Though memories of places seen and loved are wonderful, sometimes a picture is needed to capture the magic or uniqueness of a place. Mere words just don’t cut it when describing the sunshine state to those who have never visited. So grab your camera and check out these must-photograph locations in lovely, eclectic South Florida.
Virginia Key Beach Park
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this pristine beach and park offers a myriad of photo ops. Originally only accessible by boat, this park was the only Dade County public beach for the “exclusive use of Negroes”. It was closed from 1982 to 2008 and now stands as a beacon of the multicultural harmony present in Miami. Featuring an antique carousel and a large meadow, this park provides a beautiful, natural backdrop for those romantic moments you want to capture.
There are few places that can match the character, textures, and mysticism which makes up the great gardens, exotic flowers and plants of the areas botanical gardens. There are many, however the Miami Beach Botanical Gardens and the Kampong Gardens in Coconut Grove both have free entrances and provide you and your beloved with the atmosphere required for shots that will be wall-worthy.
On Biscayne Bay’s shallow seagrass beds, all that remain of Miami’s 1930′s prohibition era are seven rickety fishing and boat shacks built on stilts in the mudflats, which were used by fishermen, gamblers, and partiers through the decades. Protected by the Stiltsville Trust, these marvelous stilt houses were originally twenty more buildings -since lost to hurricanes. Visitors can boat around these former fishing sheds for a closer view, or view it from the southeastern tip of Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park on Key Biscayne through a camera viewfinder, and take some amazing shots of this bygone era.
If wide expanses of space make up your dream photo album, check out these options:
Miami Design District
Within the Miami Design District exist many historical hotels whose rooftops provide a unique view of Miami from all directions. Take your camera to the top of one of these, and capture a view above Miami you usually only see in magazines. The trick to obtaining access is either by taking a tour with the cultural center (highly recommended)or by sweet talking your way in.
For amazing skyline shots, stop on the MacArthur Causeway (which connects Downtown, Miami, Florida and South Beach, Miami Beach via Biscayne Bay. Of particular interest is the beach side of the causeway, right under the bridge. Here you can capture the magical Miami skyline, beautiful in both day and night. Not for those with panic tendencies, since it is very dusty, dirty and dark.
If the oranges, reds and purples of a dream sunset float your boat, there is plenty of opportunities to catch one at:
- Crandon Park the beach adjacent to the Seaquarium, during the “fall” months, provides the richest hues.
- Cape Florida State Park for the dramatic sunset.
- For those amazing Everglades sunsets, hop on I-75 and head into the middle of Big Cypress.
Photo from VirginiaKeyBeachPark.net