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Ft Myers as base for exploration of the wildlife and hiking variety?

Ft Myers as base for exploration of the wildlife and hiking variety?

Old Feb 14th, 2013, 03:41 PM
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Ft Myers as base for exploration of the wildlife and hiking variety?

DH and I are going to spend a week in Cape Coral, adjacent to Ft Myers, winter home of the Boston Red Sox, our reason for going. Sort of. We are looking for ideas for day trips that bring us to preserves or state parks with walking trails. We are familiar with the DingDarling Wildlife Preserve, and similar sites, and we are wiling to venture further in order to see more of FL's parks and wildlife. For example, is the northern part of the Everglades something we can aim to visit in a day trip? Does anyone know of other day-trip type locations for hikes/walks/wildlife viewing, different from what I see here in Boston, (ha)? Thanks
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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 05:13 PM
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To make a truly exceptional exploratory trip, take a drive to Tampa, to see a REAL team. The New York Yankees!
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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 05:27 PM
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A few ideas: If you are in Cape Coral on Saturday check out the Burrowing Owl Festival. Corkscrew Sanctuary and Audubon Preserve (north Naples) is wonderful. Barefoot Beach Preserve, Bonita Springs, has gopher tortoises, and you can canoe with manatees at Manatee Park in Fort Myers, or just watch them. Best to go after a cool evening. We enjoyed a guided tour of the Koreshan State Park, Estero (10 and 2 every day). We also enjoyed Big Cypress National Preserve (Naples), particularly the Oasis Center with it hundreds of gators, but there are other visitors’ areas where you can walk and watch birds.
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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 07:04 PM
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Ha Ha, SusanMargaret,

Only if Arod is playing
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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 07:07 PM
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oops, Thank you, SusanMargaret. Very helpful.
And to you, Waldo, ya know, you do have 1 good player. Think his name is Kevin Youkilis, or something
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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 08:28 PM
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Go to Ding Darling park in Sanibel.

For something different, head up to Venice beach near the fishing pier. There are loads of fossil shark teeth in the sand there.

The manatees also come to the outwash from the power plant near Ft Myers.

The Thomas Edison Home and Laboratory is very interesting too, right on McGregor Blvd.
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Old Feb 15th, 2013, 02:38 AM
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agree with emalloy and I am full of admiration for SusanMargaret's list. You can go to the Everglades on a day trip, but with her list, you don't need to. Save it for another trip.

I would also suggest looking into Matlacha and Pine Island, both very interesting. Farther afield is Gasparilla Island and Boca Grande. If you had a boat, they are no distance, but if you have to drive, you feel like you can't get there from here.
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Old Feb 15th, 2013, 06:07 AM
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A bit north, in Sarasota, you'll find the Myakka River State Park. http://www.myakkariver.org/index.php

There are miles of trails, canoe rentals, a lake excursion and a "Tram Safari" if it's too hot to hike.
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Old Feb 15th, 2013, 07:04 AM
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Excellent suggestions. thanks, fodorites-helpful as always!
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