Kennedy Space Center – reaching for the Stars in Cape Canaveral
- 20. October 2020
Kennedy Space Center is widely regarded as the most important place in US space history. The first astronauts began their missions here,…Read More
They are the most colorful inhabitants of Florida’s forests, meadows and parks: More than 150 butterfly species live in the Sunshine State. Protecting these important pollinators is the mission of the Florida Native Butterfly Society. This non-profit organization runs the Butterfly Estates in Downtown Fort Myers – a fun and informative place for the whole family.
Located at the heart of the Estates is the 400 square yard greenhouse. Here, tropical plants and flowers create the perfect surroundings for butterflies to flutter about. Walking through this authentically designed biotope, you can take photos of monarchs, longwings, peacocks and other pollinators. Carps and turtles are swimming in the pond, and the serene Zen music makes for an even more relaxing experience. With such beautiful surroundings, it is no surprise that the Butterfly Estates are a popular spot for wedding photos.
All butterflies at the Estates are native species that are raised on-site. This way, guests can follow the insects´ life-cycle from caterpillar to grown butterfly. During the 30 minute tour you will learn many interesting facts about butterflies: for example, why they are so important for Florida’s plant life and how you can create a butterfly habitat in your own garden.
It pays to wake up early: Every day at 10.30 am the newly hatched butterflies are released, so they can fly freely in the greenhouse.
If you want to learn more about butterflies, you should visit the Estates´ gift shop. Here you cannot only buy books and growing kits. The shop also sells plants, gardening equipment and live caterpillars – everything you need to create your own butterfly habitat.
Hungry guests should head for the Bullig Coffee & Bites right next to the Fort Myers Butterfly Estates. This charming café is famous for its homemade cakes and waffle recipes that have been passed on for generations. The waffles do not only come in the sweet variety, but also with barbecue pork, bacon, Piedmont Cheese and healthy salads. The homemade frozen yogurt is a perfect choice on hot Florida days.
The Butterfly Estates are open everyday (except Monday) from 10 am to 3 pm.
For adults and children aged 13 and above the entrance fee is 10 USD. Children between 3–12 years pay 6 USD, and guests aged 3 or under visit the park for free. If you want to contribute to the conservation efforts of the Florida Native Butterfly Society, you can purchase the annual membership for 30 USD.
Like many other attractions in Florida, the Butterfly Estates are best visited with coupons. Bargain hunters should look for discounts on websites like groupon.com. This way, you can save up to 50%.
The Butterfly Estates are centrally located in Fort Myers, between Edison Bridge and the IMAG History Center. Getting there from Cape Coral takes about 25 minutes by car.