Coming from Florida, I have passed through Miami several times. Similarly to the way I divided New York into posts about Queens & Brooklyn and Mahattan, I decided to divide Miami into multiple posts. This one will cover Miami Beach.
What I did:
The obvious main attraction in Miami Beach is the sand and the ocean. The sand is very nice, and it is wide enough to have space to run along the beach and avoid significant overcrowding. Due to the nice weather for most of the year, the water feels amazing.
Calisthenic Park South Beach-
Calisthenics Public Gym at Lummus Park in South Miami Beach is a nice place to workout. It is a free area for anyone to use. The equipment may not be top of the line, but there is enough there to get a great workout in. Also, if you want to cool off in the Atlantic Ocean after you workout, you are already at the beach.
Lincoln Road Mall-
Lincoln Road houses a variety of clothing stores, shops and restaurants. Most of the shops are higher end, but it is a nice place to walk through even if you do not want to buy anything. It runs east and west between 16th Street and 17th Street.
Art Deco Historic District-
The Art Deco Historic District in Miami Beach houses a variety of brightly colored buildings. It is a nice area to walk through.
Ocean Drive runs along the beachfront. It has been featured in various movies and TV shows. It is an interesting area to walk through.
Where I ate and drank:
Pura Vida and Dirt-
Pura Vida and Dirt are both great, healthy restaurant in Miami Beach. They aren't the cheapest priced food, but they are extremely high quality. They have a number of tasty, healthy options.
Las Olas Cafe and Puerto Sagua-
Las Olas Cafe and Puerto Sagua are both well priced restaurants in Miami Beach. As the Cuban cultural is highly prevalent in the Miami area, both cafes are authentic Cuban spots. I prefer Puerto Sagua for breakfast, and Las Olas Cafe for lunch or dinner. Puerto Sagua has some USB charging points at many of it table, catering to many international travelers. Las Olas Cafe, however, is cash only. The food at both places is very tasty.
Pubbelly Sushi is a nice sushi place off of Purdy Street in Miami Beach. They have quality sushi that is offered for great prices during their happy hour. It is run by the "Pubbelly boys" that have a few other restaurants in the Miami area.
Bodega Taqueria y Tequila-
The Bodega Taqueria is a nice taco place on its own, but is has a surprise behind an univiting door. What looks like a door to a port-a-potty is actually an entrance into an excellent speakeasy cocktail bar. The quality drinks are very well priced for quality cocktails, especially at happy hour. It is one of my favorite places that I have visited in Miami Beach.
Abbey Brewing Company-
The Abbey Brewing Company serves excellent craft beer in a nice, relaxed environment. The day I was there they were also giving away free food. Their brews are the best I have had in Miami Beach, and are at or near the top of the list in the entire Miami area.
Shepherd Artisan Coffee-
Shepherd Artisan Coffee is a nice coffee shop and cafe in Miami Beach. Their coffee is good, but when in Miami I prefer to get my coffee from Panther Coffee.
A younger sister restaurant of its original New York location, Employees Only serves excellent craft cocktails. The prices are a little steep, but their quality level is even higher.
Via Emilia 9 and Macchialina Taverna Rustica-
Via Emilia 9 and Macchialina Taverna Rustica both serve excellent Italian food in Miami Beach. Via Emilia 9 was also offering an amazing bargain of 50% off lunches and dinners every Tuesday.
News Cafe offers decent food for decent prices, but the real benefit to the cafe is its location. It is on Ocean Drive directly across the street from the beach.
Regent Cocktail Club-
The Regent Cocktail Club is a craft cocktail lounge connected to the Gale Hotel in Miami Beach. It is a nice place to grab a quality drink and listen to some live jazz music.
Repour Bar & Lounge-
Repour (Rapport) Bar & Lounge is a nice, relaxed place to enojy an expertly crafted cocktail in Miami Beach.
Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company-
Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company is an award winning bar in Miami Beach. They have an excellently priced happy hour that includes drinks and oysters.
Where I stayed:
All of the hostels I have stayed in were in the Miami area. I will include two with this post, and more in other posts about Miami.
Beds&Drinks Hostel offers a good value. The breakfast is very basic and the lockers are smaller than average for a hostel, but it was clean and comfortable. It is located a couple short blocks from the beach, and overall it was a nice place to stay.
Miami Hostel is the most basic, but also the lowest priced hostel I have stayed at in the Miami area. It is located very close to a Whole Foods and some nice restaurants, but it is farther from beach.
How I got around:
When compared to the rest of the state of Florida, the public transportation in Miami is very good. However, when compared to many other major cities througout the world, it is subpar. I have used both busses and train while in Miami.
The form of transportation I have used most often in the Miami area is my legs. I walk anywhere I can while I am there.
I have used Lyft and Uber often in the Miami area. I will usually use Lyft or Uber to get to and from the airport. As Miami is the most multicultural city in the United States, it is common for Lyft and Uber drivers there to have very low levels of English. Spanish is the most common language spoken in the area, but if English is your only language the Lyft or Uber app can handle the communication.
Miami has a fairly good bike share program. Bikes can be rented for anywhere from 30 minutes to multiple months.
My favorite thing:
The beach in Miami is excellent, as is the weather for most of the year. Also, Bodega Taqueria and Tequileria is a great speakeasy.
My least favorite thing:
Miami is a very touristy area, and many people seem to be overly concerned with their image and appearance. Also, there is a bit of a club/excessive drinking culture in parts of Miami Beach.
For next time:
The beach never gets old for me. Everytime I go to Miami (or anywhere warm near an ocean) I like to go to the beach.
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