I’ll be honest, we didn’t explore the ins and outs of Miami as much as we’d have liked as we were spent by this point from all the Disney and Universal fun from the past 10 days. We wanted relaxation and minimal movement when it came to Miami, so the beach was where we stayed for most of our time here.
The drive down was an experience in itself! We hired a gorgeous Mustang from Orlando and set off early on the Saturday morning, hitting interstate 95 with the roof down and our sunnies on. Bless Dan for driving, I couldn’t quite bring myself to get behind the wheel when on the other side of the car AND road with 6 lanes of traffic and some pretty crazy motorists out there with us. Dan was loving it though, the power that car has is mental and we floored it, enjoyed the wind in our hair the sun beating down on us.
We stayed in Mid-Beach, a little less expensive than South Beach but still minutes from the golden frontage of sand. We originally booked Red South Beach hotel (not in Southbeach FYI) and I’ll simply say, do not book a room here unless dodgy plumbing and an even dodgier neighbourhood is your thing.
So we moved a bit nearer South Beach to the Riviera Suites. Our room was on the ground floor, had the best air conditioning and a working shower. It was all we needed as a base to crash out in after our days sunbathing on the beach.
Walking two minutes to the boardwalk and you’re on the golden sand of Miami beach and there’s plenty of loungers. They’re free near the front (the ones without parasols) and about $10-£20 depending on where you are for ones with a parasol or cabana for the day. There’s refreshment huts dotted along the beach so you’re never far from some food or drinks. If you’re an avid people watcher like me, you’ll be in heaven in Miami, we saw a man in a Borat-style mankini donning fairy wings walking along the shore, a man that looked like Father Christmas enjoying his holidays in the surf and even a wedding being filmed and photographed by one of the famous beach huts.
Cue instagrammable swimwear shots:
I booked us tickets to the famous drag brunch at Palace bar along Ocean Drive. It’s reviews were brilliant and I booked the 2pm slot on the Sunday. For $49 dollars each you get bottomless mimosas and a brunch course of your choice. The portions were big and the food delicious (Dan’s burger was served in an actual glazed doughnut – only in America!) and I was surprised how the mimosas weren’t watered down.. we were definitely pissed when walking along the board walk back to our hotel. The atmosphere here was electric, the performers are super talented and you can tip them dollar bills to make them come up to your table and get some great photos. It’s a bit surreal at first but after your first mimosa you can’t help standing up, cheering them on and joining in. The best part of our time in Miami for sure.
If I were to go again, I’d want to dine out in and explore Little Havana, maybe visit some art museums and hit the shops as well as journey down to the Florida Quays. But the beach really was the main attraction for us. Some streets could be seen as a little ‘dodgy’ and grubby, parts of it reminded me of Hollywood, a lot less glamorous than the hype suggests, but we’re glad we’ve ticked it off our list!
You can go check out the video I created of our time in Miami over on my YouTube channel HERE – give it a like and subscribe if you’re feeling kind ❤
Have you been to Miami? What would you recommend?
With love and forever singing Miami by Will Smith…