I live in Bonita and love it (as we are avid boaters). This place (Naples, Ft. Myers & the Cape) has grown a lot. Being on the water, it is a 10-15 min ride to the Gulf and then it is only 10 miles to the tip of Sanibel Island. From there you can go to Captiva, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor and beyond. If you head south you have Naples & Marco Island. There are a lot of waterfront restaurants here and an endless amount of beaches that you can boat up to and either bring lots of other boats with you or be alone.
A lot of it depends on what you are looking to spend. For example, a nearby lot that was 250k in 2000 sold in 2005 for 1.75 million. What is it worth today - unknown but it just went on the market for 1.50 million so he will be taking a loss (but he needs to move it fast since it looks like he is heading towards bankruptcy). My guess is that it will sit for a little bit because people are still skeptical as far as prices here - I think they are scared (and with good reason) to plop down a million and then watch it depreciate. We laughed when we saw it sell for that price a few years ago - it is beautiful but 1.75 for a 1/4 acre (50 feet of seawall) and a dock just seemed crazy. But a piece of property that sold for 7 times what it was worth originally in just 5 years was crazy appreciation and couldn't be sustained.
Now, if you look further away from the Gulf and possibly on a river, etc I bet there are some killer deals. More of those were bought on speculation. I also know some of the Cape Coral waterfronts (depending on which section of the Cape) are going for much less than they were a few years ago.
And if you don't mind being close to the water, the prices have come down much more on those and you could probably get much more house. You just want to make sure you are within a decent driving distance to a ramp http://www.fun-florida-getaways.com/...yboatramps.cfm
The Fort Myers area just had the highest-selling month (March) in the past five years. Despite this, the prices have fallen because a huge amount of these are foreclosures and bank-owned (especially in Lehigh Acres & Cape Coral).
Good luck on your search. This is what I see in my area of Florida but there are many areas of this state and some like it here, some like Tampa, some like the east coast, some like the Keys, etc.