2021 Southwest Florida Accolades

What is Southwest Florida known for? Well, beautiful weather and beaches of course! But there is so much more to our area than just the beaches.

One of the best ways to learn about a new place is to read its accolades. So, we've listed the 26 accolades that SWFL received in 2021 below for you to peruse. 

Travel Pulse & MSN

The Best US Destinations for Outdoor Sites and Attractions: Highlights Sanibel Island, Ding Darling, the Sanibel Lighthouse, and shelling on Sanibel. MSN featured Lover's Key in 10 Florida Beaches that are Great for Avoiding Crowds.

The World's Most Beautiful Beaches for Ultimate Relaxation: features Sanibel and the infamous "Sanibel Stoop" shelling position. 


25 Best Family-Friendly Beaches: Highlights Bowman’s Beach on Sanibel Island, and the 25-miles of shared use path on Sanibel. 

Fodor’s Travel 

Forget Hawaii. Go to these 10 U.S. Islands Instead: Listed #1 is Sanibel Island, the "seashell capital of the world."


Top Spring Fishing Spots in the US for 2021: Fort Myers Beach and Boca Grande Pass are known for thier fishing tournaments each year. 

U.S News & World Report

15 Top Memorial Day Weekend Getaways:  Sanibel once again ranks #1 on the list of weekend getaways. The island also made the U.S News list for 50 Cheap Tropical Vacations to Take This Year.


The 10 Best Beach Towns in Florida (Because You Need a Vacation): Naples, Sanibel and Captiva make this list! Sanibel also makes the PureWow list for The 10 Most Beautiful Places in Florida. It doesn't stop there, Sanibel is featured in The 20 Best East Coast Beaches—from Maine to Florida.

SWFL felt the love from PureWow in 2021, including a feature on 8 of The Best Florida Island Escapes Perfect for Your Next Staycation.

Country Living Magazine  

15 Cutest Seaside Towns in the South: The natural beaches and shell-hunting opportunites on Sanibel make this list from Country Living Magazine. 

Travel + Leisure 

The Most Charming Small Towns in Florida: The sunsets and small-town appeal made Sanibel and easy selection for this article. Sanibel & Captiva make the list of The Top 15 Islands in the Continental U.S.


18 Best Beaches in Florida for Fun in the Sun:  Bowman's Beach on Sanibel and Naples Beach make this list from PlanetD.

Smarter Travel 

The 7 Best Beach Destinations in the U.S.: Fort Myers and Sanibel make the smart travel list, which mentions the close proximity to our RSW international airport. 

Condé Naste Traveler

Sanibel was featured in Top Islands: Readers’ Choice Awards 2021. And Pink Shell Resort on Fort Myers Beach was featured in Top 20 Resorts in Florida: Readers’ Choice Awards 2021.

Don't forget, there's camping: The Best Places for Camping in Florida, from the Keys to the Everglades.


The 25 Best Winter Trips in the World: Lists Cabbage Key, Captiva Island, Captiva Cruises, Cayo Costa State Park, Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail. 

Travel Off Path 

Top 10 Winter Getaways For Couples On The East Coast: Sanibel Island gets recognition for being a great couples retreat!

Fox News, New York Post & Trend Fool 

The 10 Best Christmas Towns in America: While we don't get snow, we do catch the Christmas spirit! Fort Myers Beach, Captiva and Sanibel Island are featured in this collab article. 

Boy! That's a Great List

A special shout-out to our tourism department for gathering the list of accolades each year! Check out www.visitfortmyers.com to see more fun-facts about the area. 

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