Estero Bay and River... Paddling in Southwest Florida
The designated paddling trail on the Estero River runs 9 miles between Koreshan State Historic Site and Lovers Key. Other paddling is throughout Estero Bay including Mound Key and Big Hickory Island, and on the 190-mile Great Calusa Blueway from Ft. Myers to Bonita Beach. (More photos and map below.)
Lovers Key State Park is a 700-acre park comprised of four islands, canals and lagoons. A prime wildlife and bird watching location, the park includes picnic facilities, 5-mile bicycle trail, bicycle and canoe/kayak rentals, fishing, and a 2.5 mile beach.
Koreshan State Historic Site was originally founded in 1894 by Cyrus Reed Teed as a religious community (Koreshan Unity) which believed that the entire universe existed within a giant, hollow sphere. Family members deeded the land to the state in 1961. Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1976, 11 of the original buildings remain. The park includes a campground in addition to picnic area, playground, canoe/kayak rental, and hiking trails.
Mound Key Archaeological State Park in Estero Bay is accessible only by boat. There are no facilities, a hiking trail has interpretative markers. The 30-foot mounds are remnants of the Calusa Indians who inhabited the site.
More information on paddling on Estero Bay and River (opens in a new window):
Paddling in Florida - Kayak, Canoe
Canoe/Kayak RentalsEstero River Outfitters
Support and AdvocacyEstero Bay Buddies
Friends of Lovers Key