Miami is known for having beautiful beaches and exceptional climate but what many people might not know about Miami is that it has many vibrant and contrasting neighborhoods to explore. From tropical beach and original Art Deco to great parks and historic sites, Miami has it all for everyone.
I feel that Miami and New York City are similar in a way. There are so many neighborhoods to see. Each of the neighborhoods offered completely different scenery from appearance to diverse cultural influences. Since I can’t drive, one of my concerns was the expense of taxis and I didn’t want to miss any opportunity to see Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, or even Little Havana. Well, I came across a perfect solution that allowed me to plan my own perfect Miami sightseeing itinerary.
The Hop on Hop Off bus tour from Gray Line Miami was a terrific way to see the different neighborhoods and sights of Miami. I can get on and off at different locations throughout Miami. The best thing about this bus is that it enables me to create my own itinerary and get off at the stop I find most interesting.
This bus tour covers all the highlights of Miami in two different routes, from City Loop to Beach Loop. I had the 24 Hour Pass with unlimited Hop on, Hop Off privileges (You can choose from the 24, 48 or 72 hour tour packages, each with different pricing). The live tour guides on the bus were enthusiastic and informative. They explain the sights and answer questions from the tourists. That’s something you don’t get from taking a taxi.
There was a stop in front of Fontainebleau Miami Beach which is our hotel. We hopped on the beach loop route bus in front of our hotel and started our tour. The beach loop has daily departures every 30 minutes. We pass by Miami beach, Lincoln Road, and Art Deco Welcome Center. We get off in front of the Art Deco Welcome Center to explore the Art Deco Distract, featuring protected architecture of the 1920s and 1930s. We found many whimsical boutique hotels in their original Art Deco Style on Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue.
After we finished exploring, we caught the bus and headed to Bayside Marketplace where we changed for the city loop bus. The city loop takes us to Downtown Miami, The Vizcaya Musuem, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables and Little Havana. We got off at the iconic Vizcaya Musuem & Garden in Coconut Grove, an Italian Renaissance Villa with world class arts and a beautiful garden. The view there is amazing. It overlooked Miami’s Biscayne Bay, a great inspiration that takes you back to the past before Miami was born.
Afterward we boarded the bus and toured around rest of the city loop, getting off where we wanted to spent more time, then hopping back on to continue our tour. I highly recommend this tour if this is your first visit to Miami. It is excellent value for your money and a fun and leisurely way to see the city. This was a great tour and it made our trip to Miami more memorable.