What makes the University of Miami so special

Miami - Sunny paradise on the east coast of Florida

Florida is the southernmost state in the United States after Hawaii and has a reputation for being a retiree's paradise. Wrongly. Because the state and especially the metropolis of Miami have so much more to offer. Cuban serenity meets American bustle and no matter whether you want to experience a little culture or party in the nightclubs, lie on the beach or go shopping, Miami is definitely the place for you.

Table of Contents
Figures, data, facts about Miami | Weather and Climate in Miami | Miami population | Politics | Economy and Infrastructure | One of the largest international airports in the world | Education | Miami for tourists | Activities in Miami | Events during the year | Book accommodation in Miami | Worthwhile day trips from Miami | Miami's story | A look into the future

The second largest city in the state after Jacksonville is located in the south of Florida on its east coast. Amusement park fanatics' El Dorado, Orlando, is 360 kilometers away. Miami Beach, on the other hand, lies upstream in the Atlantic Ocean and must not be confused with Miami itself.

Numbers, dates, facts about Miami

  • State: Florida
  • county: Miami-Dade
  • population: 467,963 (July 1, 2019, estimated)
  • surface: 143.15 square kilometers (of which 92.42 square kilometers land)
  • Population density: 13,512 people / square mile
  • founding year: 1896
  • Altitude difference: 2 metres
  • Time zone: Eastern (UTC -5 / -4)
  • Postcodes: 33109, 33122, 33125-38, 33140-47, 33149-50, 33154-58, 33160-62, 33165-70, 33172-87, 33189-90, 33193-94, 33196
  • prefix: +1 305, 786
  • mayor: Francis Suarez (Republican)
  • Nicknames: The Magic City, Gateway to the Americas, Capital of Latin America

Where did the name Miami come from?

The Mayaimi Indian tribe of the same name lived in the past in the area around Lake Okeechobee, which was once called Lake Mayaimi. Miami was named after the Miami River, but its name goes back to Lake Mayaimi, so it can be said that the city indirectly owes its name to the Indian tribe, which died out around 1750.


Weather and climate in Miami

Miami has a tropical climate, which is shaped by the influence of the local monsoon climate and the Gulf Stream of the Atlantic. In the summer there is a hot, humid climate, while in the winters it is rather warm and dry. Hurricanes are to be expected in autumn. The rainy season from May to October also has the most rainfall and there are more or less regular thunderstorms. Otherwise, Miami is one of the largest cities in the US with the most rainfall, with most falling in September. Then there are also most of the rainy days.

The warmest months are July and August with average temperatures of around 30 degrees Celsius, while January is coolest, with average temperatures around 21 degrees Celsius even then. However, cold fronts must be expected in this travel destination during the winter months or between October and March. However, in this area the Gulf Stream helps to ensure that there are no extreme heat waves and strong cold waves.

What is the best time to visit Miami?

The highest temperature ever measured in Miami was 40 degrees Celsius, the lowest was -1 degrees Celsius. Snowfall is very rare in the metropolis even during the winter months and has only occurred twice in the history of weather records.

The best time to travel depends on your own preferences. The months between February and April in Miami are all about the spring break. At this time there is a lot of hustle and bustle when numerous students travel to the seaside city. If you would like to explore Miami more calmly, it is best to travel to Florida in May. Then the temperatures in Florida are pleasant and there are relatively few tourists there.

Miami hurricane season

The hurricane season in the city on Biscayne Bay runs from around the beginning of June to the end of November. But cyclones can also occur outside of the official hurricane season. Even in these times, you don't necessarily have to be afraid of visiting the metropolis. It often happens that the hurricanes flatten over the sea and only thunderstorms, precipitation and slightly lower temperatures occur.

And otherwise there is strict surveillance in Florida and there is a reliable early warning system to protect residents and holidaymakers. In the event of a hurricane, be sure to follow the instructions given!

Miami population

Miami is predominantly white, with the majority (over 70%) of Hispanic descent with roots in Latin America. Afro-Americans make up around 16 percent, and people with Caucasian roots around 11 percent. Asians make up around one percent of the Miami's population. The age group of 25 to 45 year olds is the largest group.

When it comes to religion, Miami is the most prominent Baptist group. Catholics make up 27 percent of the metropolitan area of ​​Miami. About 10 percent belong to the Jewish religion and 9 percent are Muslim. All in all, there are as many as 500 churches from 32 denominations in Miami.


In the US, the Democrats are more likely to be left, while the Republicans are more likely to be right-wing. In County Miami-Dade, the Democrats have the edge, while in the State of Florida, Republicans are predominantly elected. In the last presidential election, the Democrats received 64 percent of the vote.

Economy and Infrastructure

Miami is a major commercial and financial center. Several large companies have their headquarters in Miami and, due to its proximity to Latin America, the location serves as the headquarters of the Latin American branches of more than 1,400 multinational companies such as American Airlines, Fedex, Visa, Microsoft and Walmart. In addition, the metropolis in Florida is an important center for television productions, especially when it comes to media in the Spanish language. For example, Telemundo and UniMás have their headquarters in Miami. Many well-known music studios are also located there.

However, the majority of the population earns relatively poorly, usually several people work in a household, but the unemployment rate is about one percent higher than in the rest of the USA. Miami ranks third among the poorest cities in the United States in terms of the proportion of people who can only fall back on an income below the poverty line.

Income tax is not paid in Miami or any of the state of Florida. In return, property taxes, sales tax, and the cost of living are higher than in other parts of the United States of America.

One of the largest international airports in the world

With the Miami International Airport, Miami has one of the largest international airports in the world. In 2016 alone, 44.6 million (million) passengers were handled there in international air traffic and the airport is served by numerous international airlines. In mid-2019, it was announced that Miami will be investing $ 5 billion in its airport.

The Port of Miami is at least as important. It is one of the largest ports in the world for cruise ships. Various cruise lines such as Carnival Cruise and others head for Miami or have their starting point here. In addition, the city is also of vital importance as a freight transshipment point. In public transport, the Miami Airport Station is the most important transfer point. Not only do the Amtrak long-distance trains from New York City end here, but also the regional trains and suburban trains of the Tri-Rail. If you want, you can change to the elevated railway or to city and long-distance buses.

Metromover connects important facilities

The Miami-Dade Metromover connects many office buildings and public facilities in the city. The ride on the Metromover, which connects office buildings in Downtown Miami, among other places, is free.

The main road link is Interstate 95, which is intersected by Interstates 195 and 395. In addition, the highways 1, 27, 41 and 441 as well as several state roads run through the urban area of ​​the metropolis.


The city of Miami is part of the Miami-Dade Country school district, which comprises a total of 39 high schools. Florida International University and Miami-Dade Community College are particularly important.

Miami for tourists

Warm climate, many beaches, the night clubs, the waters of the Atlantic and so much more than the television series "Miami Vice". The city in the Sunshine State of Florida has a lot to offer that you won't find anywhere else in the United States. Tropical charm and Latin American flair, for example. The boutiques, the culinary specialties, the nightlife and especially the night clubs are a real experience.

However, it's also important to remember that Miami is one of the more dangerous cities in the U.S. when you look at its crime rate, and you'd do well to include neighborhoods like Liberty City, Little Haiti, Little Havana, sections of the waterfront, and the Biscayne Boulevard is better to avoid as a tourist, especially at night after dark. At least if you are traveling alone to this destination. If you adhere to these guidelines, you can easily experience a relaxing holiday in Miami and no longer have to fear crime than anywhere else.

Tickets for attractions and activities

Getyourguide and Tripadvisor are great ways to find out more about Miami tourist destinations. With Getyourguide you can also book guided tours and tours according to your travel preferences in the city in South Florida. Or you can present one of your loved ones with a voucher.

Cultural sights in Miami

When you think of Miami, you first think of sun, sand and the television series Miami Vice. And for an understandable reason. In addition to sun and sea, don't forget the cultural sights in the city, such as the museums for young and old, which are absolutely worth seeing.

Must-see museums in Miami

  • Vizcaya Museum and Gardens: The museum displays antique carpets and furniture, paintings and decorative objects. The mansion was James Deering's winter residence from 1926 to 1925.
  • Pérez Art Museum Miami: The first museum on the square is the "Pérez Art Museum Miami". The exhibitions focus on the different cultures and geographical conditions here at the intersection of North and South America. In addition to art, there is also a hanging garden to marvel at.
  • Wolfsonian: The Wolfsonian is affiliated with the Smithsonian Institute and exhibits nearly 180,000 works of art from around the world from the late 19th century to the end of World War II.
  • ICA: The "ICA" shows local and undervalued artists and supports experimental and intellectual exchange, also on an international level. So there is always something new to see here.
  • The bass: "The Bass" in Collins Park is dedicated to modern art and recently acquired two major works of art for the existing exhibition: "Miami Mountain" by Udo Rondinone and "Eternity Now" by Sylvie Fleury, which adorns the museum facade.
  • History Miami: The "HistoryMiami" is one of the largest regional history museums and also part of the Smithsonian Institute. More than 37,000 exhibits date back to pre-Columbian times. Tourist and technological developments in South Florida are additional topics.
  • Lock & Load Miami: A museum where everything revolves around submachine guns and where you can even fire shots with fully automatic firearms? Lock & Load Miami offers all this and more. Numerous historical objects are on display in the free museum.

Miami for nature lovers

  • Miami-Dade Zoological Park and Gardens: The "Miami-Dade Zoological Park and Gardens" is the largest and oldest zoo in Florida. Over 3000 animals live there. Many plants can also be admired here on three square kilometers.
  • Flamingo Gardens: The "Flamingo Gardens" are not only a botanical garden for more than 3000 species of rare, exotic plants, but also a reception center for wild animals that cannot be released into the wild due to injuries. Alligators, bears, eagles, otters and panthers are some of the animals that can be seen here.
  • Everglades Outpost: The "Everglades Outpost" has a similar motif. Here, too, animals from poor husbandry are nursed and either released into the wild (if possible) or cared for until their end of life.
  • Oleta River State Park: In the north of Miami is the Oleta River State Park. Here you can have fun outdoors on foot, by mountain bike or on the waterways.

Miami's cultural offerings

Miami also has a lot to offer culture lovers. The “Arsht Center”, in which various events are held, should be mentioned in a very classic way. Among other things, the "Knight Concert Hall" and the "Ziff Ballet Opera House" are located here.

But even those who love Cuban culture will certainly get their money's worth in Miami. "Little Havana" west of the city center offers Cuban-inspired food and a suitable atmosphere. There is even a “Walk of Fame” for Latin American artists along the main street.

Miami Beach is also a crucial part of culture. The Art Deco buildings alone are worth a visit. And after a busy day, you can indulge yourself in one of the numerous spas here ...

Wynwood Walls features works by international street artists both indoors and outdoors. What started in 2009 has now grown to be one of the best places in the world to see street art.

Also in Miami Beach is the Miami Beach Holocaust Memorial, which commemorates the extermination of the Jewish population during the Nazi era in Europe. It is located on 1933-1945 Meridian Avenue.

The most beautiful parks in Miami

  • Matheson Hammock Park: Matheson Hammock Park has a man-made beach and a marina. Here you can go cycling, do water sports, explore the park on foot and have a picnic. Visitors can rent kayaks or paddle boats and ride them along the mangroves.
  • Oleta River State Park: The "Oleta River State Park" with several kilometers of route is best suited for cycling. Canoeing is also possible on the river. Nature here is relatively unaffected by human transformation.
  • South Pointe Park: In "South Pointe Park" in South Beach everything revolves around the ocean. In contrast to Oleta Park, nature is very nicely laid out here and you can stroll between well-tended lawns and manicured palm trees. There's a playground, skateboarding space, and a dog park.
  • Barnacle Historic State Park: Miami's oldest house is in the 'Barnacle Historic State Park'. It was built in 1891 and can be visited. At that time the city could only be reached by boat.
  • Margaret Pace Park: The "Margaret Pace Park" excels with an exciting range of sports and various sports fields for basketball and volleyball.
  • Bayfront Park: The "Bayfront Park" is very versatile and perhaps the most famous park in Miami. Located right at the Bayside Marketplace, many activities take place here. These include yoga or rollerblading, but also an annual music festival.

Miami for kids

Are you visiting the city in the Sunshine State of Florida with children? Then, in addition to the zoo and the beach, you should definitely visit these two museums while on holiday.

  • Frost Science Museum: The "Frost Science Museum" in Downtown Miami has many interactive exhibits and is therefore ideal for visiting a museum with children on vacation. Attractions include a planetarium and an aquarium with marine life. The "Frost Science Museum" is part of the Museum Park.
  • Children's Museum: In the "Children's Museum" between Miami and Miami Beach there are countless activities for the little ones among the museum visitors. There is a special focus on communication, community and creativity. A nine-meter-high climbing wall, a cruise ship and a two-story sand castle complete the museum and make it a really successful destination for families with children.

Cuban joie de vivre in Little Havana

If you want to experience the unique atmosphere of Miami as originally as possible, you should definitely visit Little Havana during the trip. The inhabitants of Little Havana, who mostly have their roots in Cuba, maintain their culture there, which makes a visit an absolute experience. Because the influences of the Cuban heritage can be felt everywhere.

The most famous street in Little Havana is by far the Calle Ocho. Along the street and generally between SW 12th and 16th on Calle Ocho are many shops in Little Havana where you can buy cigars.The most popular shops and great for buying handmade cigars are the “Little Havana Cigar Factory & Lounge”, the “El Titan de Bronze” and the “La Tradición Cubana”.

Are you longing for Cuban coffee? Then you should definitely pay a visit to the “Versailles” or the “Islas Canarias”.

A great way to get to know the Cuban way of life even better is the Domino Park, where the residents meet on Sundays to indulge in the game of the same name. You can also take great travel photos of the old pictures of the park, which date from the 1970s.

More attractions in Little Havana

  • Tower theater: The cinema is located to the west of Dominos Park and only shows films in the original language. Visitors whose mother tongue is Spanish in particular should get their money's worth here.
  • Calle Ocho Walk of Fame: Walk of Fame? Isn't that in California? That's right, but Florida's Walk of Fame in Miami is dedicated to Cuban artists, who are also honored with a star there.
  • Memorial Boulevard: Memorial Boulevard in Little Havana commemorates the victims of the Bay of Pigs invasion in the 1960s with a flame, the "eternal flame". There is also a bronze map of Cuba, a statue of the Virgin Mary and some monuments by José Martí and Antonio Maceo.
  • Ceiba tree: For the Santería, the Ceiba is a sacred tree. It is the main syncretic African American religion in Cuba. You can find out more about this in the Botánicas shops. The perfect place to have the future predicted.
  • Bay of Pigs Museum: The free museum is dedicated to the failed 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion.

Historic Overtown - on the trail of African American history

Historic Overtown is one of the oldest African American neighborhoods in Florida and is located to the west of downtown Miami. The founding of the neighborhood at the time was a direct result of the Jim Crow Acts, which put racial segregation into practice. Over time, Historic Overtown developed into a center for the African American cultural scene, music and business.

In the 1950s in particular, the district was known for its top-class nightlife and the vibrant spirit that characterized the district can still be felt everywhere today. The unique art and culture scene, excellent soul food and some sights make the district west of the city center an absolute experience.

Some attractions in Historic Overtown

  • Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum: The police station with attached prison and court is the first and only facility of its kind that was run exclusively by African-American police officers. Today you can take part in guided tours by former security guards.
  • Lyric theater: The entertainment center in the district to the west of the city center has existed for over 100 years. Celebrities from the Afro-American cultural scene such as Billie Holiday and Cab Calloway once came here.
  • Jackson Soul Food: This venerable restaurant is considered the best soul food restaurant in town and the soul of the district. Be sure to pay a visit to the family restaurant, which opened in 1946, during your stay.

Downtown Miami / Brickell - home of the skyscrapers

Downtown Miami is a cross-section through the city and has a decisive influence on the skyline through the many skyscrapers. Here in downtown you can visit important tourist destinations such as the Port of Miami, attend a game of the Miami Heat in the American Airlines Arena or simply enjoy the unique view of the bay.

Little Haiti - colorful houses and more

Many Haitian immigrants have found homes in the Little Haiti district. The colorful houses, as we know them from the Caribbean, are characteristic of the quarter. Caribbean flair, a lively art scene, pubs and many shops await you there. However, crime is also a big issue there.

People don't earn very much in this place and tourists can quickly become victims. Because of the high crime rate, it is best to visit the district with someone else, avoid visiting after dark and carry valuables on your body.

Tip: The best way to visit the area is by renting a car from Avis or another rental company.

Special attractions in Little Haiti

  • Caribbean Marketplace: The Caribbean Marketplace is a replica of Haiti's famous iron market and an architectural marvel designed by famous architect Charles Pawley.

Activities in Miami

  • shop: Miami is a shopping paradise - without a doubt. “Supply & Advise” in Downtown Miami has small labels. These are only available at high prices, but you can be sure that not too many will wear the same thing. If you stop at "Andrew", you will find everything to do with skateboarding. The shop was named after the hurricane that devastated Miami in 1992. Do you love unusual sneakers and limited editions? Then you should definitely browse through the “Shoe Gallery”. And if you or your children like to do handicrafts, "The Bead Bazaar" is an absolute paradise. Here you can get everything you need to make bracelets, earrings or necklaces.

    In addition to Ocean Drive, Collins Avenue, which runs from South Beach (Sobe) to Fort Lauderdale, is probably one of the most famous streets in the city. Here, too, there are many opportunities to experience the joy of shopping.

    Art galleries, shops, boutiques, antique dealers and much more can be found in the Miami Design District. Among other things, Gucci and Versace shops can be found in this area. A Community Art & Design Night is held in the Design District every other month.

    Over 200 stores are represented in the Dolphin Mall, the largest outlet store in the city. With a bit of luck, you can get a bargain at the best price here. Events are also held regularly at the Dolphin Mall.

    And if you just want to experience luxury once, you should definitely pay a visit to Bal Harbor.

  • Enjoy: Miami does not fail in the area of ​​culinary specialties either. Naturally there are many seafood restaurants here, including a Peruvian variant of Japanese dishes called "Nikkei Cuisine". The "Osaka Corinna Nikkei" serves lots of fresh seafood, sushi rolls and grilled meat that can only be tasted from the Robota grill. Another great place to go is the “Novikov”, which is very expensive, but definitely worth every dollar. A fusion of Chinese and Japanese cuisine may take some getting used to at first, but it works extremely well here in this restaurant. Much cheaper but at least as adventurous is Timon Balloo's cuisine. In his restaurant "Balloo" he creates something new every day and the prices are moderate.
  • nightlife: The nights in Miami are legendary and there are numerous opportunities to indulge in the nightlife while on vacation. The climate helps ensure that you don't cool down here and party until the morning. If you want to explore the city's nightlife, it's best to take Calle Ocho as a starting point and enjoy some there or play bingo with Miss Toto, a drag queen in Miami's most colorful cocktail bar, the Gramps. Then maybe another cocktail on the terrace of the East Hotel in Bricknell. Since Miami has no hills, you have to resort to artificial elevations to get a view. In South Beach you will find the famous clubs "LIV" and "Story", where women don't have to queue for long. For men, however, it can look different. Allow a little more time for these Miami nightlife attractions.

    Other types of entertainment are provided in containers. Micro theater is the art of performing short plays on pop-up stages. You go from stage to stage and have a drink in the courtyards between the attractions. Most of the plays here are performed in Spanish.

    Do you love salsa? Then you will definitely get your money's worth in Miami. Because salsa is simply part of the lifestyle here. South Beach and Little Havana are good neighborhoods if you want to get the hang of it.

  • to do sports: The flat area is ideal for relaxed cycling. Bicycles can be rented from many locations, the best of which is Key Biscayne. 30 golf courses in the Miami area also leave more than enough choice for a game of golf. Sailing and boating are of course also very popular and there are a dime a dozen boat rentals. And if you want, you can visit one of several outdoor gyms in Lummus Park and train there free of charge.

    For the more leisurely tourists, various guided walks are offered. For example the "Art Deco District Walking Tour". Here you are on the move for about 90 minutes and marvel at the buildings in Ocean Drive. The tour departs daily at 10:30 am at the center of the Miami Design Preservation League on the corner of Ocean Drive and 10th Street. The “Little Havana Arts & Culture Walk” is carried out by “HistoryMiami” and starts at 6:00 pm at the “Los Pinareños Fruteria” juice stand, but only once a month.

    And those who prefer to do passive sports can, for example, attend a game of the Miami Heat. Or attend a game of the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium, where the NFL's famous Super Bowl has been played several times. The stadium has a capacity of over 65,000 seats for football games.

  • Enjoy the sun, the water and the sandy beach: Miami is located on the Atlantic Ocean and offers so much more than just an opportunity to enjoy a great beach vacation and go for a swim in the ocean. The island of Key Biscayne is an absolute paradise with streets lined with palm trees and sandy beaches. Here you can also visit an aquarium with marine life, among other things. South Beach, Lummus Park Beach and Mid Beach are also worth a visit.

Tip: If you drive on the Rickerbacker Causeway towards Key Biscayne, you will find a parking lot under the first high bridge, which offers a fantastic view of the Miami skyline, especially at night.

Events throughout the year

There's always something going on in Miami and you shouldn't get bored. The following events are special highlights of the year.

  • South Beach Jazz Festival: The South Beach Jazz Festival takes place in January each year. From traditional to modern to Latin and New Orleans jazz, you get a lot on your ears here. The organizer, David New, suffers from an illness that left him unable to move, blind and deaf and so this festival is especially dedicated to disabled artists.
  • Coconut Grove Arts Festival: 360 artists are selected each year to participate in the Coconut Grove Arts Festival. They come from the fields of painting, photography, jewelry design, sculpture and more. You wander from stand to stand and can also watch life performances. Concerts and food stalls enliven the picture.
  • Miami Carnival: In March there are some festivals related to Mardi Gras. One million visitors are drawn to the various carnival events every year.
  • American Black Film Festival: The American Black Film Festival takes place every June. It is a multi-day film award ceremony at which African-American films and filmmakers are awarded.
  • Aqua girl: The Aqua Girl is a women-only festival that takes place every August. Women from the LBT community have been meeting here for 20 years and celebrating life.
  • Miami International Auto Show: The "Miami International Auto Show" took place for the 48th time in 2019 and lasts 10 days. Antique automobiles are the magnet of this show, which South Florida automobile houses invite to every year.
  • Ultra Music Festival: The Ultra Music Festival can look back on a long history. The main stage with its impressive lighting effects is absolutely legendary.

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