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fun things to do in fort myers
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10 Fun Things to Do in Fort Myers

SmarterTravel

Sure, the beaches beckon in Fort Myers. But when it rains, or when you’re simply ready for a break from all that sun and sand, you’ll find plenty of other fun things to do in Fort Myers.

Fun Things to Do In Fort Myers

Visit a museum, get in some retail therapy, head to an amusement park, take in a traveling Broadway show or concert. Here are 10 fun things to do in Fort Myers that have nothing to do with the beach.

Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall

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The tagline here is “Where Broadway comes to you.” This elegant venue is the place to see the road show hits as they make their way around the nation. If you’re in town for several months each winter, it makes sense to subscribe to a series and secure tickets—because they do sell out—to all the biggest numbers. In addition to traveling Broadway shows, Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall hosts international dance companies, high-profile speakers, and is a regular stage for the Southwest Florida Symphony, Lee County’s only professional orchestra.

Bell Tower Shops

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One of the region’s newest shopping malls, Bell Tower Shops offers a decidedly upscale open-air experience. The chic boutiques, which range from locally owned business to national chains, and on-trend eateries are arranged like a double “W.” Landscaping and fountains in the open spaces create inviting spots to meet friends, relax between store visits, and hang out with your pet. In fact, not only is the mall pet-friendly, Bell Tower Shops even sponsors “Yappy Hour,” a fundraising event with the Gulf Coast Humane Society, on the second Friday of each month.

Bell Tower Shops is also home to a movie theater, so you can plan for dinner and a movie here.

CenturyLink Sports Complex–Hammond Stadium

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Major League Baseball spring training is a Southwest Florida tradition, and Fort Myers is lucky enough to be home to two teams: the Boston Red Sox, who train at JetBlue Park at Fenway South; and the Minnesota Twins, who moved here in 1991 from Orlando. The Twins also have a Player Development Academy and maintain two Minor League affiliate teams here, so when you’re looking for things to do in Fort Myers, look no farther than this sports complex—there’s a good chance you’ll be able to catch a game featuring up-and-comers.

Fleamasters Fleamarket

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Fleamasters is a local institution and a longtime favorite thing to do in Fort Myers. Open since 1986, it’s an enormous, 400,000-square-foot flea market. Here’s partial list of what you can find among the multitude of booths here: seasonal produce, antiques, jewelry, bargain items, souvenirs, kitchen products, sportswear, tools, and art, plus 20 concessions selling everything from corn to cotton candy. You can even catch a live concert at The Music Hall at Fleamasters Fleamarket, which features state-of-the-art sound and lighting, and seats 300.

Fleamasters Fleamarket is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday year-round, though hours are a little shorter in summer.

Florida Repertory Theatre

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This award-winning regional theatre ensemble presents a variety of entertainment throughout the year, including widely known musicals, comedies and dramas, and festivals of new plays. The group of nationally acclaimed actors performs in the historic Arcade Theatre, built in 1908 for vaudeville performances. It later became a movie theater, where Edison and Ford saw films. By the late 1980s, it had deteriorated, but was saved by the City of Fort Myers and ballet great Mikhail Baryshnikov. Florida Rep, as it’s known, moved in permanently in 1998.

Fort Myers Skatium and Recreation Center

fun things to do in fort myers

Ice skating might seem like a novel thing to do in Fort Myers, but it’s just as engaging and challenging here as in colder climes. In addition to hosting youth and adult ice hockey, in-line skating hockey, basketball, and soccer leagues, the Skatium offers public skating sessions and lessons at the Learn to Skate Skating Academy. You can also come here for spinning, Zumba, yoga and general fitness in the Fit Club. Amenities include Wi-Fi and concessions.

IMAG History & Science Center

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State-of-the-art technology meets good old-fashioned fun at this amazing children’s center. STEM-based exhibits are interactive and focus on both the built and the natural world. The center also includes an aquarium and a 3D theatre, making it a star among things to do in Fort Myers for families. In 2017, IMAG also released an app for virtual reality and augmented reality experiences, which include “diving” an artificial reef and turning fossils of a Columbian mammoth into animation. The IMAG App is easily downloaded and allows viewers to continue their experiences even after they’ve left the premises.

Miss Potter’s Place

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This dedicated urban nursery and backyard micro farm is charming for children who want to observe rabbits, free-range chickens, earthworm colonies, and bee hives. Miss Potter is certified in “Square Foot Gardening” and demonstrates how to use every inch of lawn space to plant edible flowers and hedges; how to plant vegetables, herbs and fruit trees in containers and raised beds; and how to plant to attract butterflies. Take a garden tour, book a garden party, go to garden school, or take a class or workshop here. Then buy some freshly picked produce or take home some plants and seeds to start your own backyard makeover.

Note that children under five need to be held by the hand at all times, and the garden paths don’t provide very good traction for strollers. In addition, no public restrooms are available.

Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center

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This visual and performing arts stages art openings, performances, lectures, concerts, festivals—most notably the long-running and popular Fort Myers Film Festival—and events. The building itself is an architectural and artistic treasure. Designed by Nat Gaillard Walker, this Neoclassic Revival rarity was built using, among other materials, Florida Keys limestone, coral, and sea shells. The light fixtures, by artist Jim Sanborn, include stories about the history of Florida.

Zoomers Amusement Park

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Go-kart tracks. An 18-hole miniature golf course. Bumper boats, a roller coaster and other rides. A family-friendly arcade. These are just some of the things to do in Fort Myers at Zoomers, where it’s possible to spend an entire afternoon or evening with a wide range of family members, and leave knowing that everyone had a good time. Food is available on the premises, and the trolley stops here, making it convenient even if you don’t have a car. Pack a change of clothes if you plan on riding the bumper boats or playing balloon wars—it’s impossible not to get wet.

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– Original reporting by Jen Karetnik

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