Top 10 Can’t Miss Things to Do in Fort Myers

Fort Myers has something for everyone with a rich history thanks to its famous early residents including Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. If you’re visiting Fort Myers, Florida it’s not a question of “what can you do” but rather “what will you do first”! Take your pick from this list of Top 10 Favorites!

1. Step Back in Time at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates

This 20-acre site includes five historic buildings including the furnished winter homes of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. The restored Research Laboratory and Museum provide insight into the prolific inventions of Edison. Tour the gardens with their tropical plants and take a selfie beneath the huge banyan tree. Learn more about Edison & Ford Winter Estate here

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

2. Cool Off in the Splash Park

Lakes Regional Park covers 300 acres with natural lakes that are home to alligators and many wading birds. Walk along the nature trails or rent a bicycle or 6-seater Surrey and hit the trail. Kayaks, pedal boats, and electric boats are also available near the Whistle Stop Café. There’s a Miniature Railroad ride and Splash Park with its fountains and water play that kids love. Learn more about Lakes Regional Park here.

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Photo credit Nita Ettinger

3. Visit the World’s Largest Shell Factory

There’s far more to see at the world’s largest Shell Factory than seashells. This 80-year-old “Old Florida” roadside attraction has evolved with the years and now includes an animal park with feeding stations, botanical garden, bumper boats, and mega zip line. Browse the huge shop for souvenirs and admire the fantastic collection of seashells in glass showcases. 

4. Take a Guided Walking Tour with True Tours

The most enjoyable way to learn more about the historic buildings and pioneer settlers that developed Fort Myers is on a guided walking tour. Stroll along First Street listening to humorous tales and interesting snippets of history. True Tours also offers Haunted History Tours after dark, if you dare!

5. Go Manatee Spotting on the River

In winter, manatees flock to the warm water outlet from the Florida Power and Light Power Plant on the Orange River in Fort Myers. View them from the waterfront Manatee Park, or better still enjoy a boat trip with Manatee & Eco River Tours. The captain and on-board naturalist provide an unforgettable trip to see them in their natural habitat. 

Photo credit Nita Ettinger
Photo courtesy Manatee & Eco River Tours

6. Stretch your Imagination!

The IMAG History and Science Center provides a full day of activities for families of all ages. Located close to downtown, it includes interactive experience and mind-boggling challenges in a series of games and exhibits. You can also feed stingrays, there’s an interesting Sea-to-See Touch Tank and Living Lab. Staff offer live animal encounters and there’s a 3D Theater if you need a break! Learn more about IMAG here. 

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Photo courtesy IMAG History and Science Center

7. A Day at the Beach

Fort Myers Beach offers four miles of soft white sand lapped by warm Gulf waters. There’s always a breeze to keep things pleasant. Relax on beach chairs, spot dolphins, rent wave runners and stand-up paddleboards or take to the air with an exciting parasail ride. Park by the Pier and access the beach at Lynn Hall Memorial Park Beach

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman
Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

8. Walk the Boardwalk

Explore native Florida at Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve. This non-profit attraction has an excellent Interpretive Center, which provides free spotter guides to accompany you along the boardwalk, which stretches for over a mile. There are several lookouts across ponds where you may see turtles, gar, nesting herons, egrets, woodpeckers and playful river otters. 

9. Attend a Spring Training Baseball Game

Fort Myers is home to JetBlue Park, home of the Boston Red Sox and Hammond Stadium at CenturyLink Sports Complex, home of the Minnesota Twins Spring Training. Book tickets online to see the winners of the 2019 ALW Central Division or the World Series Champions as they warm-up for their next season. It’s a great atmosphere! Minnesota Twins Spring Training infoBoston Red Sox Spring Training info

10. Visit the Theater

Tucked inside the Historic Arcade between First Street and Bay Street downtown Fort Myers, the beautifully restored Arcade Theatre dates back to 1915. This premiere Repertory Theater has a full program of live entertainment from romantic comedy to musical masterpieces for a memorable night out. Learn more about the Florida Repertory Theatre’s Arcade Theatre


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About the Author: Thien Bao