Southwest Florida Travel Guide - Summer/Fall 2021

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The Best of Flo

FRESH CITRUS • FRESHLY SQ

Free s e l p m Sa

e u q i Un Gifts a d i r o Fl

FRESHLY SQUEEZED FLORIDA JUICE Six Mile Cypress and Metro Pkwy 14601 Six Mile Cypress Pkwy, Ft Myers Monday - Sunday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Closed Sundays (May-October)

800-743-1480

Located Inside!


lorida is Here!

QUEEZED JUICE • ICE CREAM

e v r e S Soft ream Ice C

p i h S e W us Citr

We Ship

PREMIUM FRUIT WINES

“Always our first stop when we arrive on vacation to pick up fresh Florida juice and citrus. The kids love the ice cream and playground.” - M. Taylor, Minnesota

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One t e G , e n Buy O

E E R F Ice Cream

Try one of our soft serve ice creams (Orange, Vanilla, Chocolate or Key Lime). No photocopies. One per customer. Expires July 31, 2022 SWFTG

Mon-Sun 8-6 Closed Sundays (May-October)

800-743-1480

southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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Come see what Thomas Edison and Henry Ford discovered!

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southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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EDISON HOME RIGHT

The Edison and Ford Winter Estates includes the winter homes of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, Edison’s Guest House, the Caretaker’s Houses, Museum, and Botanic Research Laboratory on more than 20 acres of botanical gardens.

Several tour options are available, including Guided Tours, Insidethe-Homes Tours, Automotive Tours, and Garden Tours. Selfguided Tours and maps are available in English, French, German, and Spanish, and maps are also available in Chinese.

This National Register Historic Site, Florida Historic Landmark and Winner of the National Trust for Historic Preservation Restoration Award provides an opportunity for visitors of all ages to step back in time and experience “old Florida.” The 1929 historic landscape also offers a beautiful setting for guests to enjoy special events, weddings, corporate functions and meetings, exhibits and educational programs.

Throughout the year, there are museum exhibit openings, a film festival, quilt show, art exhibits, garden festivals, music performances and the annual Holiday Nights celebration. The Museum Store and Ford Cottage Shoppe are stocked with gift items and souvenirs and the Garden Shoppe has a large selection of plants available for purchase. Visit the website for information on upcoming events and programs.

OPEN DAILY 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. and until 9:00 p.m. during Holiday Nights

2350 McGregor Blvd. • Fort Myers, FL 33901 EdisonFord.org

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|

239.334.7419

southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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Our tours set the standard in Everglades City. We introduced two-way headsets and designed easy-load docks and airboats. Others imitate us but none can duplicate the experience you’ll have with us! Count on having a fun, personal and exhilarating experience with us!

• Fifth generation native operators, local USCG-licensed master captains • Recognized by the City of Everglades for the quietest and most professional airboats • Ticket Center with souvenir shop, vending machines and restrooms

Our fleet of five airboats and scheduled tour times fill up fast. Open 8:30 am – 4:00 pm (Closed Sunday)

Book Now !

Online: EvergladesCity-AirboatTours.com By Phone: 877-AAA-6400 | 239-695-2400 907 Dupont St. Everglades City | Florida 34139

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southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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CAPTAIN JACKS LEFT

• Animal Sanctuary & Hourly Alligator Show FREE with All Tours • Over 100 Alligators • Open 9–5, 365 Days a Year Book Online at:

www.CaptainJacksAirboatTours.com 8

1-844-FAN-BOAT (326-2628) • 905 Dupont St • Everglades City FL

southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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NEW!

Interact via 2-way communication headsets with the captain and fellow riders!

Fun for the Entire Family!

$2.50 OFF

$6.00 OFF

Per Mangrove Airboat Tour

• 1 Hour Mangrove Airboat Tour • FREE Animal Sanctuary • FREE Hourly Alligator Show

Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG swflorida.travel

$10.00 OFF

Per Grassland Combo Tour

• • • •

1 Hour Mangrove Airboat Tour 30 Minute Grassland Airboat Tour FREE Animal Sanctuary FREE Hourly Alligator Show

Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG

Per Total Combo

• • • • •

1 Hour Mangrove Airboat Tour 30 Minute Grassland Airboat Tour 30 Minute Swamp Buggy Tour FREE Animal Sanctuary FREE Hourly Alligator Show Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG

southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition

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contents 14

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Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel & Captiva Islands, Estero 16 Beachin' times around fort myers 24 explore historic downtown fort myers 36 a little history, some learning and lots of fun!

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36

Everglades City, Marco Island, Naples, Bonita Springs, Immokalee 44 everglades airboat excursions 48 vacation with a side of water

52

Cape Coral, Pine Island, Port Charlotte Punta Gorda, North Fort Myers

44

58 Pine Island: "Florida's Creative coast" 60 3 days the family way

31 coupons SOUTH OFFICE 2164 A, W First Street | Fort Myers, FL 239-337-0999

60 NORTH OFFICE 211 Pioneer Drive | Wisconsin Dells, WI 608-254-8770

VECTOR ANDINK.COM

©2021 Vector & Ink. As you can appreciate, we have taken every precaution to ensure that the contents of Southwest Florida Travel are correct and current. However, Vector & Ink assumes no liability for the accuracy of the information or representations/delivery of services contained herein.

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AIRBOAT RIDES Ride with the oldest airboat tour family in South Florida.

For more information call

1-800-368-0065 Reservations Accepted FREE Wi-Fi Available www.CaptainMitchs.com PleAse give us A Review on

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3

$ 00

SFTG17

OFF Per Person

AiRBoAT RiDes ADulT or CHilD

(limit 1 per boat. not to be combined CM with any other offer.) southwest florida TRAVEL - 2021 summer/fall Edition 13


Page Field Airport

FORT MYERS BEACH

Fort Myers Fort Myers Beach Sanibel & Captiva Islands Estero 14

Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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ESCAPE...ENJOY...EXPLORE

Relax and refresh with Key West Express to the Southernmost Point of the United States. Experience warm ocean breezes, sunshine on your face and sand between your toes on this island oasis vacation destination of Pirates, Poets and Presidents. Stay for a day or an extended stay, getting there and back is half the fun.

For more information visit:

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Book Your TripToday!

1-888-293-4574 Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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Beachin’ Times around Fort Myers

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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to choose from:

ALISON HAGERUP BEACH PARK 14790 Captiva Dr, Captiva Island

Also known simply as Captiva Beach, this is the island’s major access, with parking just off Captiva’s commercial district. It has a reputation for romance and the islands’ best sunsets. Facilities are sparse – only portable restrooms – but you will find restaurants and shops within walking distance. Amenities: Restrooms. Parking: $25 for two hours; $40 per day (dawn to dusk)

The beaches of Lee County make for some of the most picturesque destinations in Southwest Florida, where the Gulf of Mexico’s shallow, gentle slopes provide safe and easy access. Choose your beach, and plan an adventure-filled day or pure relaxation as you sink into the soft, warm sand and dip your toes into the Gulf. Lee County’s coastline provides an ideal atmosphere for families and friends to reconnect along the subtropical coast. From romantic sunsets to shelling adventures, from trying out a new water sport to wildlife encounters, you will take home lasting mental slideshows of sun, surf and sand.

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LOVERS KEY STATE PARK 8700 Estero Blvd, Fort Myers Beach

Away from Fort Myers Beach’s party scene, the two-mile stretch of sand welcomes beachgoers looking for both quiet and active pastimes. From trails to kayaking and shelling to sunbathing, it makes a great all-day beach destination. A new Welcome and Discovery Center opened in the spring of 2021. Amenities: Shelters, tables, grills, playgrounds, food and recreation concessions, hiking and biking trails, paddle sports, ranger tours and programs, trams to beach, boat ramp, bait shop, restrooms and showers. Admission: $8 per vehicle.

Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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3

DOG BEACH 14436 Bonita Beach Causeway, near New Pass Bridge, Bonita Beach

Lee County’s only off-leash beach is a tidal flat edged with mangroves. It requires that dogs be kept under voice command and have proof of license and immunizations. Amenities: Plastic bags and disposal stations, canine showers and restrooms. Parking: Free

4

FORT MYERS BEACH

The Town of Fort Myers Beach maintains 25 public beach access points on the Gulf side of Estero Island. They are marked with bright orange and blue signs and are easily accessed from Estero Boulevard. Many have public metered parking ($3 an hour). Two family-friendly locations that offer lots of amenities: BOWDITCH POINT PARK 50 Estero Blvd. It resides at Estero Island’s northern point on Matanzas Pass, where the environment is all-natural with a view of boat traffic in and out of the harbor. Amenities: Shelter, tables, grills, a paddlecraft launch, boat docks, nature trails, food concession, restrooms and showers. Parking: $2 per hour.

5

SANIBEL BEACHES

World-famous shelling and a historic lighthouse distinguish Sanibel beaches, which are accessible from five major public park accesses and a number of boardwalks for resident vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians. Sanibel beaches are lightly developed. You will find the most amenities at these two: BOWMAN’S BEACH PARK 1700 Bowman’s Beach Road, Sanibel Island Shellers, sand-strollers and seclusion-seekers head to this long stretch of beach at the island’s northern end.

Photo Credit: Jillian Cain Photography

Amenities: Shelters, tables, grills, fitness stations, hiking trails, a paddlecraft launch, a playground and restrooms. Parking: $5 per hour.

LYNN HALL MEMORIAL PARK 950 Estero Blvd. in Times Square With its admission-free, 560-foot pier, playground and close proximity to shops, restaurants and watersports operators, this is the most happening beach around, especially at sunset, when live performers often entertain and a party scene erupts.

LIGHTHOUSE BEACH PARK 1 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island This rounds the eastern tip of the island with a fishing pier on the bay side and a beach popular with windsurfers and families on the Gulf. In between lie nature trails and the landmark, historic Sanibel lighthouse.

Amenities: Shelter, tables, grills, fishing pier with bait shop, restrooms and showers. Parking: $2 per hour.

Amenities: Shelter, tables, grills, fishing pier, hiking trails and restrooms. Parking: $5 per hour.

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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DEEP SEA FISHING CAPT. TONY’S FISHING ADVENTURES 1/2 Day, Full Day, Night Trips & Private Charters for Grouper, Snapper, Sharks & More 1/2 D 9:30-3 AY :30 GRE

Night ips Tr Fishing- 1am 6pm

AT FAM FUN! ILY

Private Charter Aboard 45FT Queen Conch

1/2 Day • all Day • 12 Hour Trips

GROUPER, SNAPPER & SHARK Family Owned & Operated. Capt. Tony & Capt. Chris are 2nd generation charter boat captains, born & raised in S.W. Florida.

Call & Reserve Your Spot Today!

239-415-0515 18800 San Carlos Blvd. Ft. Myers Beach, FL - www.capttonys.com

Professional model. Closed course. Always wear your seatbelt.

street & Highway legal all roads speeds up to 60+ mph | seats up to 4 Rent yours today by calling 386-284-4437 fun-bug-gies Like it so much? ask to buy one! 28290 Old 41 Road

| Unit 4 | Bonita Springs

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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TURTLE TIME! Each summer, sea turtles shuffle ashore local beaches to dig nests and lay their eggs. Two months later, the eggs hatch and baby turtles will make their way back to the sea!

How can you help the process? Keep lights off and drapes pulled at night. Light on the beach can mess with the turtles' innate navigational abilities making them head inland instead. You should also avoid flashlights and camera flashes on the beach. Beach goers should fill in holes, level the sand, and pick up beach furniture as well as toys at the end of the day to avoid blocking the turtles' path. For more info, visit www.turtletime.org

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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Mon-Fri 10 AM-5 PM | Sat 10 AM-4 PM swflorida.travel

Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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Explore Historic Downtown Fort Myers

Photo Credit: River District Alliance

Downtown Fort Myers not only oozes with charm, but the historic town is vibrant and real! With one-of-a-kind locally owned shops and restaurants offering a variety of culinary delights, the streets come alive with a trendy comfortableness sure to please any visitor! Monthly Art and Music Walks held on the first and third Fridays of the month feature local artists and musicians of all genres. For Art and Theater lovers, the Sidney Berne Davis Art Center is a worldrenowned cultural center known for its international art installations

and musical performances. The historic Florida Rep Theater is a nationally recognized professional theater located in the heart of downtown. Take some time for a walking tour with True Tours or a river cruise with JC Cruises. Explore Fort Myers and discover why Thomas Edison said, “There is only one Fort Myers and 90,000,000 people are going to find it out." For event information, visit www.explorefortmyers.com

Restaurant & Market

GULF PINK SHRIMP, FRESH FROM OUR BOATS!

• • • • • • • • •

Salads Steamers Shrimp Sandwiches Homemade Soups Soups & Sandwiches Combo Platters Seafood Platters We Ship Seafood!

Newly Expanded Seafood Market

239-482-0433

OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK w w w. S k i p O n e 4 1 . c o m 15820 S. Tamiami Trail • Fort Myers, FL 33908

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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Try our best selling Swedish dishwashing sponges!

MON - SAT MON - SAT

NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, NASCAR, MLS & College

Cape Coral

2323 Del praDo BlvD. 239.458.4998 eDISoN Mall Cape Coral

MyerS BlvD. 2323 Fort Del praDo 4125 ClevelaND ave., SUIte 1705 239.458.4998 eDISoN Mall 239.997.4997 Fort MyerS

GUlFCoaSt towN CeNter Ft. MyerS

10012 GUlF Ctr Dr, SUIte #6 239.433.4997 GUlFCoaSt towN CeNter

port Charlotte towN CeNter Ft. MyerS

10012 Ctr Dr, SUIte #6 1441GUlF taMIaMI traIl #947 239.433.4997 941.627.4997

port Charlotte towN CeNter

Mon-Thurs: 10am-8pm • Fri-Sat: 10am-9pm • Sun: 11am-6pm 4125 ClevelaND ave., SUIte 1705 1441 taMIaMI traIl #947

11 LLCCTTOOS TTRRUUHHUU LLE & CCLLIIR CCUUTTEE!

JP Sports Super Sports Store! With 4 locations to serve MONDAY-SATURDAY: 10AM - 7PM & SUNDAY: 11you AM better. - 5 PM JP 239.997.4997 941.627.4997 Sports is your destination for any NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, NASCAR, Mon-Thurs: 10am-8pm • Fri-Sat: 10am-9pm • Sun: 11am-6pm MLS and College fan gear. JP has delivered quality licensed Sports carries New Comic BooktoReleases every JPJP Sports Super Store! With 4 locations serve you better. JP products for overSports 24 years. Each store has over 250,000 different items Sports is your destination for any NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, NASCAR, inMLS stock. JPCollege Sports isfan your one-stop store for all your Sports Card Wednesday & Hundreds CGC Graded Comic Books! and gear. JPof has delivered quality licensed needs: Topps, Panini, Magic the Gathering, Sportsitems products for over 24 years. Each store has over Yu-Gi-Oh, 250,000 different in stock. JP SportsECT. is your one-stop Sports Cards Supplies, If you can notstore find for it atallJPyour Sports youCard can Follow JP IfSports needs: Panini, Magic the Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh, Sports not findTopps, it anywhere! we do not have Cards Supplies, ECT. If you can not find it at JP Sports you can itnot we find will order it for you. on Social Media! it anywhere! If we do not have it we will order it for you. Open 7 Days a Week Open 250,000 7 Days a Items Week Over Over Items same 250,000 Day shIppIng

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20% OFF 20% OFF any One item any One item

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero JP-Sports_QS_106731.indd

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25 4/26/17

12:07 PM


Trout Redfish Tarpon Snook

Serving: Sanibel, Captiva, Pine Island, Fort Myers And Fort Myers Beach

S IDE Y A BCHARTERS

DEEP SEA FISHING jamminfishingcharters.com

•BACKWATER FISHING •Light Tackle • Fly Fishing www.baysidecharters.com

• 4 hr., 6 hr. and 8 hr. Charters. • Great Family Fun! • We catch Snapper, Grouper, Kingfish, Sharks, Cobia, Permit, etc.. • Enclosed head aboard.

• Rod & Reel, bait & Fishing licensed are included. Fish cleaned and bagged. • Things to bring: drinks, snacks, sunscreen, camera, sunglasses.

Jammin Charters

CAPT. KELLY KAMINSKI Ft. Myers, Florida (239) 872-1504

239-281-5865

Located in Bonita Springs, Florida

BaysideCharters_QS_21531.indd 11 BaysideCharters_QS_106731.indd

11/30/15 5/2/17 4:08 3:01 PM PM

Eat,, Drink Eat Drink,, Play & Stay

MATANZAS ON THE BAY – Fresh seafood, live entertainment and scenic waterfront views. The best of Southwest Florida, just ask the locals! n Live Music Daily n Free Boat Dockage n Indoor & Outdoor Seating

n Happy Hour Everyday n Gift Cards Available n Upstairs Sports Bar

MatanzasOnTheBay.com 416 Crescent Street Fort Myers Beach, FL

RESTAURANT • INN • MARINA

239-463-3838

5OFF

$ 26

Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

TWO ENTREES Not valid on Fridays, Saturdays or holidays. Exp. 1/31/22

SWFLTRAVSUFL21

CALL (239) 463-9258 FOR WATERFRONT ACCOMMODATIONS

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Gas and Diesel We can accommodate up to 120’ feet long Service Department Slips & Dockage with direct Gulf access Enclosed Dry Storage Ship’s Store Boat Rentals

$25 OFF Day Dockage or Boat Rentals

M O S S M A R I N A .C O M

Bring This Coupon (Short walk to the beach)

450 Harbour Court, Fort Myers Beach P: 239-765-6677

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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4/26/17 9:28 AM


1/31/22

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Serving The Very Best Seafood In An Elegant Gulf Front Setting Dinner Served Daily at 5pm Reservations Highly Recommended

Ranked in the top 10% of hospitality businesses worldwide!

Happy Hour Everyday 3:30 - 5 pm!

$5 Martinis &

Glasses of Wine Appetizer Specials

(at Bar Only)

Items, Times and Prices Subject to Change. Call for Details.

3040 Estero Blvd., Fort Myers Beach, Florida

Follow, Tag, Like!

239.463.2600

www.FreshCatchBistro.com

1/15/22

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GS

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m-8pm

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Ask for the Coupon Book at Shopper Services located near the Children’s Playground. ALL YOUR FAVORITE STORES: Banana Republic • Butterfly Beach • Calvin Klein • Cheeburger Cheeburger • Coach • Gap • Guess • Levi’s • LOFT • Nike • Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store • Swim Mart • Tommy Hilfiger • Under Armour • Island Breeze Trading Company • Dante’s Coal Fired Kitchen • Bluwave Lobster House & many more...

20350 Summerlin Rd. • 2 miles before the Sanibel Causeway • 5 miles from Ft Myers Beach TDGW21

The Best Happy Hour Mon-Fri 3-5 in The Playmore Tiki Bar

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239•463•1028 1028 Estero Blvd. in Times Square

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play $2.50 OFF

SWFTG

PER MANGROVE AIRBOAT TOUR

Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG

• 1 Hour Mangrove Airboat Tour • FREE Animal Sanctuary • FREE Hourly Alligator Show

Everglades City | 1-844-326-2628 | CaptainJacksAirboatTours.com

$6 OFF

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PER GRASSLAND COMBO TOUR Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG

• • • •

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Everglades City | 1-844-326-2628 | CaptainJacksAirboatTours.com SWFTG

Cannot be combined with other offers. Coupon Code: SWFLTG

• • • • •

$10 OFF PER TOTAL COMBO

SWFTG

$40 OFF GUIDED DOLPHIN TOUR TRIPLE OR $20 OFF GUIDED DOLPHIN TOUR DOUBLE Fort Myers Beach | 239-849-6342 | adventure-watersports.com SWFTG

ADVENTURE WATER SPORTS, INC.

WATER SPORTS, INC.

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$10 OFF PER PERSON Coupon Code: SWFLTG

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1-HOUR AIRBOAT TOUR

Everglades City | 1-877-695-2820 | JungleErvAirboatWorld.com SWFTG

$3 OFF PER PERSON

Not valid with any other offers.

SWFTG

Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-6677 | MossMarina.com SWFTG

$25 OFF

B O AT POWER BOAT RENTAL coupon per person. Not valid with any other R E N T A L S Oneoffers. Must present coupon at time of rental. Expires 1/31/22

Fort Myers Beach | 239-314-5631 | FTMyersRentalBoats.com SWFTG

$30 OFF

YOUR GROUP OF 6 OR MORE With this coupon presented in advance. Coupon may not be combined with any other discount.

Limit 1 per boat. Not to be combined with any other offer.

SWFTG

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AIRBOAT RIDES - ADULT OR CHILD Everglades | 1-800-368-0065 | captainmitchs.com

$6 OFF Bonita Springs | 239-948-9099 | CongoRiver.com

2-HOUR AIRBOAT TOUR

$2.50 OFF PER PERSON

ANY WATER SPORT ACTIVITY

$1 OFF PER GOLF PLAYER UP TO 6 PLAYERS

Everglades City | 1-877-695-2820 | JungleErvAirboatWorld.com SWFTG

$5 OFF

Fort Myers Beach | 239-849-6342 | adventure-watersports.com

Everglades City | 1-844-326-2628 | CaptainJacksAirboatTours.com SWFTG

ADVENTURE

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Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-2252 | esteroislandparasail.com SWFTG

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BOOK ONLINE AND SAVE 5%

Fort Myers Beach | 239-463-7272 | paradiseparasail.com

Book Online! | 239-472-8443 | adventuresinparadise.com

PROMO CODE: iheartfun

31


play (CONTINUED)

PARASAIL COUPON

SWFTG

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PER PERSON

Restrictions Apply. Not valid with other offers.

Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-8080 | windandwatersports.com

PARASAIL COUPON

SWFTG

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com SWFTG

FREE

Restrictions Apply. Not valid with other offers.

Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-8080 | windandwatersports.com

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com SWFTG

Restrictions Apply. Not valid with other offers.

Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-8080 | windandwatersports.com

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com SWFTG

$5 OFF SINGLE $10 OFF DOUBLE $20 OFF TRIPLE

$2 OFF

Restrictions Apply. Discount applied upon arrival. Not valid with other offers.

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com SWFTG

PRIVATE CHARTERS

EACH PLAYER IN YOUR GROUP

10% OFF

Not valid in combination with other discounts.

Restrictions Apply. Not valid with other offers.

FAMILY 4-PACK

CALL 239-263-4949 TO BOOK

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com SWFTG

BOOK ONLINE! USE DISCOUNT CODE: RENT10

Additional Players $7.50 +tax. Not valid in combination with other discounts.

Restrictions Apply. Discount applied upon arrival. Not valid with other offers.

Naples | 239-263-4949 | PureFL.com

Bonita Springs | 239-947-1377 | golfsafariminigolf.com SWFTG

BOAT RENTAL

$10 OFF

$30 PLUS TAX

SWFTG

$25 OFF YOUR BOAT RENTAL 32

JET SKI RENTAL

CALL TO RESERVE 2HR+ RENTAL

Bonita Springs | 239-947-1377 | golfsafariminigolf.com SWFTG

$10 OFF

BOOK ONLINE! USE DISCOUNT CODE: RENT10

Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-8080 | windandwatersports.com SWFTG

PER ADULT COUPLE

BOOK ONLINE! USE DISCOUNT CODE: DS250

ANY RENTAL OR 10 EXTRA MINUTES

DOLPHIN TOUR COUPON

SIGHTSEEING AND SUNSET CRUISES

$5 OFF

$5 OFF

SWFTG

PER ADULT COUPLE

BOOK ONLINE! USE DISCOUNT CODE: FISH5

$35 value. Restrictions apply.

JETSKI COUPON

DEEP & BACKWATER FISHING TRIPS ECOSEA TOURS - DOLPHIN,PUBLIC SHELLING & NATURE

$10 OFF

HD PHOTO PACKAGE

SWFTG

PER COUPLE

$7 OFF ANY DINNER CRUISE $5 OFF ANY LUNCH CRUISE $3 OFF ANY SIGHTSEEING CRUISE

SEASON DISCOUNT CODE: SWFLTG

Offer valid per couple. Not valid with any other offer. Expires 1/31/22.

Naples | 239-530-5134 | NBRBoatRental.com

Naples | 239-649-2275 | NaplesPrincessCruises.com


$2 OFF GRASSLAND AIRBOAT TOUR

SWFTG

SWFTG

Plus FREE Animal Sanctuary Visit and Live Alligator Show

BOOK ONLINE & USE CODE SWFLTG

VALID THRU 9/6/2021 COUPON CODE #8900

Cannot be combined with other offers. Discount does not apply to private airboat tours.

Not valid with other coupons/discounts.

Cape Coral | 239-574-0558 | SunSplashWaterpark.com

Ochopee | 1-800-282-2781 | WootensEverglades.com

$2 OFF SMALL AIRBOAT TOUR

SWFTG

SWFTG

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This coupon is valid anytime mon - thurs. and valid after 11am fri - sun. Coupon must be presented at golf shop to receive 10% off round discount. Offer expires 1/31/2022. May not be combined with any other offers, league fees, member rates, or special events.

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Naples | 239-642-8818 | See-Manatees.com

Cape Coral | 239-574-3939 | tropicalbreezefunpark.com

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(CONTINUED)

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Fort Myers Beach | 239-765-7272 | SightSeaFlorida.com

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LIVE MUSIC Fri, Sat & Sun 5pm - 8pm

You’ll Come Back Again & Again for our

Get a taste of Key West right here on Sanibel. For the past 18 years, The Island Cow is Sanibel’s award-winning family dining destination with great cookin’, lavish island cocktails, specialty coffees, outdoor games, and live entertainment.

Family Owned & Operated | 300+ Menu Items | Open Daily 8am - 9pm 2163 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island | 239.472.0606 | SanibelIslandCow.com

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Succulent Seafood

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner & Late Night Lounge Walking Distance to the Beach Live Music Daily Sunday Jazz Brunch Open Daily 8 AM – 10 PM (239) 395-4000 11509 Andy Rosse Lane

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

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A little history, some learning and lots of fun! While kids look forward to ice cream cones and endless pool time, parents feel fulfilled when vacation is not only fun but also educational for their children. How do you squeeze in the learning without kids rolling their eyes and saying "boooring?" We've got your back, parents! These are our picks for fun and educational attractions that you can enjoy with the kiddos.

THE MOUND HOUSE Located on Estero Bay (Fort Myers Beach) the Mound House engages visitors in archaeological, historical and environmental learning. This must-see attraction spans 2,000 years of local history. The house holds a museum and they also offer kayak tours. moundhouse.org

THE BAILEY MATTHEWS NATIONAL SHELL MUSEUM In addition to the natural history museum that included the “Great Wall of Shells” they opened a one of a kind aquarium exhibit dedicated to mollusks and their conservation in early 2020. Featuring octopuses, cuttlefish, snails and many more. shellmuseum.org

Photo Credit: Edison & Ford Winter Estates

THE EDISON AND FORD WINTER ESTATES Explore the winter home of iconic inventors Thomas A. Edison and Henry Ford in Fort Myers, tour the museum, botanical gardens, homes and laboratory. Check out their website for events! EdisonFord.org

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

THE GOLISANO CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF NAPLES A brain-building power house for children and families to learn through play. With hands-on exhibit galleries, the accessible museum invites visitors of all ages to journey through the swamps of the Everglades, weave through a maze, climb a two-story banyan tree, experiment with the water play station and more! cmon.org

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Fort Myers - Fort Myers Beach - Sanibel & Captiva Islands - Estero

37


FORT MYERS BEACH

Everglades City Marco Island Naples Bonita Springs Immokalee 38

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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12/15/15 11:14 AM

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Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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EVERGLADES AIRBOAT TOURS Grassland Airboat Tour (30 min.)

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Book Online at WootensEverglades.com 1-800-282-2781 • 32330 Tamiami Trail E • Ochopee FL 34141 42

35 Miles South of Naples on US 41 • Open Daily • Free Parking

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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AND DON’T MISS OUR Swamp Buggy Tour

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Animal Sanctuary

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Wooten’s Original Combo

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Book Online & Use Code SWFLTG

Book Online & Use Code SWFLTG

Cannot be combined with other offers. Discount does not apply to private airboat tours.

Cannot be combined with other offers. Discount does not apply to private airboat tours.

Book Online at WootensEverglades.com 1-800-282-2781 • 32330 Tamiami Trail E • Ochopee FL 34141 swflorida.travel

35 Miles South of Naples on US 41 • Open Daily • Free Parking

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

43


Everglades

Airboat Excursions

It all began in the Florida Everglades in the 1940s when tourists started asking for rides on the boats used by local frog hunters. The zippy boats with their shallow draft could fly over the so-called River of Grass waters from which the hunters supplied fancy French restaurants with frog legs. With public interest in the unusual mode of transportation, the airboat tour industry took sudden flight.

★★★

check out these five places where you can get the ride of your life! ★★★ Today, airboat tour operators line Tamiami Trail between Naples and Miami and fill the town of Everglades City with opportunities to hop aboard the noisy contraptions and head out in Everglades waters—now in search of alligators, raccoons, birds, and other wildlife. Every tour operator has his or her own shtick, but they all share Everglades backwaters, opportunities to educate about the mangrove and marsh habitats, and built-in thrills. They provide protective headgear to deaden the noise of the huge aircraft-like propellers that speed them across the water’s surface.

1

WOOTEN’S

Running since the 1950s, Wooten’s has grown from an airboat tour operation into an extensive nature attraction that also offers tours of its animal sanctuary—home to a Florida panther, tigers, lions, otters and more than 100 alligators— gator and other animal demonstrations, swamp buggy tours, a gift shop, and kayak rentals and tours. You can opt for public or private swamp buggy and airboat rides or combos of both. wootenseverglades.com 44

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

2

EVERGLADES CITY AIRBOAT TOURS

3

JUNGLE ERV’S AIRBOAT TOURS

Operated by a third-generation airboat tour guide, it takes pride in making its tours small—a maximum of six people per boat—and personalized. Guides can communicate with their passengers via two-way headphones. The one-hour narrated tour takes you through tight mangrove tunnels and narrow creeks that the bigger boats can’t navigate. evergladescity-airboattours.com

Book a Wilderness Airboat Tour or Mangrove Canopy Airboat Tour, or a combination of both. Your tickets get you free passage to a boardwalk trail that travels through a raccoon sanctuary, gator slough, mangrove forest, and manatee lookout point. They also include admission to an alligator show. jungleervairboatworld.com swflorida.travel


4

CAPTAIN JACK’S AIRBOAT TOURS

5

CAPT. MITCH’S AIRBOAT TOURS

With its Total Everglades Combo, you get to tour mangroves and grasslands by airboat, ride aboard a big-wheeled and elevated swamp buggy, visit Captain Jack’s animal sanctuary, see a free alligator show, and even hug a baby alligator for a cool Instagram post. Home to rescued wildlife, the animal sanctuary holds snakes, turtles, crocodiles, alligators, river otters, and big cats. captainjacksairboattours.com

A descendant of pioneers in the airboat business, Capt. Mitch offers private tours in six-seat boats. The business, he likes to boast, is “Redneck Owned and Operated.” During a one-hour tour, learn about the Everglades eco-system and how it works while exploring hardwood tree hammocks, cattail sloughs, and habitat for a number of wild animals including gators, snakes, bobcats, and bald eagles. captainmitchs.com swflorida.travel

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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HALF-DAY OFFSHORE FISHING ON OUR MULTI PASSENGER VESSEL 46' DALIS

TRIP DEPARTS DAILY AT 7 AM RETURNS 11:30

NAPLESFISHINGBOATS.COM

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FISHNAPLESDALIS.COM

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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SEE THE BEST OF NAPLES AND THE EVERGLADES ( 2 3 9 ) 2 6 2 - 7 3 0 0 | 1010 6 t h Ave S . | N a p l e s , F L | 34 10 2 swflorida.travel

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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Vacation with a Side of Water In and around Naples, the water is where it’s at. Like local residents, visitors find that their two favorite ways to enjoy all the area’s various waterfronts and wetlands are at the beach or in a boat – whether it’s a sailboat, power boat, or paddlecraft. Some of the best local beach experiences combine the two – accessible only by boat. Others you can reach easily by car. Take your pick from these favorites, depending upon whether you’re looking for relaxation, action or the truest getaway.

3

DELNOR-WIGGINS PASS STATE PARK 11135 Gulfshore Blvd, Naples

Anglers, nature-lovers, shellers, picnickers and paddlers find an ideal retreat at this popular beach at the north end of Vanderbilt Beach. An observation tower provides an overlook of the pass and the Gulf of Mexico. Amenities: Shelters, tables, grills, an observation tower, paddlecraft rentals, restrooms, showers. Parking: $6 per vehicle with 2-8 occupants.

1

BAREFOOT BEACH PRESERVE 505 Barefoot Beach Blvd, Naples

Somewhat hidden from the beaten beach path, it requires traveling through a residential neighborhood to find this natural gem, where gopher tortoises cross the road and butterflies flit through the native garden. Amenities: Tables, a walking trail, nature exhibits, gardens, restrooms. Parking: $8 per day

4

MARCO ISLAND BEACHES Collier Blvd, Marco Island

SOUTH MARCO BEACH 930 S. Collier Blvd. Its sands run between the Gulf and Marco high-rises with limited facilities, but near a popular restaurant. The parking lot and restrooms lie across the boulevard. Amenities: restrooms. Parking: $8 per day

2

BONITA BEACH PARK

For active beachgoers, this lively park at the southernmost end of the island conveniently lies near water sports rentals and a fun beach restaurant and bar.

TIGERTAIL BEACH 480 Hernando Dr. At the island’s northern end, it draws metro beachgoers interested in wildlife, seashells and water sports. A quiet lagoon attracts feeding birds, while the sandbar on the other side scoops up shells.

Amenities: Shelters, tables, grills, sand volleyball court, a paddlecraft launch, a playground and restrooms. Parking: $2 per hour.

Amenities: shelter, tables, playgrounds, a food concession, beach and watersport rentals, restrooms. Parking: $8 per day

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27954 Hickory Blvd, Bonita Springs

Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

swflorida.travel


5

NAPLES BEACHES Gulfshore Blvd, Naples

The Naples Pier anchors the town’s stretch of beach accesses. Naturally, fishing is a favorite pastime at the pier beach, which is also convenient to downtown Naples’ legendary shop-and-dine scene. Two other well-loved accesses include: CLAM PASS PARK 465 Seagate Dr. Hop aboard the free tram that travels from the parking lot, across an estuary boardwalk, to plush white sands with all the amenities you need for a beach day. It lies at Naples’ north end, adjacent to the Naples Grande Beach Resort. Amenities: Tables, a restaurant, resort beach and watersport rentals, restrooms. Parking: $8 per day LOWDERMILK PARK 1301 Gulfshore Blvd. N. Perfect for family beach outings, it stretches midtown, encompassing playgrounds, a duck pond, volleyball courts and a food concession. Two gazebos are available to rent, and yoga classes happen on Saturdays. Amenities: tables, shelters, playgrounds, a food concession, a duck pond, beach rentals. Parking: $3 per hour

6

OFFSHORE BEACHES

To combine beaching and boating, rent a boat or charter and head to offshore barrier islands unconnected to the land.

KEEWAYDIN ISLAND A short ride from Naples’ marinas, it jams on the weekends and other in-season times with boaters who pull up to sun, pick up shells, swim and picnic. At busy times, food concession boats accommodate the beach crowd. TEN THOUSAND ISLANDS NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE This maze of mangrove and sand islands south of Everglades National Park can be daunting for first-timers to the area. A number of charters can whisk you off to a beach all your own or the ethereal, abandoned white dome pods of Cape Romano.

Marco Island’s most unique waterfront dining experience! Sightseeing • Lunch • Sunset Dinner • Narrated Nature & History Cruise Wedding • Private Charters • Family Gatherings • Special Events

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Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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Bonita Springs - Everglades City - Marco Island - Naples

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Page Field Airport

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

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& NATURE PARK

Crave adventure and comfort food? Adore bargains and cute critters? How about catching a show? The Shell Factory & Nature Park is the place for you! We’ve got tons of fun happening every day of the week all year long. You’re gonna love it as much as I do! Check out our Facebook page and website for upcoming events and info 16554 N. Cleveland Ave. (US 41) N. Fort Myers, FL 33903 (239) 995-2141 • shellfactory.com

Nature Park

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FOLLOW. tag. Like. Tag us @visitswflorid a and use #visitswflorid for a chance to a be featured in ou r next issue!

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#VISITSWFLORIDA 54

Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

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Jammin Charters 239-281-5865

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Visit our website for web only specials & online tee times Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

11/22/17 2:27 PM 11/30/15 1:58 PM

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

57


pine island:

“Florida’s Creative Coast” PINE ISLAND is rightfully nicknamed “Florida’s Creative Coast” for its colorful selection of art galleries, restaurants serving fresh seafood, and local “characters.” Secluded Pine Island has a quirky, laidback small-town feel set in a lush, natural environment. Surrounded by mangroves, it’s home to three natural preserves; a collection of talented artists; acres of palm, tropical plants and fruit groves; waterways offering excellent fishing, boating and paddling along with birdwatching; nature trails; ancient Indian shell mound; and bounty of specialty shops and fine art galleries.

★★★

Pine Island has a quirky, laidback small-town feel set in a lush, natural environment. ★★★ Pine Island is void of high-rises and traffic lights. It’s Southwest Florida’s largest island at 17 miles long and 2 miles wide and is made up of five distinct communities, Bokeelia, Matlacha, Pine Island Center, Pineland and St. James City. The island is only about a 30-minute drive from Fort Myers and about 15 minutes from Cape Coral.

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

59


days the family way From Cape Coral, Pine Island and North Fort Myers to Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte, the region just north of Fort Myers has so much in store for families, you might need a plan. This three-day road map to navigating the area with kids hits all the high notes. And a few secrets.

Photo Credit: The Shell Factory & Nature Park

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Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

Photo Credit: Sun Splash

day 1:

Get a jump on the day’s crowd and head to the sign with the giant conch shell that marks the SHELL FACTORY & NATURE PARK (shellfactory.com), the region’s oldest surviving attraction, in North Fort Myers. There’s enough happening here to spend a half-day at least. The Nature Park brings together our most intriguing native species such as alligators and raccoons, with 400 different creatures from around the world. Kids are particularly fascinated by the bugs, spiders, snakes, and other creepy-crawly critters in the Eco Lab; farm and exotic animals they can pet and feed; the butterfly garden; and the dinosaur playground. In Scallywags Fun Park, every amusement activity they have ever dreamed of exists–from miniature golf and bumper boats to zip lining and a 40-foot climbing pole. Stop in at Southern Grill for seafood, pasta and ribs before you head to the shops and museums inside. From its humble beginnings as a shell shop, the retail operation has flourished into a continuum of gift stores, the Christmas House, a fudge shop, a video arcade and other dazzling attractions.

day 2:

Time for sunshine, water and beach. Cape Coral’s SUN SPLASH FAMILY PARK (sunsplashwaterpark.com) opens seasonally with all the speed slides, kiddie pools, sand beaches and stay-wet activities kids love. When it isn’t open, head instead to the public beach at the YACHT CLUB COMMUNITY PARK (capecoral.net) in Cape Coral. It borders the Caloosahatchee River and provides swimming ops from its shoreline and in its swimming and kiddie pools. Other family-friendly facilities include a waterfront restaurant, playgrounds, a fishing pier and a bait shop. In the afternoon, visit the CALUSA HERITAGE TRAIL (floridamuseum.ufl.edu/rrc) in Pineland on Pine Island to build a history lesson into the schedule. Learn about the region’s earliest inhabitants and climb to the top of a Calusa mound. Plan on dinner at one of the island’s funky fish houses in Matlacha or St. James City.

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Photo Credit: Courtesy of Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor & Convention Bureau

day 3:

To the North, Charlotte County maintains its nature and history for a quiet, off-theradar day of exploration. DOWNTOWN PUNTA GORDA preserves its history in its buildings and a trail of 29 murals that tell stories from heyday to modern-day. In the cool of morning, take advantage of the free bicycle loaner program to tour the town, its riverfront, parks, shops and great restaurants. Spend the rest of the day relaxing at PORT CHARLOTTE BEACH PARK (charlottecountyfl.gov). In addition to sunning and swimming in river waters, the complete recreation center offers picnic facilities, grills, swimming and kiddie pools, basketball, tennis, volleyball, a fishing pier and canoe and kayak rentals.

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Photo Credit: Courtesy of Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor & Convention Bureau

Cape Coral - Pine Island - Port Charlotte - Punta Gorda

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