Fort Myers offers some of the best beaches in the world, whether you’re looking for tanning, exercise, nature, or a private sunset with someone special. Lovers Key State Park has been a romantic retreat for more than 100 years, and Alison Hagerup Beach Park is a nice spot to cuddle up and watch the sunset. For more seclusion, venture to the islands. Fort Myers Beach and South Fort Myers Beach have gentle sloping shores and waves which make them ideal for safe swimming. For a list of Southwest Florida Beaches see SWFLFun
There are lots of great ways to experience Florida’s unique subtropical wildlife in Fort Myers. To experience the area’s most fabulous insects up close, visit the Butterfly Estates, a glazed glass Butterfly Conservatory that’s home to more than 300 species of Butterfly. The regional Manatee Park allows you to view the gentle manatees in their natural environment – not in captivity – from November to March when they swim in from the cooler Gulf. For a really wild experience, take a Day Safari through the Florida Everglades. Each Eco-Safari includes tours of the everglades four main ecosystems: the sawgrass prairie, mangrove estuary, cypress swamps and pine savannah. You’ll take an airboat ride and boat cruise, and see the legendary alligators, dolphins, sea turtles, and colorful birds.
For a secluded getaway, hop a boat to one of the outer islands and either kick back and relax or get ready for adventure. North Captiva Island and Gasparilla are favorites for fishing. On Cabbage Key, visit the Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant, whose walls are lined with dollar bills left by fisherman who wanted to hedge their bets against a poor catch. Cayo Costa is one of the least visited parks in Florida, meaning it could be the perfect spot for a quiet getaway or the best place to find that rare seashell.
The Caribbean currents and wide continental shelf make the Fort Myers area one of the best places in the world to find colorful and exotic sea shells. Keep your eye out on the beaches for that perfect conch, starfish, tellin, or scallop to incorporate into your home décor, or take one of several Shelling Cruises to the nearby islands to hunt for shells. If you seriously love shells, stop in at the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum, where you can learn more about the mollusks of the area and see rare shell finds.
Whether you dream of sailing, fishing, windsurfing, kite boarding, canoeing, or kayaking, Fort Myers has the perfect location, equipment rentals, and instructors to teach you. Sanibel Causeway beaches are a great place for windsurfing, and there are great paddling trails on the calm waters of the Great Calusa Blueway and in the Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge.
Prefer to just kick back on the water? Dozens of sightseeing cruises will take you to Calusa Native mounds, pirate haunts, historical tours, eco-tours, or dolphin watching.