Sanibel and Captiva Islands are a perfect southwest Florida cruising destination for those looking for shelling, fishing, bird watching, or just relaxing. It can also be a romantic destination to hold a wedding or other special events with a beautiful landscape. With an east-west orientation, the beaches there are some of the most unique barrier islands in the world, as most have a north-south orientation.
Some of the best beaches for shelling can be found on the Gulf-side from the lighthouse to North Captiva. The islands rank in the top of the best shelling beaches in the world because of its geography. It’s shaped in a curve along the coastline among other, more narrow islands. The curve acts like a shovel, scooping up all of the shells as they come in.
If shelling isn’t really your thing, Sanibel and Captiva cater to many different types of fishing. Whether you’re a seasoned fly fisherman or a novice offshore fisherman, Sanibel and Captiva provide the best setup year-round. The islands offer many species, such as seatrout, redfish, snook, tarpon, and more.
Sanibel and Captiva have so much to offer, it’s best to make a long weekend out of your stay. The Sanibel Marina is a great spot for docking, with nearby access to many local spots. They have 65 slips for boats up to 70’ and is the ideal location for boaters traveling up and down the Intercoastal Waterway, giving them direct access to the Gulf of Mexico and the island’s gorgeous beaches.
Jenson’s Marina is a quaint little community deep into Captiva Island. It’s been around for many decades and remains almost identical as it was back in the 1970s. Jenson’s Marina is like many marinas, a docking and launching point for many age-old Sanibel-Captiva water activities like fishing, sailing, or boat rides out to the neighboring islands.
If you’re looking to stay on land there are many options with ample accommodations, including:
- Sanibel Island & Captiva Island Lodging
- Sanibel Island Vacation Rentals – Captiva Rentals
- Sanibel Island Cottages and Small Inns
- Sanibel Island Visitor Center at the Chamber of Commerce
The islands also offer a wide variety of restaurants ranging from casual, pet-friendly dining to formal restaurants. When visiting Sanibel and Captiva, be sure to check out some of their best restaurants:
- Sanibel Fish House
- Keylime Bistro
- George and Wendy’s Seafood Grille
- RC Rotter’s Island Eats
- Thistle Lodge Restaurant
With so much to do and see in Sanibel and Captiva, there’s good reason it’s considered a top cruising destination in all of Florida.