Miami is one of our most popular locations for travel nurse assignments, so odds are you’ve either taken one there already or are considering it now. When it comes to beautiful weather, gorgeous beaches, a lively culture and plenty to do and see, you can’t go wrong in the Magic City. During winter, Miami is one of the only cities in the country that stays consistently warm and sunny, making it the perfect place for travel nurses looking to escape the winter blues. But the fun doesn’t stop during the warmer months, and because peak tourist season ends in April, you’ll enjoy lighter traffic, shorter lines and more room to salsa on the dancefloor at some of the city’s hottest nightclubs during summer. Here is our guide for travel nurses wondering what to eat, drink, do and Instagram while on a travel assignment in Miami.
At some point during your travel nurse assignment in Miami, you’re bound to end up in South Beach. While you’re there, whether it’s to shop on Lincoln Road, attend a music concert at the Fillmore Miami Beach, or enjoy the sun, sand and turquoise water on the actual beach, you’ll probably want something quick, simple and consistently delicious to eat. La Sandwicherie, which has been a local favorite since 1988, is your spot! It’s super casual, with only a few barstool type seats and counter service, making it ideal to grab a couple sandwiches and go. And these aren’t just any sandwiches. They use fresh, crispy baguettes or croissants piled high with your choice of meats and vegetables and topped with their infamous vinaigrette for a taste that will instantly transport your taste buds to the streets of Paris.
Cuban culture is the heartbeat of Miami, from the language, music and dancing, to the architecture, coffee and of course, the food. Travel nurses on assignment in Miami will definitely want to indulge in a Cuban meal or several while there. The city offers plenty of excellent Cuban restaurants to choose from, whether you’re in the mood for something as casual as a food truck or prefer a five-star dining experience. Versailles Restaurant is an excellent choice to sample a wide range of traditional Cuban specialties. This iconic restaurant located in Miami’s Little Havana district has been a local favorite of Cuban exiles since 1971. From fried tostones and banana soup to medianoche sandwiches, picadillo, roast pork, yellow rice and black beans, you are sure to leave with both your belly and your wallet being fully satisfied.
When you think of Miami, fresh, juicy, tropical fruits are probably some of the first images that come to mind. And there’s no better place in Miami to feast on all things tropical fruit than South Florida’s infamous fruit stand Robert is Here. The establishment’s Homestead location makes it an ideal stop on the way to a number of southern Miami-area attractions, including Florida Everglades National Park and the Florida Keys. People travel far and wide for their fresh fruit milkshakes and smoothies, handmade with coconut, guava, dragon fruit, key limes, lychee, mango, mamey, papaya, passionfruit and sugar cane. However, they also sell a number of fresh fruit food items, including jellies, fruit butters, chutneys, hot sauces, marinades and more made with local ingredients, and feature a small petting zoo loved by kids and adults alike.
Cuban coffee is a staple in Miami, and you can find the ever popular cortaditos, cafecitos and café con leches throughout the city in corner shops, cafes, bookstores and restaurants. If you’re looking for more of a traditional coffee roaster – that also serves Cuban specialties – you’ll want to visit local favorite Panther Coffee. Founded by a husband a wife team with more than 30 years of combined coffee industry experience, they roast their own beans and have locations in many of the city’s most popular areas, including their Little Haiti headquarters, Wynwood, Miami Beach, and Coconut Grove. The Wynwood location is the perfect spot to relax with an excellent cup of coffee while you discuss the area’s spellbinding and world-famous street art.
Travel nurses on assignment in Miami will definitely want to make at least one trip to Everglades National Park, which provides an up close and personal look at one of the most incredible ecosystems in the world. Although the park has several entrances, Shark Valley offers an experience you are unlikely to find anywhere else on earth: bike riding alongside – no, not sharks -- but alligators! What could be more Florida than that? Bring your own bike or rent one there and follow the 15-mile paved road deep into the Florida Everglades, where you will see a variety of native and migratory birds, turtles and yes, alligators. In fact, on sunny days, you’re likely to see dozens of the toothy creatures peacefully warming themselves on the banks alongside the bike trail.
The sign greeting visitors at the entrance pretty much sums it up: you will be seeing an unusual accomplishment. This museum is shrouded in mystery, but the story goes something like this: a man named Edward Leedskalnin fell in love with a woman who didn’t love him back, so he spent the next 28 years secretly carving a castle out of coral using a variety of hand tools that are still on display at this unique, mind-bending local attraction. He single-handedly carved more than 1,100 tons of coral rock, and his work includes a 9-ton gate that moves with the touch of a finger and a variety of other sculptures that will leave you feeling both mesmerized and perplexed. Definitely opt for the guided tour, which fully explains just how magical the Coral Castle really is.
Street art has exploded in popularity in recent years, and Miami’s Wynwood district is an internationally renowned hot spot. Graffiti, stamped and stenciled words and drawings, and intricately painted murals that drape entire buildings cover nearly every square inch of this hip neighborhood. Plan to spend a long afternoon or even an entire day here, browsing avant-garde creations at pop-up art galleries, tasting a wide variety of delicious food and drinks at numerous bars and restaurants, and enjoying some of the most fascinating people-watching the Miami area has to offer. And of course, take a stroll through Wynwood Walls, an extremely photogenic, outdoor urban art gallery featuring a rotating display of wall-sized murals created by acclaimed street artists from around the world.
The former winter home of agriculture industrialist James Deering, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is now a National Historic Landmark and an excellent place to spend an afternoon photographing the property’s opulent décor and breathtakingly landscaped grounds. This century-old mansion is situated directly on Miami’s Biscayne Bay, and features a vast array of antique furniture, paneling and architectural elements such as gates, fountains and fireplaces. Thirty-four decorated interior rooms showcase more than 2,500 art objects and furnishings, and the outdoor gardens feature 400-year-old trees, more than 2,000 orchid specimens and geometrically arranged hedges reminiscent of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century France and Italy.
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