Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

December 2009: Miami Beach

For the first time ever, I decided to go away for New Year and resolved that my destination should be somewhere that held out the hope of some climatic relief from the misery of winter in the UK. I settled on Florida and came up with an itinerary that combined Miami Beach, Sarasota and St Petersburg. Although the weather proved to be mixed, it was nevertheless a welcome and thoroughly enjoyable break from what turned out to be UK's worst winter in nearly thirty years. This short series of linked reports (see side panel) will hopefully give a flavour of the trip.

Art Deco District

I spent the greater part of my day in Miami Beach exploring the famous Art Deco heritage of South Beach, in glorious weather conditions. Miami Beach is a separate city from Miami and is situated on a barrier island that has multiple causeway connections with the urban sprawl on the mainland. Once a wealthy area, the South Beach district in particular suffered serious decline in the 1970s as its Art Deco buildings fell into disrepair and the streets became infamous for drugs and other social problems. Plans were afoot for the entire area to be razed to the ground. Largely thanks to the efforts of a lady called Barbara Capitman, however, sense eventually prevailed and restoration was finally adopted as the way forward. Today, South Beach is an architectural gem that attracts both tourists and the movie industry.

Duck Tour

I'd been aware of the existence of these tours by amphibious vehicles in several parts of the world for many years, but had never actually sampled one. I decided that Miami provided the perfect opportunity to give it a go, as a break from all the walking about and as a means of seeing a little of the bay area. It was all good fun - even shouting quack-quack-quack at innocent passers-by!

Base : Hilton Bentley Miami South Beach

Linked reports from same trip :-

Flight Log: LX64

Florida Gulf Coast

Flight Log: UA922