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The beauty of Miami comes from its mix of cultures, especially highlighted in each of its neighborhoods. Coconut Grove was originally settled by Bahamians a century ago and has that laid-back attitude with a bohemian touch, while Little Havana, which was carved out by Cuban exiles during the 1960s, is the heart of the city’s Hispanic culture. Don’t miss Calle Ocho (Eighth Street), with its ventanitas, walk-up windows next to restaurants that serve up coffee, pastries, and croquetas. Little Haiti was settled in the 1980s by Haitian refugees and now has Creole-influenced restaurants and museums; Allapattah (also known as Little Santo Domingo) offers a taste of the Dominican Republic; and Liberty City dates back to the 1930s Black migration and is home to the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center. In the center, there’s Downtown Miami, a juxtaposition of old and new, while neighboring Brickell is lined with modern skyscrapers.
As one of the nation’s busiest airports for international passengers and total passengers, there should be no shortage of flight options to Miami International Airport (MIA), a 15-minute drive away, which serves more than 150 destinations by more than 80 airlines. If you still can’t find the right flight, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) is just 30 minutes north. However, if slow travel is more your speed, you can take a train from several major East Coast hubs. Just east of the airport is the Miami Intermodal Center, with bus, rail, and rental cars available to get into town. The airport is also connected to the city’s Metrorail system, making it easy to reach destinations from Palmetto in the northwest to Dadeland in the south. Additionally, an express bus service runs from the airport to Miami Beach. Rideshare services are available throughout the area.
There’s no denying the Miami heat. While midsummer temperatures may not sound that high in the mid-70s to high 80s Fahrenheit, the tropical climate makes it feel humid and muggy. Springtime and autumnal visits may be more pleasant, with temperatures averaging in the 70s. But even a winter trip to Miami will likely feel like a warm-up, with lows around 60 and highs in the mid-70s. Along with the sunny days comes the rain, with the Atlantic hurricane season starting in June and going through November. The highest rainfall usually comes in June but remains high in August and September.
Miami Beach is a separate city from Miami, and the former lends additional cultural vibrancy to the latter. After all, the South Beach neighborhood is home to the Art Deco architecture, high-end dining, and beach culture the Magic City is known for. The best way to get to know Miami Beach is to just start walking along Ocean Drive, where you’ll hit oceanfront coffee shops, boutiques, and bars — and many fascinating characters.
The international art museum isn’t just about its works, it’s also about the community, showcasing pieces from the 20th and 21st century from the diverse artists that have made their mark on the Miami scene.
This former warehouse district has transformed into the epicenter of Miami's art scene, thanks to the influence of graffiti and street artists. Sure, there are 70 galleries and museums here, but the neighborhood itself is an open-air street art museum with its constantly evolving large-scale murals.