Beach Vacation Blog - A blog about vacations in Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Springs along with things to do and places to stay in Southwest Florida.

Beach Vacation Blog

A blog about vacations in Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Springs along with things to do and places to stay in Southwest Florida.

Have you ever gone on vacation, arrived at your destination, and wondered: “what’s there to do in the area?”

Download Lahainas Free App The New Lahaina Island Accommodations App for iPhone & Android

If you’re coming to stay with us in Fort Myers Beach or Bonita Beach, it’s pretty obvious what the main attraction is…a warm, tropical beach.

But what if you’re sunburned or it’s raining? Sometimes you may not want to lay on the beach? Sometimes you may want to check out other things to do in the area.

Well we think you’re gonna LOVE the new Lahaina app!

Although we’ve always kept a Ft Myers Florida vacation guide on our website, our new app takes convenience to a whole new level because it encompasses:

  • Local recommendations such as:
    • Restaurants
    • Events, concerts, movies, festivals, theaters, sports
    • Activities like boating, biking, fishing, gambling, para-sailing, swimming, water-sports
    • Points of interest like Matanza’s Pass and Lover’s Key

But that’s not all. There’s so much more

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In an effort to bring you more stories from our clients who’ve had the pleasure of experiencing the beaches of Southwest Florida, I’d like to introduce you to Jake. He and his family stayed with us not long ago and this is his (and his family’s) vacation story. Enjoy!

~Barb

My beginnings in Fort Myers Beach

Back in 1995 I moved from Upstate New York to Fort Myers Beach, Florida and practically every day of the year I got to see what so many people long to see, especially during the deep, dark days of winter…the beach!

I can remember how my eyes widened as I came over the Matanzas Pass Bridge for the very first time in Errol’s taxi, seeing all of the palm trees, colorful shops, the beach, and feeling the warm air blowing through my full head of hair. Here is what that drive looks like 19 years later.

For the year and a half that I lived there, I got to experience a beautiful island paradise with blue waters, dolphins, para-sails, wave-runners, and countless restaurants. Almost every day I had the chance to exit my front door, walk 500 yards, and set up my chair & umbrella on the warm sands of the Gulf of Mexico.

I was 20 years old, without a care in the world. Life was easy. I had no car, no boat, no responsibilities. Just a job that paid for my rent and of course, cocktails. icon wink Southwest Florida is a Great Destination for Family Stay Cations

Life today isn’t as care free…but it’s getting better

Fast forward 19 years and today I am a married man with a beautiful wife and four children, residing in a nearby city in Southwest Florida, not far from Fort Myers Beach.

As you can probably imagine, I don’t have as much time to lounge on a beach as I once had and all those days I once cherished as a care-free 20 year old, have almost faded.

So back in September of last year when my family and I had the chance to spend a 3 day stay-cation in the Seaside condos on Fort Myers Beach, we jumped at the opportunity.

At the time, we going through a very difficult situation which put a major strain on our family ties and it almost resulted in a divorce. While I’m not going to get in to details, I will tell you that addiction affects so many families and it almost ruined ours.

It’s important that I paint this picture for you because I want you to know just how healing this stay-cation was for us. Here we were, a struggling couple, doing our best to raise a 7 year old girl, twin 17 month old boys, and a baby on the way…and along comes an opportunity to put our family back together after one of us spent a 28-day stint in rehab. Talk about stressful times!

Paradise at Seaside Condos

When we first arrived at the Seaside condos, we were blessed and overcome with happiness with this view from our bedroom window.

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To Feel at Home on Fort Myers Beach

Posted by Barb On November 4th

For several years now we’ve done our best to inform you about vacation rentals, local events, and attractions here in Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Beach so that you could plan a vacation of a lifetime.

We could tell you how beautiful this area is until we are blue in the face. But until you actually come here and experience the beaches and all that Southwest Florida has to offer, you’ll never truly appreciate it.

So we decided to reach out to you, our guests, and we asked you to share your Fort Myers Beach/Bonita Beach experience with us and others….and the feedback has been awesome!

Two weeks ago, Linda Trummer shared her Fort Myers Beach experience and we were blown away by how much time and effort she spent in assembling all of her photos and the accompanying story. It’s a MUST READ!

Today, Hanne Kleven Eek is going to share with us her experience this past summer. Keep in mind that it is currently snowing in Norway (where she is from) as she shares her love for “her beach.”

Enjoy! ~Barb

Sommer 2013 007 To Feel at Home on Fort Myers Beach

Welcome to Fort Myers Beach! -Hanne

Paradise on Earth

I am a bit reluctant to tell how much I love the Beach – I want it all to my self!

But then again, how can I not share my love for this Paradise on earth? Sure there are several pretty places in Florida more posh, more glamorous, more stylish than Fort Myers Beach (FMB), but once you’ve been here – it’s impossible not to come back. It’s like a rag doll; you’ll love her all your life….

Sommer 2013 004 150x150 To Feel at Home on Fort Myers Beach

Roseate Spoonbills

We came to FMB for the first time in 1998. Our boys were 10 and 8 – perfect team park-age! We did Disney World from A to Z that year and the years to follow. But every time we came home to Sandarac. And it really felt like home.

We’ve been coming every second year since then, and there’s nowhere we’d rather go. Friends tell us wonderful stories about Sarasota, Clearwater, and St. Petersburg, but we have no urge to explore. We have found our spot.

You’re Going to LOVE the Sunsets!

The relaxed pace of the island – especially on the south part, is so valuable to us. We live a very busy everyday life and coming to FMB makes us better people. We can do absolutely nothing, which to us is the meaning of fortune in this material world we live and are a part of! I cannot count how many pictures I have of the FMB sunset, and there will be several more. The view from the condo is ever changing and that is so fascinating.

This summer we stayed all alone in FMB, but we loved every second of the five, wonderful weeks! For the first time we had to use the storm shutters, which was an experience.

But about the weather – nothing bothers me less when at the beach. There will be showers, but eventually the sun will come out again and again! After so many years of coming here, I always pack far too much. I more or less live in my pair of jean shorts, t-shirt and flip-flops (bought from my favorite shoe shop at Santini).

Sure, we do some serious shopping, but mostly presents. We have all we need. Barnes & Noble is my “candy store”. I love to read, and during the vacation I can catch up with the past year’s new bestsellers! Preferably in my deck chair.

Try These Hotspots for Dinner

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My Fort Myers Beach Experience by Linda Trummer

Posted by Barb On October 21st

Bird on Driftwood My Fort Myers Beach Experience by Linda Trummer

At Lahaina Island Accommodations, we have so many guests who come down to Fort Myers Beach or Bonita Beach and wind up having the time of their lives.

We decided to ask some of our guests for their stories about their vacations to Southwest Florida and share them with you. If you’d like to tell others about your experience on the beaches of Southwest Florida, please contact us online or at Facebook.com/LahainaIslandAccommodations and let us know.

Today, we bring you Linda Trummer’s story about her recent trip to Fort Myers Beach, Florida. We hope you enjoy her experience.

-Barb

I started traveling to Florida from my Minnesota home in 2012. It wasn’t hard to fall in love with the extreme climate change. Early in 2013 I rented a condo with Lahaina Island Accommodations in Ft. Myers Beach, and I felt as though I had found my second home.

My first evening on the beach was amazing – there were all kinds of sea creatures washed up on the shore at low tide, laid out for display as if for a flash course in marine biology. There were several kinds of living starfish, shellfish, coral; sea pork, hundreds of fighting conch, mermaid’s purse, natural sponges, sea urchin … and a lot of them.

“A real friend is someone who takes a winter vacation on a sun-drenched beach and
does not send a card.” –Farmer’s Almanac

And then is the endless list of seabirds… gulls, pelicans; sanderlings, dowitchers and willets; herons and egrets; ibis, spoonbills, and oyster catchers – to name the ones I could identify. One can really get in touch with nature on Ft. Myers Beach as there seems to be an unwritten law that humans and animals will co-habitate in peace. It is really quite incredible to be able to watch nature, for better or worse, up close and personal.

While most days bring a bit of rain…

…you know it’s coming and can plan around it!

The early morning walks on the beach are so peaceful; and at the end of the day are the gorgeous sunsets. The scenery is ever-changing, with something new to see at different times of the day and evening.

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In a little over a week, the 3 day Fort Myers Beach Pollo Tropical Pirate Fest will start and  it’s going to be a great time here on the beach!

As we reviewed in our last blog post, it’s a family friendly event, too! icon wink Fort Myers Beach   Pollo Tropical Pirate Fest is almost here!

Pollo Tropical Pirate Festival 375x300 Fort Myers Beach   Pollo Tropical Pirate Fest is almost here!

The 8th Annual Pirate Fest is sponsored by Pollo Tropical and will be featuring:

  • The Pub N Grub Pirate Stroll – Friday (10/11) evening stroll with the pirate musicians along Old San Carlos Blvd and Estero Blvd.  It starts at the Cottage at 6pm sharp, and will hit many pubs throughout the evening.
  • The Pirates’ Ball at Nervous Nellie’s – Local favorite band Celtic Stew will be playing while prizes are won for best pirate, best wench and best couple.
  • And so many more events!

We still have availability for our Fort Myers Beach Home Rentals and our Fort Myers Beach Condo Rentals.  If you’d like more assistance, please feel free to give our wonderful staff a call at (866) 218-1709 – we’re here for you!

Please be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter, if you haven’t already – we’ll keep on sharing the fun of Florida with you!

Remember – it’s always beachtime at Lahaina, too!

Enjoy,

-Barb

Pirate Festival – Fort Myers Beach, FL

Posted by Barb On September 9th

If you haven’t been to the annual Fort Myers Beach Pirate Festival yet, then we suggest setting aside a week in October to come down to Estero Island to partake in the festivities…especially if you enjoy dressing up in costumes.

Let the festivities begin!

The 8th Annual Fort Myers Beach Pirate Festival will kick off at 6pm on Friday October 11th with a Pub Crawl along Old San Carlos Boulevard and surrounding areas.

Bands of roving pirates will be accompanied from pub to pub by Daniel O’Ryan and the Craic show, where songs will be sung and ale will be drunk!

But don’t be concerned about Pirates acting like as Pirates do with all their drunken debauchery. This is a family friendly event.

Family friendly entertainment

This year, there are plenty of side shows, contests, and battles for the whole family to enjoy including:

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Why Vacation Rentals ROCK!

Posted by Barb On July 31st

Holiday 485x300 Why Vacation Rentals ROCK!

When you decide to take a vacation, do you like:

  • Having the flexibility to cook your meals or dine out whenever you wish?
  • Having enough space to move around without being cramped or feeling claustrophobic?
  • Having all of the comforts of home without having to call room service frequently?

If so, why not stay in a vacation rental?

Typically when people think about taking a vacation or “going on a holiday” (as they say in the mother country), they choose a destination and then search for hotels in the area to stay in. But those of us in the vacation rental industry are working hard to change that way of thinking and the results have been astounding!

That’s because with every passing year, thousands of new families are learning about the benefits of renting a vacation home. What kinds of benefits you might ask?

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Some people enjoy the nightlife and the hustle & bustle of the Time Square area at the North End of Fort Myers Beach.

But if you prefer a laid back type of vacation where you can relax and unwind with the beauty of nature all around you, then you might want to consider staying at Creciente 415N.

This condo has northern views overlooking the preserve and beach. The patio can be open-air or air conditioned. Perfect for the nature lover, watch the birds come in for their morning gathering. On-site pool and tennis courts.

For booking rates and dates of availablity, click here or call us at 1-866-218-1709.

It’s always beachtime at Lahaina!

10 ways a property manager can maximize your investment 10 Ways a Property Management Company Can Maximize Your Investment

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If you’ve been reading this blog, you know that we mostly cater to those who are seeking fabulous vacation rentals in Bonita Springs and Fort Myers Beach.

So if you’re here for that reason, GREAT NEWS! You’ve come to the right place. Feel free to check rates and availability of all of our condos and homes here in sunny Southwest Florida. We’d love to help you experience the beach vacation of a lifetime!

In order to provide you with a wide selection of condos, pet-friendly homes, single family houses, cottages, and beach-front rentals, we also must cater to property owners.

So if you own a home or condo in Bonita Springs or Fort Myers Beach and you’re thinking about renting your home so others can enjoy the beauty of Southwest Florida, this article is for you.

We want you to know that you don’t have to go it alone and we can help maximize your investment. Just check out these 10 helpful articles to see if a vacation rental management company is right for you.

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My husband Paul and I absolutely love to dine out. WE LOVE IT!

Rosedale Memories  533x300 Rosedale Brick Oven   One of the Best Italian Restaurants in Naples? You Tell Us.

Click for larger image. Recognize any of these images?

And while there are plenty of amazing restaurants located near our vacation rentals in Bonita Springs and Fort Myers Beach, occasionally we enjoying venturing a bit further south.

Naples, Florida has some of the best restaurants in the world, especially when it comes to fine dining. If you go down to Fifth Avenue in Naples, you’ll find exactly what I’m talking about. There are some outstanding fine dining restaurants lined up and down this street.

But what’s funny is that we found one of the best Italian restaurants in recent memory…and it’s not even considered a fine dining establishment.

That’s not a knock on them, either. The owners pride themselves in offering homemade, delicious Italian food without a “Fifth Avenue Price Tag.”

So who are we talking about? Well aside from the fact that the title is a dead give-away, if you recognized any of the images from the photo above, you’re most likely from Rosedale, a community in Queens, NY…the same place the owners of this restaurant came from.

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