I am planning a trip, flying into Miami on july 23rd. Then i have time until the 1st of august, when i will have to be in tuscaloosa, alabama. how many days should i plan i miami? is 2 full days enough? i also want to head down to key west and then maybe go to the everglades half a day (possible from miami?) and then orlando - alabama. i will rent a car, so no worries ;-) thanks for your help
2 full days in Miami is enough to hit the high spots. Go to South Beach, Lincoln Road, Coral gables, Cocoanut Grove, Vizcaya and the Biltmore Hotel, are nice and safe.
The Everglades is Ok ; Lots of high Grass and bugs.
If you have time drive up A1A from Miami beach to Fort Lauderdale ; the boating capital of The USA.
Also farther up A1A Is Palm Beach aka Billionaires Row, beautiful. From there you can get the Florida Turnpike to Orlando(about 3 Hours).
The drive down the keys to Key West is not to miss. Plan on taking a good 1/2 of a day for the drive so you can stop at some of the sites along the way (bahia honda state park, card sound, to name a couple). You can easily kill a day in KW just walking/riding around the island.
Not to steer you away from Ft. Lauderdale, but I would suggest driving US 41 (Tamiami Trail) from the Keys to the west coast of FL. If you do Miami for a couple of days, Ft. Lauderdale is not unique enough to justify a visit, and Tamiami Traill is a nice drive through the everglades.
If you want more nature, consider hitting up one of the rivers north of Tampa, Chassahowitzka River for example.
I found the Jacksonville area particularly pleasing. Going straight from Orlando to Tuscaloosa is a boring drive and if you'd stop in Jacksonville it'd cut down the amount of time in the drive where you'd be doing nothing
The everglades are so underestimated. Absolutely beautiful! If you go to the everglades, go on an airboat ride run by an Indian reservation. They give wonderful tours, and it's a nice little adventure.
For the real beauty, take the Shark Valley Tram tour. Run by the National Park Service, the tram takes you out into the everglades far from civilization for two hours. The tram is open so photo ops are incredible. You will see so many animals and sights. I was incredibly lucky (some might not see it the same way) that a storm rolled in during my trip. Watching the storm creep across the plains, and hit us with such force was breathtaking. You could see lightning hitting the ground miles away. The left as quickly as it came, but I got some amazing pictures. It's a must do for those who love nature.
Bring and apply bug spray heavily though. I wasn't bitten much on the actual tours, but waiting for the tram and the air boat (they had a little everglades zoo, and gator show to watch while you wait) I was sure glad that I had bug spray.