang-outs are better served by wearing slip-on espadrilles, as Art Basel brings dressier requirements to Miami Beach. Now factor in that you’ll be bouncing around all 80-degree days between art fairs, food, your hotel, and parties, and style-forward, dependable shoes become the best option.


Miami’s design district has plenty of charging stations, but a lot of the time they’re occupied or out of order; so, while you’re strolling around Wynwood Walls looking for that one piece you added on Instagram — and your battery is dying — you’ll thank us.

And it’s often very difficult to find a non-occupied cab in peak art districts, at peak hours. So, you’ll need Uber/Lyft a lot — keep that phone charged.

Lastly, stash an energy bar or two for you because although the art is nourishing, it’s not exactly edible!

Stylish sunglasses.

Nope, not just wayfarers or aviators; we’re talking frames you’d only describe as “architectural.” Sometimes a great pair of glasses and the right attitude is all it takes to enter a party without an RSVP.

Open mind.

And last but not least, bring a big, fat, open mind to soak up all the art and culture. Art Basel is not just about buying and selling artwork, it’s also about experiencing new perspectives and ideas. So challenge yourself to explore different mediums, styles, and artists that you may not be familiar with. Who knows, you might discover your new favorite artist or genre! And don’t forget to engage in conversations with other attendees; you never know what interesting insights or connections you

And there you have it, folks! Your ultimate survival kit for a rockin’ time at Art Basel. Pack light, pack smart, and most importantly, pack your enthusiasm. Remember, this event is a vibrant canvas of creativity, where unexpected conversations, new inspirations, and undiscovered passions await around every corner. So keep your eyes wide, your phone charged, and your mind open!

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And let’s be honest, that’s pretty darn gay.

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