15 Best Things to Do in Fort Myers Beach (FL)

Written by Bart Meeuwesen
Updated on
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Fort Myers Beach is a small city of around 7,000 people situated on Estero Island in Lee County in southwestern Florida. The city’s location along the Gulf Coast means the area has a tropical climate, with warm temperatures and sunny skies most of the year.

Fort Myers Beach is a tropical paradise best known for its seven miles of coastline, most of which is comprised of white, sandy beaches.

This little barrier island town may be small in area and population, but it packs in quite a lot to see and do. A colorful history, a laid-back small-town atmosphere, and a lively nightlife scene are just the beginning.

The city is home to a wide variety of accommodations for every budget, ranging from family-friendly resorts to little cottages suitable for romantic getaways.

Fresh seafood adorns the menus of the many waterfront dining establishments, and world-class shopping and attractions are available in abundance in Fort Myers Beach and surrounding areas.

Below are 15 of the Best Things to do in Fort Myers Beach, Florida.

1. Take a Dolphin and Wildlife Cruise with Good Time Charters

Estero Bay Aquatic PreserveSource: EQRoy / shutterstock
Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve

Good Time Charters offer a spectacular 90-minute eco excursion that leaves the marina in Fort Myers Beach to explore the waters offshore, including Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve.

During this tour, nature enthusiasts of all ages enjoy the comfort of the fully-equipped boat, while the captain keeps a lookout for dolphins, manatees, and a variety of birds and other marine life.

A trained biologist provides an educational run-down on the different aquatic animals you’ll see while you sit back and enjoy the stunning coastal scenery.

2. Imaginarium Science Center

Imaginarium Science CenterSource: EQRoy / shutterstock
Imaginarium Science Center

People of all ages enjoy a hands-on experience while learning about science, history, technology, and nature at the Imaginarium Science Center in Fort Myers. More than 60 interactive displays are spread out across the museum.

Visitors can take part in a number of experiences, including feeding stingrays, observing a wide variety of native and exotic fish in the large aquarium, and exploring the region as it was 150 years ago through a 3D Virtual Reality experience.

3. Sun Splash Waterpark

Sun Splash Waterpark, Cape CoralSource: Sun Splash Family Waterpark / Facebook
Sun Splash Waterpark

More than 14 acres of water fun await visitors at Sun Splash Waterpark in nearby Cape Coral. As the biggest waterpark in the region, it has attractions for all ages, including a lazy river that streams around the park, a massive tube slide that plunges you into complete darkness, and many water slides of varying sizes.

Very young children enjoy Pirate’s Cove, where they can have fun playing in the water gushers and fountains. Lounge chairs and cabana rentals are available, and three eateries are on-site.

4. Fort Myers Beach

Fort Myers BeachSource: lunamarina / shutterstock
Fort Myers Beach

Of course, no trip to Fort Myers Beach is complete without at least one day spent enjoying its namesake: the long stretch of soft white sand that makes up one of the most popular beaches in the country.

Water sports – including swimming, kayaking, and parasailing – are enjoyed year-round at Fort Myers Beach, and because the waters are usually shallow and calm, it’s safe for young children.

Many festivals and exciting events take place on the beach throughout the year.

5. Times Square

Times Square, Fort Myers BeachSource: Jillian Cain Photography / shutterstock
Times Square

Times Square is where visitors find the premier destination for shopping, dining, and entertainment in Fort Myers Beach. Situated near the pier, the lively pedestrian-access district is home to some of the best seafood restaurants around, little surf shops, colorful art galleries, and unique boutique shops.

Live entertainment happens at many of the eateries throughout the week, and during the high season, street performers come out to entertain the masses. Sunset Celebration beach parties are held every weekend and feature a wide variety of family activities and live entertainment.

6. FMB Haunted Pub Crawl

FMB Haunted Pub CrawlSource: Yupa Watchanakit / shutterstock
FMB Haunted Pub Crawl

Visitors get the best of both worlds when they participate in the FMB Haunted Pub Crawl. They get to sample local beer, wine, and spirits while getting the grand tour of some of Fort Myers Beach’s most haunted locations – with the possibility of spotting one of the town’s other spirits.

While making the rounds from pub to pub, hear chilling stories about some of the area’s greatest mysteries, learn about the interesting history of the city, and be entertained by tour guides who are also magicians and mediums.

The venues along this tour have been hand-picked based on their level of paranormal activity.

7. Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium

Calusa Nature Center & PlanetariumSource: Bill Ragan / shutterstock
Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium

Visitors of all ages get a hands-on learning experience via hiking trails, exhibits, a natural history museum, a butterfly aviary, and a bird aviary at the 105-acre Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium.

This non-profit organization sets out to educate the public about the natural world, particularly when it comes to the plant and animal species of Southwest Florida, and to inspire more people to get out in nature.

The center houses many rescue animals, and the planetarium is the only one of its kind in the Southwest region of the state.

8. Lovers Key State Park

Lovers Key State ParkSource: Maridav / shutterstock
Lovers Key State Park

Extending 712 acres across the Fort Myers Beach area, Lovers Key State Park is the perfect place to spend the day if you love nature and outdoor activities. Many different bird species can be observed in the park, and bottlenose dolphins and manatees can be spotted offshore.

The two-mile-long beach area is where visitors can participate in a wide range of water activities, such as swimming, shelling, canoeing, and kayaking.

Other activities enjoyed in the park include biking, hiking, fishing, wildlife viewing, and geocaching. A picnic area, playground, and boat ramp are on-site.

9. Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille Fort Myers Beach

Doc Ford's Rum Bar and Grille Fort Myers BeachSource: AProvchy / shutterstock
Doc Ford’s Rum Bar And Grille Fort Myers Beach

Situated on nearby San Carlos Island near Fort Myers Beach is one of the area’s preferred eateries. The main focus at Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille is on local seafood specialties, with a Caribbean twist using only the highest quality ingredients.

Some of the dishes on offer include seafood paella, Campeche fish tacos, and panko-fried shrimp. A raw bar is also available and features various shrimp and oyster options. As if the scrumptious meals were not enough, diners enjoy waterfront views while they dine.

Live entertainment takes place throughout the week.

10. Check out Sanibel Island and Captiva Island

Historic Sanibel Island LighthouseSource: William Silver / shutterstock
Historic Sanibel Island Lighthouse

While the drive to either one of these places is a bit long, it’s worth it to check out both these beautiful, must-see islands. Known for stunning beaches with soft sand and an abundance of unique seashells, each island also has attractions that are worth checking it.

Sanibel is home to several wildlife refuges, including J. N. Darling National Wildlife Refuge. Captiva has the Captiva Island Historical Society’s History Gallery. Both islands have lodging options and fine dining restaurants.

11. Fort Myers Beach Art Association and Gallery

Fort Myers Beach Art Association And GallerySource: Fort Myers Beach Art Association / Facebook
Fort Myers Beach Art Association And Gallery

This long-standing non-profit art gallery in Fort Myers has two working art galleries with the works from 150 artists from around the country on display.

A variety of fine artworks are sold on-site.

12. Matanzas Pass Preserve

Matanzas Pass PreserveSource: Ebyabe / Wikimedia
Matanzas Pass Preserve

Sixty acres of beautiful natural green spaces make up the Matanzas Pass Preserve near Fort Myers Beach. The park protects the area’s last remaining maritime oak hammock habitats, and many bird and animal species can be spotted on a walk through the preserve.

Kayaking and canoeing are popular activities in the area, and a boat launch allows visitors to paddle along the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail. A short hiking trail is also on-site.

13. Lagerhead Cycleboats

Lagerhead CycleboatsSource: lagerheadcycleboats.com
Lagerhead Cycleboats

Visitors who are in the mood for a party atmosphere away from a traditional bar or pub get a unique and fun experience onboard a cycle boat with Lagerhead Cycleboats.

This type of boat is a long sailing vessel with a bar in the middle. Patrons sit around this bar, and everyone peddles in order to move through the water. While onboard, you enjoy refreshing beverages, music, and stunning coastal scenery.

14. Take to the Water with Holiday Water Sports

WaverunnerSource: Nadezda Murmakova / shutterstock

Visitors to Fort Myers Beach enjoy a wide variety of water activities with the help of equipment rentals and tours from Holiday Water Sports.

Waverunners, sailboats, parasails, kayaks, and paddleboards are available, along with safety equipment and instruction. The company also offers nature and adventure tours highlighting the area’s marine life.

15. Bowditch Point Regional Park

Bowditch Point Regional ParkSource: Jillian Cain Photography / shutterstock
Bowditch Point Regional Park

Situated in the northern portion of Estero Island, Bowditch Point Regional Park combines a nature preserve and recreation area for visitors who like to observe nature and participate in outdoor activities.

Several walking trails pass through the preserve area, where you can spot a number of bird species. Some butterfly gardens, a boardwalk, picnic tables, and a scenic viewing area are on-site.

15 Best Things to Do in Fort Myers Beach (FL):

  • Take a Dolphin and Wildlife Cruise with Good Time Charters
  • Imaginarium Science Center
  • Sun Splash Waterpark
  • Fort Myers Beach
  • Times Square
  • FMB Haunted Pub Crawl
  • Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium
  • Lovers Key State Park
  • Doc Ford's Rum Bar and Grille Fort Myers Beach
  • Check out Sanibel Island and Captiva Island
  • Fort Myers Beach Art Association and Gallery
  • Matanzas Pass Preserve
  • Lagerhead Cycleboats
  • Take to the Water with Holiday Water Sports
  • Bowditch Point Regional Park