MIAMI: Some Do’s and Don’t for the Miami Visitor
THINK MIAMI and what images come to mind? Beautiful beaches, great weather, international cuisine, the club-life and an incredible art scene. YES!
However, Miami visitors don’t always take advantage of all this diverse City has to offer…so here are some common mistakes to avoid, compiled from some of the best of Miami bloggers, and me!
NEVER LEAVING YOUR BEACH CHAIR
“The beach isn’t the only thing to enjoy in Miami! One of my favorite things about living here is that there is ALWAYS something going on. From Art Basel to the Miami Boat Show to the SoBe Wine and Food Festival, almost every month of the year offers events that can only happen in Miami! Travelers should take advantage of these unique offerings — that’s why we live here and never want to leave.” Emily Sobel, Blogger, Soul in Stilettos.
Feb. 19-23. SOBEWFF (South Beach Food and Wine Festival).
Foodies from around the world congregate with 100 events across town,showcasing the world’s most renowned wine and spirit producers, chef and culinary presentations. Creativity abounds, caloric intake is abandoned, and spirits (both alcoholic and non) soar with favorite events like Buddhas & Bellinis; Spike Your Ice, ice cream making and spirits master class; BBQ on the Beach and Burger Bashes, And, for me, with my grand daughters visiting from Boston, we decided upon an event at Jungle Island which focuses on healthy eating for Kids! ONLY IN MIAMI……Get the scoop.
2. LIMITING EXPLORATION TO SOUTH BEACH
“Many tourists mistakenly believe that Miami starts and ends with South Beach. Don’t get me wrong – South Beach has a lot to offer, but our city has many incredible neighborhoods that are worth exploring. It’s easy to hop a Lyft and find yourself in Wynwood, with all its art galleries and artistic grafitti, or you can hop over to Little Havana to get a taste of Cuban Culture —including music and dancing. And that’s barely scratching the surface”. – Dana Roszansky, Blogger, Miami Food Port
And BTW: Versailles remains the place to go for Cuban food, still maintaining that 1980’s Miami Vice vibe……..and if Lyft and Uber are not your thing, there are CitiBikes all through Miami: Miami is so much better to explore by foot or bike.
3. THINKING IT IS ALL ABOUT CLUBBING! NOT!
While Miami is known for its fabulous Clubs, like LIV and Story, and its great neighborhood bars like Bodega and Mama Tried, greater Miami is also one of the most health conscious destinations in the country, with a wealth of options for staying active and fit.
Feb. 1-March 31. Miami Health and Wellness Months
As a testimony to that fact, did you know that the period from Feb 1st to March 31st is designated as MIAMI HEALTH AND WELLNESS MONTHS, with some of the city’s top destinations, fitness centers, spas, and golf clubs offering deep discounts and special offers for “mind, body, and soul”. Some offers include:
- A 70-min Himalayan stone massage for $165 at the Biltmore Hotel
- 1 free tennis lesson at the Crandon Park International Tennis Center,
- 50% off on a 50-day HCG prescription weight loss program
- A 20% savings on your Miami
- Beach Fitness Escape at AC Hotel on Collins Avenue and more!!
4. SKIPPING HISTORIC SITES
A common mistake of many travelers is to miss local historic sites. One of Miami’s best, featured by Martha Stewart for its gardens, is the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, a breath taking Gilded Age estate on Biscayne Bay with 10 acres of formal gardens and shoreline.
Vizcaya is also the site of a Spring “Hat Luncheon”, which like New York’s Central Park Conservancy Spring luncheon attracts Miami’s fashion forward philanthropists, to raise funds for preservation of Vizcaya, which is a National Landmark..
Or for a look at Miami’s historic Latin culture, consider an evening at Calle Ocho Ball and Chain bar, with food, drink, music and a look at a history as rich and vibrant as the neighborhood itself.
5. MISSING THE ART SCENE
The Coral Gables Festival of the Arts, The Wynwood Art Festival, and the Coconut Grove Art Festival all come together during the month of February, making Miami’s art scene accessible to all, from browsers to serious collectors. “Too much of a good thing” can’t be that bad…so if you step right next door from the Miami Yacht Show, you will be at the heart of the Wynwood Art Festival, one of the most esteemed Winter contemporary and art fairs….and a great opportunity to start your own collection. For a multi-sensory experience, consider one of Miami’s longest running art fairs: the Coconut Grove Art Festival, held over Presidents Day weekend. There’s great food, demonstrations and sit down meals from James Beard chefs, live music, a family zone, and everything from upscale art to kitschy keepsakes from local vendors and global artists alike. Truly, something for everyone!
6. PACKING ONLY BEACHWEAR
“One mistake is only bringing bikinis, flip flops and shorts as your wardrobe. Our culture is very vibrant and we love to dress up, even when it comes to going to the grocery store. Pack your favorite dress, hat, earrings, and a little ‘attitude’ to enjoy the scene”. Stephanie Cosmopolitan, blogger at Stephanie Cosmopolitan
7. NOT TAKING ADVANTAGE OF LOCAL INFLUENCERS
“One mistake tourists often make is not tapping local influencers. Visitors are quick to Google, which sometimes generates helpful insights but why not go directly to those who have their finger on the pulse? It’s perfectly acceptable to DM a fashion blogger for the coolest, off the beat stores…or a food blogger for the best, most authentic flavors Miami has to offer. I personally love serving as a resource for locals and tourists alike, and try to respond to every message in my mailbox.” Rozansky
8. AND FINALLY, SLEEPING IN LATE
“People assume staying up until 5 AM dancing and drinking is what people do every night. We don’t. There’s nothing more magical than an early stroll on the beach sipping a Cuban cafecito.” – Gomez – Ortigoza
So, there we go, my Tomato friends. Hope these insights are helpful and I look forward to reporting to you on March-April events soon…
Yours in the Sunshine,