Off of Biscayne Boulevard you will find the Bayside Marketplace. This waterside shopping center is located near the cruise port. If you happened to arrive at the port very early, then you can just head over to Bayside for some shopping. Here you will find a wide variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment. You will also find that the majority of people here do not speak English. There is some parking here, but it is very hard to find. Your best bet is to park in the adjacent parking area and pay the $2 rather than driving around trying to find a spot. They have valet parking located at the back of the Hard Rock.
Once you arrive at Bayside, if you go all the way to the back along the water and turn to the left, you can see the Miami cruise port. If you are here between 3 and 7pm, sit back and watch the ships sail out. Walk around the pier and check out the boats. In the middle of the market they have a lake area where you can take a boat tour. They offer a variety of cruises, from dancing to gambling to sightseeing. Near the waterfront you can take a peaceful horse-drawn carriage ride. That was my favorite thing here. They do have photographers around to take your photo, offering a great souvenir for home. They also have live music. When we were here, they had a Latin band, and many people were sitting around while others were up showing off their impressive salsa skills.
There are more than 100 shops here. Chain stores run from the Disney Store to Victoria's Secret. They have a number of specialty stores here, too. This is where you run into most of the problems of trying to find anyone who speaks English. You will find a variety of restaurants here, from Bubba Gump Shrimp to Latin America Café to Hooters, and this is where the Miami location of the Hard Rock is. You will find a variety of nightclubs here, and Gloria Estefan’s Bongos is nearby.
Overall, this was an enjoyable place. I loved the horse-drawn carriage ride and watching the cruise ships leave. This is a great place to stop while in Miami, or a great place to kill some time before your cruise ship leaves. I would have enjoyed it more, though, if more people spoke English. I just have a problem when I go into a shopping area in the US and more people don’t speak English than do. And apparently I am not the only one who feels this way since a large portion of my clients have made this complaint. From what I have heard, though, there have been enough complaints that they are trying to rectify this by having more English-speaking employees. You can visit them on the web at www.baysidemarketplace.com.