Our fleet doesn’t normally cover this route, so I was pretty excited to see MIA on my roster! This was not my first visit to Miami though, in fact it was two years ago I had a very exciting holiday during Springbreak for the Miami Music Conference week, admittedly that was not a trip to boast about health and mindful consuming, quite the opposite! However this recent trip with work did not involve any pool parties or music festivals; it was more a “how much I can squeeze into 24 hours ” kind of trip.
The flight was a busy day flight so by the time we arrived to the hotel I was quite tired but having gained five hours I didn’t want to waste the rest of the day and find myself awake at 3am with nothing to do… So I hit Dadeland Mall for some shopping. I joined some of my colleagues for dinner at the Cheesecake Factory, which wouldn’t have been my first choice, but I was surprised to find a few healthier options. Obviously being the States the chicken and avocado salad I ordered could have fed a small horse, but it was fresh and pretty delicious.
So by now I should know that any plan of mine to help me sleep does always tend have the opposite affect. I was awake at 4.30am, it could have been worse. I used this time to pack my bag ready incase of a prompt departure later, and check out the hotel gym facilities. I was happy to find the gym was 24-Hours, so went down to work out. The gym overlooked the outdoor pool; it was nice to watch the sun rise whilst doing a HIIT workout. I felt ready to take on the day.
Conveniently the hotel had bikes that my colleagues and I could use, I thought it would be a great way to get out and see the city, the weather was amazing and I wanted to revisit South Beach! Although we were staying the other side of town, it looked possible to make it if we caught the train into Central first. Arriving with the bikes into Government Central we were told to catch a bus across from the mainland to South Beach, this didn’t seem to be a problem until every bus that turned up only had one of its bike racks working; we needed two. Having waited for what felt like hours for a bus that could take us all, we finally were crossing the bridge over to South Beach!
After nearly two hours of trains and buses we hopped off at Lincoln Road, we were starving and I was ready for some breakfast having been awake for 8 hours already. Lincoln Road is the place to be if you’re hungry though, anything you could wish for is here, from Italian and Mexican to frozen yogurt. Restaurants stretch out into the sunlit street with big umbrellas and infectious music, sure to get you in a good mood. We chose “Havana 1957” a Cuban restaurant offering up a selection of omelets for breakfast and Cuban steak ciabatas. I had a balanced breakfast – a delicious egg white spinach omelet, a side of whole meal toast with honey and a cappuccino to keep me going. It was so lovely to sit outside, soak up the sun and enjoy the colourful vibes of one of my favourite cities.
Keen to actually do some cycling instead of taking our large accessories for a walk we made the home straight to South Beach! – Lincoln Road itself is pedestrianised so we had to walk them just a little further. But once we were there it was well worth the trek! You can cycle for miles alongside the beach, the vibe here is so amazing, it seems as though everyone is out running, cycling, or walking their dogs, making the most of the sunshine. If I had more time here I would have bought a coconut from one of the fresh fruit stalls and I could have sat for hours people watching, just absorbing the atmosphere and good energy.
Realising we were running short of time, we made our way back to the main streets and hopped onto the 120 which took us directly back to the Metro, and on to our hotel. In hindsight the bikes were a hindrance with what little time we had, although a lovely idea, but next time I will definitely be taking just my running shoes to South Beach!
My advise to anyone visiting Miami would be to purchase an “all day travel card” this gets you around on all public transport, and its only $5, it was a total life saver for us!
Safe to say we were all pretty tired but it felt good to fit so much in and make the most of being somewhere different. I walked into my hotel room just as my wake up call was ringing, signaling one hour before pick up… Good job I already had my bags packed in my state of insomnia earlier! A shower, one large coffee and I was ready for the 9 hour flight home…