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News Story
Updated: 02/22/2018 08:30:03AM

Matlacha: A perfect nearby getaway

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MELISSA MAIN PHOTO

The Wild Child Art Gallery in Matlacha is a contemporary art gallery that features the work of 115 Florida artists.

MELISSA MAIN/CORRESPONDENT

Matlacha is just a short destination from many other scenic places, including Ft. Myers Beach, Cape Coral, St. James City and Pine Island.

MELISSA MAIN/CORRESPONDENT

Leoma Lovegrove Gallery and Gardens is a popular tourist attraction that features the art work of world-famous artist Leoma Lovegrove.

MELISSA MAIN/CORRESPONDENT

Fishing enthusiasts consider Matlacha to be a topnotch fishing destination. Visitors can fish off the bridge.

MELISSA MAIN/CORRESPONDENT

While staying at the Bridgewater Inn, visitors literally stay "on the water" and can fish on the docks outside their rooms.

MELISSA MAIN/CORRESPONDENT

The bridge at Matlacha has been nicknamed "the fishingest bridge in the world."

BY MELISSA MAIN

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Matlacha provides fishing, kayaking, dolphin watching, shopping, fine dining and art galleries in a quaint old-Florida atmosphere. Seafood restaurants, such as the Blue Dog Bar and Grill and Island Seafood Market, boast of fresh-caught fish from local waters. Some of the restaurants offer a water-front view, and all of them serve small-town hospitality.

The bridge that runs through the heart of Matlacha was nicknamed “the fishingest bridge in the world.” Visitors can fish straight from the bridge on a separate platform that keeps them safe from traffic. Besides fishing, visitors can kayak on their own or as part of guided tours through the Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve. The kayak tours offer a close-up look at marine life and birds. Many of the mangrove forests provide delightful catches of fish can be accessed only by kayak. Matlacha Fishing Charters will take fishing enthusiasts on half-day and full-day expeditions in search of redfish, snook, tarpon, and snapper. Dolphin and bird watching trips are also available.

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