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Discussion Starter #1
I need to drive from Miami to Calabay Parc, Davenport, and need some native advice on a route. Would the best be to go up the I95 out of Miami, then take the Florida Turnpike (about 10 miles past Port St Lucie), then eventually go left onto the 417 which seems to head towards where I want to go. Or is there a shorter 'cross country' route that I could take? Thanks guys. :thumb:
 

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Hwy 27 all the way would be my choice. IMHO I-95 from Miami north all the way through Palm Beach Gardens is HORRENDOUS at the best of times.
Highway 27 is a very well maintained and well marked secondary road with lots of small towns to go through once you get to Belle Glade, at the south end of Lake Okeechobee.
It has always been light to moderate traffic for me when I use it. My last time was just this past March when I traveled from Key West up through Florida to home.
The bit between leaving Miami proper to Belle Glade/Lake Okeechoobee can seem a bit desolate (miles and miles of sugarcane fields) but it goes by in an hour or so.
If you're flying in from the UK to Miami, you can get onto Highway 27 just a north of MIA.

Looks to me like a bit of Disney is in the works... Using the "back way" you'll arrive relaxed.
There will be no need for two days of decompression that taking I-95 will force onto you.

Here are the two routes as mapped out by Google:

Highway 27 (The back way): http://g.co/maps/uud5m
220 mi, 4 hours 29 mins

I95/Florida Turnpike: http://g.co/maps/pj9wb
241 mi, 4 hours 13 mins

Just remember to drive on the wrong side of the road and you'll do just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hwy 27 all the way would be my choice. IMHO I-95 from Miami north all the way through Palm Beach Gardens is HORRENDOUS at the best of times.
Highway 27 is a very well maintained and well marked secondary road with lots of small towns to go through once you get to Belle Glade, at the south end of Lake Okeechobee.
It has always been light to moderate traffic for me when I use it. My last time was just this past March when I traveled from Key West up through Florida to home.
The bit between leaving Miami proper to Belle Glade/Lake Okeechoobee can seem a bit desolate (miles and miles of sugarcane fields) but it goes by in an hour or so.
If you're flying in from the UK to Miami, you can get onto Highway 27 just a north of MIA.

Looks to me like a bit of Disney is in the works... Using the "back way" you'll arrive relaxed.
There will be no need for two days of decompression that taking I-95 will force onto you.

Here are the two routes as mapped out by Google:

Highway 27 (The back way): http://g.co/maps/uud5m
220 mi, 4 hours 29 mins

I95/Florida Turnpike: http://g.co/maps/pj9wb
241 mi, 4 hours 13 mins

Just remember to drive on the wrong side of the road and you'll do just fine.
That's brilliant Genehil - thanks... :thumb: Wouldn't have known that there was an alternative to the I95, let alone had the nerve to go into the backwaters and get possibly lost in the Everglades... :eek: Will use Highway 27. Does a 'Highway' have a lower speed limit than an 'Interstate'..? Is there much police presence along these roads? Can't imagine having to do 50 mph for 200+ miles..! Thanks again..! :thanx:
 

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Does a 'Highway' have a lower speed limit than an 'Interstate'..? Is there much police presence along these roads? Can't imagine having to do 50 mph for 200+ miles..!
Most highways in Florida have a 55MPH and some parts are 60MPH. When there is dual carriageway it is usually 65MPH... I-95 and Turnpike are 70MPH. I usually clip along around 5 to 10MPH above the posted speed limit on Highway 27 and seem to get along OK. When passing through a city or town, the speed limit drops to 45 or sometimes 35 and there I keep it to 5MPH above at the max... but those are pretty short sections.

As for police presence... I've never seen a formal "speed trap" in my Highway 27 travels... you might run into the occasional police car sitting out in the open, under a shady tree, that you should be able to spot way ahead of time. I don't use any kind of "early warning" devices... like a radar detector... I just watch the traffic that I'm following and take my cues from what they're doing.

Plus... I'm old... so I travel a lot slower than I used to... I'm now a "smell the roses" kind of guy... but in any event, Highway 27 is a nice easy drive.

I just found a site that lets you see what the speed limits are on most Florida roads. It looks like there is a lot of 65MPH sections on Highway 27.
 

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This route, hugging the eastern edge of Lake Okeechobee, might be more scenic:
http://g.co/maps/6p5a6

Although you won't see the lake unless you get off the highway and ride up to the top of the 40-foot-tall dike that surrounds the lake.

Obey the speed limit in the towns of Belle Glade and Okeechobee. That's what I always do, because I notice that most cars obey the speed limit, and I figure the reason is zealous cops. Outside of town, you're OK at 7 or 8 mph over the limit.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
This route, hugging the eastern edge of Lake Okeechobee, might be more scenic:
http://g.co/maps/6p5a6

Although you won't see the lake unless you get off the highway and ride up to the top of the 40-foot-tall dike that surrounds the lake.

Obey the speed limit in the towns of Belle Glade and Okeechobee. That's what I always do, because I notice that most cars obey the speed limit, and I figure the reason is zealous cops. Outside of town, you're OK at 7 or 8 mph over the limit.
Thanks all for your suggestions and comments. Holden - what road is it that goes off the 27 to the East side of the lake? Appears to have various numbers on it. :huh:
 

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I call it US 98. A lot of locals might refer to it as US 441. Actually, they would say "Highway 441."

Why does a road have two U.S. Highway designations? I have no idea. American highway nomenclature is inscrutable.

Other names and symbols you see: I believe it's State Route 700 and County Road 15. (Although I could be wrong -- it might be State Route 15.) All those names for one stretch of pavement!

Basically, Highway 441, to me, symbolizes leisurely wandering and going up north to the mountains (or back from the mountains). So if I'm riding back home from the Blue Ridge Parkway, I'll say I'm going down 441. Calling it Highway 98 implies, to me, that I'm using it in a more businesslike manner, to get to a destination. The two highways go their separate ways just north of Lake O.

More than you want to know, I'm sure. I love this country so much, and one tiny reason is little quirks like this, with several names for one stretch of highway.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I call it US 98. A lot of locals might refer to it as US 441. Actually, they would say "Highway 441."

Why does a road have two U.S. Highway designations? I have no idea. American highway nomenclature is inscrutable.

Other names and symbols you see: I believe it's State Route 700 and County Road 15. (Although I could be wrong -- it might be State Route 15.) All those names for one stretch of pavement!

Basically, Highway 441, to me, symbolizes leisurely wandering and going up north to the mountains (or back from the mountains). So if I'm riding back home from the Blue Ridge Parkway, I'll say I'm going down 441. Calling it Highway 98 implies, to me, that I'm using it in a more businesslike manner, to get to a destination. The two highways go their separate ways just north of Lake O.

More than you want to know, I'm sure. I love this country so much, and one tiny reason is little quirks like this, with several names for one stretch of highway.
Thanks Holden - A bit like Europe as I found out when I drove to the Nurburgring last month. Roads, in France particularly, have more than one number designator. In the UK, the road has one name or number, that's it...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I started this thread quite a while ago. Our trip to FL was delayed but I'm pleased to say that we're travelling out LHR to MIA on 27 March. Per Genehill's advice (and others) we're going to get on HWY 27 north to Davenport. Were staying on Calabay Parc which is a few miles north of the junction with the I-4. Just want to check that this is still a good alternative to the I-95 in case anything's changed. We're overnighting on Blue Lagoon Drive, just south of MIA off the Dolphin Expressway and my worry is finding our way onto the 27 the next morning. l found an alternative by going west along Blue Lagoon drive, then up a looonnng road which intersects onto the 27. Looks a lot easier than finding our way back east along the Dolphin Expressway, around MIA then up to try to join the 27. Yes, we'll have a satnav but when I'm in the middle of an eight lane road and it suddenly says 'go left' I'll probably cause an accident..! Hey, I'm rambling now and that's cos I'm worried about this part of the journey. Once we're on the 27 it's just 200 miles in a line..! Any comments or chat welcome.. :thanx:
 

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Easy Peasy:

(Least amount of turns - keeping off the Expressways)

1. Blue Lagoon Drive to NW 57th Ave (North Red Road).
2. South on NW 57th Ave (North Red Road) to SW 8th Street (Tamiami Trail).
3. West (right) on SW 8th Street (Tamiami Trail) to SW 177th Ave (Krome Ave)... about 12 miles.
4. North (right) on SW 177th Ave (Krome Ave) and it will eventually feed into Highway 27 near the Opa Locka West Airport... About 15 miles.

Google Map

(FYI: In Miami Avenues run North/South and Streets run East/West.)

BTW I just rode to Key West down and back on Highway 27 last June and it was easy sailing...

And... can you believe that Liam might be in a gang? ...and Alfie and Kat have split??? ...and Phil Mitchell trying to keep Lexie all to himself?!? Put the kettle on and tell me what the heck is going on in Albert Square???
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wow Genehill, you're a star..! :thumb: I had worked out something similar but there were more turns and would have put us on the Dolphin Expy and then up the Florida 821 toll to join the 27. Your idea is a lot neater and skirts some difficult stuff. We're staying at Homewood Suites for the night at the east end of Blue Lagoon Drive. All I gotta do now is have confidence in getting from the car hire depot on the east side of MIA to Blue Lagoon the evening before - that'll be a challenge after 9 hours flying plus customs..! As for Eastenders, do you follow that stuff? Not a UK ex-pat are you? I wouldn't have a clue as we gave up regularly watching that show years ago cos it was just shouting and fighting. Nothing's changed and the last time it was 'accidentally' on 'Miserable Max' wound me up immediately - he needs a slap..! :D
 

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Hahaha... Max still needs a slap. I was stationed at RAF Lakenheath for a total of 7 years. 77-80 and 83-87. Eastenders started up during my last tour and I followed it for years even after returning to the States... until it was removed from BBC America over here. Then... about three years ago I figured out how to watch it on-oline by using a UK Proxy... so that's what I do four times a week. It keeps me connected to all you guys over there... and I like that.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks again Genehil, yes I remember you mentioning about Lakenheath a while ago. Glad you can still get your Eastenders 'fix' too. I'll let you know how I got on when we return in April. One thing, street signs hanging above junctions facing you - that's the name of the road being crossed, not that you're, on so I understand?? 'Cheers geezer' as our friends in Eastenders would say....! :D
 

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Thanks again Genehil, yes I remember you mentioning about Lakenheath a while ago. Glad you can still get your Eastenders 'fix' too. I'll let you know how I got on when we return in April. One thing, street signs hanging above junctions facing you - that's the name of the road being crossed, not that you're, on so I understand?? 'Cheers geezer' as our friends in Eastenders would say....! :D
Bang On... Those would be the names of the streets being crossed.
Have a happy Disney time and let us know how it goes.
 

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Google Map - Blue Lagoon to Hwy 27 (27.5 miles)

View turning left (South) onto NW 57th Ave (North Red Road) from Blue Lagoon
(Burger King World Headquarters Building will be on your right)
View turning right (West) onto SW 8th Street (Tamiama Trail)
(Modernei Furniture store will be on your right at the corner.)
View turning right (North) onto SW 177th Ave (Krome Ave)
(Miccosukee Casino will be across Krome Ave.)
View feeding left onto Hwy 27 from Krome Ave.
(Bear left and Hwy 27 is just ahead at the traffic light)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks again Genehil, keep an eye on this thread after mid April and I'll give you a brief trip and vacation report..! This is our first family trip to FL, we're big CA fans and love Santa Barbara, La Jolla and Del Mar. I have relatives there too. FL is new to us. Thanks for the pics, it's useful to see where to turn - that shopfront before the right for example. And the left onto the 27 looks fairly desolate, not what I was expecting to see. But hey, if it's not too busy I've get less chance of cocking it up..! Cheers..! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #18
We're here, it's hot, it's sunny..! MIA to Davenport all the way - simple and stress free. And in five days and 400 miles so far I've seen far fewer bikes than expected. Mainly groups of Harley riders and a couple of guys on Hwy 27and I4 on stretched sportsbikes, drag racer stylee. Ah well, Discovery Cove and Seaworld done, NASA tomorrow...! :usa:
 

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Yay! Glad everything is going well. When my dad and I saw the pad where they launched the first American into space he said that it looked like a driveway he once owned. Way more primitive than we had anticipated.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Kennedy Space Centre - what can I say? Not cheap for five of us but well worth it. From someone who remembers both Shuttle accidents it meant a lot to stand at the astronaut memorial area for a while. The best day out so far, and such an easy trip despite being 80 miles away. Getting used to the roads now and driving like a European abroad i.e. quicker than most others tho' it surprises me how fast the traffic does move. There's also some pretty bad driving out there, nearly got taken out buy this woman who wasn't sure what she wanted to do lane wise and was waay too busy on her cell. That's illegal in the UK y'know... Saw a couple of fat guys on Harleys, but that was it for the bike quota today.. Tomorrow? dunno, maybe an airboat ride.... laters..
 
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