Magic City, The Gateway to America, Capital of Latin America, or simply Miami. No matter which name you call it, Miami is one of the most prolific destinations in the United States. And this goes beyond tourism. Still, tourism represents one of the most important industries in Florida’s largest metro, and this is why we’re resorting to bringing you the best places to visit in Miami. We’ll include the landmarks, hip corners and restaurants, and many more.
My brother was a huge Charles Barkley fan – my brother went to Miami. He played power forward, and he always used to tell me stories about Barkley and college. And I watched Barkley growing up. I loved what he brought to the game. His toughness and just his attitude, being as strong he was.– via Paul Pierce
Landmarks & Place to visit
Let us begin with Little Havana – vibrant cultural landmark dominated by the Cuban influence. Looking from Cuba, Miami is the closest large American city. This is the reason why this vibrant tropical hub exhibits enormous Cuban influence – and Little Havana neighborhood personifies that influence. Little Havana is one of downtown Miami’s bordering neighborhoods – being just across Miami River and all. It boasts a unique street life atmosphere that you won’t be able to find in any other American city. The smell from cigar shops, restaurants and cafes is just a part of the atmosphere.
Friendly people constantly on the streets are another. If you happen to find yourself in Miami during March, don’t forget to visit the Calle Ocho Festival. Otherwise, Calle Ocho street itself represents a landmark, and so do Domino Park, Walk of Fame, Plaza de la Cubanidad, Jose Marti Park, etc. Restaurants like La Carreta, Hoy Como Ayer, El Mago de las Fritas and Exquisito Restaurant shouldn’t be missed.
Apart from enjoying the Latin (mostly Cuban) cuisine, you can always grab the genuine Cuban cigar, watch the residents play domino (or partake inactivity), and indulge yourself in other activities offered by this special neighborhood.
Since the city is open toward Biscayne Bay, but still secluded enough thanks to Miami Beach strip – Miami is a perfect destination for speedboat enthusiasts. There are plenty of clubs that offer this high-adrenaline adventure and it would be a shame to miss on the opportunity. While you’re at the beach, you might as well try the jet skis and other available water sports – and there are plenty of things available here.
Actually, since we’re already talking about the beach, Miami Beach itself should be considered one of the best places to visit in this city. Ocean Drive is here, together with numerous restaurants, bars and shops. This is the tourist part of Miami and you’ll be hard-pressed to miss it while there.
Ocean Drive runs along the oceanfront in Miami Beach, passing the historic Art Deco buildings and the famous strip of sand known as South Beach. It is a popular place both day and night for a slow cruise and some drive-by sightseeing.
For those with a special interest in these lovely pastel-colored, the 1920s and 1930s Art Deco buildings, some of the most notable structures are the Beacon (732 Ocean Drive; by Henry O. Nelson, 1926), the Colony Hotel (736 Ocean Drive; by Henry Hohauser, 1936), Waldorf Towers (860 Ocean Drive; by Albert Anis, 1937), the Breakwater (940 Ocean Drive; by Anton Skislewicz, 1939), the Cardozo (1300 Ocean Drive; by Henry Hohauser, 1939), which is busy night and day, and the Cavalier (1320 Ocean Drive; by Roy F. France, 1936).
Best place to visit in Miami
Miami Beach is home to the Art Deco district as well. This historical district is fully restored to its former glory and offers a view of the past – together with neon signs illuminating every single 1930 building. You have probably already seen the Art Deco district in one of the numerous movies or TV shows about the city, but to experience it up close is a different matter entirely. Plus – Art Deco is surrounded by other prolific Miami landmarks and areas. One such is South Beach which is your best choice if sunbathing and swimming are what piques your interest.
Back to Miami. Biscayne Bay plays an important role in every Miami resident’s life and its one of the main touristic hubs within the city. Biscayne Boulevard, in particular, is home to a great many attractions – plus it usually features a great waterfront view. American Airlines Arena, Knight Concert Hall, and Pérez Art Museum Miami are only some of the mentioned landmarks. Bayfront Park and Bayview Marketplace are another. Let us start with the former. Bayfront Park offers a contrasting green speck on the map among Miami’s numerous skyscrapers.
This contemporary park features state-of-the-art technology at a glance. Modern amphitheater and laser illumination tower are some of them. Park is also a venue for a number of events throughout the year, so don’t be surprised if you bump into one of them. Bayview Marketplace is definitely one of a kind. This open-air shopping mall is riddled with both unique and chain shops, cafes, and restaurants. That, however, isn’t all as Bayview Marketplace offers daily programs, both for tourists and locals.
Like any other popular city, Miami doesn’t lack its share of museums. Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is a true jewel of the city thanks to its architecture. Italian Renaissance was the main architecture influence here, but the villa itself was built in the Mediterranean Revival style with Baroque elements. It features Italian Renaissance gardens and numerous fountains, pools, and structures of all kinds. It really shouldn’t be missed if you’re an art lover. Miami Science Museum is another one you shouldn’t miss, while Miami Children’s Museum offers plenty of opportunities to have fun and learn something as well.
As far as the city’s landmarks go, one of the best places to visit in Miami has to be Freedom Tower. Built-in 1925, this building is one of the oldest multi-story buildings in the entire American south-east. It’s a striking historic building which rises surrounded by palm trees and other, more contemporary buildings.
Miami wouldn’t be what it is without aquarium. Miami Seaquarium is one of the locals’ favorite landmarks, but that doesn’t mean tourists aren’t allowed. On the contrary, seaquarium should be high on your priority list – especially if you’re bringing children alongside you. This is one of few places in the world where you can watch trained dolphins, killer whales and seals perform their shows. There’s plenty of observation tanks available as well. They can give you the opportunity to see some of the water creatures firsthand and get to know something about them in the process.
Miami is a vibrant city, and as that offers plenty of things for you to do. It might have a deficit of landmarks, but then again, most American cities do. However, there are still more than enough spots which qualify as the best places to visit in Miami, and we have only brought you some of them. You’d be advised to fully explore the city if you’re able as you might never know what you can find.
American Airlines Arena
The American Airlines Arena is the home of the NBA’s Miami Heat. It is also the main venue for large concerts and other special events, including top name singers and performers. It can hold more than 19,000 people. The structure itself, opened in 1999 has been awarded the Leed Green Building Certification for being an energy-efficient building. It stands out prominently on the waterfront in a modern and developing area of downtown.
Deering Estate at Cutler
The 440 acres Deering Estate at Cutler property encompasses globally endangered pine Rockland habitat, as well as coastal tropical hardwood Rockland hammocks, mangrove forests, salt marshes, and a coastal dune island. The Deering Estate is home to the c1900 Richmond Cottage, which served as a hotel. Other historical buildings date from 1896 to 1922 and an American Indian burial ground dating from 1500.
The estate is named for Charles Deering, who owned the home. He, along with his brother James, was an art collector and accumulated a great number of works by the Old Masters. Deering himself also painted. On-site at the estate is the Artist Village which has become an important cultural center, featuring art and artists programs.
Visitors can stroll through the beautiful grounds, tour the houses, or simply enjoy the view.
Miami Science Museum
The Miami Science Museum presents a large number of hands-on and interactive exhibits covering a variety of scientific fields including physics, biology, and chemistry. Exhibits change, offering new displays with new themes. The museum is also well known for its children’s summer science camp.
Since the museum was first established in 1950 it has grown considerably and been forced to expand its space throughout the years. Once again the museum has found itself in need of more space. As a result, the museum is once again going through some major changes as it evolves and moves to a larger, more modern facility.