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Where to Stay in Fort Myers
Downtown Fort Myers is situated along the banks of the Caloosahatchee River on the north side of the city, and several nice hotels can be found in its scenic and pedestrian-friendly historic districts. Leading south from the downtown area, a diverse strip of accommodations roughly eight miles long stretches along South Cleveland Avenue. Just a little farther to the southwest are the communities of Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel Island, both of which are packed with beachfront resorts.
If you’re seeking cheap hotel deals in Fort Myers, you’ll probably find the biggest discounts in the inland areas along South Cleveland Avenue and near Southwest Florida International Airport. But if you’d rather be as close to the water as possible, you can also find great value in the beachfront areas by comparing rates and amenities among their dozens of hotels. The huge variety of accommodations in Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel Island enable you to enjoy the Southern Gulf of Mexico on virtually any budget.
Fort Myers Hotel Tips
The largest concentrations of accommodations in the area are in the beachfront communities of the barrier islands, and these largely consist of resorts with large-scale amenities like spas, elaborate pools and fine dining restaurants. On Sanibel Island, you’ll find a few older and more affordable resorts mixed in with the newer towers. Some of the quieter, more residential neighborhoods in the coastal areas have houses for rent ranging from simple beach shacks to luxurious oceanfront condos.
A number of budget chain hotels and motels are located between Downtown Fort Myers and Fort Myers Beach. Though they don’t offer views, their rates are usually a fraction of those at the beaches just a few minutes’ drive away. Most of the finer hotels outside of the beach resort area can be found downtown, where most hotels cater to a combination of business travelers and pleasure seekers.
Fort Myers Hotel Recommendations
In Fort Myers’ Downtown River District, the Hotel Indigo is an elegant boutique hotel located less than a mile from the Edison & Ford Winter Estates. In addition to its modern rooms, it features a private outdoor swimming pool area, a rooftop fitness center, a separate rooftop cocktail lounge and an on-site Italian restaurant.
If you’re traveling with children or think you’ll need lots of space during your stay, some of the area’s largest rooms can be found at the Embassy Suites Fort Myers – Estero. And if you want a luxurious waterfront experience without leaving Fort Myers proper, look into the Sanibel Harbour Resort & Spa. With rooms overlooking the nearby bay and Sanibel Island in the distance, this resort is chock-full of premium amenities. Six pools, multiple dining options, clay tennis courts, water rentals, a state-of-the-art fitness center and a full-service health and beauty spa are among the offerings.
To stay right in the heart of the beach resort communities, the Pink Shell Beach Resort and Spa makes for a comfortable stay in Fort Myers Beach. Its complex of accommodations includes studio-style rooms, spacious villas and stand-alone cottages, all with modern kitchens. On Sanibel Island, the Seaside Inn is a small, award-winning resort with individually appointed rooms and a tradition of friendly, personal service. Though it is one of the oldest lodging options on the island, routine renovations have kept the Seaside Inn competitive with its modern neighbors.
Fort Myers Transportation
Fort Myers’ public transportation system is not extensive, and since the areas of interest to tourists are sprawled out over nearly 100 miles of coastline, it’s best to rent a car when taking a flight into Fort Myers. Several national rental car companies have lots and kiosks on the Southwest Florida International Airport premises. Though it’s worth checking with your hotel to be sure, most accommodations throughout the area include free guest parking.
If you do wish to use public transportation, a network of bus routes covering a wide swath of the area is operated by LeeTran; its coverage area includes Fort Myers, North Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Pine Island, Punta Rassa, Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Springs. Cabs are also available throughout this area, though they are only marginally easy to hail on the streets in dense hotel and nightlife districts. If you want to take a taxi, your best bet is to ask for assistance in calling for one.