Straddling the Caloosahatchee River, Fort Myers is well-known for its affiliation with Thomas Edison. As well as exploring the legacy of the legendary lightbulb inventor, Fort Myers is a great place to rub shoulders with Florida manatees and enjoy a flourishing local arts scene.
Things to do in Fort Myers
The Fort Myers River District is the beating heart of the city, with breezy streets lined with palm trees and redbrick buildings. The riverfront serves up exceptional local culture, from quirky boutiques and independent galleries to trendy cafes and farm-to-table restaurants.
Built in 1885, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates is a must-visit attraction for any history buff. One of Florida’s original snowbirds, Thomas Edison and fellow inventor Henry Ford escaped to the Sunshine State every winter. Today, you can discover their legacy at a fascinating museum showcasing everything from light bulbs and phonographs to waffle irons and celluloid film.
Want to get face to face with Florida’s adorable manatees? From December through March manatees flock up the Orange River to bask in the warm waters of Lee County Manatee Park. You can admire them from waterside viewing platforms or rent a kayak and go for a paddle with the gentle giants.
Built in 1908, the Arcade Theatre hosts a colourful line-up of comedy acts, musicals and Tony award-winning stage shows. The grand Mediterranean Revival building is now home to the Florida Repertory Theatre, one of America’s most prestigious performing arts companies.
Getting around Fort Myers
The Fort Myers River District is easily navigated on foot, with most major attractions minutes apart. Buses and trolleys run throughout the city, though the fastest way to get around is with a hire car. Most travellers fly into Southwest Florida International Airport, located around 30 minutes from downtown Fort Myers.