#TravelTuesday: Fab Fort Myers Beach

by Babs Chandrasoma on February 13, 2018 in Travels,
One of the beautiful sunset on Fort Myers Beach. Photo by Babs Chandrasoma 1 e1518476338492

The people of Fort Myers Beach are warm, friendly and inviting, as are the white sand beaches and warm ocean breeze of Fort Myers Beach, Florida.

With a population of approximately 6,500 in the off-season and over 50,000 during the peak season, it’s easy to understand what attracts many to this tropical paradise. The dazzling beaches and breathtaking sunsets draw visitors and snowbirds from across the nation. Whether you are looking for a relaxing walk on the beach, an island excursion, fine dining or a lively dolphin excursion, you’ll find it here.

The Neptune Resort is mere steps away from the Gulf of Mexico and those inviting beaches. The property is home to 71 newly-updated guest rooms, almost all offering a scenic view of the beach or the hotel pools. Each spacious guest room features the comforts of home, including mini kitchens with refrigerator and microwave, sleeper sofas, and unlimited Internet access. The heated outdoor pools beckon after a day of exploring the town and frolicking on the beach.

Whether you are planning a trip to escape the cold of winter or a fun-filled family summer vacation, Fort Myers Beach will not disappoint.

Interested in combining a bit of exercise while enjoying the water, sunshine and views? Give Lagerhead Cycleboats a call to schedule a unique experience that blends fitness and fun! An evening cruise with friends and family provides a unique respite to the humid Florida evenings. The 90-minute adventure includes one or two stops to offer the cyclists a break and—if you prefer to sit back and relax—the boat is equipped with a backup motor.

In the mood for waterfront dining with a modern twist to local cuisine? Fish-Tale Waterfront Dining is a winning blend of nautical design and savory cuisine. The open-air establishment is nestled in a family-owned marina and proudly sources its produce and seafood locally. Another favorite spot with a casual atmosphere is Flipper’s on the Bay, located on the backwaters of Estero Bay. The menu offers unique signature cocktails, such as Fresh Garden Martini, along with local favorites and savory desserts. An amusing option, beach parking, means customers can arrive by boat and park directly on the shoreline to enjoy lunch.

Colorful nautical decor highlights the dining room at Fish-Tale Waterfront Dining. Photo Babs Chandrasoma

Did you know bottlenose dolphins never travel further than 30 miles from their birthplace and eat 30 pounds of fish a day? This and many other interesting facts are all part of the Estero Bay Express dolphin tour. Captain Justin discusses dolphin characteristics and behavior patterns, and how to identify dolphins in their natural habitat. To conserve energy, dolphins will draft behind a boat, similar to the way cyclists draft while riding on the road, and it is a real treat to witness the playful event.

The state of Florida produces 52% of the sugar cane in the US, and is a haven for sugar products, especially rum. Plan a stop at the Wicked Dolphin Distillery, a family-run business established in 2012 that prides itself on using local ingredients to produce an award-winning true Florida rum.

Barrels of fun: Wicked Dolphin rum. Photo Babs Chandrasoma

Speaking of local agricultural, the balmy Florida climate is ideal for growing hops; contributing to the growing microbrewery industry. Big Blue Brewery uses local honey and citrus for many of its 24 tap beers. The owners have fun naming their brews. A favorite, the “Lightest One You Have,” was named after multiple requests from customers for the lightest beer on the menu. The brewery and restaurant has live music, indoor and outdoor seating, a full menu and brewery tours: something for everyone.

Prefer a day on the water? Southern Instincts Charters has daily excursions with multiple stops and charismatic narrative from Fort Myers native Captain Matt. A memorable stop on the tour is Cayo Costa State Park, an oasis for shell seekers. The island is accessible only via boat, thus providing a quieter shelling retreat than its more popular island cousin, Sanibel.

Make sure to bring your dollar to place on the wall at the famed Cabbage Key. Remember where you placed it so you can find it again on your next visit! Photo Babs Chandrasoma

Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant is located on a remote island on the inland bay waters and also only accessible by boat. The restaurant is best known for their cheeseburgers and unique dollar-covered wall porch. From all accounts, the tradition of attaching dollar bills to the wall started with a fisherman who left his signed dollar taped to the wall to ensure a drink would be available on the next visit. Since then, thousands have been donated to charity as the bills succumb to the heat and humidity, falling to the ground. Each server is equipped with a marker and masking tape to assist customers with creating and attaching their dollar to the wall or ceiling. Make sure you pay close attention to the location of your dollar; you will want to find it on your next visit.

Cover photo: One of the beautiful sunset on Fort Myers Beach. Photo by Babs Chandrasoma