Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hey, I'm Going to the LWI Conference at Marco Island. Which Airports Can I Fly To?

Marco Island Rowe 2 LWI 25The Legal Writing Institute (LWI) Biennial Conference will be held June 27-30, 2010 at Marco Island, Florida.  Click here for information about the LWI conference, including information about registration, hotels, and transportation to the conference hotel.

SEE UPDATES BELOW AND ALSO READ THE VERY HELPFUL COMMENTS TO THIS POST WITH ADDITIONAL ADVICE FOR YOUR TRAVEL TO FLORIDA

Fort Myers Airport (RSW) is 52 miles away (about an hour's drive) from Marco Island.  It is a nice airport and easy to navigate.  The LWI conference website has information about shuttle service from RSW to Marco Island.  Click here for that transportation information. 

UPDATE FROM ROBERT VOLK:  Naples Airport (AFP) is even closer to Marco Island.  It is less than 19 miles (about 30 minutes) away. 

So here's some information to share with you about other airports.  This is not "official" LWI information; these are just my own thoughts after visiting the conference hotel last year with other LWI Board Members. I flew into Ft. Meyers (RSW) last time and rented a car (which was cheaper than the shuttle).  [But keep in mind there's a daily parking fee at the hotel.] 

If you don't mind driving an extra hour (or more if you stop for birdwatching or to look for alligators in the everglades), you can also fly to Miami (MIA) which is 103 miles away from Marco Island (a drive of about two hours and five minutes), or to Fort Lauderdale (FLL) which is 117 miles away (about two hours).  Check it out on Mapquest or whatever other website you use.  Both of those airports are the other side of the state, but the drive is not bad and can be quite interesting.

Marco Island Rowe 1UPDATE FROM ANTHONY NIEDWIECKI:  In the comments to this post, Anthony Niedwiecki (who was recently featured here in a post about his new position at The John Marshall Law School) shared this gem of local knowledge:  Even though Fort Lauderdale airport is further, it will take much less time than traveling from MIA. It is almost a direct trip (very easy and quick) across Alligator Alley from the FLL airport, while you will be stuck in traffic if you come from MIA. My experience is that flying into FLL or Fort Myers will cost less than flying into MIA. Anthony Niedwiecki

Keep this in mind too-- depending on where you live and when you want to arrive, you may more frequent flights and even better deals by looking at various airport options.

If you know the area and have additional advice, please leave a comment for us on this post.  Please check out the comments already posted too.

ANOTHER POSSIBILITY:  Robert Volk reminded me as well about Sarasota/Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) which is 137 miles (2 hours 18 minutes) away (and also on the West Coast of Florida).

ANOTHER UPDATE from Kirsten DavisFlying through Tampa is also an option, particularly if you want to include Disney or Universal Studios in your trip. It is a much longer drive to Marco Island (about 3 hours, 185 miles) than from Ft. Myers, but the flights likely will be more plentiful than to Sarasota, Ft. Myers, or Naples, and the Tampa International Airport is about 90 minutes from Walt Disney World in Orlando. So, if you want to make Disney a part of your trip, you can fly to Tampa, drive to Marco, drive back to Disney, and fly home from Tampa. Orlando would also be an option, except you would need to add 90 minutes or so to your initial drive to Marco Island. (See the comments below for more information from Kirsten Davis, including her contact information as well for specific questions you might have).

Marco Island Rowe 3 So when you are checking flights, check the rates to these various airports

  • Fort Meyers (RSW)
  • Naples (AFP)
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • Sarasota (SRQ)
  • Tampa (TPA)

The photos here are of the conference hotel. They are provided courtesy of Professor Suzanne Rowe.

Click here for more information about the conference program and reserving a hotel room.

Open the COMMENTS to this post for additional helpful travel tips.

(mew)

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Comments

Even though Fort Lauderdale airport is further, it will take much less time than traveling from MIA. It is almost a direct trip (very easy and quick) across Alligator Alley from the FLL airport, while you will be stuck in traffic if you come from MIA. My experience is that flying into FLL or Fort Myers will cost less than flying into MIA.

Anthony Niedwiecki

Posted by: Anthony | Feb 23, 2010 7:13:32 AM

Flying through Tampa is also an option, particularly if you want to include Disney or Universal Studios in your trip. It is a much longer drive to Marco Island (about 3 hours, 185 miles) than from Ft. Myers, but the flights likely will be more plentiful than to Sarasota, Ft. Myers, or Naples, and the Tampa International Airport is about 90 minutes from Walt Disney World in Orlando. So, if you want to make Disney a part of your trip, you can fly to Tampa, drive to Marco, drive back to Disney, and fly home from Tampa.

Orlando would also be an option, except you would need to add 90 minutes or so to your initial drive to Marco Island.

If anyone wants additional information about the West Coast of Florida, particularly the St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Sarasota, Bradenton, or Venice areas, feel free to e-mail me at kkdavis@law.stetson.edu.

Kirsten Davis

Posted by: Kirsten Davis | Feb 23, 2010 9:26:27 AM

I used to live in Naples, Fl, and my folks still live on Marco. One of the best places for Italian food on the Island is Arturo's. (Bald Eagle Drive, turn left off of Collier Blvd at the Beall's Outlet shopping center) Try the pork chop house special stuffed with mushrooms, proscuitto, and provolone.

One of the best places for seafood, steaks, or German food is Konrad's (on S. Collier in the plaza with the Marco Movies at SR 92 and S Collier). Konrad, the owner and creator of awesome dishes, was the head chef at the Mariott for years before he struck out on his own.

A great Mexican restaurant is La Casita on SR 92 at Barfield Drive in the shopping plaza there. Its owners also sing there at night and are Marco staples.

For a different kind of entertainment, check out Stan's Idle Hour on Goodland (an old fishing village full of locals) (SR 92 toward Miami, turn right before the bridge off the island). He usually has Saturday and Sunday afternoon entertainment on the bay. And if you're lucky, you'll see Stan doing the "Buzzard Lope."

Alligators and Everglades flora and fauna are best viewed by airboat. The best airboat tours are Wooten's on US 41 just east of US 29. The National Park Service runs a great boat outing into the area's 10,000 islands from the Park Service's concession in Everglades City. Take US 41 East to US 29 South, go through Everglades City, and you'll see the NPS stuff on the left. If the Everglades City Fish House (the restaurant across from the NPS concession in E City) is still there, that's another great seafood restaurant.

As for airports -- I always fly into Fort Myers Southwest Regional Airport. Small, friendly, and efficient, with rental cars available.

Miami and Fort Lauderdale are okay, but for my money, RSW is easier to navigate and only about an hour away from the Island.

And now for a shameless plug for my mother:

If any of you are thinking about staying longer, think about renting a condo on the beach. You can call my mom, Margot Knauerhase, a local real estate agent, at 239-290-6717 for information. http://associates.era.com/httpmknauerhase.com

Enjoy your stays on Marco!

Evelyn K. Calogero
Professor
Thomas M. Cooley Law School
300 S. Capitol Ave.
P.O. Box 13038
Lansing, MI 48901
phone: 517-371-5140 ext 2606
email: calogere@cooley.edu

Posted by: Evelyn Calogero | Feb 23, 2010 3:35:17 PM

Fort Myers will give you the best chance of getting a commercial flght. The beautiful thing about Marco is that it is out of the way.

Posted by: Wally | Jun 26, 2010 4:53:46 PM

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