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For many people of the late Gen Y/early Gen X population, Miami used to bring to mind this:
then it likely transitioned to this:
and throughout it all, there’s been the stereotypical image of Miami, which often looks a little bit like this :
But I’m here to tell you this is not Miami, or rather this is not the only thing there is in Miami. There is more to do in this city than partying like a crazy spring breaker or pretending you’re Will Smith and LMFAO. In fact, if you’re like me and the idea of encountering a horde of scantily clad and inebriated people makes you cringe in horror, I can assure you that it’s possible to visit Miami and not run into even one drunk college-aged student. The city is both extremely diverse and undergoing a really fascinating transformation, so it’s a great time to visit and explore what I like to think of as the “new Miami.”
Here are five things you to do in Miami that do NOT include partying with spring breakers:
While South Beach is arguably where all the action takes place, I say it’s okay to be far, far away from this action. Head further down the road to Miami Beach which tends to have less people and noise, or take a drive to quieter areas like Key Biscayne and Hollywood. My personal favorite is a beach I grew up near for the first 18 years of my life. It’s a bit of a drive from Miami but well worth it — Delray Beach off of Atlantic Avenue is a beach that’s not completely desolate but neither does it have the flashiness of Miami. There are plenty of great restaurants and shops nearby for those who want to make a day trip out of it, or you can plop down on the sand and not move for hours (again, without any drunk college students getting in your personal space).
Ten years ago, the food scene in Miami wasn’t much to talk about; a few good Cuban places and a nice restaurant here and there. Now? The list is never-ending. Big name chefs with their big name culinary awards have set up shop all over Miami. The result: an influx of creative, really delicious food being served in neighborhoods outside of the typical hotspots. Some of my favorites include Yardbird Southern Table & Bar (best fried chicken and waffles!), Pubbelly Sushi (try the bigeye tuna over crispy rice and home fries with spicy mayo), Coyo Taco (get the seared gulf shrimp tacos) and The Federal (home to some amazing buttermilk biscuits with a honey apple cider glaze and a light but well-flavored tomato salad).
Through the continued growth and popularity of Art Basel, Miami has become a hotspot when it comes to art and design. There’s the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, the Pérez Art Museum Miami and a slew of galleries showcasing a ton of art in a variety of ways, but my absolute favorite is Wynwood Walls. Back in 2009, a man named Tony Goldman took the Wynwood warehouse district and transformed it into a showcase of unbelievably amazing graffiti and street art. There’s also Second Saturdays when artists, food vendors and retail businesses come together for a night of music, food, art and fun vibes.
Miami parks are not your average parks. They span everything from the waterfront, beautifully designed and modern park, to the park that feels like you’re not even in Florida much less Miami, to the good ‘ole Florida Everglades. So take your pick and go out and explore. I love South Pointe Park, which has everything you want in a park. Or maybe it’s everything I want in a park. Either way, it’s amazing — palm trees, wide open spaces, walkways weaving throughout the area, a pier, a beach and beautiful ocean views. It’s a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of Miami and just enjoy the sunset and calm atmosphere.
The shopping scene in Miami isn’t anything new, but it has expanded to areas in recent years. Take Purdy Ave, for example. This neighborhood on the west side of Miami Beach is home to several great clothing stores in addition to popular restaurants and fitness studios. Then there’s the Design District, which is where I can only afford to window shop, but for all the wealthy Europeans it’s basically their mall. Even Lincoln Road has gone through some much-needed changes over the years, with well-known brands like Zara, H&M and Kiehl’s opening stores. There’s also a Tesla Motors showroom (it is Miami, after all).
All of the above are why I’ve grown to love Miami. It’s a city that has so much more to offer than most people realize, and is a place well worth visiting.
Current obsessions: International travel, domestic travel, weekend travel, basically any kind of travel, tacos, French macarons in unique flavors, shih tzus, corgis, #TGIT, wine and nut butters.
As someone who has spent more than a few Friday nights creating travel itineraries for fun (sometimes color coded), it’s only appropriate that Tausha has transferred her never-ending obsession with travel and love for planning to her blog, The Globe Getter. When she’s not obsessing about travel, she’s likely eating a meal that consists of tacos, French macarons, nut butter and wine.
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