My Miami Travel Guide

We spent our spring break in South Beach this year, and this was my first visit to Miami. We fell in love with how international the city was, both in culture and people. Here is a list of highlights:

Ocean Drive:

If you are a “certain” age – ahem – you may remember scenes of Ocean Drive from Miami Vice, MTV’s Real World Miami, or even Casa Casuarina, the home of Gianni Versace. Regardless, it is a spectacular representation of Art Deco architecture. Ocean Drive is in South Beach, and it spans just south of Lincoln Road to near the southernmost tip of the main barrier island of Miami Beach. The strip of hotels, restaurants, bars and clubs face a long, thin park that leads to the sandy beach. Take a stroll during the day to view all of the pastel painted hotels in the Florida sun. Then, go back at night, when all of the neon signs are lit, and the street is alive with people from all over the world and all walks of life.

Miami Design District:

This small district is a short trip from downtown Miami, just north of US 27 and south of North 43rd Street, between West First Avenue and Biscayne Boulevard. The area consists of a mix of both renovated warehouses and new construction that house both flagship luxury retail and furniture galleries. There are a variety of restaurants from James Beard Award-winning to taco stands. This district also is home to The Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami (ICA) and the Design and Architecture Senior High School (DASH).

Bal Harbour Shops:

Pretend to be a trust fund kid for a day and check out where all the high rollers shop and eat. Take a cab to Bal Harbour Shops at 9700 Collins Avenue in Bal Harbour on North Beach. You won’t be disappointed. This unique, outdoor mall is small, but jam-packed with all of the high end retailers. The courtyard that spans between the stores is an oasis of palm trees, orchids, fountains and coy ponds… ahh… you feel rich just being there.

Sunset Harbour:

This quiet, small “West End” neighborhood is named after the Sunset Harbour Yacht Club, and is the west tip of Miami Beach, just north of Dade Boulevard. Take a stroll down the waterfront marina to check out the hundreds of yachts… very impressive. Then, walk over to the Sunset Harbour Shops – a new development that is home to unique galleries, restaurants, and shops.

Wynwood Art District:

This cool, artsy fartsy district is just south of Miami’s Design District, along Northwest Fifth Avenue.

 

Stay tuned for my restaurant recommendations…

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