No Excuse Stopover – Miami

Ocean Drive Miami
Miami has fantastic art deco architecture, all very colourful

“I’m in Miami… bitch.”

I’m sorry, it had been stuck in my head since I arrived :). I had some time to spare with no idea about the place and wanted to make the most of it regardless. Don’t let anything hold you back – I know the coffee shop and that magazine are a comfortable, safe place to wait for your connection, but going and exploring something new is always more exciting, isn’t it

What did I do with my free time? I went to the seaside of course!

The warm, turquoise waters, the edge of the Caribbean Sea. I hoped off of a public bus near the end of South Beach and went for a walk.  On my particular day it was showering with thunder storms and I’m certain it looks better on a nicer day, but even so, I’m a sucker for a good electrical storm 😀 In four hours in the centre (a 7 hour stop-over), I had ample time to:

  • Walk along the beach. Paddle in the ocean or have a swim, it’s really warm!
  • Visit the Art Deco architecture on Ocean Drive, a palm tree avenue that takes you back to the 1920s (rather it would do, if it weren’t for the blasting reggaeton and buff, exposed bodies everywhere).
  • Get a cheesy t-shirt printed on Washington Avenue. You’ll be spoiled for choice.
  • Have lunch and make a friend there.

All of this is quite close together at the South end of the beach (South Beach) and has lovely palm tree avenues, green areas, and the wide sandy shore.

It’s even pretty and warm in the rain

First 3 impressions of Miami:

1) Every stereotype you have of Miami is true; whether that is hot, humid weather, buff bodies with skimpy singlets, bikini babes with rock hard abs playing volleyball on the beach, or people walking around town in their swimwear. I didn’t see any roller-bladers though, next time 😉

2) There are a LOT of Latinos. I knew there were a lot, but Spanish was so much more useful than english was. Both work though 🙂

3) If you can think of a type of person, they exist there. This maaaay be bias by the fact I come from such a small country and am not used to big cities. However I saw almost all walks of life in just a few short hours! I particularly loved the Caribbean folk that dressed exactly how they wanted no matter their size, the style, or how OTT it would seem. It’s crazy and wacky and colourful – they rock it and I love it. I saw women with sandals laced up to their knees with bikinis equally as lacy and long with huge colourful shawls over the top. They looked awesome and I love their confidence!

The Practical Details:

I had a 7 hour stopover in Miami en route from Bogota, Colombia to Seattle, USA.

I eventually found the information desk, and it turns out I had plenty of time for what I wanted to do. The lady there was very helpful, however finding it took a lot of asking directions first.

It took about an hour to get off the plane and though immigration, and another 10 minutes to train/walk to the airport’s bus stop. Look for signs to the MIA Mover. The bus itself, the 150, costs between $2.10 and $2.65 and goes roughly every half hour, taking 30 minutes to get to South Beach. When catching the bus back, make sure you read the numbers that stop at the bus stop you are at (they go past but not all stop at every one).

Happy travels

Penny x


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