Thursday we stop by the Fresh Market & marine store that are close by as we walk to the Coconut Grove “downtown” area to check out what is there. The Fresh Market has a fabulous selection of items (even better then Whole Foods) & we decide it is a good thing we won’t be here long as we would want to try out just about everything they have to offer. Downtown we find a wide variety of restaurants, boutique shops, and clubs. Enjoy the sites and find a nice place for lunch. Stop at the market on the way back to the boat for a few goodies. Friday we have made plans to tour the city on a bus tour in the morning & a boat tour in the afternoon. We are up & out by 8:15 as we have get a taxi to one of the hotel pick up places since our marina is not one of them even though they drive by it later in the tour. The tour starts in the art deco district of South Beach, and the holiday traffic is already starting as they prepare for a busy weekend by closing off lanes of traffic for pedestrian use. The tour takes us around South Beach to Coconut Grove (right past our marina) to Coral Gables stopping at the Biltmore Hotel & Venetian Pool then on to Little Havana and back to the Bayside Market Place, making a big loop around the city pointing out all kinds of neat things, it was a good way to see a lot of the city in a short time. We catch the afternoon boat ride from the Bayside Market Place & we get to see the city from a different perspective. We see the Miami skyline from the water, very exclusive Fisher Island & “star” island where many “celebrities” have homes. The added commentaries from the boat & bus guides made both fun. The boat tour ends at 4:30 at Bayside Market Place & Miamarina one of the marina’s we thought about staying at, but opted for Dinner Key. We take a walk around the open air mall looking at the shops & restaurants. As we walk past this couple sitting at an outside table having a drink, the man asks about my knee surgery. Turns out his wife just had the surgery done 3 months ago. I am wearing my sailboat pendant necklace (thanks again Elena) so she asks if we are sailors. Turns out so are they, having just sold their house to do some cruising also. We join them for drinks & later a bite to eat exchanging boating stories. They are heading up the east coast but we exchange information in case we happen to be in the same area down the road. Taxi ride back to the marina just in time to watch the beautiful full moon rising. Saturday is spent reading and studying cruising guides and maps to get our plans in order for where we will be going next. After going to the stores on Sunday to provision we will head out on Monday. Catching the south east winds & the Gulf Stream to head over to West End on Grand Bahama Island, checking in with customs at Old Bahama Bay Marina. Then spend June cruising thru the Little Bahamas Bank and the Abacos before heading for a “safe” area for hurricane season.
Link to Pictures