Revel in the historic, small-town atmosphere of century-old Punta Gorda, Florida, whose rustic appeal blends with a new vibe to create a multi-layered destination.
Located near Port Charlotte, the town lies at the crossroads of the Peace River and Charlotte Harbor.
Smaller airlines fly into the Punta Gorda airport, but most air passengers arrive via the Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) in Fort Myers.
Punta Gorda History
Punta Gorda developed early as a deepwater shipping port and the southernmost stop on the Florida Southern Railroad that connected to it. The pioneer town’s transportation links attracted commercial fishing operations, industry, and a grand hotel.
One man drawn to the area, an African-American shipbuilder and landowner named George Brown, became one of Punta Gorda’s founding fathers along with three other black settlers – something unheard of back in that time.
Punta Gorda Vacation
Take a historic walking tour to learn how Punta Gorda evolved from a cow town to a winter resort to the colorful riverfront city it is today. Read its history on the murals throughout town.
Stop in at the Blanchard House Museum to learn more about the town’s rich African-American heritage. Visit the old train depot and Punta Gorda History Park for further lessons about the past.
Next, head over to Fishermen’s Village, the site of former fish packinghouses that were once the lifeblood of the community. Today boutiques, waterfront restaurants, boat tours, and vacation villas make it a prime tourist destination.
For baseball fans, Charlotte County's $46 million rebuilt and expanded sports arena, the Tampa Bay Rays' spring training home, is just minutes away.
A number of eco tourism attractions, a new classic muscle car museum, and great restaurants in handsome historic digs downtown Punta Gorda build an itinerary for an offbeat, unforgettable Florida vacation.
Southwest Florida Travel Guide is your foremost vacation and information resource for exploring the Punta Gorda area.