|Miami Travel Guide|
Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Recreation Area
But while the wall-of-sound-style speakers set up outside places such as Power Records are blasting salsa and other Latin music into the street, Little Havana as a tourist attraction is elusive. It's not concentrated like a Chinatown; it's actually not really a tourist attraction at all. It's just a Cuban neighbourhood, so except during the occasional street fair or celebration, you shouldn't expect Tito Puente and Celia Cruz to be leading colourfully attired, tight-trousered men and scantily-clad women in a Carnaval parade. You're more likely to see old men playing dominoes in Máximo Gómez Park.
Little Havana occupies 10 square blocks, centred on Calle Ocho, southwest
of downtown Miami.
For a city beach, Miami Beach is one of the best around. The water is clear and warm, the sand relatively white and, best of all, it's wide enough and long enough to accommodate the throngs. The Promenade is a Deco-ish, wavy ribbon of concrete at the Beach's westernmost edge. If you've ever looked at a fashion magazine, you've seen it: it's the photo shoot site. If you show up early in the morning, you're likely to see shoots in progress. This is also the hot spot for in-line skaters, bicyclists, skateboarders, dog walkers and people watchers to mill about bumping into each other.
Miami Beach has a strong Jewish culture mixed with a dash of Latin flair: there's even a Cuban-Jewish Congregation. The city's Holocaust Memorial, in the middle of Miami Beach, was created through the efforts of Miami Beach Holocaust survivors. It's an elaborate, exquisitely detailed and moving memorial. Like the Kaddish, the Jewish prayer for the dead that does not once mention death but rather speaks only of life, the Memorial is a testament to humanity's perseverance and the hope for a better world.
Miami Beach is attached to the city of Miami, 6km (4mi) to its west, by a series of causeways.
From the brackish waters of the mangrove and cypress swamps, to hardwood hammocks, sawgrass flats and Dade County pinelands, there is simply no place in the world like the Everglades. These marshes are home to crocodiles and alligators, bottle-nosed dolphins, manatees, snowy egrets, bald eagles and ospreys. You can visit for an afternoon or get totally absorbed for days canoeing around the 10,000 Islands and along the Wilderness Waterway.
The main points of entry to the park have visitors centres where you
can get maps, camping permits and information from rangers. Free camping
permits are required for overnight stays. By far the easiest and cheapest
way to get to the Everglades is by car. The drive from Miami takes a little
less than two hours. Greyhound only serves Naples, about 25 miles (40km)
north of the Gulf Coast Visitor Center.
That Fort Lauderdale is so well-endowed in the museum and gallery department
shows how serious its denizens are about moving on from spring-breakarama.
Art, science and history are well-represented, although incurable gossips
should make for the National Enquirer Headquarters.
Key West is roughly oval shaped, with most of the action taking place at the western end, while Mallory Square, at the far northwestern tip, is the site of nightly sunset celebrations. For the best diving, aim for Key West's southern shore.
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