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Thursday, July 12, 2018

Instagram Guide to Fort Myers

Instagram has become one of the biggest tools us bloggers use to communicate with viewers and to show off our latest blog posts. But it's more than just that. Instagram is a creative place where anyone can construct content around whatever they're interested in or by just taking beautiful photos anywhere they see fit. Now, this can come off as a negative way to travel but I truly find joy in visiting sites in cities/towns that I can take photos of or with. I genuinely have fun trying to construct an Instagram post - and I'm sure some of y'all do too.
So I decided to do yet another Instagram guide, check out my London one here, this one for my hometown of Fort Myers, Florida. Below are my go to spots to take a photo when I'm home. They are also the places I take all of my friends when they come to visit to show off FM as the best place it is. Speaking of which, if you are planning to visit Fort Myers, find my guide here
Here are my eight most Instagramable spots in FM:

Sun Harvest - The line extends past the flimsy barrier and backs up to the free samples stand, where sticky juice drips into a tray and people hover to refill their crumpled paper cups of Florida's lifeblood - orange juice. Sun Harvest is an actual citrus packing store opened in 1990; the family decided to finally offer their Indian River citrus to the public after having been in the business since 1940. During season, people line up for free orange juice samples, bites of oranges fresh off the trucks and the best thing of all - their creamsicle ice cream cones. These aesthetically pleasing cones have orange ice cream (the color of the Tennessee Volunteers football uniforms) on one side with vanilla soft serve on the other side. First, they are absolutely delicious and super cheap - a cone sets you back $2.50. Second, they make the perfect Instagram; make you friends at home jealous you are snacking on some of the world's best citrus by taking your cone outside to the green plants that surround the building or the giant metal orange and snapping your photo. BONUS: Visiting during the winter season? They have peppermint swirl during December and strawberry swirl in February.
Sun Harvest Citrus is located at 14601 6 Mile Cypress Parkway. Open daily 8am-7pm Monday-Saturday and 10am-6pm Sundays.

Pink Wall - Downtown Fort Myers has plenty of Instagramable spots. Hidden in alleyways, on building facades and in some of the unique shops you'll see lots of photo options. But my favorite is the huge millennial pink wall of the old movie theater (now a law office). This expanse is perfect if you are rocking an outfit that needs to be shown off or you just want that south Florida look. Who needs the pink wall of Los Angeles when you can have more fun in Fort Myers and take your own pink wall photo. Not to mention, the Edison Theater's marque makes for a solid Instagram as well (it's even one of Fort Myers' geofilters on Snapchat). Pose it up and bask in the sun (and the likes). 
The Pink Wall of the Edison Theater is on the corner of Hendry and Main Street in downtown Fort Myers. 
Edison Ford Winter Estates - The grounds of the Estates are home to tropical plants you only wish you could grow in your yard. And when they bloom, it is a sight to see. The flowers weigh their branches down and are colors offof an artist's pallet. Not to mention the historic homes (built in 1886) provide for beautiful backgrounds to your photos. If my Instagrams from the site don't prove it, know that I took my prom photos on the grounds at sunset and they are some of my favorite photos from high school. The whole site is beautiful all year round but if you can go in March, the flowers blooming will provide for beautiful shots. I would highly recommend taking a ton and choosing your favorites after visiting because there are so many good places. 
The Estates are located at 2350 McGregor Blvd. They are open daily from 9am-5:30pm. Admission runs from $25 to $30 depending on what type of tour you want. 
Wisteria Tea Room - Purple and white tablecloths and mix matched china greet you as you sit down for tea at Wisteria Tea Room. The renovated 1919 bungalow bustles with, mainly, ladiesnibbling on cucumber sandwiches and sipping hot tea. Who cares if it's 100 degrees outside, the hot tea is too good not to enjoy. You'll hear the clink of tea cups as people toast their vacations, birthdays and other accomplishments while enjoying the scent of fresh brewed tea billowing out of the kitchen. Order the roast beef panini with the chicken & rice soup and scones for dessert. The atmosphere is something out of a Miss Marple movie but the food is some of the best in all of Fort Myers. My tip for your photo is wait until everyone gets their food and then shoot from above as a flatlay. Everything looks amazing on those purple and white tablecloths, I swear
Wisteria Tea Room is located at 2512 Second St, Fort Myers. They have two seatings a day (Monday-Saturday) at 11am and 3pm but you can walk-in during anytime. During season it is recommended you get a reservation. 

Bubble Room - If Disney World threw up and was obsessed with the early days of film stars and loved Christmas that would be the Bubble Room Restaurant on Captiva. There really is no way to explain how insane the inside of the restaurant really is, there are some photos here but it doesn't do the place justice. You walk in to giant cases holding giant cakes (I'm not kidding, they're giant) and can be seated in any room with stuff plastered all over the walls, a toy train running in between rooms and waiters dressed in amended Boy Scout uniforms. The place is incredibly photogenic from its rainbow awnings to Christmas scenes to its Bubble Scouts. There's even a specific photo op called the Love Boat by the restrooms. But my favorite spot is their bubble covered wall in the parking lot. For added points, take some bubbles from Target or the Dollar Store and go to town taking photos. 
The Bubble Room is located at 15001 Captiva Dr, Captiva, FL 33924 and is open daily from 11:30am-3pm and 4:30pm-9pm. $$.

Lighthouse Beach on Sanibel Island - When your toes first touch the Gulf of Mexico you'll feel the sweet relief of being at the beach. The sun beats down on your sunhat as you frolic in the waves with friends and family and you forget about all of lives troubles. All of that should be enough reason to visit Lighthouse Beach on the tip of Sanibel Island. But if that wasn't enough there are plenty of Instagramable spots. The metal lighthouse built in 1884 stands tall in the background of your photos, or the big leafed plants beckon you to pose in front of them, or maybe your pedicured toes look wonderful against the gulf as it laps your feet. Whatever you choose will make the perfect gram, I promise. 
Lighthouse Beach is located at 1 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, Florida 33957. Parking is $4 per hour. The park is open 24 hours.

'Tween Waters Pool - The gulf breeze blows through the parking lot as you walk toward your destination. The cool waters of the 'Tween Waters Island Resort Pool. With its yellow and white umbrellas and branded plastic cups this pool is what you've dreamt about since you started planning your vacation. Picture this, you're lyingon a pool lounger napping the day away. As you open your eyes behind your designer (or Target, who cares) sunglasses you see those very same yellow and white umbrellas, you immediately reach for your phone to snap a photo. That is the spot on Captiva. Tween Waters umbrellas, under those things anything can happen. You could get a call about your future job, you could get proposed to, you could found your own company or you could just get a respite from your mundane activity. Whatever it is, those umbrellas promise a future that is all sunshine and joy. 
'Tween Waters Island Resort is located at 15951 Captiva Dr, Captiva, FL 33924. Rooms start at $151 a night but there are day passes offered, call 239-472-5161 for more information.

Spring Training at Jet Blue Park - Balls can be heard smacking against bats as you walk through a tunnel into Jet Blue Park aka Fenway South during Spring Training. The Boston Red Sox are, hopefully, winning and you have a Del's frozen lemonade in your hand. You find your seat, grab your phone and snap a photo as the sticky, cold juice runs down your hand. As soon as you have the right shot you dive into your treat, sit back, relax and watch some of the best baseball in the country - because there is no pressure weighing it down. Visiting Fort Myers for Spring Training is a tradition and sitting under the roof at Jet Blue, enjoying Del's is one of the most classic things you can do. It's so quintessentially Fort Myers and it reminds me of my childhood. 
Spring Training in the Grapefruit League runs mainly in March. Jet Blue Park is located at 11500 Fenway South Drive.

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