Experience the best waterfront dining in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Sanibel & Captiva Island.

Southwest Florida Waterfront Dining at the Boathouse in Cape Coral

In this blog, you will find our favorite restaurants on the water, hand-selected by the SWFL locals at McMurray & Members of Royal Shell Real Estate.

From island eateries and beachside bistros to waterfront restaurants you can boat to, you will love the food just as much as the views!

Keep reading to discover the best restaurants with a water view in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Sanibel & Captiva Island.

Fort Myers Waterfront Dining

Fort Myers has no shortage of restaurants on the water. Whether you’re hanging out downtown or along McGregor Blvd, you’re sure to find a scenic restaurant on the water.

Find our favorite Fort Myers waterfront eateries below.

Oxbow Bar & Grill – Downtown Fort Myers

This new riverfront restaurant features a creative menu with something for everyone. The staff is friendly and attentive, and the food is delicious. Sitting right on the Caloosahatchee River, you are promised beautiful sunsets 365 days a year. Plus, this Fort Myers restaurant is conveniently located near downtown Fort Myers shops and nightlife.

The waterfront patio at Oxbow in Fort Myers, Florida (photo credit: @justkeatingphoto)

Lighthouse Restaurant & Bar – Port Sanibel Marina

Serving up “casual-elegant seafood” and craft cocktails, this Fort Myers waterfront restaurant offers both fine and casual dining. Sit outside on the dockside porch and admire all the nearby yachts or relax in the lounge while enjoying small bites from the $5 happy hour menu.

Deep Lagoon Seafood and Oyster House – McGregor Blvd

Centrally located at the intersection of McGregor Blvd and A&W Bulb Rd, this family friendly Southwest Florida seafood restaurant sits next to a harbor where you can dock your boat. Come for the delicious seafood and stay to watch the boats go by and experience a famous SWFL sunset.

Waterfront dining in Fort Myers during sunset
Sunset from the marina at Deep Lagoon in Fort Myers, FL

Bimini Bait Shack Tiki Bar & Island Grill – Punta Rassa

Looking for casual dining that’s fun for the whole family? With live music, water views and a fish tank bar, you will love the island vibes at Bimini Bait Shack. Located next to the Sanibel Causeway, this is a nice option for a quick bite on your way to or from Sanibel Island.

Where to Eat on Fort Myers Beach

Did you know Fort Myers Beach is technically its own city in Southwest Florida? 

That’s why we separated your Fort Myers Beach waterfront dining options from restaurants found on the mainland in Fort Myers.

Read on to discover our favorite Fort Myers Beach eats, with a view.

Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille – Fort Myers Beach Bayside

This iconic SWFL restaurant chain is a must-visit whether you’re local or living in SWFL. The Doc Ford’s Fisherman’s Wharf on Fort Myers Beach was recently rated #1 restaurant in the country for “Everyday Eats” by Tripadvisor. With live music, great food, a water view and fun times for the whole family, you won’t regret dining at Doc Ford’s.

Doc Ford's in Fort Myers voted best restaurant for every day eats
The view of Doc Ford’s from the water

Shuckers at the Cottage – Gulfside on Fort Myers Beach

A Fort Myers Beach favorite for island eats on the Gulf of Mexico, Shucker’s serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner with a view. This beachfront restaurant has a fun atmosphere with different seating options depending on your mood. Dig your toes in the sand or sit upstairs in the restaurant overlooking Fort Myers Beach.

Matanza’s on the Bay – Fort Myers Beach Bayside

With great food, live music and a place to dock your boat, Matanza’s is a popular SWFL restaurant for locals and visitors alike. Choose from two tiers of dining and enjoy the view of boats passing in the bay. With a classic seafood menu plus pizza made fresh, you’re sure to find just what you’re craving at Matanza’s.

Fort Myers Beach waterfront dining at Matanza's on the Bay
Waterfront dining at Matanza’s on the Bay

Cape Coral Waterfront Restaurants

Did you know Cape Coral has more canals than Venice, Italy? With so much waterfront, it’s not hard to find dining with a view in Cape Coral, Florida.

Below you’ll discover the best waterfront restaurants in the Cape.

Boathouse Tiki Bar & Grill – Cape Coral Yacht Club

Experience SWFL living at the Boathouse. With live music and iconic sunsets every day, this nautical-themed restaurant is a staple for waterfront dining in Cape Coral. Located right on the Caloosahatchee River in the Cape Coral Yacht Club, the Boathouse has two bars, tons of tables and rail seating overlooking the water. With a sandy beach below the main restaurant, you can even have your drinks delivered to your beach lounger.

Island eats with a view of the river from the Boathouse Tiki Bar & Grill in Cape Coral, Florida
Island eats at the Boathouse in Cape Coral, FL

Rumrunners – Cape Harbour

Looking for an upscale dining experience with a great view? Rumrunners in Cape Coral has you covered. Featuring a great happy hour and delicious entrees, this is a great spot for a quick bite or date night. Keep an eye on the water and you might catch a few dolphins or manatees passing by. With lots of boat traffic, the gongoozling opportunities are endless.

Gather – Tarpon Marina

With an eclectic menu and creative craft cocktails, Gather is a great spot to satisfy your hunger for good food and great views. Located in Tarpon Marina within walking distance to the Cape Coral Westin, this unique eatery boasts peaceful waterfront scenery with plenty of nature and wildlife. Stop by Gather for brunch, lunch or dinner.

Palm trees at dusk seen from Tarpon Marina in Cape Coral, Florida

Monarca’s Authentic Mexican Cuisine Bar & Grill

Looking for the best Mexican food in Southwest Florida? You hit the jackpot with Monarca’s. Come by land or by water and experience authentic Mexican cuisine. Located on a canal near downtown Cape Coral, Monarca’s is a win-win when it comes to waterfront dining. With a massive menu full of all your favorite Mexican eats, the whole family is sure to enjoy Monarca’s.

Traveling by boat? You can dock your boat at any of the Cape Coral waterfront restaurants listed above.

The Best Waterfront Restaurants on Sanibel Island

Surprise! Sanibel Island has very few waterfront dining options, if any. That’s what makes this Southwest Florida island such a natural beauty. On the Gulf side of Sanibel, you’ll find miles of beaches. On the bayside, nature abounds in the J.N. Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge.

If you’re looking for waterfront dining on Sanibel Island, we recommend packing a picnic and posting up at one of the best beaches on Sanibel Island. 

Read: Top 5 Best Beaches on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

Bowman’s Beach on Sanibel Island

Waterfront Dining on Captiva Island

If you’re looking for a nice waterfront restaurant on our Southwest Florida islands, you will love dining on Captiva Island. Lush and tropical, Captiva Island maintains its beauty by keeping the beaches as natural as possible. As a result, the island only has a few choices when it comes to dining on the water.

Luckily, each Captiva Island waterfront restaurant has amazing food with something unique to offer you. From family-friendly restaurants to fine dining for date night, find the best waterfront restaurants on Captiva Island below.

The Green Flash – Captiva Island Bayside

Offering dockside dining or an indoor fine dining experience, you’re sure to enjoy the view wherever you sit. Dock your boat in one of 15 boat slips or drive up and enjoy delicious island eats all day. Be sure to look out for wildlife like dolphins, manatees, white pelicans, osprey and more.

Waterfront dining on Captiva Island, Florida
The water view from the Green Flash on Captiva Island

The Mad Hatter Restaurant – Captiva Island

With white tablecloth dining right on the Gulf, the Mad Hatter is a nice choice for celebrations, date night and upscale eats. Located near Blind Pass and Turner Beaches on Santiva, this beachfront restaurant promises stunning sunsets overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Inside, you’ll find whimsical decor matching the Alice in Wonderland theme. The Mad Hatter is open for dinner 7 days a week.

The Mucky Duck – Captiva Island

Welcome to the historic beachfront restaurant known as The Mucky Duck. You can walk right up from the Captiva beach, post up with a cold beer in an Adirondack chair overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, or sit inside with great views of the water. The Mucky Duck serves lunch and dinner in a casual, family friendly atmosphere.

Beachfront bar and restaurant on Captiva Island
Enjoying a beer on the beach at the Mucky Duck on Captiva Island

Eat, Drink, Play + Stay in Southwest Florida

Are you visiting Southwest Florida, and you don’t want your trip to end? Extend your stay!

When you have property in Southwest Florida, it’s a lot easier to take a long vacation whenever you want.

Find your piece of paradise now!

Browse Southwest Florida homes for sale, exclusively listed by McMurray & Members of Royal Shell Real Estate, your go-to realtors for buying and selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Sanibel, Captiva Island, and the greater SWFL area.

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Call: 239-850-7888

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Sunset in Southwest Florida from Deep Lagoon in Fort Myers
An Iconic SWFL Sunset in Fort Myers, FL