Introduction to Fort Myers Beach, Florida
Fort Myers Beach, Florida, in Lee county, is 7 miles S of Cape Coral, Florida (center to center) and 108 miles S of Tampa, Florida. It is within the Fort Myers-Cape Coral metropolitan area.
Fort Myers Beach History
The Calusa Indians were the first inhabitants of the present day town of Fort Myers Beach. The territory was under British and Spanish control from the the late 17th to the mid 19th century. In the mid 18th century, the Calusa Indians were displaced, and the Cuba, Ranchos and Creek Indians took control of the region. Following the Homestead Act of 1862, American settlements were established. William Case established a cottage rental industry on the island in the early 1900s. Estero Island, where Fort Myers Beach is located, was known at that time as "Crescent Beach." Development remained slow until the 1950s, when the tourism industry gained momentum. Fort Myers Beach was incorporated as a town on December 31, 1995.
Fort Myers Beach and Nearby Attractions
- Bailey Matthews Shell Museum.
- Museum of the Islands.
- Thomas Edison Winter Estate.
- Lovers Key State Park.
- Caloosahatchee National Wildlife Refuge.
- Naples Zoo.
Things To Do In Fort Myers Beach
Exhibits in the Museum of the Islands and Bailey Matthews Shell Museum focus on local history and nature. The Henry Ford Estate and Thomas Edison Winter Estate are two nearby historical sites. Caloosahatchee National Wildlife Refuge is situated on the Gulf Coast, and Fort Myers Beach features miles of white, sandy, "natural beaches." Pier & Lynn Hall Memorial Park and Bowditch Point Regional Park are two of the popular parks within the town. Since both are along the Gulf of Mexico, they offer numerous opportunities for hiking, swimming and sunbathing. The Lovers Key State Park is home to a variety of wildlife including bottlenose dolphins, marsh rabbits, West Indian manatees, roseate spoonbills and bald eagles.
Fort Myers Beach Transportation
The closest major airport is Southwest Florida International Airport.
Fort Myers Beach Higher Education
Edison Community College, Florida Gulf Coast University and Manatee Community College are near the town of Fort Myers Beach.