Miami Travel Guide

Miami, Florida

Miami is a major city in the south-eastern United States and the second most populous city in Florida. The Miami metropolitan area is the largest in the state with an estimated population of over 5.4 million (2007), which makes it the 7th most populous metro area in the United States. Due to being sandwiched in by the Atlantic Ocean to the east and the Everglades to the west, the Miami metropolitan area is a lengthy 110 mi(180 km) north to south, but never more than 20 mi (32 km) east to west. Miami is 20 miles from Fort Lauderdale, 106 miles from Naples (Florida) and 156 miles from Key West.


Districts of Miami

 Downtown Miami
 MiMo Boulevard
 Design District
 Coconut Grove
 Little Havana

Although tourists generally consider Miami Beach to be part of Miami, it is in actuality its own municipality. Located on a barrier island east of Miami and Biscayne Bay, Miami Beach is home to a large number of beach resorts and is one of the most popular spring break party destinations in the world.



Flagler’s railroad sparked a wave of expansion in areas such as Miami Beach, Homestead and Cutler. Soon after the railroad was built, the Overseas Highway was created. This highway connected the Florida Keys to the mainland. Growth and progress in Miami continued through World War I as well as into the mid-1920s.

A devastating hurricane in 1926 halted Miami’s growth and temporarily put the city, as well as Miami Beach, in a recession. It was the city’s support of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal that helped the city rebuild. Roosevelt almost lost his life, however, when Giuseppe Zangara attempted to assassinate Roosevelt when he came to Miami to thank the city for its support of the New Deal.

When a German U-boat sank a US tanker off Florida’s coast, the majority of South Florida was converted into military headquarters for the remainder of World War II. The Army’s WWII legacy in Miami is a school designed for Anti U-boat warfare.

Following the Cuban revolution, Miami has become a haven for Cuban immigrants. The city has also been the base for cocaine smuggling, depicted in the 1983 film Scarface, and the Miami Vice series.


Daily highs (°F)767780838688899088858077
Nightly lows (°F)606164687275767676726661
Precipitation (in)22.12.435.98.867.88.573.11.8

Because of its proximity to the Tropic of Cancer, Miami’s weather is generally hot. The summer months of June–September will see most daytime highs over 90°F (32°C). Combined with the region’s humidity, these can make for stifling temperatures, both day and night. You won’t see nearly a car or home without running air conditioning. Winters average an impressive 75°F (24°C) for daytime temperatures and nights are slightly cooler. During June to November, rain and thunderstorms can be expected and are most common in the afternoon hours. Rain is known to fall heavily for a few minutes, to stop entirely, and then to begin again. Knowing its mercurial nature, local residents often drive or go outside in rainy weather to enjoy its cooling effect or to make good use of breaks in the storm.


Little Havana

Miami has the largest Latin American population outside of Latin America, with nearly 65% of its population either from Latin America or of Latin American ancestry. Spanish is a language often used for day-to-day discourse in many places, although English is the language of preference, especially when dealing with business and government. Many locals do not speak English, but this is usually centered among shops and restaurants in residential communities and rarely the case in large tourist areas or the downtown district. Even when encountering a local who does not speak English, you can easily find another local to help with translation if needed, since most of the population is fluently bilingual. In certain neighborhoods, such as Little Havana and Hialeah, most locals will address a person first in Spanish and then in English. “Spanglish”, a mixture of English and Spanish, is a somewhat common occurrence (but less so than in the American Southwest), with bilingual locals switching between English and Spanish mid-sentence and occasionally replacing a common English word for its Spanish equivalent.

Haitian Creole is another language heard primarily in northern Miami. It is common for a person to hear a conversation in Creole when riding public transportation or sitting at a restaurant. Many signs and public announcements are in English, Spanish and Creole because of Miami’s diverse immigrant population. Unlike Spanish, Haitian Creole is generally centered among the Haitian neighborhoods in northern Miami. Most Haitians are more adapted to English than their Hispanic neighbors. Portuguese and French are other languages that may be encountered in Miami. These languages tend to be spoken mainly around tourist areas. Most speakers of these languages speak English as well.

Get in

By plane

  • Miami International Airport (MIA IATA) [1] is located just west of the city in an unincorporated suburban area. It is an important hub for traffic between North America, the Caribbean and Latin America, and one of the largest airports in the world. As a result, Spanish is just as likely to be understood as English. The international traffic makes MIA a large and congested place. Be sure to allow extra time when departing MIA, particularly if flying internationally, as you may face an hour-long line just to check your bags. Curbside check-in is an excellent idea.
At MIA, public transportation and car rental are located at the new Miami Intermodal Center, which is a short shuttle train ride away from the terminals, follow signs for MIAmover. The M.I.C. is slated to become Miami’s Grand Central station with hub connections of Amtrak, Metrorail station (for connections to Metromover), Tri-Rail, taxis, Metrobus, and all car-rental facilities.

  • For downtown Miami, take the Metrorail to Government Center station, where transfers are available to buses to most destinations. Many hotels are along the MetroMover which is one level down from the MetroRail Government Center station. Consult a map for the closest MetroMover station or bus route to your hotel. It costs $2.25 for the MetroRail to downtown Miami. You pay by purchasing an “EASY Card” or “EASY Ticket” fare card, which can be bought from the Metrorail station at MIA, or at Terminal E of MIA.
  • If your destination is far from a MetroRail station, you may want to take a taxi or rent a car from the M.I.C. instead.
  • For Miami Beach, you may want to take the 150 express bus from the M.I.C..
  • Fort Lauderdale International Airport (FLL IATA) is 25–40 minutes north of Miami proper, depending on traffic. It serves many fewer international routes than MIA, but it is smaller and less trafficked, making customs, immigration and security a bit easier to go through. Southwest Airlines, JetBlue, Spirit Airlines and other low-cost carriers generally use FLL instead of MIA, making FLL a cheaper alternative in many cases.
If you are arriving at FLL, there is a free shuttle to the nearby Tri-Rail train station. Tri-Rail trains connect West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale and Miami (the Miami Airport station, not downtown Miami). The cheapest way to get to Miami is to take the #1 Broward County Bus to Aventura Mall and transfer to the S Miami-Dade bus to downtown Miami via South Beach. The 93 also goes to Miami from Aventura Mall. This option is inadvisable if travelling with a lot of luggage. At FLL, car rental facilities are more conveniently located in the parking garage adjacent to the terminals.
  • Opa-Locka Executive (OPF IATA) is popular for general aviation and business jet travelers out of the Miami area. Air taxi and air charter companies such as Jetset Charter fly a variety of private charter aircraft and jets, from charter luxury Gulfstreams down to economical piston twins for small groups and individuals.

By train

  • Amtrak‘s Silver Service/Palmetto (Silver Star on Train #91 & 92) and Silver Meteor (Train #97 & 98) operates two trains daily to Miami from New York City, Washington, D.C., Charleston, Savannah, Orlando, Tampa and other cities along the Eastern Seaboard. The ride from New York is about 28 hours but is often subject to delays, as Amtrak uses tracks owned by private (freight) railroad companies south of Washington and must yield to slower moving freight trains along the way.

There is a single regional (commuter) rail system operating on a single route with:

  • Tri-Rail, +1 954 783-6030 operates a regional rail service from Miami Airport up to Magnolia Park north of West Palm Beach via Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton and Delray Beach. The train is connected to Miami International Airport and Ft Lauderdale Airport by shuttle bus or shuttle train. Fares vary depending on how far you go. Tickets must be purchased before boarding the train from ticket vending machines at any of the stations or from ticket clerks at staffed stations. Tickets are checked on the trains and anyone found without a ticket is liable to a substantial fine.

By car

There are three main highways coming into Miami. I-95 runs along the Atlantic coast of the United States and terminates in Miami. I-75 comes in from the midwestern United States and runs through Atlanta and Tampa before terminating in Miami. Florida’s Turnpike is a toll road mainly useful for those driving in from Orlando. The only southbound route from Miami is U.S. Highway 1, which runs through the Florida Keys all the way to Key West.

By bus

  • Greyhound. The station is at 4111 NW 27th Street, near Miami International Airport.
  • RedCoach. Buses arrive and depart from the South Terminal at Miami International Airport. Service from various cities in Florida and Georgia.
  • Gray Line Miami. Numerous companies offer shuttle services between the airport and Miami hotels.
  • Megabus. Service from Orlando and Tampa. The buses stop in downtown Miami in a parking lot at 600-642 NE 1st Ave, between 6th and 7th Sts about a block north of the College North Metromover station. There is also a stop at the Miami International Airport near the South Terminal, specifically bus stop 5 and 6 outside of concourse H.

Get around

By public transit

Miami’s public transit system is the most diverse and extensive of any locality in Florida. If travel time is not a priority, it is possible to travel to all commercial areas and major attractions within Miami without a car. A map of transit run by Miami-Dade is available at [2].

Miami’s bus system covers the entire county and connects to bus lines serving Broward County and the Greater Fort Lauderdale area. Despite recent improvements, sometimes buses still have a hard time remaining on schedule. Most routes run about once every 20 minutes, while the most popular routes may run every 5-10 minutes, sometimes with service all night long. One useful route is the S, which connects downtown Miami to all of Miami Beach, terminating at Avenutra Mall in north Miami-Dade.

The Metrorail is an elevated rail system serving Miami and surrounding cities, running 22.4 mi with 23 stations on two lines (green and orange). It connects many areas of tourist interest, including downtown Miami, Miami International Airport (Orange line only), Dadeland Mall, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Lowe Art Museum, Miami Museum of Science, Village at Merrick Park and many other nearby shopping areas. Coconut Grove and downtown Coral Gables can be reached via short shuttle bus from various stations. The two Metorail lines share common tracks through the core, before splitting near the airport. Metrorail operates between roughly 5AM and midnight, with a bus serving all Metrorail stations operating in the overnight hours, effectively providing 24-hour service.

Fare for a single trip on both Metrorail and Metrobus is $2.25 per ride ($1 for persons with disabilities or on Medicare). Day, weekly, and monthly pass are available. In early 2010, Miami-Dade Transit implemented a fare card system known as EASY Card. Though exact change/cash is still accepted on all Metrobus routes, an EASY Card is required for riding the Metrorail, and for utilizing the free transfers offered between an unlimited number of bus routes, and a single Metrorail ride. Currently, the fare card software does not allow passbacks. Any remaining transit tokens you may have can no longer be exchanged for EASY Card credit, and are not accepted as fare. Additional information on fares, routes and schedules can be found at [3], or by calling +1 305 770-3131.

Downtown Miami is served by a free elevated people mover system known as Metromover, which connects to Metrorail at two stations: Government Center in the central business district, and Brickell Station in Brickell. Metromover is free of charge and is the most efficient way to move around Downtown Miami. It is a great way to take a rest when walking around downtown, and a great time to take pictures of the skyscrapers and growing Miami skyline from above.

Tri-Rail is a commuter rail system linking Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach. There are a total of 18 stations in and between those cities. Tri-Rail offers frequent trains (at least one per hour) on weekdays, and less frequent trains on weekends. Check the website or call +1-800-tri-rail for stop and schedule information. There are employer discount programs on the website as well as fares.

By taxi

Taxis are generally expensive, with a fixed $2.50 charge plus $0.40 for each sixth of a mile traveled. Almost all local cab companies have fixed rates for travel to Miami Beach and other beach and nightclub communities popular with tourists, ranging from $30–$60 depending on arrival location. For example, South Beach may be the most expensive, while a residential neighborhood in Miami Beach may be the cheapest. The charge is the same regardless of pick-up location on the mainland. All taxis are fitted with maps of the barrier islands which state the cost per location. The same applies for passengers leaving the islands onto the mainland, though normal rates apply for travel within the islands or within the mainland.

Service is available throughout Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, and Monroe counties regardless of pick-up location. The normal service charges apply for these four counties, but it is wise to ask for a pre-determined price beforehand if leaving the county, as this will usually be cheaper and most drivers are willing to negotiate when leaving the county. If you wish to be taken to a location outside of those four counties, you must negotiate a price and advise the cab company first. Drivers may refuse to drive outside of the metropolitan area if they are not advised to do so beforehand.

Usually you will have to call a cab company and request a pick-up. For safety and legal reasons, taxis operated by the major companies are not normally allowed to pick up passengers at random locations except at MIA, the Port of Miami, and train stations. Some individual taxi drivers will not follow this rule, however, so you can try hailing a taxi in the street. A significant and notable exception to this rule is the South Beach section of Miami Beach. For all intents and purposes, taxis can be flagged from the street on the island like one would in New York City. This trend has begun spreading into downtown Miami due to the increased redevelopment and foot traffic downtown, but should not be relied upon if you have a schedule to keep.

All taxi drivers must have a valid license to operate. It is uncommon to hear of crimes involving unlicensed taxis anywhere in the metropolitan area, since Dade County keeps track of all taxi activity in and around Miami and cooperates with other counties in getting this information. If you enter a cab and do not see a valid license placed in front of the passenger’s seat, you should not enter the taxi and instead call another cab company regardless of what the driver says. If you willingly enter a taxi without a license or with an expired license and there is an incident or accident, it is possible that you may not be able to hold the driver accountable by law. When entering a cab you should make note of the driver’s name, license number and cab number if any problems arise during the trip. This information should be easily found inside the taxi. It may be able to help you identify the cab driver to the police or the cab company.

By car

Unless you plan to stay downtown or in a single location elsewhere, you will find that a car is very convenient in Miami, and car rentals are cheap in comparison to other major US cities.

Surface roads in Miami are usually easy to navigate. The area’s roads are designed around a grid system, where most roads are numbered based on their distance from the city center. The two main axis roads are Miami Avenue (running north to south) and Flagler Street (running east to west). These two roads intersect in downtown Miami, the county’s symbolic center. All avenues run north to south, while all streets run east to west. For example, the address, “9500 NW 30th Street” would be at the intersection of NW 30th Street (to the west of Miami Avenue, and 30 blocks north of Flagler Street) and NW 95th Avenue (north of Flagler Street, and 95 blocks west of Miami Avenue). Most roads in Miami conform to this nomenclature, but due to the more than 30 municipalities within Miami-Dade County, there are a few exceptions to be aware of. Examples include Coral Gables, the Coconut Grove section of Miami (city proper), Miami Lakes, and Hialeah. Hialeah is particularly notorious since it uses its own grid system, in addition to the overall county system. For example, NW 103rd Street is also marked as E 49th Street, or W 49th Street in Hialeah.

Note that if you cross into Broward County, the roads will be numbered based on their distance from the Fort Lauderdale city center, which is generally the same going east-west but will be very different going north-south. Most of the municipalities in Broward County use their own limited grid systems as well. Some street names also change at the county line. The coastline highway, A1A, is known as “Collins Avenue” in Miami, but becomes “Ocean Drive” in Broward. Likewise, “Red Road” in Miami becomes “Flamingo Road” in Broward.

Miami has four primary expressways. In addition to I-95 and Florida’s Turnpike, there is state highway 836 (also known as the Dolphin Expressway) and state highway 826 (also known as the Palmetto Expressway). The Dolphin Expressway runs west from downtown Miami along the edge of Miami International Airport. The Palmetto Expressway and Florida’s Turnpike form “F”-shaped loops around the city. The Turnpike continues north, roughly parallel to I-95, and will take you to Orlando if you keep driving. I-95, the Palmetto and the Turnpike intersect at a junction in North Miami called the Golden Glades. You may find driving in the Glades challenging, especially if you have little experience driving in it.

New visitors to Miami should be aware that the area’s drivers are particularly aggressive.’s Road Rage Survey has rated Miami drivers the rudest in the country for a third year in a row [4]. This shouldn’t discourage anyone from using the roadways, but a passive approach to Miami driving can save you from an unwanted exchange with another driver, or even worse an accident. Posted speed limits are ignored by most drivers, especially on larger roads with lower speed limits. Two examples are I-95 and state road 826 (The Palmetto Expressway). The eastern portion of state road 836 (The Dolphin Expressway) between Miami International Airport and downtown Miami handles traffic that exceeds its capacity, and contains several left-hand exits, including the eastbound off-ramp to Lejuene Road (NW 42nd Avenue), which is the posted route, and the quickest route to Miami International Airport.

By Shuttle

Miami Super Shuttle. +1 305 871-8210 or email There is a shuttle that will take you where ever you need to go from MIA airport. Approach any of the blue vans located on the outer island. They also have guest services representatives in the airport wearing a blue Super Shuttle shirt.


    Sites located in Miami Beach should be added to the appropriate district article there, not here.

    • Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152nd St, +1 305 251-0400. Open daily 9:30AM–5:30PM. Miami. Largest and oldest zoological garden in Florida. It houses over 1,200 wild animals and is a free range zoo. Its climate allows it to keep a wide variety of animals from Asia, Australia and Africa like no other zoo in the country.
    • Jungle Island, +1 305 258-6453. 1111 Jungle Island Trail, Miami. Lush tropical garden that features animal shows and exhibits. Great outing for the family to enjoy.
    • Miami Seaquarium, 4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, +1 305 361-5705. This 38 acre tropical island paradise features marine shows and marine life exhibits. Expect to stay around two to three hours touring the large aquarium. Just ten minutes from downtown Miami and directly adjacent to Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden.
    • Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden, 10901 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, Florida 33156, +1 305 667-1651, fax: +1 305-661-8953. Garden hours are 7:30AM to 4:30PM, Monday through Sunday. The Garden opens at 9:30AM on festival days and is closed on Christmas Day, December 25. Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden is home to the only outdoor rainforest in North America, several famous outdoor art installations (including world famous Chihuly glasswork), the January Chocolate Festival, and world-famous Mango Festival (every June or July featuring information on and samples of hundreds of different mango varieties). Adults = $25,Seniors (65 and over) = $18,Children 6-17 = $12, Children 5 and under = Free, Fairchild members = Free.


    Villa Vizcaya

    • Frost Art Museum, 10975 SW 17th St (FIU-Maidique Campus), +1 305 348-2890. Open Tu-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su 12PM-5PM. Located at Florida International University, the Frost Art Museum has a large variety of 1960’s and 1970’s American photography, pre-Columbian artifacts dating back from 200 to 500 AD, ancient African and Asian bronzes, and a growing number of Caribbean and Latin American paintings and artwork.
    • Lowe Art Museum, 1301 Stanford Dr, +1 305 284-3535. With many antique art, ceramics, pottery and sculptures ranging from Greco-Roman times, Renaissance, Baroque, Art of Asia, Art of Latin America, and ancient potteries, the Lowe Art Museum offers a great range of art through the centuries.
    • Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, 3251 South Miami Ave, +1 305 250-9133, fax: +1 305 285-2004. European-inspired estate. Includes a main house filled with art and furnishings and ten acres of gardens on Biscayne Bay. $12 adults, $9 Miami-Dade residents with ID, patrons using wheelchairs, seniors 62 years of age or older with ID and students with ID, $5 children 6-12. Admission is free for children 5 years of age or younger.

    Scenic and historic sites

    • Oleta River State Recreation Park, 3400 N.E. 163rd St, +1 305 919-1846. Daily 8AM-sunset. The largest urban park in Florida has trails for biking, a beach for swimming, picnic areas and a playground for kids. Get a canoe or kayak to row to a mangrove island within the park. Several animals such as eagles and fiddler crabs also make their home here. Fourteen cabins with air conditioning are also on the premises, but bathrooms, showers and grills are located outside the cabins and guests should bring their own linens. $5 for a vehicle carrying up to eight passengers, $1 bicyclists, pedestrians and extra passengers ($50.85 a night in a cabin).
    • Venetian Pool, 2701 DeSoto Blvd (in Coral Gables), +1 305 460-5306, e-mail: . (additional phone number +1 305 460-5357). Open 11AM-5PM every day, but call to verify hours. In the 1920s Denman Dink transformed this limestone quarry into a pool with a waterfall, an area for kids and an area for adults. The water in this pool comes from a spring and is drained daily. In addition to the swimming facilities there is a snack bar (you cannot bring outside food into the Venetian Pool) and lockers. Swimming lessons are also offered here. The Venetian Pool is best known for having Esther Williams and Johnny Weissmuller (the silver screen’s first Tarzan) swim here. $6 people 13 years and older, $3 children under 13 $ (between November and March); $9 people 13 years and older, $5 under 13 (between April and October).
    • Matheson Hammock Marina. Grassy park with a man-made atoll pool, which is flushed naturally with the tidal action of nearby Biscayne Bay. The park has a full-service marina, snack bar and restaurant built into an historic coral rock building, picnic pavilions and nature trails.
    • Ancient Spanish Monastery, 16711 West Dixie Highway (near Sunny Isles), +1 305 945-1461. M-Sa 9AM-5PM, Su 1PM-5PM (unless there is a wedding scheduled; call ahead or check the website for wedding dates). Originally built in Segovia, Spain in 1141, this monastery was originally to be a part of William Randolph Hearst’s property in California. Partly because he ran out of money and partly because the United States would not allow the monastery to be built in California, the monastery remained in New York Harbor until 1954, when a couple of businessmen bought the property and assembled it in Miami. Parts of the monastery have not been assembled because the government removed the pieces from numbered boxes and then placed the wrong pieces in the wrong boxes. Today the monastery is a church as well as a popular marriage location. As seen on the History Channel show Weird U.S. Adult admission $5, senior and student admission (with valid ID) $2.50, child admission $2.


      Sites located in Miami Beach should be added to the appropriate district article there, not here.


      Of course, if you’re in Miami, you’ll want to spend some time on the beach. The only beach inside Miami city limits is Virginia Beach. However, there are many other beaches nearby in South Florida, from Tequesta all the way to Key West. As Miami has pretty temperate weather, the beaches will be active all year round, but the water will usually be too cold for locals to swim in during winter. The city of Miami Beach is closest to Miami, located on a barrier island across Biscayne Bay, and is most famous for its South Beach party scene. Topless sunbathing is allowed in Miami Beach, and if you want to take it all off, go to Haulover Beach in North Beach.

      Fruit picking

      • Robert is Here Fruit Stand and Farm, 19200 SW 344th St, Homestead, FL 33034, +1 305 246-1592, fax: +1 305-242-4122, e-mail: . 8AM – 7PM Daily including Holidays. Closed September and October.. This fruit stand and farm is popular with both tourists and local residents. It offers many of the most sought after varieties of locally-grown tropical fruits and vegetables as well as widely-acclaimed smoothies, ice creams, and other prepared foods. It also features a petting zoo and is located only minutes from one of the main entrances to Everglades National Park as well as an alligator farm.
      • Fruit and Spice Park, 24801 S.W. 187th Avenue, Homestead, Florida 33031, +1 305 247-5727. Open 7 days a week, from 9AM to 5PM. Except Christmas.. This park features a vast assortment of fruits, spices, and other foods of interest that can be grown in Florida’s subtropical climate. The park is also famous for getting a few items to grow that normally can’t be grown even in Florida (e.g. mangosteen, cacao, jaboticaba, etc.). After an orientation, visitors are allowed to pick and eat whatever is available at the time of their visit. This park is relatively close to “Robert is Here” Fruit Stand and Farm. $8.00 per adult, $2.00 per child 6-11, and children under 6 are FREE..

      Sports venues

      • Hard Rock Stadium, 2269 Dan Marino Blvd (in Miami Gardens) (Northwest 199th St), +1 305 623-6100 (TTY +1 305 623-6266), fax: +1 305 625-6403, e-mail: . This football stadium hosts the Miami Dolphins (NFL), Miami Hurricanes (college), and Orange Bowl (college). The stadium has been renamed 8 times since its opening in 1987 (most recently in August 2016 from New Miami Stadium to Hard Rock Stadium). For stadium tours, contact or call +1 305 623-6286. Tour prices are $3 for children under 14, $5 for those 14 and older and $4 for senior citizens. Check website for individual phone numbers for tickets to Miami Dolphins games and the Orange Bowl.
      • American Airlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd (near Bicentennial Park), +1 786 777-1000, +1 786 777-1250 (box office). In addition to Miami Heat (an NBA team) games being played here, this arena has hosted several awards shows in its past such as the MTV Video Music Awards (twice). Several concerts are also held here. Call box office for ticket information.
      • Marlins Park, 501 Marlins Way (Little Havana), toll-free: +1-877-MARLINS (6275467), e-mail: . The newest stadium in Major League Baseball, Marlins Park opened in April 2012 at the former site of the Orange Bowl as the new home of the renamed Miami Marlins. The futuristic, retractable-roof park broke new ground in ballpark architecture; at the insistence of team owner Jeffrey Loria, it is designed to reflect the culture of 21st-century Miami. Check website or call the toll-free number for tickets to Marlins games.

      Other things to do

      • Space Miami, 34 NE 11th St. For Info +1 305 375-0001 For VIP +1 786 357-6456. Space Miami was voted best U.S. club at the IDMA 2011 Awards. Located in downtown Miami, Space Miami is known for their Saturday nights. There are multiple rooms with different genres of music in each room so you can choose from a wide variety. They hold events almost every weekend with themed parties and well known/famous DJs.
      • Port of Miami. Take a relaxing cruise to a variety of locations.
      • Miami City & Boat Tour, +1 305-894-6409. Experience the sights, sounds and tropical flavors of Miami and Miami Beach. As you become acquainted with the Magic City you will learn about the culturally diverse and rich history the city embraces.
      • Everglades Airboat Tour, +1 305-894-6409. Take a once in a lifetime journey across, The Everglades National Parks river of grass. Tour passengers will find themselves surrounded by wild animals, in their natural habitat. as they travel into the swamp by airboat.
      • South Beach Food Tour. Explore the cultural diversity of the neighborhood, learn about the Art Deco architecture while you stop at restaurants and eateries to savor the local flavor.
      • Miami Yacht Charters & Rentals, 1250 S Miami Ave, +1 305 358-0745. Suite 1408 Miami. Yacht charters and boat rentals in Miami. Large selection of yachts to choose from between 35 and 150 feet. Half-day, full-day and multi-day charters. Great way to experience Miami. Call for yacht availability and charter quotes.
      • Miami Balloon Rides, +1 305 860-5830. Year round sunrise flights with views of the Miami skyline, Biscayne Bay, the Everglades and Redlands of Miami, including a post-flight toast and picnic. Reservations are required.


      There are very few city-wide events planned during Jul and Aug because of the high temperatures during the summer in Miami.

      • Ultra Music Festival. Streets of downtown Miami. People from around the world flock to Miami every March for its notorious Ultra Music Festival. It’s a three day and night festival that includes the most famous DJs in the music industry. Tickets usually range from $300–$600 from the three day festival and increase in price as it gets closer to the show in March. The show sells out almost every single year so be sure to get your tickets as soon as possible if you plan on attending.
      • Calle Ocho (Southwest 8th St. between 11th and 27th ave). Calle Ocho is the largest Hispanic street festival in Miami. It’s a one day festival that consists of contests, concerts, food and much more. There is also a carnival that is located in a lot to the left of Florida International University’s main entrance. The carnival is on the same day as Calle Ocho. The festival is usually held in March and is located on. Calle Ocho is free except for parking if you bring your car.
      • Carnaval Miami. A festival that consists of ten events along the course of ten days during the weeks of late February and early March. The Kiwanis club of little Havana (little Cuba,) hosts this festival full of music, international foods, concerts, sports, culinary competitions, galas and upscale Latin jazz festival.
      • Miami Fashion Week. Miami Beach Convention Center, South Beach, Miami, FL. March 21–24, 2012. This upcoming year (2012) will mark the 14th annual Miami Beach International Fashion Week. The week consists of exhibitions, fashion shows and sponsor lounges as the world’s fashion elite flock to Miami.
      • FedEx Orange Bowl Football Game, +1 305 341-4700. Hard Rock Stadium. Held in early Jan around New Year’s Day. A major bowl game, which hosts a semifinal of the College Football Playoff every three years. In other years, the game features top teams from around the country, with one being from the Atlantic Coast Conference (depending on the year, Notre Dame, which isn’t in a football conference but is in the ACC for other sports, may fill the ACC slot)..
      • South Beach Wine & Food Festival, e-mail: . Various locations throughout South Beach. Held in late February, this festival is sponsored by Food & Wine magazine and the Food Network. The event raises money for Florida International University’s hospitality program by having celebrity cooks and chefs (many of them who work for or have appeared on Food Network at one time) descend upon South Beach to do cooking demonstrations and throw parties. Florida International University’s hospitality program students volunteer at some of the festival’s events. Wine and food tastings featuring local chefs and cuisine are also held during the annual event. Tickets range from $15–$300 depending on the event.
      • Winter Music Conference, fax: +1 954 563-1599. Various locations throughout South Beach, +1 954 563-4444. Held in mid-March, the Winter Music Party attracts queer people for a good cause, the Winter Music Conference attracts electronic musicians (and the labels they belong to) and DJs as well as fans of various electronic music genres for the love of music. In addition to several parties held in clubs, parks and on Lummus Beach (and occasionally in retail stores and hotels), there are seminars for people to learn more about the music business and DJ showcases. Don’t confuse the Winter Music Conference with the Winter Party!
      • Independence Day. City-wide. Held on July 4. The Miami skyline is illuminated by fireworks on the “birth date” of the United States. While Key Biscayne has great views of the fireworks show, Bayfront Park has live music as well as a laser show.
      • King Mango Strut. Main Avenue and Grand Avenue in Coconut Grove, +1 305 401-1171. Held after Christmas, this parade began as a parody of current events as well as the Orange Bowl Parade. The Orange Bowl Parade, unlike its famous Rose Bowl counterpart, is no longer held anymore, but the King Mango Strut is still having a good time making fun of the previous year’s follies.

      Shopping malls

      • Aventura Mall, 19501 Biscayne Blvd (near the Dade/Broward County line), +1 305 935-1110. Mon-Sat 10AM-9:30PM, Sun 12PM-8PM. This mall, spanning 2.3 million feet, not only has nation-wide chains such as JCPenney and Macy’s but also has chains such as Abercrombie and Fitch as well as Rainbow Valley Playground, a play spot for children. The other notable landmark of this mall is its 24-screen movie theater.
      • Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave (on 97th Street in Bal Harbour), +1 305 866-0311. Mon-Sat 10AM-9PM, Sun 12PM-6PM (Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue are open from 12PM-7PM). Several designer labels fill up the spaces of Bal Harbour Shops, including Chanel, Cartier, Fendi and Gucci among others. $5 (parking fee).
      • Bayside Marketplace, 401 Biscayne Blvd (near Bayfront Park), +1 305 577-3344. Mon-Fri 10AM-10PM, Sat 10AM-11PM, Sun 11AM-9PM. Despite having several chain stores such as the Hard Rock Café, the Gap, Sketchers and Victoria’s Secret attached to it, this mall is noted for its gorgeous views of Biscayne Bay. The only downside is that traffic is bad at Bayside when Bayfront Park is having a concert nearby. Connected to public transit via Metrorail and Metromover. $12 (Parking).
      • CocoWalk, 3015 Grand Ave (in Coconut Grove), +1 305 577-3344. Sun-Thu 11AM-10PM, Fri-Sat 11AM-12AM (stores), restaurants and bars open until 2AM. This open-air mall not only has nice Mediterranean-styled architecture but chain stores such as Victoria’s Secret and FYE Music.
      • Dadeland Mall, 7535 North Kendall Dr (in Kendall), +1 305 665-6226. Mon-Sat 10AM-9:30PM, Sun 12PM-7PM. Dadeland is one of the United States’ first malls. Macy’s and Saks Fifth Avenue are some of the stores now represented at Dadeland.
      • Dolphin Mall, 11401 Northwest 12th St, +1 305 365-7446. Mon-Fri 10AM-9:30PM, Sat 10AM-9:30PM, Sun 11AM-7PM. In addition to Off 5th (a Saks Fifth Avenue outlet store), Marshall’s HomeGoods and Burlington Coat Factory, this mall has a movie theater and many busy restaurants.
      • The Falls, 8888 Howard Dr (in Kendall), +1 305 255-4570. Mon-Sat 10AM-9PM, Sun 12PM-7PM. Shops including Brooks Brothers and Pottery Barn adorn this mall and its tropical waterfalls.
      • Lincoln Road Mall, Lincoln Rd between Alton Rd and Washington Ave. This open-air pedestrian mall was designed in 1957 by legendary Miami architect Morris Lapidus. It includes restaurants and cafes that run the gamut from Starbucks to Miami originals like Pizza Rustica and David’s Café. There is outside seating. It includes nationally known shops such as French Connection, Ann Taylor and Anthropologie, as well as international shops such as Italy’s Miss Sixty. There’s also a multiplex theater located on the corner of Lincoln Road and Alton Drive. Lincoln Road Mall also hosts a farmers market on Sun from 9AM to 6PM and an antiques market on the second and fourth Sundays from 9AM to 5PM. Call +1 305 673-4991 for information about the antiques market.
      • Shops at Sunset Place, 5701 Sunset Dr, +1 305 663-0482. Open Mon-Thu 11AM-10PM, Fri-Sat 11AM-11PM, Sun 11AM-9PM. In addition to nationwide chains such as the Gap, Urban Outfitters and Victoria’s Secret, this mall has a Niketown store, as well as a large movie theater.
      • Village of Merrick Park, 4425 Ponce de Leon Blvd (in Coral Gables), +1 305 529-0200. Mon-Sat 10AM-9PM, Sun 12PM-6PM. The Village is Bal Harbour Shops’ major competition. It is very much like Bal Harbour. This mall features mostly designer stores such as Jimmy Choo, Neiman Marcus and is the home of Miami’s first Nordstrom.


        Foodies and chefs alike herald Miami for its unique New World cuisine. Created in the 1990s, the cuisine alternatively known as New World, Nuevo Latino or Florribean cuisine blends local produce, Latin American and Caribbean culinary tradition and the technical skills required in European cooking. Nuevo Latino is said to be the brainchild of four chefs: Allen Susser, Norman Van Aken, Mark Militello and Douglas Rodriguez. All of them still work in Miami and most of them work at the restaurants they created in the 1990s. New World is not restricted to these chefs’ menus. This cuisine influences several restaurants around the city to this day.

        Miami may be known for its Latin cuisine (especially its Cuban cuisine but also cuisines from South American countries such as Colombia), but there are other different kinds of restaurants to be found around the city. In addition to stand-alone Chinese, Japanese, Middle Eastern, and Italian (among others) restaurants, there are cafés, steakhouses and restaurants operating from boutique hotels, as well as chain restaurants such as TGI Fridays and Ben & Jerry’s.

        Miami is known for having nightclubs double as restaurants throughout the city. Most of these restaurants, such as Tantra (which had one of their chefs recently appear on Top Chef: Miami), BED and the Pearl Restaurant and Champagne Lounge (attached to Nikki Beach), are located throughout South Beach. However, some of these restaurants/nightclubs like Grass Lounge can be found in the Design District (north of downtown but south of North Miami).

        If many of Miami’s premiere restaurants don’t fit into your daily budget, consider eating during Miami Restaurant Month (better known as Miami Spice) in August and September. This year at 80 select restaurants, lunch costs $22 and dinner is $35.

        Miami’s dining scene reflects burgeoning diversity, mixing exotic newcomer restaurants with long-standing institutions, often seasoned by Latin influence and hot winds of the Caribbean. New World cuisine, a culinary counterpart to accompany Miami’s New World Symphony, provides a loose fusion of Latin, Asian, and Caribbean flavors utilizing fresh, area-grown ingredients. Innovative restaurateurs and chefs similarly reel in patrons with Floribbean-flavored seafood fare, while keeping true to down-home Florida favorites.

        Don’t be fooled by the plethora of super lean model types you’re likely to see posing throughout Miami. Contrary to popular belief, dining in this city is as much a sport as the in-line skating on Ocean Drive. With over 6,000 restaurants to choose from, dining out in Miami has become a passionate pastime for locals and visitors alike. Its star chefs have fused Californian-Asian with Caribbean and Latin elements to create a world-class flavor all its own: Floribbean. Think mango chutney splashed over fresh swordfish or a spicy sushi sauce served alongside Peruvian ceviche.

        Whatever you’re craving, Miami’s got it—with the exception of decent Chinese food and a New York-style slice of pizza. If you’re craving a scene with your steak, then South Beach is the place to be. Like many cities in Europe and Latin America, it is fashionable to dine late in South Beach, preferably after 9PM, sometimes as late as midnight. Service on South Beach is notoriously slow and arrogant, but it comes with the turf (of course, it is possible to find restaurants that defy the notoriety and actually pride themselves on friendly service). On the mainland—especially in Coral Gables, and, more recently, downtown and on Brickell Avenue—you can also experience fine, creative dining without the pretense.

        There are several Peruvian restaurants at SW 88th Street and SW 137th Avenue in Kendale Lakes. Take the 88 or 288 buses from Dadeland North train station. This is kind of out of the way, but it is worth it.

        Sites located in Miami Beach should be added to the appropriate district article there, not here.

        • La Carreta, SW 8th St, +1 305 444-7501. Open 24hrs a day. Cuban. The flagship restaurant of a small chain of Cuban restaurants (including one location at Miami International Airport). It should be noted that the majority of staff only speak limited English but menus are available in both English and Spanish. $5–$22 per person, per meal.
        • Chef Allen’s, 19088 NE 29th Ave, +1 305 935-2900. Sun-Thu 6PM-10PM, Fri-Sat 6PM-11PM. Allen Susser was named the best chef in the South in 1994 by the James Beard Foundation. A perfect place to try New World cuisine. Dinner jackets suggested. $9–$46 (the tasting menu is $75 per person).
        • Casa Tua, 1700 James Ave, +1 305 673-1010. Lunch Mon-Fri 11:30AM-3PM, dinner Mon-Sat 7PM-12AM. Italian. Casa Tua is proud of the fact that there is no outside signage outside its restaurant. If the restaurant decides to advertise out front, it’s not going to be soon. Reservations are required to get inside, but make sure you can find the restaurant first or you might get a headache attempting to get to dinner. $12–$100 per person, per meal.
        • Ola, 5061 Biscayne Blvd (in the Sanctuary Hotel), +1 305 695-9125. Mon-Thu 6PM-12AM, Fri-Sat 6PM-2AM. Nuevo Latino. Chef Douglas Rodriguez’ restaurant, Of Latin America, is a mixture of Spanish and Latin American culinary traditions. Reservations recommended. $20–$35 per person, per meal.
        • Ortanique on the Mile, 278 Miracle Mile (near Actor’s Playhouse), +1 305 446-7710. Mon-Tue 6PM-10PM, Wed-Sat 6PM-11PM, Sun 5:30PM–9:30PM. New World. One of three Ortanique restaurants (the other two are located in Washington, D.C. and Las Vegas. The food has a mixture of Caribbean and French influences. Reservations are requested. $19–$36 per person, per meal.
        • Azul, 500 Brickell Key Dr, +1 305 913-8358. Award winning blend of Mediterranean flavors with Asian influences.
        • Bongos Cuban Cafe, +1 786 777-2100. The café is owned by Gloria and Emilio Estefan and shines with Latin flavor. The music is Latin as well as the food and majority of the crowd and employees. It is a restaurant by day and club at night. Besides Miami, there are locations in South Beach, Hollywood FL, and Orlando FL.


        Nightlife in Miami consists of upscale hotel clubs, independent bars frequented by locals (including sports bars) and nightclubs. Most hotel bars and independent bars turn the other cheek at your physical appearance, but you have to dress to impress (which does not mean dress like a stripper) to get into a nightclub. Also remember to never, under any circumstances, insult the doormen and/or nightclub employees that will grant you entry or touch the velvet ropes or you may as well be sitting on the opposite side of the clamoring masses trying to get in. Attempting to tip the doormen and claiming that you know employees that work in the nightclubs (unless you actually called and reserved a table or a spot on the VIP list) is also considered an affront. Getting to the club unfashionably early and pushing through the crowd (and not the doormen) also can help make you stand out in the crowd. Finally, most nightclubs won’t admit groups of men unless those men are waiting in front of a gay bar. Bring some women or leave the pack if you’re desperate to get in. And once you get in, remember that the charge to get in these clubs can cost up to $20—cash only (some clubs, however, mercifully have ATMs—that can charge up to $7 for a withdrawal). Popular drinks in Miami include the Cuba Libre and the mojito.


        Miami is known for its boutique hotels (especially those in South Beach). Designers such as Ian Schrager (the Delano, Shore Club), André Balazs (Raleigh, Standard on Belle Isle) and Todd Oldham (the Hotel) helped put South Beach on the map with their creative hotel designs. The downside of many of the boutique hotels is that rooms can be small, particularly if the building was built during the height of the Art Deco period in Miami. If you value space, a boutique hotel may not be the type of hotel for you. If you don’t need to stay in a boutique hotel (and value space), Miami has several upscale high-rise hotels north and south of South Beach, as well as near the downtown area. Miami does have its share of less costly chain hotels for those who value space and/or money.

        The high season for hotels is around Nov to Apr because of the lower temperatures. However, Miami’s lower temperatures, in comparison to the majority of the United States around this time, are still warm. High season is also marked by the advent of many Miami events, such as the Winter Music Conference and Spring Break. If you wish to reserve a room during Miami’s high season, especially at a boutique hotel and/or a hotel on South Beach, you should book months in advance.

        Be aware that hotels have a 12.5% room tax and some hotels may add a 15% service charge which may or may not be added if you reserve a room through the hotel, through a travel agent/agency (either in person or using an online site such as or similar to Expedia, Orbitz and Travelocity) or through an opaque (prices are given, but the name and location of the hotel is unknown) travel site such as Priceline or Hotwire.

        The cost of services in hotels can be pricey just like hotels elsewhere in the world but you can seek out local services within walking distances or online such as the popular Oliom. laundry service for hotel guests.

        Some hotels offer garage and/or valet parking; check with your hotel about parking before booking a room if you wish to drive around Miami.

        • Compare Deals on Miami Hotels

          Miami Hotel Map


        The major area codes for Miami-Dade County are 305 and 786. The 305 area code also applies to the Florida Keys (Monroe County).


        In addition to some of the places listed in Eat and Miami International Airport, several hotels have internet access—both LAN connections and wireless—but it is not free in all hotels. Check with your hotel to see if internet access is free or for a fee.

        Several cafes have wireless internet connections, but depending on the café internet access may incur a fee. Unless it’s a nation-wide chain offering free internet access like Starbucks, check with your café to inquire about whether your internet access is charged separately from your meal.

        There has been talk of free wireless to be installed all over Miami Beach and the Miami-Dade area, but nothing has been done about this yet.

        • Miami-Dade Public Library System, +1 305 535-4219 (main branch number) [5] – Free Wi-Fi at any of the system’s libraries.

        Stay safe

        Miami’s crime rate is a routine topic of news media, but the city is only relatively dangerous for the passing tourist in certain areas. Almost all crime is related to the illegal drug trade, owing to Miami’s closeness to the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, which makes it a major transit point for narcotics from South America. Overtown (next to Liberty City) has the highest violent crime rate in the city and is best avoided all together. Opa-locka and Little Haiti are also best avoided at night. If you are in any crime-afflicted neighborhood, take the same precautions as you would in other dangerous neighborhoods in the US: Mind your own business, be aware of your surroundings at night and in high-traffic areas, get to your destination quickly, and avoid wearing flashy jewelry and electronics.

        Emergency numbers

        The emergency telephone number for fire, police and rescue emergencies is 911. If you require non-emergency assistance, do not call 911. To contact police in a non-emergency situation, call +1 305 4POLICE.



        There are a lot of consulates in Miami.

        • Brazil Brazil, 3150 SW 38th Avenue – 1st floor, +1 305 285-6200, fax: +1 305 285-6229.
        • Cuba Cuba, 2630 16th St NW, Washington DC 20009, +1 202 797-8518. M-F 09:00-12PM. An official consulate in Miami hasn’t been decided on yet. In the meantime all consular services of the Cuban government are handled from its embassy in Washington DC

        In addition, the consulates for Barbados, Colombia, El Salvador, Italy, Norway (Honorary), Spain and Thailand (Honorary) are in nearby Coral Gables and the consulates (all honorary) for the Czech Republic, Denmark, Mali, the Philippines and Sweden are in Fort Lauderdale, about 30 minutes’ drive to the north. Full listings for these consulates and honorary consulates are in the articles for those cities.


        • Miami Herald, 1 Herald Place, +1 305 350-2111. The city’s main newspaper that is read throughout the city, state and various places such as university libraries across the nation.
        • Miami New Times, 2800 Biscayne Blvd, +1 305 576-8000, fax: +1 305 571-7677. An alternative, free weekly newspaper which focuses on lesser-known news as well as movies and local events ranging from current theatrical productions to the Winter Music Conference.
        • Biscayne Times, 9325 Park Drive, Suite C. News concerning Northern Miami communities and some Miami communities located in the city (i.e. the Design District).
        • Press Release 365, Suite 210, 11900 Biscayne Blvd, +1 305 292-6712, fax: +1 305 292-1398. Miami-based news outlet specializing in breaking-news and press release distribution services.

        Go next

        • Miami Beach – Popular vacation destination minutes away from the city proper.
        • The Port of Miami is a major cruise ship embarkation port.
        • Biscayne National Park – The largest marine park in the National Park System.
        • Everglades National Park – Third largest national park in the United States, home to several animals native to Florida.
        • Boca Raton – Wealthy South Floridian neighborhood.
        • Delray Beach – In addition to the beach, there’s a buzzing nightlife scene.
        Routes through Miami (by long-distance rail)
        OrlandoHollywood N Amtrak Silver Meteor icon.png S END
        TampaHollywood N Amtrak Silver Star icon.png S END

        Routes through Miami (by car)
        TampaHialeah N I-75.svg S END
        Fort LauderdaleNorth Miami Beach N I-95.svg S END
        Fort LauderdaleNorth Miami Beach N US 1.svg S Coral GablesKey West
        OcalaHialeah N US 27.svg S Miami BeachEND
        TampaBig Cypress National Preserve N US 41.svg S Miami BeachEND
        Fort LauderdaleMiami Beach N Florida A1A.svg S END

        Routes through Miami (by commuter rail and mass transit)
        MedleyHialeah W Miami Metrorail Green Line icon.png S Coral GablesKendall
        ENDMiami International Airport W Miami Metrorail Orange Line icon.png S Coral GablesKendall
        West Palm BeachHollywood N Tri-Rail icon.png S HialeahMiami International Airport

        Best of the Best in Miami