Fort Myers-Sanibel Area Vacation Rentals Guide

South West FL / Fort Myers Beach


Fort Myers, Florida is a tropical destination that serves as a gateway to Southwest Florida, making it a very popular tourist spot along the beautiful Gulf coast

The city's name originated as a tribute to Colonel Abraham Myers. Well known for its shopping, golfing, and glorious sandy beaches.  It is part of the Cape Coral-Fort Myers, area of Florida including the Sanibel and Captiva Islands.


Fort Myers-Sanibel

Fort Myers Beach epitomizes the full Florida experience and is home to a population of approximately 7,000 people.  Fort Myers Beach additionally has close access to Cape Coral, Sanibel & Captiva. It is important to note that the city of Fort Myers (city center) is approximately 15 miles from Fort Myers Beach (town), but is along the Caloosahatchee River, which provides great beaches, fishing, and a quaint, historic river district.

Cape Coral

Cape Coral is great for those who love the water, with its many lakes, over 400 canals (more than Venice!), and location on the massive Caloosahatchee River. Perfect for canoeing, kayaking, swimming, and experiencing the wildlife of Florida. Cape Coral is also home to the large and tropical 15-acre water park, Sun Splash Family Water Park, which is fantastic for families. Spend some more tranquil time down at the Cape Coral Yacht and Racquet Club, which has great views of the water with picnic benches and a pier, a small clean public beach, and a restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Staying in Cape Coral can be a great alternative to the larger beaches in Fort Myers.


Sanibel is the larger and more southern of the two connected islands. Sanibel is acclaimed as having the best shelling beaches in North America. Along the white sandy beaches, over 400 different species of shells can be discovered, with conch shells being the most common. Approximately half of the island is occupied by the JN Darling (Ding) National Wildlife Refuge, one of Florida's most exquisite refuges, which provides a great destination for kayaking, canoeing, and walking or biking along the 100-acre trails. Sanibel is perfect for those who love to be outdoors, with its 15 miles of beaches and 22 miles of bike paths.


Captiva is the smaller of the two islands, giving it a serene ambiance. A truly get-away-from-it-all experience, the island is a great place to relax and enjoy the pristine blue waters, while only being a short drive away from all the activities on Sanibel. Captiva is slightly more upscale and expensive than Sanibel as a result of its smaller size. Both of these islands have excellent fishing and chartered boats.


  • You can walk the entire 7-mile length of the island along sandy, warm shores
  • 190 miles of kayaking and canoeing along the Great Calusa Blueway
  • Best beaches in the nation for shelling
  • Fort Myers has the highest total number of days with sun as compared to all other Florida cities
  • Sanibel boasts the only shell museum in the United States
  • The Everglades are nearby
  • Lovers Key state park - once only accessible by boat but now is a beautiful 712-acre park/beach
  • Near the stadium for MLB teams Minnesota twins and Boston Red Sox spring training; they compete for the Mayor's cup in Fort Myers!
  • Dogs are allowed on any of the public beaches in Fort Myers Beach (Estero Island), Sanibel, and Captiva provided they are kept on leash


  • Shop at the Miromar outlets (30 minutes east) or the Bell Tower Shops (20 minutes towards Fort Myers city center)
  • Historical sites; visit the winter homes of Thomas Edison & Henry Ford in Fort Myers
  • Swimming, beaching, parasailing
  • Marinas provide boat and water sport rentals
  • Fantastic fishing off the pier, shore, or on chartered boats/tours (exquisite fishing reefs!)
  • Golfing
  • Shelling tours & cruises
  • Dolphin eco-tours (and often other wildlife such as birds, manatees, alligators etc.)
  • Everglade safaris
  • See wild pigs in the Six Mile Cypress Preserve


  • Annual shrimp festival: mid-March
  • Fort Myers Beach Film Festival: late April
  • Annual American Sandsculpting Championships (mid-November)
  • Monthly art walk in the downtown River District
  • Annual all-Florida championship rodeo: March
  • Florida Weiner Dog Derby: early May
  • Annual Taste of the Beach (May)
  • Every night there is a Sunset Celebration in Time Square with food, music, and fun!


Search, find and book your Captiva, Sanibel, Cape Coral or Fort Myers Beach, Florida vacation rental on Florida Rental By Owners website. Exclusively for travelers wishing to communicate and book directly with the owner. There are no traveler fees for using Florida Rental By Owners website. Owners are verified for ownership, look for the verified button under the Owner profile. All transactions occur directly with the owner. Read reviews and guest experiences to ensure your vacation rental will meet your goals. 

Do you have questions about the Fort Myers-Sanibel, Florida area?

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Traveling to the Fort Myers-Sanibel Area

Whether you live in the United States, Canada, Europe and beyond you are sure to find a final destination close by.

The Southwest Florida International Airport - (RSW)

The Southwest Florida International airport is closest to Fort Myers beach, approximately a 30-minute drive. The airport services most major airlines including Air Canada, airBerlin, American Airlines, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Silver Airways, Spirit, Southwest Airlines, Sun Country, United, and West Jet.  They additionally have multiple shuttles running from the airport to hotels including Best Western, Courtyard Marriott, Embassy Suites, Hampton, Hilton Garden, Holiday Inn, Homewood Suites, LaQuinta, Spring Hill & Travelodge. Furthermore, there is public transit, car rental, and taxis/limousines available to be arranged.

Sarasota - Bradenton International Airport - (SRQ)

The Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport is smaller but includes a further 1-hour 45-minute drive to Fort Myers Beach. The airport is a destination for Air Canada, American Airlines, Delta, Elite Airways, Jet Blue & United.

Transportation in the Fort Myers Area

Once you reach your destination, there are taxi and limo services available. There is additionally a Fort Myers Beach Trolley, with single rides for the cheap cost of $0.50 ($0.25 for seniors). The trolley also offers all-day passes for $1.50 and 3-day passes for $3.00. This is a great alternative to driving, as parking can sometimes be limited and expensive.

Fort Myers - Sanibel - Captiva - Cape Coral  Monthly Average Weather Chart


What types of property can I rent the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida?

Florida Rental By Owners is full of a wide variety of vacation rentals in Sanibel and Fort Myers as well as Fort Myers Beach, Florida including condos, cottages, town-homes, duplexes, villas, holiday and private homes. Our 2018 property selection is filled many properties in the area. We recommend selecting a property based on your needs such as proximity to beach areas, waterfront docks, parking, wheelchair accessible, nearby attractions, and whether or not the property is pet-friendly or boat-friendly.

Should I rent a Cottage in the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida?

Yes, if a cottage is right for you! Most cottages in Sanibel and Fort Myers offer amazing beachfront views! Some include free beach gear and countless amenities such as pools, hot tubs, backyard beaches, tiki huts, fitness rooms, and ping pong tables. If this is what you are looking for, then you should rent a cottage in Anna Maria Island.

Should I rent a Condo in the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida?

Of course! Fort Myers and Sanibel accommodations include condos which often offer unique amenities and the perfect space rather than a cottage or large private home for example. House rentals are often great for family vacations, larger groups or those who prefer having an entire house and outdoor property to themselves.

Can I rent a pet-friendly rental in the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida?

Yes! We love our pets and we are sure you do too! has many pet-friendly rentals in the area. You can use our search feature to narrow down our Fort Myers and Sanible rental properties to just show those that are pet-friendly.

Can I rent a boat-friendly rental in the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida?

Fort Myers and Sanibel are the perfect places to bring your boat or rent one from a local vendor! (Florida Rental By Owners) has many boat-friendly rentals in the area. Use our search feature to narrow down our Fort Myers and Sanibel rental properties to just show those that are boat-friendly.

Is the Fort Myers - Sanibel area of Florida a good place for Snowbirds looking for a monthly rental?

Yes, there are many homes and condos that rent monthly in Fort Myers and Sanibel that would be perfect for longer stay guests.

Will I pay any fees to book a property on Florida Rental By Owners?

No! We never charge any fees to book a property on Florida Rental By Owners. And we never take a commission from an owner.  If you are looking for VRBO or Airbnb type rental or lodging accommodation why pay the extra fees? Use! We put you in direct contact with the owner or manager of the property or cottage rental in Anna Maria Island so you always get the best price.

Start looking for your Vacation Rental

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