Southwest Florida’s Best Boat-Friendly Restaurants
Considering Southwest Florida is a haven for boaters, the area is rife with acclaimed dock-and-dine restaurants where you can pull up in your boat and enjoy fresh seafood, maybe a cocktail or two, before getting back out on the water. Here are some of the area’s best boat-friendly dining establishments.
Top Pick: Big Hickory Waterfront Grille
Arrive by boat at the 24 slip marina to enjoy some of the best waterfront dining by the beach. The Bonita Springs-based Big Hickory Waterfront Grille is one of The Grant Group's top picks because of its relaxing environment and delicious food, including the award-winning grouper sandwich, seafood dishes, burgers, salads, steak, and homemade chowders and bisques.
Lighthouse Waterfront Restaurant
Overlooking the entrance to the idyllic Connie Mack Island, Lighthouse Waterfront Restaurant is a casual, relaxing dining establishment where you can sip from a cocktail in a cozy lounge and listen to some of the area's best live entertainment. Step outside onto the expansive porch to see breathtaking views of the dockside. You might even catch sight of an exotic animal swimming in the water. It's the ultimate setting for a special event or simply enjoying a tasty fresh seafood meal.
Positioned near Snook Bight Yacht Club and Marina on Fort Myers Beach, the Bayfront Bistro provides an upscale waterfront dining experience overlooking the beautiful Estero Bay. Sit back and delight in the tastes of the renowned kitchen while checking out the stunning surroundings. Each dish is carefully made, and the chef uses only the freshest seafood from the Gulf of Mexico. Pair your meal with one of the restaurant's carefully-selected wines.
Coconut Jack’s Waterfront Grille
Coconut Jack's is an award-winning destination in Bonita Springs, consistently voted the best waterfront restaurant in the city from 2011 to 2021. Visit by boat or car to watch the dolphins play and the other incredible wildlife outside the grill. The casual atmosphere combined with a spectacular view and excellent fresh local seafood makes for a memorable occasion.
The Dock at Crayton Cove
Located in the heart of Old Naples, The Dock at Crayton Cove is a rustic space and considered Naples' original waterfront dining establishment. When you sit down for a meal here, you're getting a piece of Naples' history. The menu is geared toward seafood lovers, with fresh fish and seafood from regional and international waters infused with tropical flavors and prepared to reflect the area's rich cultural history.
Riverwalk at Tin City
This Naples fish house is an open-air waterfront hotspot serving quality seafood in a casual atmosphere with live music. Enjoy the island vibe with a tropical cocktail at this low-key spot that's a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Serving lunch or dinner, dining at Riverwalk at Tin City is a great way to witness the natural surroundings, including playful dolphins and other wildlife at home in Naples Bay.
The Boathouse on Naples Bay
The Boathouse on Naples Bay is a charming family-owned and operated restaurant serving the area for more than two decades, including generations of local families. Throughout that time, The Boathouse on Naples Bay has remained a constant favorite. The menu changes by the season to reflect the freshest and highest quality ingredients. Popular dishes include the succulent chargrilled octopus, the bacon-wrapped sea scallops, and the house seafood gumbo.
The Fish House Restaurant
Perched right on the water, The Fish House Restaurant is a seafood-focused establishment in Bonita Springs featuring an outdoor patio and a full bar. For over 25 years, The Fish House Restaurant has served guests the freshest seafood paired with great drinks. The casual atmosphere makes it a fun place to hang out with friends and family. The coconut shrimp and fish tacos are real crowd-pleasers.
Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille
This boat-friendly restaurant is perfect for enjoying lunch, dinner, and live music right on the water. At Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille, kick back and relax with delicious fresh seafood dishes. Doc Ford’s has been positively reviewed by the New York Times and was recently ranked as TripAdvisor’s #1 “Everyday Eats” restaurant in the country. You won’t want to miss out on an incredible shellfish bar!
Bayside Seafood Grill & Bar
The Bayside Seafood Grill & Bar in Naples is a multilevel restaurant and a more sophisticated spot than some other dock-and-dine establishments. Still, Bayside combines some of the best elements of waterfront dining: live music, seafood, and beer. Since opening its doors in 1990, Bayside has been creating excellent seafood, meat, and pasta dishes, quickly becoming recognized as one of the most beloved destinations for fresh seafood.