DOING M.I.A

 DO: Wear light, chíc & comfortable clothing.

            Along with it's beautiful beaches and endless bars and club scenes, Miami is full of hot and humid weather 24/7. Ensure to bring along plenty of colorful bikinis, but don’t overpack by bringing heavy clothing that will only leave you damp and sweaty! 

Instead, opt for bright rompers, shorts, and light tanks. Take this same approach with your make-up. Don’t overload with two-three layers of foundation! Instead opt for a light spritz to refresh your face, apply a bronzer with SPF and get going! Miami is a place to live in the moment, and to take in all that’s there. You want to ensure you look refreshed, relaxed and phenomenal. Embrace your natural beauty, remove the baggage and get ready for all that Miami has to offer.

 

DON’T: Fall for beach hacks and lazy promoters.

             It was our first time in Miami and within hours of landing, we were posted on Miami Beach, bikinis and tanning lotion in tact! As we sat and admired the crystal blue water and the long stretch of sand that encompasses the uberly famous Miami Beach, we were approached by a few interesting individuals.

            Our friend, who was also the *Birthday Girl* and Commander-in-Chief of this vacation, came back from a walk on the boardwalk excited and out of breath: She had just gotten free tickets to an all-inclusive, open bar sunset cruise!

             Ahem.

            Don’t be the victim of Miami Beach scams. Long story short, our too-good to-be-true deal turned out to be just that. Sunset cruise = paddle boat, overloaded with hot and sweaty tourists who looked like they belonged at my father’s golf tournament rather than M.I.A Definitely not the J.Balvin-types we were hoping to bump into. The all-inclusive part simply alluded to short appetizers served buffet-style that had been sitting on the hot deck of the boat for hours. Everything else on this sunset cruise (the word “cruise” is being used lightly here) was for sale and overpriced. Needless to say, we learned our lesson.  After this encounter, we learned from more experienced locals that our occurrence wasn’t uncommon; in fact, we may have been one of the lucky few who didn’t end up paying for a high priced scam from many of Miami Beach’s infamous promoters.

Joanne the Scammer would’ve been disappointed in our naiveté. 

                                                                                                           At least the views on the “cruise” didn’t let us down.  

                                                                                                           At least the views on the “cruise” didn’t let us down.

 

Just like Las Vegas, Miami is overloaded with plenty of people trying to make a quick dollar from overly excited tourists new to the scene. I encourage you to do your research beforehand, scope out happy hours and visit club and bars’ websites to get the scoop on what’s happening. Don’t rely on your neighborhood promoter who will be eager to make a few bucks and leave you and your friends stuck. Instead, take initiative, do a little digging beforehand, and enjoy all that Miami has to offer.

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DO: Visit Wynwood Walls

As we trekked our way from Miami Beach to Collins Ave and explored the night scene, we decided to venture out into a hip neighborhood in Miami: Wynwood.

            Host to Art Deco and Art Basel, Wynwood has become notorious for its hipster scene, fresh graffiti and endless patio side bars. Make sure to take an afternoon to explore Wynwood and visit its murals framed by locals as Wynwood Walls. Take a stroll through the neighborhood and visit the shops all offering plenty of goodies for souvenirs and giving you a peak of a local flavor. The neighborhood screams creativity, and the local art in the area is to die for. Of course, make sure to squeeze in a few selfies in the neighborhood’s overflowing murals and colorful wall pieces.

About writer: Beya J. is a city planner, interested in travel, writing + urban settings. Through her travels, Beya has been able to explore and participate in extensive cultural immersions to learn more about world religions, politics and music.
Instagram: @plump_lips
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