Holiday Events in Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel & Captiva

By Laurén Ettinger

Spending the holidays away from the winter wonderland of snow-covered states doesn’t mean you can’t ring in the Christmas cheer! Visitors to Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, and Sanibel and Captiva Islands during the holiday season will enjoy temperate weather perfect for beach days and more than a few options for holiday events

Christmas, holiday, and New Year’s events to enjoy in Fort Myers Beach, Fort Myers, Sanibel and Captiva Island, Florida.

The perfect way to kick off the holidays is to visit the Edison & Ford Holiday Nights celebration which runs throughout December. Visitors can enjoy live music performances, thousands of lights and historic decorations, plus tours and much more. 

Walk through the downtown Fort Myers River District during the Holiday Stroll and Tree Lighting festival for ice skating, live music, a horse-drawn carriage, and appearances from Santa. Meanwhile, at the Fisherman’s Village Festival of Lights in Punta Gorda, Florida, you’ll find over one million lights, holiday music, and frequent visits from Santa. 

On Sanibel and Captiva Islands more than three miles of luminary candles light the main roads and the entire family can enjoy activities including a nativity scene, visits from Santa and Mrs. Claus, and live music.

Lovers Key State Park will celebrate the season with Santa on the Sand where children of all ages can enjoy an afternoon of games and prizes with Santa on the beach. Kids ages eight and under who donate an unwrapped toy will receive a small gift from Santa. All famiies in attendance have a chance to win a fully decorated Christmas Tree!

Lighted boat parade at sunset. Christmas and Holiday Events in Sanibel & Captiva Island Fort Myers and Fort Myers Beach, Florida. |

It wouldn’t feel like a Florida holiday season without an event on the water. Luckily there are three boat parades in the Fort Myers area for visitors to experience. Watch as lighted boats drive through calm waters in Fort Myers Beach, Bonita Springs, and Punta Gorda. During December you can also take a family-friend Christmas Canal Cruise with King Fisher Fleet Cruises.

What better way to wrap up a festive holiday season than with New Year’s Eve celebrations! Head to the downtown Fort Myers River District for four stages of live music, food and drink specials, and a ball drop at midnight. At Fisherman’s Village there will be live music and dancing, photos booths, magic shows, face painting, fireworks, and more! Start the party early with the Fort Myers Beach Birthday celebration in the afternoon and then stay for the ball drop in Times Square and fireworks over the water. 

Regardless of how you choose to spend your holiday vacation in the Fort Myers, Florida area, it’s sure to be one filled with cheer!  

Check out events taking place in and around Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel and Captiva Islands.

Written by: Laurén Ettinger | Author Website

Laurén Ettinger runs the travel and vanlife blog Flit Float Fly Away where she shares travel tips and stories from life on the road with her dog. She is the Assistant Editor at Siesta Publications for Must Do Visitor Guides where she manages social media, writes blog articles, and assists in editing print and online copy. Laurén also works as a freelance copy editor and proofreader. She holds a M.S. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University's School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution and a B.A. in Anthropology and a B.A. in Global Studies from Appalachian State University. Follow her adventures on instagram or her blog