Take a Stroll Around Beach Area Parks

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Newton Park, sitting mid-Island, at Estero Blvd & Strandview Avenue, is a great spot for a picnic or a family day at the beach. The park offers picnic tables, water fountain, tiki huts, restrooms and paid parking along a beautiful stretch of Gulf of Mexico beach. The house, Seven Seas, can be rented for meetings and special events. The park is easily accessible via trolley. A grocery store across the street offers convenient access to picnic supplies. 4650 Estero Blvd., FMB. 239-765-0865

Mound House, at the bay end of Connecticut Street, is the most unique park on the island. The historic Mound House sits atop a 2,000 year old Calusa Indian Mound and is now a museum featuring artifacts of the Calusa and early settlers of Estero Island. The museum is open Tuesday – Saturday from 9am-4pm through the end of April and offers frequent guided tours of the house and shell mound. A variety of kayak tours depart from the grounds also. visit moundhouse.org. 451 Connecticut St., FMB.239-765-0865

Matanzas Pass Preserve, at 199 Bay Rd, (turn at the library) provides 60 shady acres of undeveloped preserve along Estero Bay. Trails wind through canopies of mangroves and oak hammock and lead to the bayside pavilion. Next to the pavilion is a paddlecraft landing that is part of the Great Calusa Blueway Trail. The Preserve is also part of the Great Florida Birding Trail. The Preserve is open daily from 7am-dusk. At the entrance to the Preserve sits the Historical Cottages, open Wednesday and Saturday from 10am-noon.

Bowditch Point Park sits at the northwest tip of the island. The beautiful and serene 17-acre Lee County park offers gulf beachfront, bay boat access and a view of busy Matanzas Pass. Walking trails offer visitors a chance to encounter gopher tortoises or enjoy the panoramic views. The park is a part of the Great Florida Birding Trail and the Great Calusa Blueway. The park offers restrooms, picnic tables, grills and paid parking. 50 Estero Blvd, FMB.

Lynn Hall Memorial Park is probably the best known island park, sitting right next to the pier and site of this month’s Fort Myers Beach Shrimp Festival. Adjoining Times Square, this Lee County Park offers restrooms, showers, shelters, the fishing pier and paid parking. A gift shop on the pier offers fishing gear, souvenirs and snacks. The park and restrooms are open from 7am-11pm daily. 950 Estero Blvd, FMB.

Carl E. Johnson Lovers Key State Park sits just south of Estero Island. This 1,616-acre state park offers over 2-miles of beachfront, 5 miles of multi-use trails, a boat launch, picnic areas and a tram from the parking area to the beach, where you’ll find a beach pavilion, concessions and restrooms. Kayak, bike, paddleboard, beach chair and umbrella rentals are available. Open 8am-sunset daily. Entry frees $8/vehicle (2-8 people/vehicle); $4/single occupant vehicle and motorcycles and $2 pedestrians, bicyclists and extra passengers. 8700 Estero Blvd., FMB 239-463-4588.