Sanibel - Our Beautiful Island
Sanibel Island is located just off the Southwest coast of Florida and is a small barrier island that is renown for its beaches, particularly for those who enjoy shell collecting. Sanibel is unique in it's geographical orientation and shape means that it acts like a scoop for the shells being carried in the Gulf waters. Visitors travel from across the world to Sanibel Island and Captiva in the quest for that unique and special shell. Not only is the island popular with tourists, but also large numbers of “snowbirds” travel from the Northern US and Canada to spend their winters on this beautiful island. This means that there is a wide range of accommodations and real estate available on Sanibel for both holiday makers, as well as those looking to escape the harsh winter months. There are plenty of hotels and resorts for families to stay in, as well as luxury villa rentals, condos and homes for those who want to spend a longer time on the island.
Things to Do on Sanibel
With over 17 miles of sandy beaches, Sanibel is a top beach destination. There are also over 25 miles of bike trails allowing visitors to explore the island at a leisurely pace. Shelling is a popular past time, as well as sail boat and motor boat charters to enjoy the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Many fishing enthusiasts travel to Sanibel as some of the finest fishing in all of Florida can be enjoyed here. With such a variety of fish found in the Gulf waters, this is a fisherman’s dream come true vacation spot. The man-made reefs and wrecks dotting the water provide plenty of scope for snorkeling and scuba diving during your holiday.
Places to Go on Sanibel
Although Sanibel Island is known for its beaches, there are plenty of things to do away from the beach as well. The Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum is a must for shell enthusiasts. It is the most comprehensive museum devoted to shells in the US and showcases why Sanibel has the reputation of being one of the top shelling destinations globally. The fact that over 60% of the island is a nature reserve will appeal to nature-lovers, as will the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge and the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Center. Old Town Sanibel provides a look back to what Sanibel used to be like with streets lined with quaint shops and restaurants. The Sanibel Historical Museum and Village will enthrall history buffs with the collection of buildings dating back to the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Getting Around on sanibel
Because Sanibel is such a great tourist destination, during high-season traffic is dense, so plan accordingly to make your charter or dinner reservation on time. Car rentals are available, but with the many hiking and biking trails, visitors may be better off getting out of their cars. In particular, it is wise to avoid traveling by car during peak commuting times in the mornings and evenings.
Getting to and from the Island
A causeway connects Sanibel Island to mainland Florida and costs $6 per car to travel across. The nearest airport to fly into the area is Southwest Florida International Airport, which is about a 45 minute drive away.
Whether you are looking for a romantic getaway, a family trip, a nature vacation or somewhere to spend the winter months, Sanibel Island is a perfect choice providing something for everyone during their visit.
- Local currency – US dollars
- Average Temp – 75 F
- Visa Needed (from USA) – No
- High Season dates – December - April
- Pets Allowed – Yes
- Which side of the road do they drive on – Right
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