Small towns, great fishing, and funky shops make for a fun getaway on Florida's western shore.
"In a place like Matlacha, what you see is what you get," says Osi McCarney, who with husband Steve owns the Bridge Water Inn. A sign at the inn eloquently displays one definite reality: "This is where island time begins." The modest waterfront motel offers basic accommodations, from small rooms without cooking facilities ($59 per night) to furnished, bayfront efficiency suites ($119). You can even reserve a two-bedroom cottage ($129). Rent fishing equipment from Osi for $7 a day, and try your luck just outside your room's door or on the Matlacha Bridge, which is touted as the World's Fishingest Bridge.