Cheap flights to Miami
This coastal city was a sleepy holiday town until the 1920s, when the 'in crowd' decided to make it their own. The town bloomed into a fun seaside capital and was blessed with a legacy of Art Deco architecture, particularly along South Beach, which has been carefully preserved. During World War II the forces came to town when Miami was an important military base. Today, apart from being a favourite holiday Mecca and sunny spot for retirees, it is also the gateway to the Caribbean and Latin America.
Miami's large Cuban community add to the atmosphere in the sultry neighbourhood of Little Havana. Trendsetters hang out in Coconut Grove, while sunlovers strew the miles of white sandy beaches. For families there are entertaining attractions like the Seaquarium and Metrozoo. The nightlife is sophisticated and varied. The city also gives easy access to Florida's popular Gold Coast resorts and attractions, as well as the natural wonder of the Florida Everglades.
No wonder Miami is America's favourite holiday destination and the hub of a vibrant cruise ship industry, its port jammed constantly with sleek passenger liners. North of the city, miles of beautiful sandy beaches of the Gold Coast are hemmed in by southeast Florida's major tourist resorts: Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Pompano Beach and Palm Beach.
The mainstay of the Miami public transport system is the Metrobus; however, the network is large, and it takes some time to get used to. The fare is standard to any destination. If you need to change buses, ask for a transfer when buying your ticket, which costs extra. There is also an elevated train service called the Metrorail, which connects North and South Miami with stations at one mile intervals, and an elevated monorail, the Metromover, which offers great views of downtown Miami and Biscayne Bay and connects with buses and trains. Most visitors, however, take taxis or hire a car. This can be more convenient, as the city is sprawled out over a large area. To rent a car, the driver must be over 21, have a valid credit card and, if from abroad, hold a passport and English language driving license. Local drivers can be aggressive.
Miami's nightlife is hot! The South Beach streets pump with clubs and bars, and there's plenty of partying and live music in the Design District area. Downtown Miami hosts a few trendy venues and Coconut Grove is also a popular party zone. With everything from cocktails and comedy shows to lounges and nightclubs, one night in Miami would never be long enough.
Visitors to Miami might like to start their evening at one of the many cocktail bars, or perhaps the Dan Marino sports bar and restaurant. Visit Greater Miami for flamenco or cabaret shows, or even a drag show! There are also various comedy performances out there, including stand-up, sketch and improvisational comedies.
Miami dance clubs and lounges tend to offer a sultry Latin beat, while nightclub music ranges from Afro-Cuban or rumba rap to indie rock and electro-pop. These clubs are prevalent in downtown Miami and Little Havana, as well as west of the Bay area. Mansions and SET in Miami beach are two of the trendiest clubs, or just go club-hopping along Ocean Drive.
While Miami may not have too many iconic souvenirs for tourists to work into their budgets, it sure does have a lot to offer the discerning shopper!
A pedestrian promenade lined with palm trees and colourful art deco buildings& doesn't sound like a shopping mall does it? But that's Miami's Lincoln Road Mall, also home to big name labels like G.A.P and Banana Republic. For another 'open mall' experience, The Falls not only has all the usual shops but also a fantastic seating area near the waterfall.
For elite shopping, few places measure up to Bal Harbour Shops, with stores include Tiffany & Co, Prada and Saks Fifth Avenue. Miracle Mile is one of Miami's top shopping locations, hosting over 170 upscale shops and 40 gourmet restaurants within walking distance of each other.
On the waterfront, Bayside Marketplace offers a variety of shops, restaurant and entertainment just moments from downtown Miami. Espanola Way is a quirky, amiable street in Miami Beach filled with stalls selling local arts and crafts on weekends. U.S. 1 Discount Mall is an air-conditioned flea market in Cutler Bay with over 200 vendors ready to satisfy all consumer desires, from belly piercing to tailoring.
This lively city has more to it than Miami Vice or Horatio's crime scenes in CSI. With stunning white sand beaches, trendy shopping malls and a variety of both cultural and historic sites, Miami offers a wealth of things to see and do; save money and avoid queues with the Go Miami Card, available throughout the city.
Antique lovers should visit the Vizcaya Villa, built in the Italian Renaissance style in 1916. The Monastery of St. Bernard de Clairvaux is the oldest building in the Western Hemisphere; definitely a 'must see' for history buffs. A romantic, cultural attraction is Coral Castle, which was apparently hand-carved by a man experiencing unrequited love. Famous for its marine life, Miami's Seaquarium is the place to spend time indulging aquatic curiosity. Also worth exploring, Jungle Island has an exciting array of wildlife, from parrots and macaws to crocodiles and penguins.
At the Miami Science Museum, visitors could run into a few aliens! And collections of rare natural history specimens& Don't be put off by the exterior of Miami-Dade Cultural Centre; it houses a plethora of interesting artistic and historic exhibits, and the Miami Art Museum. Another collection of art and design, depicting popular culture from 1885 to 1945, is on display at the Wolfsonian Museum.
This is all made possible by sunny skies and ample public transport, but avoid hurricane season (June to November) and the crowds of spring break in March. While in vibrant Miami, with so many great sightseeing and cultural attractions, there won't actually be time to catch those TV shows!
Sunny Miami is a great holiday destination for families with kids. This exciting city offers a vast number of attractions and activities for children, many of which parents will enjoy too! From museums to parks and beaches, there is no shortage of places to take kids while on holiday in Miami.
Miami favourites for kids include the outer-space exhibits at the Miami Science Museum, as well as the entertaining killer whale performances at Seaquarium. Children also love seeing Jungle Island's exotic parrots, crocodiles and penguins. And that's just the beginning...
Summer tends to be a bit too warm and stormy for kids on holiday in Miami; most families prefer to go there in winter when the temperatures are a bit more comfortable, and off-season rates for accommodation and attractions are available.
Miami is particularly well known for its Cuban restaurants and the city's cuisine is predominantly floribbean(a combination of Latin, American and Caribbean). Eateries include everything from steakhouses and cafés to Italian, Oriental and Middle Eastern restaurants. South Beach and Coconut Grove have a thriving cafe society, and tourists will find plenty of sidewalk seating to people-watch as they linger over lunch.
The most common complaint about restaurants in Miami is that mid-range eateries are hard to come by. Food in Miami is either very cheap or very expensive. However, with new venues opening constantly, there is always something new to sample. Meals for under $10 are plentiful in Little Havana, while South Beach has a collection of high-end restaurants.
A fun way to dine out in Miami is by sampling the fare offered by food trucks. These mobile eateries offer excellent (and cheap) food, the challenge though is figuring out where they are! A few of the most popular, including gastroPod Mobile Gourmet, Latin Burger and Taco, and Feverish Ice Cream, have twitter accounts to keep hungry customers updated as to their locations.
Greater Miami enjoys a subtropical climate that ensures plenty of sunshine all year round. Sun protection is advised, even when temperatures are moderated by cool ocean breezes. Rainfall occurs mainly during summer and early autumn. Summer humidity levels are usually between 85-90 percent, making Miami one of the most humid cities in the US.