Destination guide: Miami, United States
Located in south-east Florida, the city of Miami is one of the most visited destinations in the United States, mainly due to its sandy beaches and warm water, which make it ideal for vacations.
Plan your trip to Miami and visit Collins Avenue with its restaurants, shops and hotels, skate down South Beach, discover the beauty of Coral Gables and Bal Harbor and marvel at the city’s Art Deco architecture. Don’t put it off any longer and take advantage of our flight promotions to Miami.
Miami- Things to do
Beachfront Avenue! Driving this causeway between Miami and Miami Beach, over the glittering turquoise of Biscayne Bay, with a setting sun behind you, enormous cruise ships to the side, the palms swaying in the ocean breeze and, let’s just say ‘Your Love’ by the Outfield on the radio, is basically the essence of Miami. Just try it, and trust us.
Latitude: 25.7754697510716 / Longitude: -80.1589965820312
Address: A1A 5th Street.>
It’s the simple things that make life worth living, and sometimes their simplicity is even more elegant in the face of life’s complexity. To wit: come to Jimbo’s at the end of Arthur Lamb Jr Rd in Virginia Key. In a city of unfettered development is this bar…no, shrimp shack…no, smoked fish house…no, 24-hour trailer park bonfire…well, whatever. A series of dilapidated river shacks (and a bocce ball court) has been, for decades, its own version of everything that once was right in Florida. Of course, even here the vibe is a little artificial; all those rotting fish houses were set pieces for the 1980 horror movie Island Claws. Other flicks filmed here include Ace Ventura, True Lies and the cinema verite of Porky’s 2. But today the shacks have been reclaimed into the set pieces of the Jimbo show. The point is this place is unique, and artificial, and authentic or all of the above; you just gotta drop in.
Latitude: 25.7458231200000 / Longitude: -80.1432929000000
Telephone Number: +1 305 361 7026
Address:Duck Lake Rd.
Website: : www.jimbosplace.com
Little Havana Art District
OK, it’s not Wynwood. In fact, it’s more ‘Art Block’ than district. But this little strip of galleries and studios does house one of the best concentrations of Latin American art (particularly from Cuba) in Miami. Any one of the studios is worth a stop and a browse.
Latitude: 25.7659625813848 / Longitude: -80.2212238311768
Address: Calle Ocho. Extras: between SW 15th & 17th Aves.
Máximo Gómez Park
Also known as 'Domino Park', you'll understand why when you see the old-timers throwing bones.
Latitude: 25.7655326151627 / Longitude: -80.2191531658173
Address: cnr Calle Ocho & SW 15th Ave.
Opening hours: 9am-6pm.
Vizcaya Museum & Gardens
The Italian Renaissance-style villa has 70 rooms full of centuries-old furnishings and art. The formal gardens, fountains and grottos make a gorgeous backdrop - expect to see at least one bride with a photographer in tow.
Latitude: 25.7444720267045 / Longitude: -80.2105486392975
Address: 3251 S Miami Ave.
Telephone Number: +1 305 250 9133.
Opening Hours: museum 9:30am-5pm, gardens to 5:30pm.
Pass the Penzoil…literally. We know it’s cool to tuck restaurants into unassuming spots, but the Citgo station on SW 17th Ave? Really? Really: walk past the motor oil into a Granadan wine cellar, and try not to act too phased. And now, the food, which is absolutely incredible. Chorizo in cider blends burn, smoke and juice, frittatas are comfortably filling and sardinas and boquerones …oh God. These anchovies and sardines cooked with just a bit of salt and olive oil are dizzyingly delicious. It’s tempting to keep El Carajo a secret, but not singing its praises would be lying, and we’re not gonna lie: if there’s one restaurant you shouldn’t miss in Miami, it’s this one.
Latitude: 25.7467010000000 / Longitude: -80.2213800000000
Telephone Number:+1 305 856 2424
Opening Hours: dinner.
Price Range: Moderate.
Pricing: tapas $3.50-15.
Address: 2465 SW 17th Ave.
Lots of Lox
In a city with no shortage of delis, especially in mid-Miami Beach, who would have thought some of the best chopped liver on rye could be found in this unassuming place all the way down in Palmetto Bay? It’s bustling, it’s friendly and the excellent lunch meats sneer at their cousins on Arthur Godfrey Rd, secure in their dominance of Greater Miami’s deli ranks.
Latitude: 25.6294846800000/ Longitude: -80.3401606900000
Telephone Number:+1 305 252 2010
Opening Hours: breakfast & lunch.
Price Range: Low.
Pricing: dishes $4-13.
Address: 14995 S Dixie Hwy.
Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink
The ‘genuine’ in Michael Schwartz’s restaurant is a sincere tribute to locally sourced ingredients and a healthy dose of innovation moderated by respect for things that work. Hence, pork shoulder in parsley sauce and cheese grits that taste like your grandma just became a cordon bleu chef. The chocolate-and-red interior feels cheerful and welcoming rather than snobbish and intimidating, and that goes for the attentive waitstaff as well.
Latitude: 25.8135970515894 / Longitude: -80.1927495002747
Sub-Type: New American.
Telephone Number:: +1 305 573 5550
Opening Hours: dinner Mon-Sat.
Price Range: High.
Pricing: dishes $16-36.
Address: 130 NE 40th St. Extras: Atlas Plaza.
Atlantic Casino Miami
This gaming cruise offers a plethora of slots, video gambling, poker, roulette and blackjack tables, plus an observation deck and full bars.
Latitude: 25.7740833362629 / Longitude: -80.1402693986893
Telephone Number: Number: +1 305 532 2111
Pricing: cruise $20.
Address: Alton Rd at 5th St, South Beach Extras: Miami Beach Marina.
Located in a loft above Miss Yip, B15 manages to blend everything we like about going out – kinda edgy but not scary graffiti chic, cast-off action figures, consistently awesome DJs (Did they just mix ‘Your Love’ by the Outfield into ‘Low’ by Flo-Rida? Oh yes they did), free entry, a good mix of the hip and the hot and the drunk and the folks who just don’t care but definitely wave their hands in the air – into one shot of nightlife fun.
Latitude: 25.7910911590221 / Longitude: -80.1356130838394
Telephone Number:+1 305 538 3815
Opening hours: Tue-Thu 22:00-05:00, Fri-Sun 20:00-05:00.
Address: 707 Lincoln Lane.
Florida Room at the Delano
Wanna buy me an eight-dollar beer?’ asks an out-of-towner, gazing awestruck at the sheer mass of model-types packed into this den of iniquity. The Florida Room is as exclusive as they get, plus a popular dancehall/samba piano lounge for local scenesters who eschew the tourist trap megaclubs further down the beach. Show up before 11pm or be on the list (or be Lenny Kravitz – who helped design this place) to get in.
Latitude: 25.7920378448900 / Longitude: -80.1294976472854
Telephone Number: +1 305 672 2000
Address: Delano Hotel, 1685 Collins Ave.
Books & Books
Like its branch in Coral Gables, this beautiful indie bookstore has an excellent array of titles, especially when it comes to Floridian and Miamian history, photography, coffee-table tomes, and literature by local authors from Edna Buchanan to Carl Hiaasen. You can also catch poetry readings and author book signings.
Latitude: 25.7906999243898 / Longitude: -80.1382148265839
Telephone Number: +1 305 532 3222
Opening hours: Sun-Thu 10:00-23:00, Fri-Sat 10:00-24:00.
Address: 933 Lincoln Rd.
More hip than hippie, the clothes and jewelry here mix up indie and hip-hop aesthetics in an admirably wearable way. Think Lucite bangles just slightly embellished by bling and you’ve got an idea of the vibe.
Latitude: 25.7498836837622 / Longitude: -80.2599763870239
Telephone Number: +1 305 445 3693
Address: 359 Miracle Mile.
They’ve got a great motto here: ‘For design addicts, but more for design virgins.’ If you’ve always wanted your house to look conceptual but haven’t the slightest idea where to begin (or if you know exactly what you require out of a room), the friendly folks at this Marcel Wanders boutique will get you on the road to a really fine interior.
Latitude: 25.8086615758261 / Longitude: -80.1954317092896
Telephone Number: +1 305 574 4045
Address: 3438 N Miami Ave.
No matter when you choose to make your way to Miami, you’re bound to find something fun going on – especially in high season, when folks flock here to escape the cold and play in the sun.
The beginning of the new year also happens to be the height of the tourist season in these parts. Expect fair weather, crowds of visitors, higher prices than usual and a slew of special events. New Year’s Eve brings fireworks and festivals to South Beach and Downtown’s bay front.
The last hurrah for Northerners needing to escape the harsh winter, February brings arts festivals and street parties, as well as warm days and cool nights. February 14 is Valentine’s Day, when lovers celebrate their amour.
Spring arrives, bringing warmer weather, world-class golf and tennis tournaments, outdoor festivals and the Irish party holiday of St Patrick’s Day, on March 17. Expect some spring breakers to behave badly on the beach.
Welcome to the shoulder season, bringing quieter days, lower prices, balmier temperatures and a few choice events. The religious holidays of Easter and Passover fall in April, as does the final of the Nasdaq 100 Tennis Tournament.
May and June boast increased heat, fewer visitors and several cultural events. Memorial Day is the official start of summer, bringing a beach-oriented three-day weekend.
The most beastly, humidity-drenched days are during these months, when locals either vacation elsewhere or spend their days melting on the beach. Official celebrations are few and far between.
In September the days and nights are still steamy and the start of school brings back college students. There are just a couple of tourist-oriented events in September, but they’re followed by a wealth of cultural offerings come October.
Tourist season kicks off at the end of the month, bringing more crowds and slightly cooler, more bearable days. Thanksgiving falls on the last Thursday of the month.
Tourist season is in full swing, with Northerners escaping south and booking rooms so they can loll about in the sunshine and be here for the Christmas and New Year’s Eve festivities.
There are a few sides to sports in Miami. First: there is the standard American obsession with football, basketball and baseball, and on this front, Miamians can be forgiven for feeling like they have just got off a sports roller-coaster. The Miami Dolphins are the only NFL team to ever pull off a perfect season – but that was waaaay back in 1972. The Miami Heat took the NBA championship in 2006, but got swept out of the play-offs like a bad habit in 2007, which also marked one of the worst seasons ever played by the Miami University Hurricanes – otherwise one of the best college football teams in America. The Florida Marlins won the World Series in 2003, yet by 2006 they were talking about packing up and moving shop to Texas, and now they are apparently getting their own stadium. Latin sports are big here too; this is one of the few places in the USA that you can strap on your cesta at a standardized jai alai court.
The other side is self-obsession: Miamians like to look good and there are plenty of gyms, yoga classes and such about. If it makes you sweat and look better, rest assured the local trend-obsessed fitness nuts have caught onto it.
Contrary to popular belief, Miami can be experienced from beyond the seat of a convertible car. Skate, windsurf, bike or hike; it all equals sweat and seeing the city from the ground up.
Everyone else here has the body of a freakin’ Greek god, so why don’t you join the club? Besides, working out is one of Miami’s favorite forms of people-watching and -meeting, and you, engaged traveler, surely want to do a bit of both. If looking at gorgeous people grunting under iron doesn’t do it for you, you might prefer to watch folks clear their pranas and stuff in one of Miami’s many yoga studios.
Miami Marlin Madness
Ten years. Ten years of backbiting, arguing, begging and cajoling, of almost losing the team to San Antonio and Virginia Beach. Ten years and 70% of an optimistically projected $619-million bill, which will likely be covered (no matter what city officials say) by shuffling public works funds. Put it all together and Miami will get to keep the Florida Marlins, rename them the Miami Marlins and house them in Major League Baseball’s newest stadium, set to replace the vanquished Orange Bowl in Little Havana. The city of Miami is hoping the new stadium will anchor south Downtown’s resurgence, bring baseball fans streaming into the city, and further solidify Miami’s position as capital of South Florida. Fans in Broward county, pissed off about the name change, will have to swallow their bitterness. And baseball goes on in South Florida, in a new, air-conditioned, retractable-domed 37,000-seat stadium, which, while small for an MLB venue, may be roomy considering only 375 fans (375!!) came out to a Marlins-Nationals game in September 2007.
Miami Jai Alai
Jai alai (pronounced ‘high aligh’), which roughly translates from Spanish as ‘merry festival’, is a fascinating and dangerous game. Something of a cross between racquetball and lacrosse, it originated in the Basque region of the Pyrenees in the 17th century, and was introduced to Miami in 1924. The fronton (arena) where the games are held is the oldest in the States, having been built just two years after the game was introduced. How is it played? Well, players hurl a pelota (a small ball of virgin rubber that’s wrapped in goat skin and so powerful it can shatter bullet-proof glass) at more than 170mph to their opponents, who try to catch it with the cesta – a woven basket that’s custom-made from Spanish chestnut and reeds from the Pyrenees – that’s attached to their glove. The game is held in a round robin, and the object is to toss the pelota against the front wall of the court with so much speed that the opposition cannot catch it or return it in the fly or first bounce. Audiences wager on the lightning-fast games, said to be the speediest sport on earth.
Catch the action for yourself at Miami Jai Alai. It’s great fun to watch these guys whack around their pelota at lightning speed – and even more exciting to wager bets on who will win.