The abundance of nature-oriented locales and activities in Bonita Springs is a testament to this community's intimate connection with nature. Nestled between Lover's Key State Park and Barefoot Beach State Preserve on the west and Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary to the east, Bonita Springs is within minutes of countless wonders. Possibilities within the city are plentiful, too. Learn about stewardship or volunteer at the Bonita Nature Place. Discover wildlife and native plants at Everglades Wonder Gardens. Relax in the sun at Bonita Beach Park, where you may see dolphins, sea birds, and other wildlife. There is no end to the wonders of Bonita Springs' natural attractions.
National Art Festival
A busy arts scene is another of Bonita Springs' most enduring characteristics. Recognized for excellence, the National Art Festivals draw the attention of artists and art patrons from throughout the state and across the nation. Weather in the region permits a robust annual schedule for these outdoor events, with three or more festivals held annually. Each fair features arts and fine crafts from 150 or more exhibitors, and the proceeds from these and other Center for the Arts' events fund local arts education, scholarships, and community arts programs, which include classes for all ages, film screenings, live dance and music performances, and art exhibitions.
Like many of the state's blossoming cities, this one arose from meager beginnings. A few homesteaders arrived in the late 19th century, but the town stayed small, even after the arrival of the railroad in the 1920s. That is, until the 1950s when highway expansion and the Fort Myers airport forever altered accessibility. Bonita Springs more than quadrupled in size by the turn of the 21st century. The community's story is told through the artifacts, photos, and exhibits at the Liles Hotel, which is the local history museum. It, along with nearly 40 other early 20th century buildings still stand, most along Old 41.