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Introduction to Fort Myers, Florida
Thinking about moving to Fort Myers? This Florida Gulf Coast city could be the perfect choice for you. Fort Myers has excellent weather, beach access, a wide range of housing options, incredible restaurants, and so much more.
As one of the fastest-growing areas in Florida, this city has a population of 105,260. Here, you’ll find not only some of the top-rated beaches in the state but also a thriving business environment, lots of local museums and attractions, and an active social scene.
The abundant shopping, restaurants, and golf courses on this stunning area of mainland Florida are appealing to many.
To the south is Fort Myer Beach, which is a separate township with its own council. This area provides the vibrant beach town atmosphere featuring bars, condos, motels, and souvenir shops. Located on Estero Island, and accessed via the Mantanzas Pass Bridge from the mainland, Fort Myers Beach is an altogether different but complementary destination.
Whether you want to escape the cold winters, you love water sports and beaches, or you’re simply interested in the employment opportunities, moving to Fort Myers, Florida, could be the right choice for you.
License # SL3486473
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Relocation Guide for Moving to FORT MYERS, Florida
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Quality of Life in Fort Myers
Living in Fort Myers, Florida, offers an excellent quality of life, with an impressive life expectancy of 84 years old. Additionally, this city was voted the number one place to retire in the U.S.
Whether you’re a retiree, a snowbird, a family or a single looking to utilise the great outdoors, Fort Myers offers an enticing array of lifestyle options for all. There is an abundance of beaches to the South of the city, lots of tempting water spots and parks along the Caloosahatchee river banks, and the downtown is filled with inviting restaurants and quaint shops. You’ll also find numerous art galleries, museums, and amusement parks in Fort Myers, so there’s always something to do.
The cost of living in Fort Myers, alongside positive employment opportunities, and a range of outdoor activities, make this a wonderful place to live. a
A Brief History of Fort Myers, Florida
As it was so abundant and prosperous, Fort Myers landmass was a key settlement area for the native Calusa and Seminole Indians. After the Wars of Indian Removal, the area became home to frontier settlers and traders.
In 1861, Fort Myers was established as one of the first forts built along the Caloosahatchee River. In the years following the Civil War, people from South Florida started to come to the area to search for wood used in construction. The official community named Fort Myers was created in the 1870s.
Residents Made Famous
The city’s most famous residents are inventor Thomas Alva Edison and his friend Henry Ford, who opened the first Ford Car Dealership in Fort Myers in 1914.
As We Know It
The population in Fort Myers started to expand significantly in the 1940s, when multiple air bases were brought to Florida because of the weather. Many of the servicemen and their families settled here after the war. Today, the older downtown has retained its old charm, and it’s full of cafes, restaurants, boutiques, professional offices, and more.
Fort Myers City Data
Below you’ll find some essential data for living in Fort Myers, Florida. While the city is very popular with retirees, it’s also desirable for young people and families. Since Fort Myers is a small city, it comes with numerous advantages, such as a laid-back lifestyle and tight-knit community feeling.
- Population – 105,260
- Average Age – 40.3 years
- Average Home Price – $419.9K
- Homeowner rate is 48.2%
- Average Household Income – $51,682
- Unemployment Rate – 5.3%
- Poverty Rate of 16%
- Median House value is $364K
- Crime Rate – 15
- Area & Density – 39.8 sqare miles, 2,642.10people per square mile
The city’s job market is exceptionally promising, with a projected future job growth rate of 60.80%.
Fort Myers boasts a diverse job landscape, with plenty of opportunities in government, healthcare, and hospitality sectors. You’ll also find well-known companies like Hertz, Gartner, and Chico’s with offices in the area.
Some of the city’s largest employers include Lee Health, the Lee County School District, and Lee County government. Major retailers like Publix and Walmart are among the top employers in the region.
Demographics & Education
Fort Myers is a well educated area with over a quarter of the population having attended college, and almost a fifth of the population holding a Bachelor’s Degree. The city has a student population of around 2,400, of which approximately two thirds are women.
For additional demographic data about Fort Myers check out the US Census Bureau for the following:
- Demographics (age, etc.)
- Family & living arrangements
- Computer and internet use
- Income & poverty
Cost of Living in Fort Myers, FLORIDA
The cost of living in Fort Myers, Florida, is lower than the average in the United States and Florida. While grocery prices are higher in Fort Myers than the Florida and U.S. average, the city makes up for it in housing, utilities, and transportation, which are all significantly lower than the Florida and national average.
100 = USA Average Cost of Living
103.1 = Florida Cost of Living
96.9 = Fort Myers Cost of Living
|Median Home Cost||$349,500||$362,400||$338,100|
Climate and Weather in Fort Myers
Soaking up the plentiful sunshine is one of the main reasons people choose to move to Fort Myers. Winters are very mild here thanks to the tropical climate, and you can expect average temperatures of 64.9 degrees with no snow. Summer temperatures are comfortable with averages of 82.5 degrees, while spring averages are around 73 degrees.
- Rainfall – averages 54 inches of rain per year
- Sunny Days – 271 per year
- Hottest Month – July high is around 92 degrees
- Coldest Month – January low is 53 degrees
- Most Comfortable Months: December, March and February
- Most Uncomfortable Months: August and July
- Check out the current 10-day Fort Myers Weather Forecast Here
Hurricane season is technically June through October, with the most active months being August and September.
Things To Do in Fort Myers
Activities & the Arts
Whether you’re a single, a couple, or a family you’ll find lots of fun and interesting things to do in Fort Myers. From visiting the local farmer’s markets, exploring the downtown historic district, recreational boating, hiking through the county parks, or beachcombing, there’s always a new adventure awaiting.
You can learn a lot about the history of the area by taking a tour of the Burroughs Home, a Georgian Revival style mansion that was once the heart of social events in the city. Or you can step back in time to learn about life in the late 1800s, at the Edison and Ford Winter Estates, located close to McGregor Boulevard, when Henry Ford and Thomas Edison lived on the banks of the Caloosahatchee River.
For even more things to do you can check out this post. Another bonus is that the stunning city of Cape Coral is so close to Fort Myers that you can easily hopover the bridge and find even MORE things to do there.
Recreation & the Outdoors in Fort Myers
Outdoor Fun Year-Round
Fort Myers offers lots of opportunities to explore the wonderful Florida wildlife, and it’s a true paradise for those who love the outdoors.
You can explore one of the numerous state parks in the area, which include the Lovers Key State Park, Koreshan State Park, and Estero Bay Preserve State Park. All these parks are located within a 45-minute drive from downtown.
If you love hiking, explore the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve, which offers some incredible routes and wildlife viewing opportunities.
Being nestled along the coast, there are a number of islands and waterways which provide opportunities for boating, fishing, wildlife watching and watersports. You can easily go out on the water thanks to the numerous kayak launches, public boat ramps, and charter boats that are great whether you have your own boat or are looking to rent one.
Golf Courses in Fort Myers
Florida is known for its plentiful golf courses, and Fort Myers holds up to the national reputation. Here, you’ll find over 80 courses within a 15-mile radius of Fort Myers, 43 of which are public courses and 27 are private courses. There are 61 18-hole courses and 19 nine-hole layouts, and the selection features both value and high-end golf courses.
Beaches in Fort Myers
There are no shortage of enticing beaches in Fort Myers. Some of our favorites include:
Bunche Beach Preserve. Offering ungroomed coastline, tidal flats, and mangrove forest, this is one of the most pristine natural settings that you’ll find in the Fort Myers area.
Fort Myers Beach. Located on Estero Island, some 16 miles southwest of downtown Fort Myers, this is a stunning beach, with various access points and seven miles of picturesque shoreline.
Crescent Beach Family Park is a sliver of coastline which is actually part of Fort Myers Beach. You’ll find picnic tables, beach volleyball courts, and convenient parking. It’s also the perfect spot for shelling and sand castle-making with the kids.
Newton Beach Park is also a part of Fort Myers Beach. The park offers shaded picnic tables and a pristine stretch of sugar-white sand.
Transportation in Fort Myers
As with much of Florida, almost everyone has a car and the city is mostly built for that. But you can still rely on public transportation when you need it. The LeeTran bus and trolley service is available not only for Fort Myers but also for the surrounding communities such as Cape Coral and Pine Island.
Interstate 75 is the major highway that connects Fort Myers to the surrounding communities, south to the Naples area and North toward Sarasota and Tampa. Highway 41, the Tamiami Trail, follows a similar route to Interstate 75 except it rides slower along closer to the coastline and through town, with many shops and restaurants along the way.
Airports in / Near Fort Myers
The Southwest Florida International Airport is located just a few miles outside the city and is serviced by numerous domestic and international airlines. There are LeeTran services available every day to and from the airport for extra convenience.
For more options, you can also search flights from Sarasota, Tampa or the Miami area if you don’t mind driving further for a great flight.
Hospitals in Fort Myers
Just like many other cities in Florida, Fort Myers has excellent healthcare services and multiple hospitals serving the area, many of which have won awards for their outstanding service.
This is the primary location for Lee Health’s cardiac program, and has received several accolades for its range of high quality cardiology services. The Center also features comprehensive OB/GYN services, including state-of-the-art birthing suites. It’s also co-located with Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, the only children’s hospital in the region.
This is the largest hospital in the Lee Health system, and has undergone further expansion in recent years. It houses a Level II Trauma Center, the Neuroscience Institute, orthopedic, oncology and cardiology services, and much more.
A+ Schools in Fort Myers
The public schools in the city all belong to the School District of Lee County and have an excellent reptation. In fact, 13 high schools are recognized on U.S. News & World Report’s Best High Schools rankings.
In addition to quality public schooling, Fort Myers has a number of private schools that provide an additional level of education in academics, athletics, and other areas.
Besides schools, Fort Myers is also home to multiple colleges and trade schools. Local universities include Florida Gulf Coast University, Southern Technical College, and Florida SouthWestern State College.
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License # SL3486473