With a million things to do and the holidays right around the corner I still found time work a quick trip to travel to Florida. This past week I had the opportunity to visit the beautiful city of Miami. Miami is known for its beautiful beaches, lovely billowing palm trees and active night life. There are many districts and neighborhoods to visit such as Art Deco District, Wynwood the Miami Art District and more. But on this trip I had the most wonderful time enjoying the culture of Hispanic Miami. I think experiencing other cultures is what makes us kinder to the world and kinder to ourselves. Latinos make up 70% of Miami hailing from Central and South America, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Mexico, and more countries.
I spent the majority of my time in Little Havana exploring the delicious food and spiritual beliefs of the community practices. I took a wonderful food tour with GetYourGuide.com and I got to explore some great family-owned restaurants, and get the story behind the food, and taste the best Cuban cuisine in Miami’s Little Havana. My tour guide Lana was fabulous and she did an amazing job of explaining the cultural significance of all of the dishes that I tried. There was so much food in Little Havana, there was really something for everyone there and it was a lot to take in. I think it is very important that your tour guide is knowledgeable and experienced enough to be able tell you the history and background of the places that you visit and the different activities that you try.
With Miami being a little over an hour of plane to ride to Cuba, you can imagine how deeply the country has had a cultural impact to the city. The immigration of Cubans to Miami has significantly influenced modern Miami. One of the deeply rooted spiritual practices within Cuba and Little Havana is Santeria. Santeria is an Afro-Caribbean religion influenced by Roman Catholicism that was brought to Cuba by the Yoruba nations of West Africa, and subsequently introduced in Miami by Cubans. Throughout Miami you can find Botanicas which are retail stores that sell religious medicine, candles and other supplies.
I always appreciate traveling to a new city to get a glimpse and experience life outside of my immediate surroundings. I think it is so important to be able to see life from other’s peoples point of views and explore what is out there in the world. Whether it is visiting a new place to try new foods or going to a destination to try new activities and excursions, a life well-traveled is a life well spent.
Cheers to you trying new experiences in the New Year to come!