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Facts about Miami

Updated on November 22, 2016
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Since completing university, Paul has worked as a bookseller; librarian; and freelance writer. Born in the UK, he now lives in Florida.

Miami skyline at dusk.  The city has a fascinating past, thanks in part to its Caribbean influences.  The city is also a major tourist destination and hub for cruise ships.
Miami skyline at dusk. The city has a fascinating past, thanks in part to its Caribbean influences. The city is also a major tourist destination and hub for cruise ships. | Source

Located in southeastern Florida, Miami is a large and unique US city.

It has a fascinating past and a vibrant present, thanks in no small part to the plurality of its population.

The city has been called the: "Capital of Latin America", due to its Spanish-speaking majority and large number of Cuban-Americans who live and work there.

It is also famous throughout the world as a center for tourism, media, finance, the arts, and as a major hub for cruise ships.

I hope you enjoy my facts about Miami, Florida, and find them interesting.

1. The metropolitan area of Miami is the 5th largest urban area in the USA with a population of 5.5 million.

2. The city received almost 12 million visitors in 2009.

Miami is just really fun whenever I go there. It's like this post-apocalyptic Barbie world: everything is pink, and there're palm trees everywhere. But then there are also all these people in crazy sunglasses, warehouses with sick parties where all the girls are covered in spikes and black leather. It's a very weird place.

— Grimes

3. Uniquely for a major American city, Miami was conceived by a woman, Julia Tuttle. Originally from Cleveland, "the mother of Miami", as she became known, moved to Florida to set up business growing citrus fruits.

Miami pictured from the beach.  The city is a major destination for tourists, both international and domestic.  Its Spanish-speaking majority and the large number of Cuban-Americans who live there have led to the nickname: "Capital of Latin America".
Miami pictured from the beach. The city is a major destination for tourists, both international and domestic. Its Spanish-speaking majority and the large number of Cuban-Americans who live there have led to the nickname: "Capital of Latin America". | Source

4. It was officially incorporated as a city on July 28, 1896. The population was not much over 300 people at the time.

5. The city's name comes from the nearby Miami River. The name is derived from a Native American tribe called the Mayaimis, who lived in the region until the 17th or 18th century.

Boat sails near Miami Beach,  The city has strong connections with the sea and water, its name comes from the nearby Miami river and the Native American tribe called the Mayaimis, who lived in the region until the 17th or 18th century.
Boat sails near Miami Beach, The city has strong connections with the sea and water, its name comes from the nearby Miami river and the Native American tribe called the Mayaimis, who lived in the region until the 17th or 18th century. | Source

6. Miami is the county seat of Miami-Dade County, which, with a population of 2,500,625, is the most populous county in Florida.

"Miami is nothing like me, and that's why I need to be here - it's the opposite. I'm practical, where this place is moody, I'm stolid in my interior, where this place has a certain flair, and I'm materialistic in a sense that this place is fundamentally spiritual - there's a quicksilver quality about this place."

— Iggy Pop

7. There are many sports teams based in Miami, including the Miami Heat (basketball), Miami Dolphins (football), Florida Panthers (ice hockey) and Florida Marlins (baseball).

8. The city was ranked “America’s cleanest city” in 2008, by Forbes magazine, who commended its good air quality, high quality drinking water, clean streets and extensive recycling facilities.

9. The first widely used sunscreen was invented by Benjamin Green, a Miami Beach pharmacist, in 1944.

Miami at night
Miami at night | Source

10. The city has a tropical monsoon climate. It hot and humid most of the year with short, warm Winters.

List of People From Miami, Florida

Sidney Poitier, actor.

Gloria Estefan, singer.

Flo Rida, rapper.

Deborah Harry, singer.

Steve Carlton, baseball player.

Anna Kournikova, tennis player.

Patricia Cornwell, writer.

Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida.

Bobby Johns, NASCAR driver

11. Statistically speaking, Miami is the most likely city in the world to be hit by a hurricane. Although the hurricane season officially runs from the start of June to the end of November, the most likely period for the city to be hit is between mid-August and the end of September.

Although hurricanes are a relatively common threat to the city, tornadoes are rarely seen.  Despite this, tornadoes struck in 1925 and in 1997 (pictured).
Although hurricanes are a relatively common threat to the city, tornadoes are rarely seen. Despite this, tornadoes struck in 1925 and in 1997 (pictured). | Source

12. There are no records of it ever snowing in the city, apart from a minor flurry recorded on January 19, 1977.

13. The world’s largest cruise ship port is in Miami. The city has been called the: "Cruise Capital of the World."

But this is Miami, you can't come to Miami and not show any skin. You gotta show something. If you're all covered up in this heat, you're gonna make me pass out out just to look at you. It's sweaty in Miami-but the diamonds will keep me cool.

— Lil' Kim

14. The world’s biggest collection of Art Deco Architecture of over 800 buildings can be found in Miami Beach’s Art Deco District.

15. Miami was ranked the 3rd richest city in the USA and the 22nd richest city in the world in 2008.

16. Many famous pirates, such as Blackbeard and Lafitte, visited the area in the past and it was a popular place to for pirates to bury their cashes of gold and silver. Pirate treasure has been discovered both at on shore and underwater locations.

17. The world’s only Everglades eco-system is hosted by the city.

18. In 2006 the city was voted the 3rd best destination for families in the USA, by American Express Travel.

Miami Beach is a completely interesting hybrid because it is, on the one hand, a resort and, on the other hand, a real city. This condition of city and water on two sides I think is really amazing. And in the heart of that city, it has put an enormous convention center, an enormous physical presence.

— Rem Koolhaas

19. Miami Beach has been called “America’s Riviera”.

20. The city has over 800 parks and is bordered by two National Parks (Everglades and Biscayne).

Alligators in the Everglades.  The internationally famous National Park is the largest protected tropical wilderness in the US, and the largest wilderness of any kind east of the Mississippi River.  It is visited by one million people each year.
Alligators in the Everglades. The internationally famous National Park is the largest protected tropical wilderness in the US, and the largest wilderness of any kind east of the Mississippi River. It is visited by one million people each year. | Source

Have you been to Miami, Florida?

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© 2012 Paul Askew

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