Snapshots from South Beach, Miami

South Beach Lifeguard Station

Looking back on a January winter sun holiday in South Beach, Miami. We lucked out with outstanding weather during most of the trip, swapping sub-zero temperatures and grey skies in London for bright sunshine and beautiful beaches. Find out more in this travel snapshots South Beach post.

Travel Snapshots South Beach Miami

South Beach Lifeguard Station

South Beach

Enjoying some time walking along the shore and taking in the bright colours of the South Beach scene…

South Beach

South Beach

South Beach

South Beach Lifeguard Station

Where to Stay in South Beach Miami

Looking for where to stay in South Beach? Hotels along Ocean Drive are ideal for the nightlife, restaurants and beach access, with the busiest area being between 5th Street and 12th Street. For a quieter location still within walking distance of all the action, look for hotels south of 5th Street.

Another great area to stay in South Beach is near Lincoln Road, a pedestrianised road that runs parallel between 16th Street and 17th Street which is lined with shops and restaurants. Several beachfront hotels, such as the Ritz-Carlton and the Royal Palm South Beach (where we stayed) are in this area conveniently located within walking distance of Ocean Drive and Lincoln Road.

James Hotel South Beach

South Beach

Getting Around South Beach

Miami Beach Bike Rental

Renting a car is not necessary (parking is expensive and there’s often traffic) – unless you want to visit other parts of Miami. Most places in South Beach are within walking distance or a short taxi ride away.

South Beach Bike and Roll

I’d recommend renting a scooter or bicycles to move around the area. We rented beach cruisers on a discounted weekly rate from Bike and Roll Miami during our stay in South Beach.

South Beach Bicycles

Sightseeing Cycle Tour South Beach

Towards the end of our trip, we traded the beach cruisers for road bikes so we could go on a sightseeing cycle tour around South Beach and along the scenic Venetian Causeway. The Venetian Causeway crosses through a chain of artificial islands in Biscayne Bay from Miami Beach to the mainland.

South Beach

South Beach

South Beach

Sightseeing Cycle Tour Venetian Causeway

Venetian Causeway

Where to Eat in Miami Beach

We ate at a few cafes on Ocean Drive and Lincoln Road for a simple lunch or dinner, visited a couple of South Beach’s most famous restaurants, had one of our best meals at an unassuming cafeteria-style place and admittedly had some very disappointing dinners from a few highly recommended places which we’ll leave unnamed.

These restaurants in Miami were the highlights of the holiday in South Beach;

Las Olas Café South Beach

644 6th St, Miami Beach, FL 33139

We discovered this place by chance when I searched online where to get the best Cuban sandwich in South Beach. Las Olas Café is a small and cafeteria style restaurant, with a counter of hot food, including roasted chicken and pork and all the sides – fried plantains, steamed vegetables, rice, black beans, etc.

Las Olas Cafe

The Cuban sandwich is grilled and freshly made with ham, roasted pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, mustard and crusty Cuban bread. Las Olas Café roast and slice the pork loin each morning, and you can tell all the ingredients are fresh and well made.

Las Olas Cafe

The roast chicken came with steamed vegetables and fried plantains, which altogether came out to less than $10 when we visited. The roast chicken was delicious and so tender that the meat was just falling off the bone. I would highly recommend lunch at Las Olas Café in South Beach for fantastic value and well made, delicious food. And definitely go for the roast chicken, you won’t be disappointed.

View the menu for Las Olas Café South Beach

Joe’s Stone Crab

11 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139

Joe’s Stone Crab is one of South Beach’s most famous restaurants, considered a local institution, that also ships its famous seafood all across the continental USA. Here are those famous stone crab claws!

Joes Stone Crabs

My husband had the swordfish, while I went with fried shrimp.

Joe's Stone Crab

Joe's Stone Crab

View the menu for Joe’s Stone Crab South Beach

One of our favourite dining experiences was at Versailles Restaurant, about a 15 minute taxi ride away in Little Havana.

Day Trip to Key West

The day before we left, we rented a car to drive down to Key West. It’s a beautiful drive through the Keys and while we didn’t have time to during this vacation, it is worth it to stay there overnight as the drive to Key West takes about 3 1/2 hours.

Florida Keys

We were happy to make a day trip out of it though and enjoyed the gorgeous scenery along the way… and the scrumptious key lime pie at Blue Heaven.

Key Lime Pie

Pin for Later – Travel Snapshots South Beach Miami

Travel Snapshots South Beach

  1. Oh wow it looks amazing we are spending the day i Miami in August I cant wait, your photos are fab x

    1. Thank you! The scenery is beautiful around Miami, I hope you have a great time. Are you stopping by on your way to the Caribbean or somewhere else in Florida?

  2. I absolutely love Miami and your photos are taking me straight back there – I went back with my daughter when she was about 16 months old, so she’s sat on South Beach too and came on a food walking tour of Little Havana with me which was fantastic. Wish I was under those blue skies today! #mondayescapes

    1. Just realised I missed this comment! A food walking tour of Little Havana sounds amazing, I would have loved that! I really enjoyed the Cuban food we had in Miami especially at the Versailles Restaurant.

      1. It was such a great way to see Calle Ocho (and eat!). Definitely recommend it if you’re back there. And lovely to see these sunny photos again on a rainy day for #citytripping

  3. I am literally dribbling at those onion rings – how big are they?? I love this post – Miami is top of my list of USA visits in the next few years and you’ve just basically strengthened that desire. I am bookmarking all your tips and suggestions! Thanks so much for linking up with #MondayEscapes

    1. They were huge! We were expecting thin, crunchy ones but these were pretty good! 😀 Miami is amazing and the drive through the Florida Keys is definitely worth it. Looking forward to the next Monday Escapes, I’m really enjoying reading everyone’s travel posts.

  4. […] Photo by Catch A Single ThoughtPhoto by Piccolo Explorer […]

  5. Love these shots, Cindy!

    1. Thanks Kim!! It was a nice surprise seeing your comment here 🙂 xx

      1. It was such a great way to see Calle Ocho (and eat!). Definitely recommend it if you’re back there. And lovely to see these sunny photos again on a rainy day for #citytripping

  6. Beautiful photos of Miami Beach, Fl. I’ve never been, but I’m hoping to go in the future. I think if I go though I’d wait until winter. I feel like Florida stays hot and humid. :-/

    1. Miami is one of my favorite places and I highly recommend it, I love the vibe there and the great beaches. We took this trip in January when the weather is pleasant – sunny and warm, a little bit cool at nighttime but never overwhelmingly hot or humid like we experienced on a previous trip in the summertime – although I did love swimming in the warm ocean in the summer. Hope you visit Miami and thanks for stopping by!

  7. I want to go to beach now:) #city tripping

  8. What a fantastic trip…the hotel, the gorgeous sunrise, the beach and clearly the food was pretty incredible too. I’ve not been to that part of the states but sounds like a really good option for some winter sun! Thanks for linking to #citytripping

  9. I love your photos – you give a real flavour of South Beach. I’m particularly keen to go to Key West. That lime pie looks amazing! #citytripping

  10. Oh my goodness, your photos are beautiful. I’ve never been to America but they certainly make me want to go! Thanks for sharing 🙂 #citytripping

  11. I love Miami… my daughter is from there and I remember eating such amazing Cuban food while we are there. I can’t wait to be back next week. #citytripping

  12. Miami Beach is one of our favorite places, too! Las Olas came highly recommended, and we were not disappointed; same with Versailles Cafe. Oh, so many awesome places to eat – we would happily go back just for lunch! 🙂 Great pictures – thanks for taking us down memory lane, too!

  13. I love South Beach!! Will have to go back some day. Was there ages ago.

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