[City] Neighborhood Overview Page


Overview of Miami Neighborhoods

Miami is booming. High rises are showing up overnight. Art Deco buildings are undergoing makeovers. Public transportation is improving. It is a sprawling city with a surprisingly variety of neighborhoods, each with a specific culture. Hop in your car and explore the great places Miami has to offer, just be aware of the neglected gaps in between each neighborhood. Try to steer clear of
Overtown and Liberty City for the time being.
Miami Beach: Miami Beach is a general term for the entire island, comprising of many neighborhoods, including South Beach. North of 23rd Street until around 60th Street is called Miami Beach, home to fancy hotels and members-only clubs. Above 60th Street until around 90th Street is North Beach, a great, local neighborhood nicknamed Little Argentina. Cross west over 79th street to find yet another surprise neighborhood called Normandy Isles, with funky restaurants, golf courses, parks, and sweeping bay views. Continue north on Collins Avenue to find very upscale and luxurious living, dining, and entertainment options starting with the Bal Harbour Shops on 97th street, reaching Sunny Isles Beach around the mid 100's and ending with Aventura at the top of the island.
South Beach: A visit to Miami requires a visit to South Beach. Eclectic, energetic, colorful, and international, South Beach has it all. From Downtown, take the MacArthur Causeway over the bay onto 5th Street. To the right is SoFi, South Beach's lovely Euro-style neighborhood. At the tip is South Pointe Park, a must-see green space and marina. To the left of 5th street is everything that SoBe is famous for: Ocean Drive, Lincoln Road, nightclubs, drag shows, and neon signs. Straight ahead is the beach. Find a mixture of tourists and locals, old and young, from every corner of the globe. South Beach ranges from South Pointe Park until 23rd Street.
Downtown/Brickell: Downtown is exactly what you'd expect: urban, gritty, and on the rise. Overall a safe place to wander, be privy to any sketchy areas as you approach NE 5th Street. Separated by the river from Brickell's more polished, shiny, business-like atmosphere, downtown Miami's current affordability is drawing investors and city dwellers. Flagler Street is great for a cheap and easy lunch and light shopping. Bayfront Park offers free outdoor yoga classes and musical concerts. The beloved Miami Heat play here for thousands of fans at the American Airlines Arena. Bayside Marina is filled to the brim with shops and bars. Hop over to Brickell for happy hour in Mary Brickell Village, located around S Miami Avenue and SE 10th Street.
Midtown/Edgewater: Swanky. Restaurants offer cuisines from all over the globe, including Chinese, which is a rare find in Southern Florida. Shopping and open parks make up this neighborhood shadowed by high rise condominiums. NE 34th Street between NE 2nd and North Miami Avenues.
Wynwood: Artsy and hipster, Wynwood is a local favorite. Artists inhabit the many warehouses found in this area south of Design District, and to the east of I-95, its center falling around NW 26th Street and NW 2nd Avenue. Come on the second Saturday of the month to peruse open art galleries and sip free wine. Murals abound, and outdoor beer garden-style restaurants and bars with are popping up everywhere. Late night draws a younger, beer-drinking crowd.
Design District: Luxury home furnishings and high-end retailers such as Prada line the Design District's main intersecting drags, NE 2nd Ave and NE 40th Street. Infused throughout are art galleries, impressive event spaces, and some of the best and priciest restaurants Miami has to offer.
Little Havana: Little Havana is a staple of Miami's Cuban culture. Its most famous street, Calle Ocho, stretches from SW 12th to 16th Avenues, and is peppered with Cuban restaurants, fruit stands, odds 'n ends shops, and cigar stores. Reminiscent of Havana's neighborhoods, don't miss a glimpse of Domino Park, where you can watch old-timers challenge one another to endless domino matches over cafecitos and cigars.
Coral Gables: Originally a small, colorful and banyan-tree lined suburb of Miami, Coral Gables is a city in its own right. Businesses, theaters, and galleries have all set up shop here. Historical sites like the luxurious Venetian Pool, the grand Biltmore Hotel, and the charming 1920's Merrick House can be enjoyed today. Majestic mansions of the rich and famous can be admired by bicycle. For upscale shopping, meander the Miracle Mile, a half-mile street of shops and restaurants that runs from SW 37th to 42nd Avenues.
Coconut Grove: Surrounded by lush gardens and tropical vegetation, Coconut Grove, or simply, the Grove, is a vibrant neighborhood with lots of shopping and quaint restaurants. The many bars sprinkled throughout bring in a college-age crowd on the weekends. The Grove's hub, CocoWalk, is located at the intersection of Main Highway, McFarland Road, and Grand Avenue. For an alternative to shopping, stroll the Vizcaya Mansion and Gardens.

Bethany Platanella is a freelance writer, yoga instructor and obsessive traveler based in Miami Beach.