Discovering Miami’s beaches, shopping and architecture

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My favorite part about being in tropical places is all the fun colors incorporated into the architecture. No major U.S. city other than Miami would dare to utilize pink and orange and baby blue on its houses and hotels, but in Miami Beach it makes perfect sense.

Miami pastel hotel

Even at night, the bright colors remain out in full force.

Miami night lights

It’s fun to walk the streets in South Beach and just look up at all the impressive hotels and high-rises.

Miami hotels palm trees

And the palm trees can make even the most boring buildings look majestic.

Miami Royal Palm

The convention center even looks tropical. You would never find a convention center like this in a northern city.

Miami convention center

One of the local parks has giant art pieces that are fun to explore.

Miami art piece

Lincoln Road is a fun place to find lunch. It’s a pedestrian-only outdoor mall with a zillion restaurants that aggressively try to recruit passersby.

miami-lincoln-road-restaurants

Espanola Way is another great place to find a meal with outdoor seating so you can people watch.

Espanola Way

There are plenty of shops that cater to tourists, selling towels, tshirts, shot glasses, postcards, and every other souvenir you can imagine.

Miami tourist shop

Miami fashion seems to be all about flip flops and high tops (except when people are clubbing.) And that’s fine when there are so many awesome beaches.

Miami Beach

I never realized how creepy the eyes on these birds really are. This friendly guy came over to say hi. He wanted to chat. Or maybe he just wanted food.

miami birds

A lot of people think the beaches in Miami are always super-crowded. But I managed to find a beach completely devoid of human life. Of course, that’s because it was 8 am, cloudy and rainy.

empty beach

With no human competitors, the birds took over this particular beach.

miami birds beach

The coolest view of the beach, though, comes from the plane when you’re flying in to Miami.

South Beach from plane

I can’t wait to make it back to Miami. I’m honestly considering making it my permanent winter residence. I enjoyed South Beach and Calle Ocho, but there are still a bunch of neighborhoods I haven’t seen.

I’d just need to find a sublet for 3 or 4 months and work remotely while I’m there. It seems totally doable!

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About Scott Shetler

Scott is a Chicago-based journalist and blogger who seeks out quirky sights and awesome destinations throughout North America and beyond.

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