22-29 September 2016
Touchdown, Fort Lauderdale, we caught an Uber (our new favourite mode of transport), direct to our hotel. As we had a big trip ahead of us and new America would be quite pricey we stayed in Downtown Miami, hotels on South Beach were too expensive so we comprised and stayed in Downtown (Our hotel cost $220 for 7 nights, very reasonable!). After a long day travelling we decided to catch an early night.
I can now see how keeping a travel blog is hard to keep on top of so my post for Miami is a quite packed. Anywho, on Friday we had breakfast, oh, did I mention we also had complimentary breakfast, tea and coffee, every morning which is always a bonus. After stocking up on toast and coffee we walked to a neighbourhood called Wynwood, it took us about 40 minutes to walk. During the walk we realised we had made the mistake of walking. Our Uber driver from the airport advised not to walk anywhere as some parts of Miami can be dangerous. You don’t know who you were going to bump in to. Although we had only been in America for a couple of weeks we noticed a huge difference in social status. There were a lot of homeless people on the street, some harmless, some with mental health issues, and some dangerous. There was nothing noticeable being done to help these people. We were fine on the walk there but did come across some shady characters. We took this as a learning curve and both agreed for the remainder of our trip we would take Ubers. Back to Wynwood, it was a colourful neighbourhood full of art. So much graffiti! It was really interesting walking around the exhibitions and looking at all the pieces. We found a cool little Italian restaurant hidden in the art called Baccono, we were both peckish so had a pizza.
In the evening we caught a Uber across the water to South Beach to meet my friend Zoe, who I knew from back at home in Winchester. Zoe was also with another friend, Abi. It was still light so we all got a few cans and enjoyed sunset over Downtown. After a couple drinks we went back to Zoe’s Uncle’s apartment which was near Nikki Beach, it was a top floor apartment, and as you would imagine, the views looking out were amazing! After a couple more drinks here we headed for a night out on the famous Ocean Drive. I had one of the strongest long island ice teas ever and another cocktail called ‘call a cab’ – this was also very strong and I could see where the name came from! After a few hours partying we went back to our hotel. In the morning we were a little hangover so used the day as a chilled one and relaxed by Bayside.
On Sunday we went back to South Beach for a beach day. It was so sunny and the water was so clear. It was perfect! Also another opportunity to top up our tans. Monday came round very quickly and we had another chilled one and met Zoe again for a couple of drinks at Bayside. Bayside is a small harbour area with lots of eateries and bars, there was also a jazz band playing live music which was very good fun. After a couple of drinks we caught an Uber to Brickell, another cool area known for quirky bars and restaurants. One of the bars we went to was called Blackbird which had a sweet vibe to it.
We spent the rest of our time in Miami hanging out at the beach, soaking up the rays and swimming in the sea. It was very relaxing. Thursday came around very quick and it was time to move on to Tampa Bay. I did really like Miami for the beach and bars, however, I wouldn’t be in a rush to go back, mainly because of the huge divide between the rich and poor. It was definitely an experience though.