Photo by simplethrill
Miami’s reputation precedes it. Also known as the "Cruise Capital of the World", the "Capital of Latin America", and “Magic City”, Miami is located on the southeastern tip of the Sunshine State, and is celebrated for both its culture and its commerce. It’s Florida’s hub for finance, media, and international trade, and it’s also a great place to swim any time of the year.
Right now, 6.1 million people live in Miami’s densely populated metropolitan area, making it the seventh most heavily populated area in the United States. Despite its huge population, this city is actually one of America’s smallest major cities in terms of land area.
The shimmering waters of Biscayne Bay beckon from Miami’s east. Here, you may be lucky enough to spot bottlenose dolphins and Florida manatees frolicking amongst the barrier islands that hug the shoreline.
West of Miami are the Everglades. This natural wonder houses a diverse ecological community of sawgrass, marshes, cypress swamps, pine rockland, estuarine mangrove forests, and hardwood hammocks, not to mention an array of endangered and uncommon wildlife. The Everglades are the largest subtropical wetland in America, and its particular ecosystem cannot be found anywhere else on the planet.
Although the Florida Department of Health’s Healthy Beaches program tests water weekly at beach locations, they do not monitor many recreation spots (such as Biscayne Bay). For this reason, Miami Waterkeeper monitors 7 additional sites weekly. Water quality in Miami is also monitored by Surfrider Foundation’s Blue Water Task Force. This volunteer team samples water weekly from 6 public beaches along the coast of Miami-Dade County, which is tested by the Florida Department of Health Florida Healthy Beaches Program.
Miami has a long history of sewage failures that have harmed water quality and ecosystems, and jeopardized beachgoer safety. The Blue Water Task Force was created in part to carry out water testing so that beachgoers can be aware of water quality issues. Biscayne Bay has suffered numerous sewage spills, which have recently shown the value of volunteer citizen science programs such as the Blue Water Task Force in the face of pollution and public health issues.
Other issues that affect Miami’s water are flooding from sea levels rising and extreme weather events due to climate change and the toxins of red tides. Red tide is the name given to algae blooms that have become so numerous that they change the colour of waters on the coast. These blooms are dangerous to both humans and ecosystems. Southwestern Florida has recently been plagued by red tide, which has threatened Biscayne Bay. The best defense against this phenomenon is reducing the amount of phosphorus that can reach the water and planting native species along shores to absorb contaminated runoff.
Miami’s warm waters encourage locals and tourists alike to take part in a wide variety of activities such as surfing, stand up paddleboarding, sailing, jet skiing, speed boating, kayaking, canoeing, scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming, and fishing.
Many art deco style lifeguard towers line the shore of Miami’s South Beach, which, in addition to being a feast for the eyes, house Miami Beach Patrol Lifeguard staff who will ensure you have a safe swim. South Beach Park is one of Miami’s most popular beaches, with small waves for novice surfers, volleyball nets, and some of the area’s best nightlife.
Haulover Beach, which has been voted one of Miami’s best, boasts white sandy shores, sand dunes, and concession stands. Haulover Beach North is Florida’s oldest and most famous ‘clothing optional’ beach area.
Climate in Miami
Miami is warm all year, but is the driest during the winter. In January, temperatures average about 20 °C (68 °F), though they can be as high as 24-29 °C (75-84 °F). During Miami’s wet season (June to October), the air is very humid, and temperatures can be around 29-35 °C (84-95 °F). The water here is lovely year-round, but it becomes as warm as 31 °C (89 °F) in August.
Whether you’re into surfing or sunbathing, Miami’s white sand beaches and tropical Atlantic waters have it all: fun, relaxation, opportunities to take in the natural world, or the buzz of a busy boardwalk. This exciting city of has something for everyone.
Swim Guide shares the best information we have at the moment you ask for it. Always obey signs at the beach or advisories from official government agencies. Stay alert and check for other swimming hazards such as dangerous currents and tides. Please report your pollution concerns so Affiliates can help keep other beach-goers safe. Swim Guide, "Swim Drink Fish icons," and associated trademarks are owned by SWIM DRINK FISH CANADA. See Legal.
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