Welcome to historic Estero Bay, Florida’s first aquatic preserve dedicated in 1966. With lush vegetation and an active animal population, this are stretches over 15 square miles with a drainage basin of 293 miles. Estero Bay’s subtropical climate, coupled with its numerous lagoons and bounty of various plant species, allow for it to be considered one of the most productive estuaries in the entire state.
Estero Bay is home to over 40 percent of the state’s endangered and threatened species, while also acting as a supply nursery area for commercial as well as sport fishing. Fishing for the famous Southwest Florida Snook along with other delicious fish such as Redfish and Trout remains a popular activity for tourists and residents alike. With Estero Bay’s impressive bird population, consisting of egrets, herons, ibis, pelicans, ospreys and even the patriotic Bald Eagle just to name a few, bird watching has become a fascinating hobby as well. Coasting by the massive mangrove forests of the main islands which comprise Estero Bay (Estero Island, Long Key, Lovers Key, Black Island, Big Hickory Island and Little Hickory Island) by boat is perhaps the most rewarding way to see what the estuary has to offer. Stop the boat near a seagrass bed and view a manatee in its natural habitat and favorite hang-out. Keep a sharp eye and you might spot an osprey feeding a freshly caught fish to its young in a nest high up in a mangrove tree. Turtles are commonly spotted floating along in the bay, and dolphins are also seen quite regularly in their pods, especially on the bay sides near the bridges of New Pass and San Carlos Pass. Cool off with a dip in the cool, blue-green water surrounding you or take a break and anchor the boat at one of Estero Bay’s many powder-white beaches to find a beautiful shell or two to take home as a creative souvenir. Explore the waters of Estero Bay at your own pace at Bonita Boat Rentals on a comfortable pontoon boat big enough for the whole family, where you’re your own captain and in control of your own personal adventure.