Just a block or two away from Ocean Blvd is Washington and Collins - each a bit scarier than the next at night.
During the evening the underbelly of the city comes out. Drug dealers and a few professional women. I've seen worse, but it is to be expected in a large metropolitan area.
Just be sure to travel in a group, take a cab through some of the areas and don't be stupid.
AKA walking 10 blocks while drunk as a skunk being alone and 22 year old woman...
Be smart and safe and aware as you would in downtown Manhatten.
MIami is like any other city. I'm from Boston but I've been living 10 blocks over from Liberty CIty (supposedly one of the most "dangerous parts of FL"). I'm a lil 22yr old white girl working here and its fine. Just don't be flashy, don't walk around the streets holding a map or any other stupid *** like that and you're fine. I hate when people exaggerate how dangerous these parts of the city can be, no one is gunna knife you for walking down the road. Obviously don't go walking around at like 2 in the morning but thats common sense.
Read the last comment on page 1 (by beachlocal, titled Relax). I couldn't put it any better. These are the only places I go to and I'm a local. I've stumbled into the really bad neighborhoods in the past and I realized quickly. Just stay calm and get out. Take a cab and don't rent a car. The street addresses outside of Miami Beach are not straight forward. They are very confusing, especially if your not familiar with the city. This is why people end up in bad areas.
I stay away from the city and it's events when it's Memorial Weekend, Labor Day and the Hip Hop Conference. Every single year for the past 4-5 years there has been shootings and killings. These are not locals, it's the tourist themselves. The girls disappearing, it was 1 girl and she was abducted by people who lived in the north of Florida. They had a plan and targeted Miami because of the nightlife and tourists. Be aware but relax it's a lot of fun being in my Miami Beach.
Really this stuff written above is a little bit crazy. Yes Miami has crime just like many other big cities in the US. YES! Miami is a big city! Its a huge very international city. Its a huge transportation hub and one of the largest international financial centre in the world. Miami is not just full of tourist and beaches. Of course Miami has bad areas like Chicago, DC, LA, Atlanta, NYC etc.. But as long as you use common sense, common safety smarts you should be fine. If you ever find yourself lost and you think your in a bad neighborhood just drive east. As long as you drive east you will end up in a better lower crime area. Crime in Miami tends to stay in its areas. I live in Midtown Miami which is very close to an high crime area yet my neighborhood is the safest one in the county.
Also the only time I would warn someone from going to Miami Beach is Labour Day weekend. It is crazy! Its horrible, way to many people and its gets way to crazy there and most years there is a shooting or two. Why? Well its not Miami Beach its the people that come for that one weekend. Why violence always comes that weekend im really not sure. It is Hip Hop music weekend so that might have something to do with it. This is the weekend which most locals stay away form Miami Beach and try to stay on the mainland.
Traffic is going to be bad in Miami. Miami is a big city! Traffic is bad in NYC,DC,LA,Chicago too.
Yes many people speak Spanish and Creole. But most speak english too. That is one of the great things about Miami 58% of its population were born outside the US. THe highest percentage in the world!
So as long as you use Common safety sense you should be fine in Miami.
So come down enjoy the amazing city and night life and have fun.
The City Was Great, but without doubt parts of it were crime-ridden. Even areas near the beaches had their fare share of crimes. Keep alert!