Relaxing in Fort Myers, take TWO.
Yes friends we are attempting… No NO we dare, to include relaxing, and traveling with kids, in the same blog post. For those just tuning in, this is take two of our favourite family hideaways in Fort Myers, Florida.
This beautiful, Florida area is filled with incredible theme parks, and attractions, Festivals and more! And while i’m sure they are all very wonderful. In our experience they also leave you absolutely exhausted. Lineups and crowds, an endless array of child temptations and “mommy daddy can I have just one more” the cheap useless souvenirs, or that oh sooo yummy bag of sugar that will leave you cursing your agreement for hours to come.
So what on earth is a parent to do. I mean these are wonderful experiences don’t get us wrong, but in this season of our travels, we said no. I said No to the heavy mommy guilt! Instead we found activities in nature, the great outdoors. And a big bold YES… to exploring beaches, endless sandcastles, splashing and healthy homemade lunches. We said YES to physical activity and walks in nature, bike rides and creativity. and in doing that said NO to overstimulated and exhausting. This is not to say this is our forever. But for now in this season of life. The “ simple” life is totally our JAM.
If you, like us, are looking for great places to let the kiddos run, then our second recommendation is for you. And BONUS if you have a train lover, like we do!
MUST SEE number TWO.
Lakes Regional Park, 7330 Gladiolus Dr.
Open everyday 7 am to Dusk
This gem quickly became a family favourite hang outs. Sooo where to begin?
Because this park really does have a little bit of everything. From hikes, to splash pads, and everything in between. This park is nearly 300 acres of beautiful nature trails, lakes and gardens. A true, natural beauty for exercise and family recreation. Lets dive in shall we…
The super cool surrey bike you see pictured is just one of the awesome rental options, to cruise around the bike paths in style. Check them out at their two locations on site where you can rent not only bikes, but also watercraft.
Bike Rentals by Wheel Fun Rentals https://wheelfunrentals.com/fl/fort-myers/lakes-regional-park/rentals/
Now, if you are up for a little bit of education, the park has a lovely greenhouse that is run exclusively by volunteers and when its open, has a variety of books and kid activities, sidewalk chalk and educational materials. All fantastic to entertain little hands. We also enjoyed time reading the walking stories in the children’s garden area which offers a beautiful shaded area to stroll and learn.
FARMERS MARKET Lakes Park also hosts a beautiful Local outdoor farmers market selling produce, fresh seafood, flowers and plants, artisan foods, organics, cheeses and breads, jams and more. Open every Wednesday, October to April. 9am to 1pm. The parking in the park is free during that time, where it is otherwise pay parking $1 per hour or $5 for the day.
The grounds have TWO super playgrounds, with lots of climbing and play for kiddos of all ages. One located at each end of the park they have play for all skill levels.
Now we’re getting to the good stuff… if you have a train lover in your home, well you are in luck! Lakes park is home to the Railroad Museum of South Florida.
Our family spent hours, either in the museum, which includes a little train simulator, miniature train displays, a large bell, plus more resources that one person could consume. As well as a little gift shop area with various Thomas and other train collectables.
Also in addition to the museum the real adventure, is the 1/8 scale miniature train ride. Its a mile long, and travels around Lake Park. It is Fantastic! A must see for the train lover in your family.
Tickets at the time of writing this were just $5 per person and kids 1-5 were free, Just to be safe ticket pricing, museum and train hours plus special holiday theme information can be found at http://rrmsf.org/#home
During different seasons the train displays change up, and we were lucky to see it at Christmas time with all the lights.
This is one train ride you don’t want to miss. and the staff are outstanding.
We sure hope this blog inspires you to add Lakes park to you Fort Myers adventure. It truly is a magical place with so much to see and do. I feel like, even as repeat visitors we still didn’t get to explore all it has to offer. With so many walking and bike trails. Those exercise, fitness stops, and did we mention the ice-cream shop? (yes friends I just put fitness and ice cream in the same sentence.)
Pack up your gear and get ready to enjoy a fun filled afternoon. Where kids can run and be kids.
Enjoyment for the young and young at heart.