13 Beautiful Beaches in Fort Myers To Visit On Your Southwest Florida Trip

Located in Southwest Florida, Fort Myers is one of the Sunshine State’s top travel destinations. Treat yourself to a vacation of a lifetime and spend time frolicking on the best beaches in Fort Myers. Hosting some of the state’s finest stretches of sand, this famous seaside city is a fantastic place to enjoy the perfect Florida beach experience. From swimming and kayaking to sunbathing and beachcombing, enjoy fun on sand and water with this complete guide to Fort Myers’s most beautiful beaches!

Why Treksplorer? Founded in 2011 by Ryan O’Rourke, Treksplorer provides travel recommendations and advice to millions of readers every year. Our content is rooted in our writers’ firsthand experiences, in-depth research, and/or collaborations with other experts and locals. Read more about our editorial policy.

Fort Myers Beach

Blessed with white sand and warm water, Fort Myers Beach is the city’s most popular seaside destination. The beach is the perfect destination to enjoy water sports, such as parasailing and kayaking. Visitors can also simply relax on a beach that’s both inviting and breathtaking.

Fort Myers Beach

Fort Myers Beach is located on Estero Island, a small barrier island on the Gulf Coast. The seven-mile-long beach offers excellent facilities, including clean showers, restrooms, and accessible parking.

If you want to take a break from the sand and the sea, the town of Fort Myers Beach itself has a great party atmosphere. You can also enjoy a restful afternoon eating ice cream at Fort Myers Beach Pier, chillin’ out at Lynn Hall Memorial Park, or shopping around Times Square.

Fort Myers Beach truly offers something for everyone—from days filled with sand and sea to sports activities to quiet tourist activities to a party vibe for the young at heart. It’s also one of the best areas to stay in Fort Myers, with its slew of excellent family-friendly hotels.

Bowditch Point Park

Located in the north of Estero Island, Bowditch Point Park stretches across 17 acres. The park is divided into seven acres of grassland for recreational use. The remaining ten acres are preserved.

The serene location of Bowditch Point Park offers a choice of settings to fulfill all of your needs. The bay features calm waters, quiet surroundings, and a view of boats entering and leaving the bay.

Bowditch Point Park

Bowditch Point Park features areas for grilling in a relaxed tropical setting that’s sure to please everyone. It provides a great atmosphere for walkers, swimmers, and sunbathers. Pack beach chairs and enjoy this top-rated Fort Myers beach for the whole day. You can also spend your time on walking trails through the nature preserve while birdwatching.

Looking for a comfortable stay in the area? Settle one of the superb luxury hotels on Estero Blvd.

Captiva Beach

Located on Captiva Island on the Gulf Coast, Captiva Beach is a popular spot for shelling and one of the top attractions in Fort Myers. Encompassing several sections of pristine shoreline, Captiva Beach is all about taking advantage of the outdoors. On your visit, you’ll get to fill your days with biking, sailing, bird-watching, and water activities galore.

Captiva Beach

Alison Hagerup Beach Park is a sliver of land nestled next to the state’s southwest coast. If you want to cast a line at Alison Hagerup Beach Park, keep in mind that you’re required to have a license to fish from the shore of this beautiful stretch beach.

Sitting on the southern tip of Captiva Island, Turner Beach has a magical feel. Keep an eye out: You’re likely to discover sea and wildlife in the clear, shallow waters. One of the most interesting places to visit on Captiva Island, it’s the perfect beach for families, offering good beach fun for everyone.

RELATED: Most Popular Florida Gulf Coast Beaches

The kids will love splashing around in the pools while looking for sea animals. Turner Beach also offers outdoor showers so everyone can get cleaned up before getting back to the car. 

Cayo Costa State Park

Located along the Gulf Coast west of Fort Myers, Cayo Costa State Park sits upon one of Florida’s most significant barrier islands. Accessible only by boat, it’s served by a public ferry four miles west of Pine Island, FL. You can also reach the island via private boat.

Cayo Costa

Located on Cayo Costa, Cayo Costa State Park is home to unique vegetation and the gorgeous sandy stretch of famous Fort Myers beaches. The island is an excellent place for everyone who enjoys camping, swimming, shelling, and fishing.

Cayo Costa offers a relaxed, seven-mile-long island destination of pristine beaches filled with natural wilderness and a sense of serenity. Cayo Costa moves at its own pace. It’ll make you feel relaxed in no time. 

Bowman’s Beach

Isolated and picturesque, Bowman’s Beach is arguably the most popular beach on Sanibel Island. This white-sand beach is excellent for shelling. On-site amenities such as picnic tables and barbeque grills make the five-minute hike from the parking area worth it. Restrooms for the beach are located just off of Bowmans Beach Rd. It’s one of the coolest places to visit on Sanibel Island to enjoy an outdoor BBQ with splendid views.

Bowman's Beach

Avid hikers and explorers will enjoy walking the several miles of empty white-sand beaches covered in shells. It’s also easy to find the perfect spot for watching the sunset.

RELATED: Must-Do Side Trips from Miami

Bowman’s Beach has excellent shore fishing that’s free to residents. Anglers will be delighted by the experience of catching fish and being surrounded by the unique beauty.

Lighthouse Beach Park

Located on Sanibel Island’s southern tip, Lighthouse Beach Park offers one of the area’s finest stretches of sands. The park encompasses Sanibel Lighthouse, built in 1884 to mark the entrance to San Carlos Bay.

Lighthouse Beach Park

Lighthouse Beach Park is a quaint area that’s become the center of island activity. The park shows off a great beach for kids. It offers excellent shelling opportunities while giving young explorers a clear view of the Gulf of Mexico. It’s one of the top beaches on Sanibel Island, and it’s sure to be a favorite for the little ones. 

Enjoy fishing from the fishing pier, picnicking, strolling on the nature trail, ocean swimming, sailing, or windsurfing. You’ll be sure to get perfect snapshots of the whole family, filled with the beauty you can only find at a natural beach.

Crescent Beach Family Park

Crescent Beach Family Park is a 2.25-acre beachfront park close to Matanzas Bridge on Estero Blvd. It’s surrounded by a 400-foot stretch of beach. The park offers excellent amenities, including two restrooms, two accessible parking spaces, four beach access points, a picnic area, two beach volleyball courts, and plenty of open space. When you visit, expect a full Fort Myers beach experience.

Freat Blue Heron on the Crescent Beach

It’s worth noting that pets aren’t allowed in the park. With a comfortable spot for picnics, you can enjoy a cold drink while enjoying the best Fort Myers Beach has to offer. It’s easy to find a nice spot where you can celebrate special events.

Lovers Key State Park

Stretching over 712 acres, Lovers Key State Park encompasses tidal lagoons, mangroves, canals, and four barrier islands. The unspoiled area is home to a vast selection of birds and wildlife. You might even see manatees, dolphins, coastal birds, or bald eagles on the islands and in the surrounding waters. Lovers Key is the primary barrier island, dotted with incredible white sand beaches.

Lovers Key State Park

Previously, Lovers Key State Park could only be reached by boat. The romantic beach became a popular place for couples, giving rise to its current name.

RELATED: Most Popular Beaches in Naples, FL

In 1965, a road was built, making it possible to drive to the island and easily bask in its beauty. Lovers Key State Park is the perfect spot to enjoy the company of the one you love or to have an anniversary party. It’ll be a Fort Myers experience you’ll never forget.

Barefoot Beach Preserve

Located on a barrier island near Bonita Springs in Lee County, Barefoot Beach Preserve is a palm-lined oceanfront park lapped by gentle waves from the Gulf. Its white sandy beaches are magical, meandering into the distance without any developments to ruin your views.

Barefoot Beach

At Barefoot Beach Preserve, you might find gopher tortoises nosing around in a tropical forest as you take on its nature trail. Showcasing coastal beauty, the preserve offers miles of trails. It’s easy to find a secluded spot where you can fully embrace an abundance of wildlife.

Matanzas Pass Preserve

Perched south of Matanzas Pass, Matanzas Pass Preserve encompasses almost 60 acres of untouched coastal wilderness. The sanctuary sits less than a mile from the gorgeous Estero Bay, west of Fort Myers Beach.

Matanzas Pass Preserve offers more than a mile’s worth of trails, leading you along the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail. The trail features abundant wildlife and bird-watching opportunities. Wildlife lovers will be blown away by the natural beauty of the preserve and the abundance of animals and native plants that call it home.

RELATED: Top-Rated Tampa Side Excursions

Take the time to rest in a shaded spot as you enjoy the view of the white sandy beaches of Estero Bay and Fort Myers Beach. Enjoy watching the plentiful wildlife and native plants on an afternoon hike. Water lovers can also paddle around by renting a kayak or canoe and enjoy the views from a different angle.

Bunche Beach

Looking to escape the crowds? Venture 25 minutes outside of the city to discover Bunche Beach. Located on San Carlos Bay, the public beach complements its pristine shoreline with a mangrove forest and salt flats spread out over 718 acres.

Bunche Beach

Although Bunche Beach is a fantastic place to take a safe dip in shallow water, there’s far more to experience here. The park is part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail, making it one of the best places in the area for bird-watching. On the boardwalk nature trail, keep on the lookout for herons, osprey, kingfishers, and white pelicans.

At the beach, you can also rent a kayak to access the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail. The famous water route meanders through 190 miles of inland and coastal waterways.

Anglers will also find two fishing piers to cast in a line and reel in the catch of the day.

Gulfside City Park (Algiers Beach)

Staring out to the Gulf of Mexico on Sanibel Island, Gulfside City Park is renowned for its quiet vibes and shelling opportunities. Also known as Algiers Beach, the sandy shores here are both kid- and pet-friendly, making it the perfect Sanibel Island beach getaway for the entire family.

Although wedged between several resorts, Gulfside Beach is surprisingly serene and offers plenty of space for your beach vacation. Let the kids and pups run amok as you unwind from your Southwest Florida sightseeing adventures on the soft sands.

Gulfside Beach is also a well-known nesting spot for Loggerhead turtles. During turtle nesting season, take care to obey the signage to avoid disturbing the fragile ecosystem.

Causeway Islands Park

Located along the Sanibel Causeway bridge, Causeway Islands Park isn’t your usual stretch of Southwest Florida sand. The “beach” occupies a thin strip of sand on either side of the busy Sanibel Causeway.

Causeway Islands Park

While it’s not the most relaxing place for a seaside escape in the area, Causeway Islands Park is a convenient stopover point between Fort Myers and Sanibel Island.

Thanks to a consistent breeze, the park is one of the best beaches in Fort Myers for wind sports like windsurfing and kite surfing. With miles of open water to explore and easy parking, Causeway Islands Park is also a great place to launch a kayak or stand-up paddleboard adventure.


Ryan O'Rourke is a seasoned traveler and the founder & editor of Treksplorer, a fiercely independent guide to mid-range luxury travel for busy people. With over 20 years of extensive travel experience, Ryan has journeyed through over 50 countries, uncovering hidden gems and sharing firsthand, unsponsored insights on what to see & do and where to eat, drink & stay. Backed by his travel experience and in-depth research, Ryan’s travel advice and writing has been featured in publications like the Huffington Post and Matador Network. You can connect with Ryan on Twitter/X at @rtorourke.

DISCLAIMER: Treksplorer is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and its affiliated international sites.

DISCLAIMER: You'll notice that from time to time I link out to recommended hotels/tours/products/services. If you purchase anything through these links, I'll receive a commission. It won't cost you anything extra, but it will help keep me trekkin' on and delivering more free (and unsponsored!) travel information to you. Thanks :)