Planning a Vacation to Miami: Know Your Geography

 Planning a Vacation to Miami: Know Your Geography

When you’re contemplating a trip to Miami, geographic terminology can be a little confusing, and it can actually result in booking a stay in a location that isn’t what you really intended. Here are some tips on how to make the reservation and make the most of your Miami experience.

Miami and Miami Beach

Basically, Miami and Miami Beach are sometimes used synonymously. However, they’re not the same city. Miami Beach is a peninsula connected to mainland Miami by several causeways, each a few miles apart. When most Americans picture Miami, they think of images like brightly colored art deco style buildings and neon lights on Ocean Drive. However, what they’re picturing is really South Miami Beach.

When you’re looking at hotels in a search platform, be sure to choose Miami Beach rather than Miami as the city if you want to book a beach-themed vacation. While you’re not far from Miami Beach if you choose to stay in downtown Miami, you’d probably rather walk to the beach than drive over the causeway and park every day. Ultimately, you’ll probably most enjoy being able to spend your days relaxing under an umbrella on the beach and your evenings enjoying the sunset at waterfront restaurants miami.

Part of what makes Miami such a unique and visually amazing place to visit is its unique light. Being in the southernmost part of the East Coast and being surrounded by water makes for gorgeous sunrises and sunsets. The best way to see beautiful Miami skies is to face the east off the coast of Miami Beach in the morning and the West towards the Port of Miami in the evening.

South Beach

Yet another geographic distinction has to be made in your search perimeters: South Beach vs. Mid Beach. South Beach is the most famous and historic part of Miami Beach, and often when people plan a vacation to anywhere in Miami Beach, it’s their understanding that they’re going to South Beach. In reality, South Beach refers only to the southernmost portion of Miami Beach. South Beach encompasses the width of the peninsula, approximately only one mile wide in that area, and it extends just under 3 miles to 23rd St on Miami Beach’s gridded street map. Most of the larger oceanfront hotels will be on Collins Avenue or Ocean Drive, with a street number starting in 22 or less. If you want a true South Beach vacation, you have to limit your search criteria to this area. Any oceanfront hotels further than 23rd St will be Mid Miami Beach.

Mid Beach

Mid Beach shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand as a Miami vacation destination just because it isn’t south beach. It has beautiful luxury hotels designed by world renowned architects. When you’re staying in Mid Beach, you can literally walk right out of the hotel onto the beach. To book a hotel room with a true oceanfront view, you’ll need to choose a hotel located on Collins Avenue that has an odd-numbered street address.

Clare Louise