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Archive for the ‘Adventures’ Category

It’s January and snowing. Good news if you’re skiing, not so much if you’re dreaming of warmer climes. Right now, I could definitely be soaking up the heat shimmering off Miami’s South Beach (current temperature 71 degrees). Ok, so that might be a little chilly for sunbathing, but luckily there’s more to do in South Beach than hang out with beautiful people by the water.

Just one block from the beach is Ocean Drive, one of the most happening streets you’ll find anywhere. Lined with chic bars, small eateries, beachwear vendors and souvenir hawkers, it’s a hangout for both casual tourists and the “be seen” crowd — not to mention bikini-sporting sirens, sexy surfers, laid-back Harley dudes, business people, roller bladers, joggers and bicyclists. The eclectic crowd reminds one of Amsterdam or Vegas, but with a small town vibe that makes everyone feel at home.

If you’re into people watching, find a patio perch at one of the bars or cafes that line Ocean Drive. If you’re lucky, you might be visited by the roaming cigar girl who will tempt you with a selection of fine cigars (another reason to love this town!). For dinner, seek a small Cuban diner for authentic local cuisine (your hotel concierge should be able to recommend one).

Speaking of hotels, although Ocean Drive boasts many fine accommodations, if you’re on budget, stay one block over on Collins Avenue (aka, the A1A). Last spring we stayed at the Carlton Hotel, which at $150 plus tax and resort fee, seemed to be a good deal given the location. The rooms were a decent size, the beds were super comfy, and the pool area provided a secluded alternative to the beach. Although the property showed its age, the modern décor made it fun.

To be fair, most of the hotels in South Beach are housed in older buildings, many done in Art Deco style. It’s part of the area’s charm, especially at night when Ocean Drive lights up like a tropical Christmas tree.

In addition to being a destination in itself, South Beach is a short cab ride to the Port of Miami for travelers departing or returning from a cruise. Try to book more than one night’s stay, though, or you may find yourself pining for a longer retreat on a snowy day back home!

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“You’re traveling through another dimension — a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That’s a signpost up ahead: your next stop: the Twilight Zone blogsphere…!” – Rod Serling

Greetings fellow bloggers! If you haven’t guessed by now, this is my first ever  blog entry! I do feel a bit like it’s the Twilight Zone – an unfamiliar place filling me with as much excitement and trepidation as I’ve ever felt traveling. I expect to have just as many adventures, and make even more friends, in this new dimension!

First, an intro…my name is Deb Jennings, and my husband, Sean Roth, and I love to travel. In the past 10 years, we’ve visited more than 40 cities in the US, Europe and Mexico. Only a lack of time has kept us from visiting other coveted spots (New Zealand, Australia, UK, Ireland, South America and Egypt to name a few…). Whenever we travel, we enjoy getting the flavor of the local culture; we’re always seeking off-path adventures (like wandering around Venice for 90 minutes looking for a laundromat, or losing our tour group in Pompeii, or getting eaten alive by mosquitos in Isla Mujeres).

We also enjoy taking photos on our travels, and jotting down stories we can share with people back home. Thus, the creation of our Cafe Press site – eXPress Travel Photos – and this blog. I look forward to sharing tales of our travels in this blog – something we’ve done both online and in person for years (check out the journal of our first trip to Europe in 2002).

I’d also love to hear your comments and stories about places you’ve been and loved (or not!). For now, I’ll bid you adieu. Coming soon…stories about our latest trip, a Caribbean cruise to San Juan, St. Thomas and Grand Turk!

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