Winter in the Midwest and the Northeast is enough to send everyone packing for a warmer climate, sometimes permanently. And there is no place more synonymous with warmth and fun than the vibrant Miami, Florida. If you’re thinking about a move, here’s why Miami isn’t just a vacation spot anymore.

Everybody’s Doing It

Okay, maybe not everybody. But native Floridians are now a minority in their own state. In Miami, most out-of-state transplants come from New York City, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Boston. People are fleeing states that are snow-bound half of the year and landing in Miami. That may be why Florida is one of the fastest-growing states in the country.

The Cost of Living

Living in Miami costs less than many other big cities across the country. The median home price is about $255,000. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the metro area is about $1,500. Compare that to $3,100 per month, the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in NYC.

There is also no state income tax, no estate tax and no inheritance tax in Florida.

You’ll Never Run Out Of Stuff To Do

Beaches? Check. Nightlife? Check. Outdoor fun and fitness? Check. Miami-Dade County is world famous for its gorgeous beaches. There’s something for everyone. The Art Deco architecture and nightlife made South Beach famous. Miami is also home to family-friendly beaches and sandy shores that cater to the LGBTQ community. A word of warning for the unfamiliar visitor: some beaches allow women to sunbathe topless. Just know before you go and don’t stare. (Or if you do, wear sunglasses!)

You don’t have to go to the beach to get a taste of ocean life. The Seaquarium is a 38-acre aquarium in Biscayne Bay. It’s near the Bayside Marketplace, a two-story open-air shopping center.

The Miami Beach Botanical Garden is a great place to spend an afternoon or plan an event. This 3-acre green space is more than just an arboretum. The garden center features Florida native plants with information on how to grow them.

The Miami Beach Botanical Gardens are worth spending a day at whether you're a tourist or a local.

Miami is one of the cultural centers of the South, boasting a diverse population and a multifaceted art, music and food scene. It’s home to one of the world’s premier art shows, Art Basel. Many talented musicians grew up in Miami. You’ll recognize Gloria Estefan, the controversial XXXTentacion and City Girls.

The Foodie Scene

We hope you’re hungry because there’s a lot of food here. You’ll find modern Japanese cuisine at Zuma Miami on Biscayne Boulevard Way. Miami is an international melting pot, and it shows in the food. Heavily influenced by Cuban and Puerto Rican fare, you’ll find authentic flavors at the local restaurants. There’s no shortage of fresh seafood places or restaurants recognized by the James Beard Foundation.

Thousands of visitors head to Miami every year to soak up the sunshine and enjoy the city’s beaches. Many choose to stay permanently. Whether you’re single searching for the party scene, a health nut looking for yoga on the beach at sunrise or a foodie pursuing the newest dish, there are millions of reasons why Miami isn’t just a vacation spot anymore.

Featured image: “Magic City” courtesy of MuralsWallpaper

“Botanical Gardens” courtesy of Miami Beach Botanical Gardens

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Rachel Vogel

Rachel Vogel is an outdoor and gardening writer and ukulele extraordinaire. When she's not working she's playing with her Goldendoodle Oliver, you can find her laying in her hammock and enjoying nature any way she can.

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