I've lived in Miami for over 25 years and have 3 kids (....and would not change it for the world). With that said, I've noticed that northerners have a tendency to be scared of Miami or give Miami a bad name when it comes to raising a family or leading a "normal" life.
Take a look at this article I wrote about Miami being featured as a "child friendly city"
I also just wrote an article about Summer Camps:
There are great schools, both public and private located throughout Miami. It may also be a good idea to research those, and it wouldn't hurt to ask families what they like about the particular cities they live in.
For example, I was raised in Coral Gables. Itâ€™s a beautiful city perfect for the family who appreciates a clean and safe environment. Coral Gables is centrally located and sits just 15 minutes away from Coconut Grove, South Miami/Pinecrest, and Downtown.
The cities of Pinecrest and South Miami boast some of the best schools in the state. Most streets are quiet and many parks are easily accessible.
Coconut Grove is unique for its lush green landscapes and water views. Being outdoor is part of the lifestyle of the Grove.
As its own island, Key Biscayne is one of the smaller communities but it includes beaches, a state park, restaurants and shopping. And all are walking distance from your home.
I enjoyed very much growing up in Miami. There is always something for everyone here. I understand learning about each neighborhood is important for choosing the right one for your family. For more information on any of the cities I mentioned feel free to contact me.
I've lived in Miami since 1988 and have 2 kids and me and my husband travel to a lot of places around the world. Nice beaches, nice weather, a lot of restaurants, a multicultural city, and a nice place to live.
You will get many opinions on this and it really depends where you are coming from and what type of lifestyle you are used to. There are tons of beautiful neighborhoods and great schools throughout Miami and plenty of activities as well.
Take a look at this article I wrote:
hope that helps,
I lived near Miami once upon a time when I was young and good looking.
My suggestion, which might seem to be off the wall a bit, is one weekend to drive (slowly) around a Miami neighborhood that you think you might like to live in.
When you see a guy pushing a mower around the yard, stop and turn off your car, and wave at him. He will be glad to have an excuse to stop mowing for a few minutes. When he does, smile, be friendly, the world needs more of it, tell him you're thinking of moving to the area, and ask him how he likes living in the neighborhood. Trust me, this works. I have stopped mowing many times to answer dumb questions asked by strangers..
You will be surprised how much you can learn about an area from people who actually live there. They will tell you about things you will never find out any other way and may even tell you about Aunt Sally who wants to sell her house and owner-fiance it! That happened to me one time. And you will have just made your first investment of time and effort into finding the right neighborhood to live in and maybe a new neighbor and friend.
If you don't feel comfortable doing what I have suggested in a particular area, keep driving, don't stop, and don't live in that neighborhood. And if you are too shy to do it, you will have to take the advice of those who sell real estate for a living.
All the best,