Getting to Miami
Miami International Airport (MIA, 4200 NW 21st St., 305/876-7000, www.miami-airport.com) is continually duking it out with Orlando International for the title of Florida’s busiest airport, but without a doubt MIA is by far the more international of the two. The airport is not only served by multiple daily flights by all major low-cost and cut-rate American carriers—including dozens of direct flights from around the country—but is also the primary point of entry for travelers entering the United States from South America and the Caribbean, making it the third-busiest international gateway after LAX and JFK.
The airport, a hub for American Airlines, is located only about eight miles from downtown Miami. Taxis ($32 flat rate for 1–5 people to South Beach, $37 flat rate for 1–5 people to North Miami Beach, $21.70 flat rate for 1–5 people to downtown, Coral Gables, and Coconut Grove) and shuttles are available (from $14 per person to hotels) in the ground transportation area.
Despite the proximity and the wide availability of service, many travelers have begun using Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood International Airport (FLL, 320 Terminal Dr., Ft. Lauderdale, 866/435-9355, www.broward.org/airport) instead; although it’s almost an hour away from downtown Miami, FLL has carved out a niche catering to low-cost carriers and is far easier to navigate than the labyrinthine and somewhat outdated facilities at MIA. Taxis can run upwards of $75 to Miami, but shuttle services are available in the ground transportation area from around $40.
I-95 and Florida’s Turnpike both terminate in the Miami area. I-75 crosses the state from the west coast of Florida about an hour north of Miami. Miami is approximately 30 miles south of Fort Lauderdale, 165 miles northeast of Key West, 225 miles south of Orlando, and 275 miles southwest of Tampa.
Miami is the southern terminus for Amtrak’s Silver Star and Palmetto services, with a station at 8303 NW 37th Avenue.
The Miami Greyhound station (4111 NW 27th St.) is open 24 hours.
© Jason Ferguson from Moon Florida, 1st Edition