Fort Myers Vacation Travel Guide
Naples Vacation Travel Guide
Fort Myers is the historical heart of southwest Florida, beginning as a cow town in the 1800’s. This history continues in the attractions found in and around the area. In 1885, Thomas Edison made Fort Myers his winter home and, ever since, northerners have flocked to the area to enjoy the tropical climate, beaches and activities. In fact, the Edison-Ford Winter Estates is the most well-known Fort Myers attraction – daily tours are provided. Other attractions you’re sure to enjoy are the Shell Factory, the Imaginarium children’s museum and a performance at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall or the Broadway Palm Dinner Theater.There are lots of choices for outdoor activities and nature adventures. Just northeast of Fort Myers, Babcock Wilderness Adventures offers “swamp buggy” rides, and a wildlife tour with five different ecosystems. For more excitement, you can take a sightseeing airplane tour from Page Field in Fort Myers.
The sugary-white gulf beaches are just a short ride from Fort Myers. You can choose Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel and Captiva Islands, Bonita Springs or Naples for your day at the beach. Some of the beaches are full of activity and others are secluded, providing for relaxation. While most of the Fort Myers Beach action is near the pier, Lover’s Key State Park, at the south end of the island, is a favorite known for its natural unspoiled beach. Shelling enthusiasts will want to head to Bowman’s Beach or one of three other public beaches on Sanibel Island.
Fort Myers offers all types of shopping experiences. Edison Mall is a typical name brand indoor mall. Bell Tower Shops is an outdoor boutique mall, with Saks Fifth Avenue and Bed Bath & Beyond anchoring a variety of shops and restaurants, as well as a movie theater. Bargain-hunters will want to make a trip to the Sanibel Outlets (just before the Sanibel Causeway), the Miromar Outlet Mall (south of Fort Myers in Estero) or Fleamasters (the largest flea market in the area). Finally, the Shell Factory is where you want to shop for all types of shell-related goods, but plan to also enjoy the other attractions the Shell Factory offers.
There are so many choices for dining in Fort Myers, we couldn’t begin to make recommendations for you here, but we can give you a few links to sites with opinions from those in the know! At the USA Today 10 Best website, get recommendations for the Fort Myers area’s top 10 restaurants, top 10 romantic restaurants, top 10 Italian restaurants, top 10 waterfront restaurants and more. At UrbanSpoon, you can search for restaurant ideas by cuisine, price, neighborhood and features. You can also find the restaurant location on their map. Our local food critic, Jean LeBoeuf, offers his recommendations for News-Press newspaper – check out his Facebook page for his insight.
While most visitors choose a hotel, resort or condo near the beach, there are many fine accommodation choices in Fort Myers.