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Old 02-19-2010, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Mechelen - Belgium
64 posts, read 178,110 times
Reputation: 33

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I will be arriving in Miami on the 7th of july and can stay a couple of days before moving on north.
Can anyone inform me on what to see or visit in Miami? We like culture, sightseeing, shopping, nature, relaxing, cars (my son).
Our family has 2 kids (13y girl-15y boy).
I'm still trying to figure out the different parts of the city (Miami Beach, Downtown - Little Havana, Coral Gables - Coconut Grove) and what there is to see and do?
I have a rental car so I can move around.
What is the best place to take a Hotel?

Thank, Frank
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Old 02-19-2010, 02:25 PM
 
Location: Miami/ Washington DC
4,836 posts, read 10,780,170 times
Reputation: 2545
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank from Belgium View Post
I will be arriving in Miami on the 7th of july and can stay a couple of days before moving on north.
Can anyone inform me on what to see or visit in Miami? We like culture, sightseeing, shopping, nature, relaxing, cars (my son).
Our family has 2 kids (13y girl-15y boy).
I'm still trying to figure out the different parts of the city (Miami Beach, Downtown - Little Havana, Coral Gables - Coconut Grove) and what there is to see and do?
I have a rental car so I can move around.
What is the best place to take a Hotel?

Thank, Frank
Best place for a hotel will be Miami Beach Between 24th street and 10th street IMO. Try to get one on the beach they are fun.

So What to do:
For culture just being in Miami Beach at night is a show, the people watching is great. Little Havana has some good cuban restaurants for Cuban food I would not reccomend getting cuban food anywhere else. You need to go to the Suburbs or Little Havana for good cuban food. Coral Gables as the Vineitian Pools and the Biltmore Hotel two old and famous sites. Miami has the 2nd largest performing arts center in the US which has many different things going on all the time. There is the historical Museum of South Florida Downtown, Vizcaya Muesum and Gardens which is very cool.

Sightseeing: Being on Miami Beach is the main part, going into downtown for a few hours is nice, If you are there on a weekend go to South Point park or Watson Island by the Port of Miami and see the cruise ships leave. Metro Zoo is one of the largest in the US 2nd largest I think. Miami Seaqaurium is large and has lots of attractions including one of the orginal flipper dolphins! Yes it is still alive. Also Cape Florida Lighthouse in Key Biscayne, it is a nice beach and state park. Maybe rent a boat for a few hours and drive around the bay, take a duck tour or boat tour of Miami. Also there is Jungle Island filled with exotic birds and animals it even has a liger. Also there is an Spanish Monestary from the 1100s in North Miami, it was moved here from Spain.

Shopping: Up scale shopping at the shops at Bal Harbour very expensive mall. Outlets at Dolphin Mall by the airport, also about an hour north is Sawgrass Mills Outlet Mall one of the largest malls in the country. Aventura Mall is in north Miami-Dade large mall, large variety of shops. Miami Beach has tons of stores all over and opened late into the night.


Nature: Well the beach is nature, also the Everglades is near by but summer, it will be very hot there. But if you want to see Aligators in there natural habitat and some awesome birds, turtles etc.. head on over. For a better summer place go to Biscayne National Park, it is a tropical coral reef go snorkling and see the reef it is awesome! Deep Sea Fishing?

Relaxing: The beach, the beach the beach. But in the morning when it is not too hot then move to the pool.

If you want some real Miami/Florida food go to Joes Stone Crabs. Also I reccomend you find a good Argentinen restaurant for some of the best steak you can get. If you want good food and good prices and a lot of it in Miami Beach go to Next Cafe on Lincoln road.
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Old 02-19-2010, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles......So. Calif. an Island on the Land
736 posts, read 2,090,771 times
Reputation: 475
Hi Frank: I am a sometime tourist and occasional business traveler to Miami/So.Fla.

I will agree with FlyMia's comments above but add I think a trip to Miami is WASTED, in my opinion, without a trip out to Key Biscayne (as FlyMia suggested). It is one of the nicest urban beaches in the USA in my opinion. There are two big parks on either end of the island and they are both VERY NICE. You will feel VERY CLOSE to nature for being in a large Metro area. Great place to take your kids.

Also, I agree stay in Miami Beach to enjoy the beach and the Art Deco architecture. But Coral Gables is also very nice with great architecture, shopping, restaurants, etc.

Next time try to extend your visit and take a trip down the Fla Keys....excellent diving and Key West is a laid back coastal town (a bit commercialized these days) but still very interesting. And the drive down is really nice...beautiful water on both sides. And you can visit the American author Ernest Hemingway's house with a guided tour which is very interesting.
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Old 02-19-2010, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Miami/ Washington DC
4,836 posts, read 10,780,170 times
Reputation: 2545
Quote:
Originally Posted by Island_OnThe_Land View Post
Hi Frank: I am a sometime tourist and occasional business traveler to Miami/So.Fla.

I will agree with FlyMia's comments above but add I think a trip to Miami is WASTED, in my opinion, without a trip out to Key Biscayne (as FlyMia suggested). It is one of the nicest urban beaches in the USA in my opinion. There are two big parks on either end of the island and they are both VERY NICE. You will feel VERY CLOSE to nature for being in a large Metro area. Great place to take your kids.

Also, I agree stay in Miami Beach to enjoy the beach and the Art Deco architecture. But Coral Gables is also very nice with great architecture, shopping, restaurants, etc.

Next time try to extend your visit and take a trip down the Fla Keys....excellent diving and Key West is a laid back coastal town (a bit commercialized these days) but still very interesting. And the drive down is really nice...beautiful water on both sides. And you can visit the American author Ernest Hemingway's house with a guided tour which is very interesting.
Agree with all of that as well. Coral Gables is a fantasic place. One of the places I would love to live in when im older. The Biltmore Hotel is there if you like 1920s type buildings its a must see. Downtown Miami also has a few old gems like the Freedom Tower and Old Court House. Also Coral Gables has some beautiful old homes.

Also I could not agree more the keys are great! And the drive is AWESOME!!!
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Old 02-23-2010, 09:17 AM
 
796 posts, read 1,686,963 times
Reputation: 375
Puerto Sagua on 6th and Collins (miami Beach) has great Cuban food...it's kind of dumpy, but you will definitely get a "Miami vibe" there...did I mention their food is great?
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:02 AM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,408 posts, read 27,901,001 times
Reputation: 16564
eeew the keys and kids definitely do not mix.. if you go to the keys it'll be one of those "we went to say we went" but its just a gruesome slow drive .. you get there and walk around and realize you just want to be back in miami. if you are going to drive that long to key west... drive up to tampa and go to busch gardens your children will thank you!!
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Miami
6,853 posts, read 20,653,427 times
Reputation: 2927
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank from Belgium View Post
I will be arriving in Miami on the 7th of july and can stay a couple of days before moving on north.
Can anyone inform me on what to see or visit in Miami? We like culture, sightseeing, shopping, nature, relaxing, cars (my son).
Our family has 2 kids (13y girl-15y boy).
I'm still trying to figure out the different parts of the city (Miami Beach, Downtown - Little Havana, Coral Gables - Coconut Grove) and what there is to see and do?
I have a rental car so I can move around.
What is the best place to take a Hotel?
South Beach is a good spot to get a hotel even with teenagers. Key Biscayne could also be a good choice, but less things to walk to from the hotel. July is going to hot, humid and rainy. Its also part of hurricane season, FYI, though July isn't that active.

Little Havana, is just a place you may want to stop at to have a bite to eat at Versailles Restaurant Miami and just drive through. Not a place you will want to get out and walk around.

Coconut Grove started out as an artist colony. There are restaurants, bars, shops, etc. Green Street Cafe, Mr. Moes will be fun places to eat for the kids. Great place to walk around. Around the corner from the downtown part of the grove is Kennedy Park, nice place to walk around. But in July it's not going to be much fun to be outside.

Coral Gables has lots of restaurants, but more grown up kind of place, the kids will be bored here.

What to do, well in July its going to be hot so being outside for long periods of time isn't going to be fun for teenagers unless they are in the water. Bill Baggs State Park http://www.floridastateparks.org/capeflorida/ will be fun for teenagers, you can rent those four person bikes walk around the lighthouse. Usually ranked as one of the prettiest beaches in Florida. Fairchild Tropical Gardens might be a fun place for the teenagers, the iguanas there will be fun for them to see.

Last edited by doggiebus; 02-24-2010 at 09:06 AM..
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Old 02-27-2010, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Mechelen - Belgium
64 posts, read 178,110 times
Reputation: 33
Thank you all for the advise. I have to agree that the temperature won't be on our side but summer vacation for the kids is July and August so we'll have to do with it.

Are there place in Miami where we rather NOT go to???
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