Day Trip to South Point Park in Miami
One of my favorite places in Florida is South Point Park. Clearly the fact that it is the jumping off point for all cruises out of Miami plays a huge role in why this is the case. Additionally, however, it is just a great place to chill on a beautiful day in South Florida. The parking is very proximal, but keep in mind you will have to spend some time looking for spot. On nice afternoons this place is PACKED, and its easy to see why. There is fine dining, a reasonable café, views on views, South beach, a park for the kids, jetties and a gorgeous pier.
I decided to make my way to the park for a solo afternoon to check out some sail aways and enjoy the day. When you make the trip to South Point Park, you always get more than you bargain for so let’s start from the beginning.
I got a bit of a late start (which happens routinely for me) but in my defense, I wanted to time it so that I would not be waiting hours for the cruise ships to roll through. I left Boca Raton at around 2pm for a harbor “parade” that would begin around 4pm if everything remained on schedule. When they tell you it’s a good idea to leave early and plan for the unexpected, it’s a good idea to listen. So with Florida deciding to stay “on brand” the absolutely perfect weather conditions in which I left under began to make a turn for the worse just as I was getting to Fort Lauderdale. There was a heavy sound of thunder and within minutes the sky was black and flash flood warnings started coming across my devices. Traffic slowed down to a crawl and the rain pounded relentlessly for the next 25-30 minutes. This was only a minor set back since Florida continued to do Florida things as it cleared up and by about 45 minutes later it was like nothing ever happened.
Parking was a little rough, since it was back to being a nice day and there were many beach goers that were taking their time coming and going. Eventually I found a spot, paid the meter, grabbed my gear and headed for the jetties.
As soon as I set up, I noticed that there was a bit of a disturbance in the water. I noticed the US Coast Guard trying to apprehend a group of people, but I do not (and still do not) know what the issue was. It had to be pretty serious since one person from the group literally jumped in the water and tried to escape by swimming away. Needless to say, that strategy did not work out well for him.
There were members of the group that were on the Coast Guard boat who were in hand cuffs, and one woman laying on the floor of the boat crying. I was curious to find out the details, but not curious enough to let it distract me from the fact that Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas was headed my way.
Royal Caribbean: Explorer of the Seas
- Capacity: 3,114 Passengers
- Crew: 1180
- Length: 1,020 ft (311 m)
- Gross Tonnage: 138,194
- Capacity: 4977 Passengers (at capacity)
- Crew: 1,450
- Length: 1061 ft (323 m)
- Gross Tonnage: 133,596
- Capacity: 3963
- Crew: 1657
- Length: 1068 ft (326 m)
- Gross Tonnage: 145,655
Virgin Voyages Scarlett Lady
- Crew: 1160
- Length: 909 ft (277m)
- Gross Tonnage: 110,000