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What to Do in South Beach in November

As another year inches closer to a close, South Beach is coming back to life with plenty of great events lined up for November. This month, we’ve got wine festivals by the dozen, not to mention events celebrating everything from edgy art to the vets, Frisbee to burgers. This is November in South Beach.

burger miami

Seed Food & Wine Festival

The Seed Food & Wine Festival asks the question: what if a food and wine festival went vegetarian? Hosted by Whole Foods, this event seeks to promote plant-based eating and animal welfare. The festival runs from November 1-5. More information here.

 

Miami Live Month

From November 1-30, Miami Live Arts Month will see special events popping up across the city. There’s everything from live comedy acts to dance, concerts, poetry and more. There’s also special deals on restaurants and hotels. Find out more here.

 

Burgerliscious

Head over to Ponce Circle Park on November 2 for this celebration of the classic beer and burger. It’s delicious and good value. More details here.

 

Doral Food & Wine Festival

The Doral Food & Wine Festival is returning once again this year. From November 4-5, Doral Central Park will be overflowing with wines from across the world. Plus, there’s food, live entertainment and cooking demos. Pretty much everything you need for a fun weekend out, right? More information can be found here.

 

South Miami Art Festival

More than 100 artists from across the world will be putting their work on show over two days, from November 4 to5. Admission is free, and the event is set to take place along Sunset Drive between U.S. Highway 1 and SW 57th Avenue. More details here.

 

Veterans Day Parade

Honor the vets on November 11 with this year’s Veterans Day Parade. The event will take place on Washington Avenue, with more information available here.

 

Ultimate Beach Frisbee

If you’re a fan of ultimate Frisbee, you can’t miss this one. Over 1000 players are expected to turn out this year for Miami’s biggest celebration of the humble Frisbee. Events will be taking place over November 11 and 12. Find out more here.

 

Miami Book Fair International

The more than three decade old book fair is returning this year, from November 12 to 19. Find some of the best of new literature, with both local and international writers set to attend. More details can be found at the official website.

 

NASCAR Ford Championship

The biggest event of the month, it’s time to get revved up for the NASCAR Ford Championship. The action starts on November 17 and continues through to 19. It should be a blast, find out more here.

 

Sunny Isles Beach Jazz Fest

If you’re looking for a touch of class to go with your race cars and burgers, why not pop over to the Sunny Isles Beach Jazz Fest on November 18? Dozens of acts are lined up to impress audiences in their mellow outdoor performance area. More information here.

The Best Parks in and Near Miami Beach

Miami is a city that loves being outdoors, and there’s no better way to experience it without visiting a few parks. Ranging from hidden garden hideaways to marine parks for the adventurous, these are some of the best parks around Miami.

best  parks miami

Pinecrest Gardens

This pristine little enclave of greenery is basically a ticket to a tropical paradise. Explore the landscaped grounds lush with Caribbean vegetation, and get lost in this self contained world.

 

Matheson Hammock Park

Locals complain of how this place is always full, but there’s a reason why it can be hard to get in: because Matheson Hammock Park is awesome. Admission is around $5-6 per vehicle, which gets you access to the beach, including an artificial atoll pool. Expect crowds on weekends.

 

Fruit and Spice Park

Little known even among locals, Fruit and Spice is one of Miami’s best botanical parks. Spread over 37 acres, they have hundreds of intriguing species, plus a rather pretty orchard of mango trees.

 

Bill Sadowski Park

A birdwatcher’s paradise, the Bill Sadowski Park is the perfect spot to catch sight of any number of exotic tropical birds. The park organizes its own birdwatching tours, and stargazing events are also available.

 

Crandon Park

Easily one of the most picturesque beaches in Miami, Crandon Park’s white sands are easy to fall in love with. The shallow waters aren’t so great for swimming, but the beach holds its own as a classic spot for a weekend barbecue.

 

Oleta River State Recreation Area

Florida’s largest urban park is great for getting out of the hustle and bustle of the city. There’s endless bike trails, and waterways perfect for kayaking. It’s also a great place to camp, with enough space to make you feel further from the city than you really are.

 

Biscayne National Underwater Park

So this park isn’t quite like the others. For one, 95 percent of the park is underwater, so you’ll need to plan this one a bit. Your best option is a guided boat tour, which takes visitors

 

David T. Kennedy Park

Some people say this is the best park anywhere in Miami, though admittedly there’s been some pretty close contenders. Either way, it’s clear David T. Kennedy Park is one of the best spots in the city for an outing, with plenty of great community facilities on hand. There’s a good exercise course and an even better bike trail. On top of this, there’s a dog park, and even free yoga on weekends. So grab a frozen lemonade from A.C.’s Icees, and explore all the little nooks and crannies of this excellent park.

 

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

Another aquatic park, the John Pennekamp Coral Reef is a far cry from the humble urban playground. A visit here usually revolves around a dive down to the 4,000-pound statue of Jesus. It’s approximately 25 feet down, and a favorite for local scuba diving aficionados. If you’re not quite up for a dive, consider taking one of the glass-bottomed boat tours.

Hurricane Irma: How did it affect South Beach?

Hurricane Irma’s trail of destruction through the Caribbean left over 100 people dead, and devastated the region for years to come. It was also the worst Atlantic storm to hit the US in over a decade, bringing back bitter memories of Katrina. Across Florida, the hurricane inflicted an estimated $83 billion in damage, according to an estimate from Moody’s. Over 10,000 homes across Miami-Dade were left without power, and the entire community was in shock.

irma south beach

South Beach was no exception; while being spared of the worst the storm had to offer, the community is still reeling from the disaster. Businesses have been damaged, tourism numbers temporarily slumped, and the environment has been battered.

 

The first casualty in South Beach was the shoreline, which lost much of its sand to erosion during the storm. The recently completed $11.5 million beach widening project on 53rd Street is now barely a distant memory, with the shoreline now noticeably thinner. In some places, the storm threw sand against beach-side condos and hotels, leaving the beach narrow and uneven. Nonetheless, experts say the situation could have been significantly worse if the beach widening project had never been carried out.

 

“It did its job to prevent further erosion on upland properties,” the beach’s environmental director Margarita Wells told the Miami Herald.

 

Luckily, South Beach’s infrastructure went largely unscathed – at least compared to other regions hit by the hurricane. The trees that fell during the storm have already been cleared, and businesses that suffered minor damage are getting back to work. However, a number of local icons were damaged. Epicure Market is indefinitely closed, while both the River Yacht Club and beloved Dashi were still shuttered at the time of writing. A spokesperson from the yacht club said their main building had been deemed unsafe after being damaged by the storm, and part of their seawall had fallen. Meanwhile, one of the most visually disturbing incidents took place at the site of the former Ireland’s Inn, where a crane collapsed. Over at the Stonybrook Apartments complex, a roof reportedly collapsed, forcing residents to evacuate.

 

Despite the damage, South Beach is resilient, and will bounce back. In fact, within days of the storm passing, restaurants were already re-opening and tourists were being encouraged to return. After all, South Beach and the rest of Miami is heavily dependent on tourism, and everyone is pulling out all the stops to keep the industry alive and well. In 2016, tourists brought $25 billion into Miami’s economy, with around 70 percent of that being attributed to international visitors.

 

To encourage visitors to return, the tourism bureau has launched the #MiamiNow campaign, which aims to showcase the best of Florida. Businesses are offering special deals to visitors, including bargains on hotels and resorts. Meanwhile, business owners are doing everything they can to get back to normal.

 

“You don’t go into a battle thinking you’re not going to get it,” Mango’s Tropical Cafe proprietor David Wallack recently told ABC News. His cafe has already reopened, and others like it are quickly getting back on their feet. So even after the worst of disasters, South Beach isn’t giving up.