By Theresa Russell
South Beach Spin
Arriving a day prior to our cruise departure from Miami, we had chosen to stay at the Marriott Biscayne Bay. We knew that it was convenient to the cruise terminal, but also knew that there was a nice walking path right behind the hotel. Imagine our surprise when we found that we would also be able to explore the area by bicycle via the bicycle sharing program in South Beach.
Like many similar programs in the USA and around the world, DecoBike has several bicycle stations located throughout its large operating area, in this case, South Beach. Since our hotel was conveniently located near a public bus station, we hopped on the bus and headed over to South Beach and chose our bicycles. The bicycles are cruiser-style models customized specifically for the DecoBike program.
A real advantage of this program is that it’s possible to pick up a bike at one station and leave it at another, making it easy to stop for lunch, enjoy the beach or visit the local attractions. For us, it offered a great way to tour South Beach in the short time that we had and to get some exercise. We especially liked the idea of exploring South Beach under our own power and also liked the fact that the bicycle stations use solar power as their source of energy. Now, we would use our own pedal power to enjoy the sunny skies and ocean breezes.
Art Deco Delights
South Beach boasts a multitude of buildings representing Art Deco architecture along with pleasant streets for cycling. The best place to see examples of Art Deco architecture is in the Art Deco district itself, which is roughly east of Alton Rd, between Dade and 6th St. The clean lines and geometric details of these interesting structures deserve closer inspection on foot. With so many bicycle stations located in the area, it’s easy to return the bicycle, do some exploration and find another bicycle at a different station.
The grid pattern layout of the area is easy to navigate so we pedaled around randomly choosing our route and turning where we wanted, heading in any direction that grabbed our fancy. After all, the area is so compact; it’s just about impossible to get lost.
We cycled to the south of the island with our camera and sunscreen safely secured in the handlebar basket attached to the bicycle. Reaching the end of the island, we walked around South Pointe Park where we had open views of the expansive ocean as well as Fisher Island just across the way.
Totally engrossed in our cycling exploration of South Beach, we lost track of time and ended our tour without seeing everything that was on our list. We never had a chance to visit the beach. At least we did take advantage of one of the many restaurants available on the island. The next time that we go to Miami for a cruise, we will allow more time for cruising around South Beach on a bicycle.
About Theresa Russell
Claiming her lust for travel began on her first journey through the birth canal, Theresa is genetically programmed to travel and to have fun doing it. She especially enjoys adventure and experiential travel and always finds something at a destination to write home about.