West coast Florida family trip Feb/March

Sep 6th, 2019, 04:54 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 293
West coast Florida family trip Feb/March

I'm planning on going to Florida for a week. in late February or early March to break up the Winter in New York. I am not familiar with travel to Florida, although friends do go down to the Naples area. This is for my family to so, sleeps six and economical. I only want to rent one car so I was wondering if there is a suggested location (anywhere on the gulf) that would be walking distances to a town or at least a bit of food shopping or coffee house. I would even consider easy public transportation to town. I was thinking of looking into airbnb but I'm not really sure where to start as far as location. Any help would be appreciated. thanks
stoweflake is offline  
Sep 6th, 2019, 07:50 AM
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Can't help you except to alert you that this is HIGH season and economical may be difficult. VRBO might be what you mean rather than airbb.
Gretchen is offline  
Sep 6th, 2019, 08:10 AM
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The main airline hubs on the west coast are Tampa and Fort Myers so you can narrow down your area to avoid a lot of driving... because it's spring break and peak season, expect top prices for properties... spending more to be near the beach can also save you money on not needing a rental car... on Estero Island in Fort Myers your family could use the trolley or walk to everything...just uber to the beach property for the week...
garyt22 is offline  
Sep 6th, 2019, 07:42 PM
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To cut the risk of driving a rental car out of NYC or flying, consider taking one of the Amtrak Silvers (Star or Meteor) from New York Penn station to Orlando. From there rent a car to go to Tampa - St. Pete.
Fly home if the weather is good in New York or take the train back home.
tomfuller is offline  
Sep 6th, 2019, 07:59 PM
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You can also fly into Sarasota-Bradenton. Be aware that the further south you are the more pleasant the weather is likely to be at that time of year. Have you considered going to the Keys at all? I assume you've decided it has to be on the Gulf side because of your friends.
Dukey1 is offline  
Sep 7th, 2019, 04:33 AM
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I don't think that is spring break time--a little early for that.
Gretchen is offline  
Sep 7th, 2019, 05:02 AM
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Thanks all. I'll continue to investigate. Last year we had booked a sailboat cruise just for my husband and me in March. It was so nice to go to a place that was warm for a week.
stoweflake is offline  
Sep 7th, 2019, 10:46 AM
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Gretchen... the old "spring break " calendar no longer holds true... colleges have scattered their breaks, and many public school districts have changed off of the traditional schedule... now it has become "high season " starting on Presidents' week and running through Eastertime...
Being in Fort Myers, we see kids throughout the period...
garyt22 is offline  
Sep 7th, 2019, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by stoweflake View Post
This is for my family to so, sleeps six and economical.
My favorite hideway for years was the White Gate Court in Islamorada -

Beautiful Old Florida location. Simple cottages. Not fancy but very clean. The keys aren't known for beaches, but they have a little manmade beach there. They also have a dock. My BIL would tow the boat down and spend the day fishing and we'd grill the catch on the grills in front of the cottages. Shops and restaurants are nearby. Not in walking distance, but within a short drive. We'd spend most sunset at Zane Grey's eating shrimp and watching the gorgeous sunset. Key West would be a day trip. You could held up a bit north to Pennekamp to snorkel, or hire a boat there at the marina at Islamorado to go out to fish or snorkel. It's pretty much paradise. We'd spend a week there each year in spring. Very simple but wonderful.

starrs is offline  
Sep 8th, 2019, 04:05 AM
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I was thinking more of a college spring break time (different crowd!) and yes, I'm sure you do see kids and families. But for sure, it IS high season. til April, IME.
Gretchen is offline  
Sep 8th, 2019, 05:26 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
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St. Pete Beach and Fort Myers Beach have trolleys for easy, inexpensive transportation to restaurants and grocery stores. I'm sure other places have trolleys too. If you think of going to Fort Myers Beach, try for accommodation near Times Square, which is heart of the beach area and has several restaurants and bars, as well as a 711 for grocery needs. Both SPB and FMB have a Publix Grocery Store that is on the trolley route. For a few years my daughter visited us at FMB and always stayed at Silver Sands Villas, which was in a great location across from the beach and near restaurants and coffee shops.
SusanMargaret is offline  
Sep 8th, 2019, 07:24 AM
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I guess it does depend on exactly how you want to spend your time, but you do need to realize you are picking absolutely the most expensive time of year for the area. As to transportation, car rentals are one of the best deals in Florida -- especially with lots of discounts available (Costco is one of the best). So taking an Uber to and from an airport is likely to cost you as much as an entire week of car rental. Add in free parking at most places, and having a car to visit places rather than more Ubers or public transportation (which is mostly pretty limited on the Gulf Coast), it may be less expensive to just rent a car for your stay. If you want to just stay right at one place and walk or take a trolley to really close places that's another matter. I'd agree that for that, Ft. Myers Beach is probably one of your best bets. Just don't plan on going to see Sanibel, or The Edison/Ford houses, or visit Naples, or shop at Miramar, or much of anything else unless you have a car.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Sep 9th, 2019, 05:13 PM
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This does sound like a good choice. I'll check it out. Thanks
stoweflake is offline  

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