A Week At The Beach...

If one has never visited South Beach, then there are a few things you need to know to prepare yourself for the beach experience there.  I have compiled a little list that should be helpful.  Some of the things that I will mention are a "given" for any beach trip; others are some things that you just might not have thought of.

1.  Don't go to South Beach without some sort of "base tan"; this is very important for a couple of reasons:
     First, you do NOT want to look like Snow White out there.  Those are the people that have traveled
     from a snowy winter up north and decide that they can get a savage tan in 5 days.  FYI...that is NOT
     possible; you will only find that you have suddenly become the color of a ripe tomato.  Second, you MUST
     look good out there from Day 1...as if you are a local or at least one of those foreigners on the beach who
     appear exotic....blend in; don't stand out.

2.  Don't over pack.  There are also a couple of reasons NOT to do this:  First, it will cost you more at the airport
     if you do not have a way of taking that extra weight out of your bag and putting it somewhere else...to carry on
     the plane (Never understood that; same weight on the same plane...).  Second, you will NEVER wear all of
     those clothes and shoes that you packed.  All you really need are some bathing suits (DO pack more than
     one of those...it's proper beach fashion etiquette!), sandals, sundresses and undies.

3.  Do pack your i-pod.  Whether you are laying out on the beach or taking a nice walk along the water,
     listening to your favorite music while doing so is a MUST.

4.  Do take your "easy reading" material.  What I mean by that is, one should read something light and relaxing
     while on a beach trip; something that makes you laugh and is interesting.  Who wants to be forced to
     concentrate too much while you are enjoying the beach?

5.  Do take PLENTY of sunscreen.  Even if you do have a base tan, one can easily get burned on South Beach.
     It is very tropical; warm temps plus nice breeze equals you not knowing how much sun you are actually
     getting until you get out of the shower.  I suggest at least a 30 SPF as the minimum.  Add a big bottle of
     moisturizer to your bag too.
6.  Unless you want to lay on a towel on the sand all day long, be sure to bring money for a chaise lounge.  It
      is definitely worth the 10 bucks they charge.  They have thick cushions on them with a fresh terry cloth slip
      cover and towel.  Umbrellas can be rented too.  It's a nice place for an afternoon nap on the beach. 

7.  Want to eat or drink on the beach?...No problem!  Little menus are attached to your chaise lounge chairs and
      waiters will take your order and bring it back to you...no need for you to ever have to miss catching any of
      those rays!  P.S....Although you will be tempted to drink those cute little drinks with catchy names, order
      a large bottle of water to sip on all day.  Believe me, those little drinks are pretty pricey AND they will
      NOT be very cute if you indulge in more than one at the end of the day.

8.  Now, for those who did not know...South Beach is a topless beach; be prepared.  That is not to say that
     everyone is topless or even the majority of women.  However, there ARE some...and often times it is
     not a very pretty sight.  Lots of thongs (both women and men) can also be found.  And these two things
    have reminded me of  one certain truth...MOST people DON'T look as good as they think they do in those
    outfits. ( NOTE TO SELF...Keep it classy as I grow older.  Bikinis are OK...the other, not so much.)  I'm
    mentioning this to you not only for your own benefit, but also because parents with children need to know
    this and be aware of it.

9.  The shopping and dining is a fabulous experience in South Beach and just a short walk away.  For most
     visitors, Lincoln Road is "The" place to be when one leaves the sand and sun for the day.  Outdoor bistros
     can be found all the way down the center of Lincoln Road...and I just LOVE dining outside!  On either side
     of the street are shops that ANY shopaholic would ADORE!

10. Get "unplugged" for the week.  This past week was great not only because I was in the sand in sun all day
      and then spent my evening dining outdoors with the tropical breeze kissing my newly tanned skin.  It was
      nice because we just got "unplugged" for 5 days.  NO television!  Have you ever tried that?  It is pretty
      enjoyable not to have it playing all the time...another tip for total relaxation!

Now that I have offered you a few tips for a "Week at the Beach", perhaps they will tempt you to start planning your own beach trip.  And if the tips were not not enough, I have added a few pictures below that just might entice you to get to your beach of choice a little quicker!

This is the entry way to the pool at our hotel:  The Loews Miami


Pool at The Loews Miami


South Beach, Miami


Beware!  These little creatures know when it's lunch time and would like you to share with them.


Parasailing anyone?


Grab a chaise lounge, umbrella and good book!


Drinks, anyone?


Lovely little church on Lincoln Road


Ahhh...There's NOTHING like having the sun on your face and the sand between your toes!
   

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