Straddling the sliver of silver sand and turquoise Mexican Gulf that is Estero Island, Fort Myers Beach rentals are a ticket to an all-round Sunshine State resort. Head north and you can find buzzy spring break bars where beer kegs and sunset cocktails are the norm. Head south and things become family friendly, with big villas and beachfront cottages right next to the dunes.

Distinctive features of Fort Myers Beach vacation rentals

Sleek apartments, deluxe villas, Caribbean-themed cottages – there's all sorts on the line up of vacation rentals in Fort Myers Beach, Florida. The guide below can help you get an idea of what to expect before booking…

Gulf-front locations are to die for

From the boardwalks of Bowditch Point Park to the secluded barriers of Lovers Key, Estero Island and Fort Myers Beach run through miles of gorgeous Floridian sand. What's more, the whole of Estero Boulevard is dotted with vacation homes and condos that spill straight onto the coast, offering pads just a few steps from the lapping waves.

Al fresco spaces are important

Half of the fun of choosing a Fort Myers Beach vacation rental is that you get to soak up the rays and enjoy the fresh breezes of the ocean. That's why outdoor areas are such a big thing in the lettings. Whether it's a lofted balcony that gazes over the green-blue swells or a hidden cottage that's got fern-sprouting, orchid-speckled gardens with a pool, you can prep the Aloha shirt and sunnies for these.

Condos in Fort Myers Beach and their shared extras

You shouldn't have to look hard to find a reason to join the crowds in the condo blocks that rise against the Gulf Coast along Estero's glimmering shores. These modern flats come in all shapes and sizes, with multiple bedrooms and living spaces. But they also boast oodles of alluring extras – think bubbling hot tubs and cooling splash pools surrounded by sunbeds.

An area guide for vacation rentals Ft Myers Beach, FL

It's all very well pointing the compass to Fort Myers Beach vacation rentals, but what part of the town will you plump for when you arrive? There's nearly 10 miles of soft sand to get through up the length of Estero Island, not to mention certain neighborhoods that prefer pulsing margarita bars to chill-out sessions.

Fort Myers Beach rentals near Times Square

Revelers forever strut up and down the cobbles of Times Square between the umbrella-shaded bars and the lanky coconut palms, making this the most energetic corner of Fort Myers Beach as a whole. Come spring break, the condos and apartments in the area will be in uber-high demand.

Get away from it all going south down Estero Boulevard

As you wiggle down the coast along Estero Boulevard, you'll notice that the Fort Myers Beach rentals tend to become more family orientated. They get larger, sit in laid-back cul-de-sacs, have driveways, and tropical gardens with swimming pools. Oh, and it should be easier to score a place with a beachfront location in these parts.

What about San Carlos Island?

The stepping stone between the Florida mainland and Estero Island is often overlooked by travelers who just whiz on through to Times Square and the beaches. But linger a little on diminutive San Carlos and you get to enjoy shrimp kitchens and port-side seafood buffets, local cafés and lesser-known cocktail clubs, along with a clutch of more low-key condos with swimming pools and parking.

Booking cheap Fort Myers Beach vacation rentals

There are some tips and tricks that can help you whittle down the price of a stay on this sun-splashed island. Whether that means dodging the peak seasons or remaining on Estero's soft sands a little longer than expected, some money-saving hints are listed below…

Know when to go to Fort Myers Beach

Spring break and the summertime are always busy on the Gulf Coast of Florida – sunbathers, swimmers, partiers, and more hit Times Square and the villas along Estero Boulevard then. To try and save a few dollars, it might be worth planning your jaunt for months like June or October, which are generally cheaper and less popular overall.

Long-term rentals can save bucket loads

If you're lucky enough to have more than a month away from the Rat Race, then you could settle into the chilled rhythms of Estero Island like a real local. The good news is that there's often hefty price cuts on vacation rentals that last more than 30 days.

Fort Myers beachfront vacation rentals aren't the cheapest

Spending the evening clinking cold ones as the sun dips low on the horizon and glows across the Gulf of Mexico might sound like a dream come true, but it's worth remembering that rental homes right by the beach are often considerably more expensive than their counterparts just a few blocks back.