5 things you should do in Fort Myers, according to a local

Pro tip: If you want to go hunting for seashells, go out early in the morning

Many people are ready to escape to a place that’s warm and sunny, and if you are looking for somewhere to go, you might want to check out Fort Myers, Florida and the surrounding areas.

Ft. Myers is located on Florida’s west coast, almost directly across the state from Fort Lauderdale. It has beautiful weather, beaches, islands, art, great food and so much more.

We spoke to Miriam Dotson, a local resident and Communications Manager for Fort Myers -- Islands, Beaches and Neighborhoods, to get her advice on how to make the most out of your southwest Florida vacation.

1) Visit the islands

There are more than 100 different islands in this region of Florida, along with 50 miles of coastline. They really embrace nature, so there are lots of outdoor activities to do. Sanibel Island is a great place to go if you want to go searching for seashells. Pro tip: You want to go early in the morning for this activity, and make sure not to take a live shell. The sandy beaches and sea breeze will have you relaxing in no time.

2) Get out on the water

You don’t have to stay on the sand to have a good time. You can go kayaking, paddle boarding, or out on a boat ride to see some dolphins.

According to our expert, the best place to see dolphins is in the back of the boat, so sit there and watch in the boat’s wake. Dolphins love to interact with you and play in the waves. And if you clap and whistle, they will probably respond. There are also tons of preserves in this area, so you can get up close with nature.

3) Enjoy the culture

If you are looking for something to do indoors, check out their many museums and art galleries. You could also go out to see live theater one night of your trip as well.

4) Fill up on the local cuisine

Anytime you are that close to the water, you know the seafood has to be good. There are plenty of great restaurants that serve fresh-caught fish, or you can enjoy the experience of going out on a boat to catch food yourself. Breakfast is also something you shouldn’t ignore in this region, with places that specialize in homemade donuts and biscuits.

5) Catch a sunset

Fort Myers is on Florida’s west coast, so the sunsets here are gorgeous and over the water. They have things called sunset celebrations where people gather with a drink or some ice cream to enjoy the view. You don’t want to miss them!

For more information, watch the full interview above.

To see more about what Fort Myers and the surrounding areas have to offer, click or tap here.

About the Author:

Michelle Oliver is a multimedia Journalist for the 10 a.m. lifestyle show, "Live in the D." She is known as "the food girl" because of her two popular food franchises, Dine in the D and Find Your Fix. Michelle also covers stories on homegrown businesses, style, and other fun things happening in the D.