Miami. [puts on sun glasses]. yeeeEEAAAHHHH!!!
Trip Start May 07, 2011
20Trip End Nov 09, 2011
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Where I stayed
Circa 39 Hotel Miami Beach
Read my review - 4/5 stars
Read my review - 4/5 stars
What I did
Explored Miami Beach
Visited the Seaquarium
Miami city tour
Biscayne bay cruise
Everglades airboat ride
Sat on the beach and swam in the ocean
Landed at Miami International airport at 1530 local time after a pleasant nine hour flight. Two hours later, we got in a taxi to take us to the hotel. Getting through Miami customs took 1.5 hours!!!
We stayed at Circa 39 hotel for all 4 nights in Miami South Beach. The hotel is in a small art deco building.
After checking in, we went for a wander along the sea front. Saw at least four weddings, one of which was right on the beach. Half the guests were in their shorts/bikinis.
Can't believe how hot it is!
Today we wandered around Miami South Beach taking in the atmosphere and the sights. There is a walkway along the beach all the way to South point. You can smell the sun baked wooden decking, flowers and the ocean. Very nice walk as long as you watch out for all the fitness fanatic locals jogging and cycling and the tourists on Segways.
We walked south to Ocean drive where celebrities apparently hang out at night. Very pretty art deco buildings. South Beach has the largest collection of art deco buildings in the world.
The afternoon was spent at the beach. Miles of pristine white sand. May seems to be a great time to visit Miami; the beaches are far from crowded and the sand isn't too hot to walk on barefoot. There wasn't a cloud in the sky and the ocean is a lovely blue/green colour. I had never been in such warm water before (outside of a bath/shower).
We saw a shark swim past a group of people swimming. It was just like http://www.miamishark.com/
The day was finished off with a gin & tonic in the hotel bar.
Today we visited the Miami Seaquarium. Not quite Sea World but it was fun. We were supposed to be touring the city in an air conditioned bus today so we were unprepared to spend it under the baking sun. Now we have silly touristy straw hats. It will be a miracle if they survive the next couple of months.
We saw Flipper the dolphin, his troop and five slim blonde women. The highlight of the dolphin show though, was a naughty crane which waited patiently at the side of the pool until the show started. As soon as blonde woman No. 3 left the fish bucket unguarded, it crept over and filled itself with fish after fish. It barely managed to take off afterwards.
The killer whale show was fun with half the audience getting drenched by the whale
All in all, it was an american family, fun filled day out.
Miami city tour: Miami beach, Miami downtown, Little Havanna, Coral Gables, Coconut grove. Miami is the richest city in the USA and it shows.
Biscayne bay cruise: homes of the rich and famous. Or former homes of the rich and famous...
Today we went to the Everglades. This was the highlight of our Miami trip. We went on an airboat ride through swamp followed by an alligator wrestling demonstration.
The airboat ride was fantastic. The swamp is stuffed full of fish, turtles, alligators and birds. An eight foot long alligator swam right up to the side of the boat next to Alison. Apparently they can jump in to the boat. Baby alligators are very cute and are about six to eight inches long with yellow stripes on their backs.
A purple Gallinule (swamp chicken) jumped up on to the guy in front's shoulder. Amazingly tame and friendly
We had our photo taken with three year old Larry the Alligator. Very cuddly.
Miami trip over. Time to head to the airport. No sign of Horatio Caine or Dexter.
So its the end of our 4 day trip to Miami! The weather's been great - 30-35C everyday, clear blue skies. We stayed in the Circe 39 hotel on Miami south beach (at the north end of the south beach).
Went to the beach a few times - fantastic! Never-ending white sandy beach and warm aquamarine sea. Because it is May there are very few tourists so the beach was nice and quiet. We saw two sharks in the sea. They were just swimming around people! (Luckily, we were on the promenade watching). We also saw a big pelican swarm down and gulp up a big fish right by the waters edge - that was fun to see but we didn't have the camera with us
While we were in Miami we walked all the way down the beachside promenade to the south point of the island. Got to see a fair bit of Miami beach this way, including Ocean drive (where celebrities apparently hang out at night) and lots of art deco buildings - Miami has the largest collection of Art deco builings in the world!
On the second day in Miami we went to the Seaquarium. This was not quite Sea Worlds but it was fun all the same. Saw flipper the dolphin, his troop and the slim blonde women who swim with them. Once the show started a very naughty crane sneaked up to the fish bucket and gobbled down fish after fish after fish until it could barely fly away. The killer whale show was pretty impressive.
On the third day we went on a Miami city tour. We got to see Little Havanna, Coral Gables and Cocunut Grove. Some very nice houses. Miami is quite a pretty city. We went on a Biscayne Bay cruise to see the homes of the rich and famous - or rather the former homes of the rich and famous :)
On our last day in Miami we went to the Everglades
So now we are off to the airport. Heading on to L.A. for the next section of our trip!