Fort Myers Imaginarium has Hands-On Exhibits for all Ages | Imaginarium science center Fort Myers, Florida attractions

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

Imaginarium Has Merged With The Southwest Florida Museum of History

The new name is IMAG History and Science Center and it now features a combination of history and science exhibits after merging with the SWFL Museum of History.

Learn how Fort Myers got its name and other Fort Myers history. Discover and explore historically themed exhibits about area boating and fishing, Native Americans, and World War II. See historical photographs, Calusa Indian tools made from shells, an 1850 military fort diorama, and a model depicting First Street in 1900.

If you think IMAG History and Science Center is just for children, you’re missing out on a wonderful attraction that is suitable for all ages. The huge indoor area is laid out with dozens of educational puzzles and activities. Designed to stimulate the imagination of youngsters, you will see plenty of adults unable to resist having a go too!

The two-story indoor zone has games, interactive exhibits, logic puzzles to solve and plenty of video games. Although it’s fun, everyone comes away having learned a great deal about science, natural history and how things work.

Imaginarium science center family fun attraction in Fort Myers, Florida

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

There’s an Idea Lab, lots of experiments to prove Newton’s Law of Motion, and a Dinosaur Exhibit where you can dig for prehistoric fossils and try to identify them. Sports enthusiasts will have fun in the Sporty Science area where you can select a game and then try to score a goal against the realistic looking “virtual” goalie.

Activities for Everyone

Pre-K youngsters have their own Tiny Town area with building bricks, paper and crayons and games laid out. Hands-on activities for slightly older children include a popular Build Your Own Roller Coaster corner.

One of the most popular exhibits is the Hurricane Experience. Visitors enter the simulator and feel what 45mph winds feel like, well below the 75mph winds that constitute a hurricane. You can also enter the Storm Experience for virtual rain, thunder, and lightning. Florida is located in the Hurricane Belt so it is interesting to see exhibits on the latest impact-resistant windows and flexible window shutters to protect homes in real life.

Hurricane simulator at Imaginarium science center Fort Myers, Florida kids activities and things to do

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

On the same upper level there is IMAG-TV where would-be reporters can produce a lively news program or do a weather forecast.

The Imaginarium has a huge supervised area of animal encounters. There is stingray feeding at certain times and visitors are invited to stroke some unusual creatures in the Sea-to-See touch-tanks. There are Spanish lobsters, sea stars, urchins and porcupine puffer fish in the marine life section.

Family fun activities Imaginarium hands-on Science Center touch tank Fort Myers, Florida.

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

More wildlife can be found in the Animal Nano Lab where aquariums display snakes, toads, alligators (juveniles!) and tanks of coral reefs. | Imaginarium Science Center discovery lab Fort Myers, Florida family activities

Photo credit Nita Ettinger

Indoor and Outdoor Exhibits at IMAG History and Science Center

Step outside and there is plenty more going on. Walk along the boardwalk to Fish Eye Lagoon where visitors hang out in the shady pavilion feeding and watching the huge Japanese koi. There are enclosures of turtles and other reptiles and a model of the nearby Caloosa Locks and Dam with a hands-on demonstration of how lock gates work.

The 3D films are one of the highlights of the Imaginarium so check the start times on your program. The films change from time to time and may feature penguins, or perhaps a journey to prehistoric times with Dinosaurs – Giants of Patagonia. Special 3D glasses are provided and the effects are pretty amazing!

If you are visiting Fort Myers with children and want a full day of entertainment,  the IMAG History and Science Center (formerly Imaginarium Science Center) offers great value for money. It’s an entertaining and educational place to escape the summer heat or to head for on a showery day. There’s even an on-site café and gift shop.

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Nita Ettinger is Co-publisher for Siesta Publications Inc. and the Editor in Chief for Must Do Visitor Guides. Must Do Visitor Guides provides Southwest Florida visitor information through printed magazines and the website Must Do magazines are published bi-annually and are available at no cost in Sarasota, Lee, and Collier County Chamber of Commerce, visitor information centers, select Southwest Florida hotels, and wherever free publications can be found.

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