Florida's largest metropolitan area is a frequent stop on rented RV excursions across the southeastern most part of the United States. There are no shortage of RV parks around Miami, thanks in large part to the tremendous number of 'snowbirds' who flee northern North America's winters for Florida's far milder climate every year. The posh Coconut Grove neighbourhood is located south of Miami's historic downtown area, which features the majority of the city's museums and green spaces. Little Havana and Little Haiti can be found north of central Miami.
Miami Beach, perhaps South Florida's most famous beach party destination, is actually a separate barrier island and independent city linked to Miami proper by a series of bridges. A half hour RV drive north of Miami leads to the Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport and its neighbouring John Lloyd Beach State Recreation Area, home to several endangered manatees, tropical birds, and sea turtles. An hour's drive west of Miami takes visitors to another unique ecosystem, Miami Everglades National Park, with its wild alligators. The Florida Keys, two hours south of Miami, feature an active dolphin research centre where visitors can swim with the friendly mammals.
The majority of the Miami area's most famous beaches are actually located in neighbouring Miami Beach, but Miami itself also has much to offer. Coral Gables is best known for its public Venetian Pool created from coral rock, University of Miami campus, and Miracle Mile shopping district filled with unusual boutiques and coffee shops. The Coral Castle is another unique coral structure built by one man over a 20-year period.
When the Miami-Dade Zoological Park and Gardens first opened in 1948, it contained just half a dozen animals. Today, Zoo Miami boasts about 1,200 animals and a monorail which travels through the four main areas of Florida's oldest and biggest zoo. Animal lovers of all ages may also enjoy the colourful birds and friendly primates beneath Jungle Island's shaded pathways.
The small island of Key Biscayne, south of Miami, has the former coconut plantation turned Crandon Park on its north end and Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park on its south end. The Cape Florida Lighthouse, south Florida's oldest structure, has guarded the Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park for nearly two centuries. Another former coconut plantation is now the Matheson Hammock Park and Beach, a popular Coral Gables beach park with an artificial lagoon.
Driving south from Miami to Homestead will lead to the Biscayne National Park, most of which is underwater and best explored during a three-hour reef cruise aboard a glass-bottomed boat.
One of Florida's most peaceful RV parks is Goldcoaster RV Resort, located within easy driving distance of the Everglades, Miami, and the Florida Keys in Homestead.
Palm, mango, and avocado trees grow around the RV park at Miami Everglades Resort between Key Largo and Miami. NASCAR fans will especially enjoy the close proximity to the Homestead Speedway.
Visitors can dance poolside, swim in a large heaated pool, and play shuffleboard or petanque at Paradise Island RV Resort, located north of Fort Lauderdale in the centrally located Oakland Park area.
Interstates 95 and 75 both end in Miami, while US Highway 1 is the major route south into the Florida Keys. Flagler Street and Miami Avenue are Miami's two busiest roads. The roads leading to Everglades National Park, on the other hand, can be fairly isolated. Driving under the influence (80 mg/dL) is strictly prohibited on all Florida roads.
- Speed limits in the city: 50kph.
- Speed limits on national roads: 90 to 110kph.
- Help number: 9-1-1