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Parking Rates?

Halifax, Canada
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129 posts
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Parking Rates?

My friends and I are vacation in the FL area (Weston) and are trying to decide whether to rent a car or not. We realize that taking public transport from Weston will be timely.. but we don't mind that much. We are swaying towards renting a car.. but I was wondering, what are parking rates like in the area - the beach, Miami, etc... Also the Tri-Rail.. do any of these stations have a commuter parking lot? Is it expensive to part in these commuter lots? In Toronto they are usually free.

Any advice/help would be greatly appreciated.

Fort Lauderdale...
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1. Re: Parking Rates?

The Tri Rail will be of no help to you at all as public transport from the Weston area. It runs on one north to south route along a rail track in the east central part of Broward County- and Weston is about as far west as you can go. Getting across town on the bus from Weston would take forever and be really complicated. This is one case in which I think you absolutely need a rental. I don't think you'll ever be using the parking lots at the Tri Rail Stations- you won't be going anywhere it goes, but they are free. Parking at beach areas is generally about $1/hr. I can't speak for the situation in Miami- while you might be able to take Tri Rail into Miami-Dade County, you would have to ask on the Miami Forum if it will take you near any of your desired locations. Parking in the South Beach area of Miami can be hard to come by especially on evenings and weekends, but once again the Miami Forum is your best source of accurate information on the current situation. You don't mention when your trip is planned, but I'm assuming it is this spring or summer, when the Ft. Lauderdale beach parking is generally less crowded.

The only place in Ft. Lauderdale where parking can get tight is in the Downtown near the Courthouse or sometimes in the Himmarshee Village club area, where there are only a limited number of garage spaces- but once again summer would be less difficult than the "snowbird" winter season.

Halifax, Canada
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129 posts
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2. Re: Parking Rates?

Thank you so much!! Really helpful. If I am driving to the beach.. it is a big one.. where should I go? We would like somewhere with a lot of things going on... can walk along and visit shops, restaurants, bars, etc??

Fort Lauderdale...
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3. Re: Parking Rates?

The beach area is a coiple of miles long and is mainly a public beach with only a handful of hotels right on the sand. A great deal depends on your age. The beach strip itself doesn't really have shops- except for souvenir and t-shirt shops- mailnly restaurants and bars and lots of construction of mega-hotels right now. There is a metered parking area on the south end of teh Beach at Bahia Mar- You would head east on SE 17th Street and the road ( a very scenic drive ) goes by the Cruise Port, over a brigde ( gorgeous views) and curves around and runs up the Beach. If it were me, I'd go to the beach , maybe have lunch or happy hour along the A1A strip - maybe at Beach Place ( Lulus' Bait Shack or Sloppy Joe's both ocean view) and leave my shopping for another day. The humongous Sawgrass Mills outlet mall ( over 300 shops) is not so far from Weston- go north off I-595 on Flamingo Rd. Lots of great shopping and dining at Cheesecake Factory, Grnad Luke Cafe, Legal Seafood , among many choices. Another upscale shopping area is slightly north and east of the beach at Galleria on Sunrise Blvd just beyond the Intracoastal. Neiman Marcus, Saks and Dillards. Had lunch ther yesterday at Seasons 52, a great new restaurant and they have a wonderful food court outside Dillards as well ( definitely get some gelato).

The other primary tourist area is Las Olas Blvd, which run east and west on the south end of the beach- but the "main area" is more at the west end. Many dining choices- not so many shops, but my all time favorite gift shop, Seldom Seen is there.Lots of metered parking on the streets that run just above and below it. Just a nice place to dine and stroll day or evening.

There are some smaller beach areas, especially to the north- Lauderdale by the Sea and Deerfield Beach are a bit quieter and cater to the older crowd and lots of European visitors. Just be sure to feed the parking meters- the meter maids are right on top of expired meters. I like the small town feel of Lauderdale by the Sea and having lunch at Aruba Beach Cafe, mulligans, Athena by the Sea or Village Grill - all on or near the Ocean. And Sea Watch is just north of there a few blocks and is a beautiful coice for oceanfront dining- I like it more for lunch than dinner because of the view.

Also search out info on the Water Taxi- for $10 you can get an all day pass and hop on and off at various waterfront areas along the canals for which Lauderdale is famous as the Venice of America.

Halifax, Canada
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129 posts
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4. Re: Parking Rates?

Thanks, once again, VERY HELPFUL.. you are right on the money for the info I was looking for... the shops mentioned were the touristy type.. like just browse, trinkets and T-Shirts etc..we ladies are all in our early 30s.. so Happy Hour is what we will be looking for.

Thanks again for all your help.. it is going to be very useful. We are staying at Mizner Place in the Weston area from May 7 - 15.