Neighborhood Spotlight: Captiva Island
On a still morning watching waves wash up on shore, the quietness of Captiva Island is a well-deserved respite from the world. Located just over a small bridge from Sanibel Island, Captiva is where nature soothes your soul, and a laid-back lifestyle lets you take your vacation one day at a time.
On this barrier island, Captiva Drive is the main thoroughfare, crossing past waterfront estate homes, a small downtown village and lively Andy Rosse Lane. Bright bougainvillea and other tropical flowers bring colorful flair to outdoor cafés and local shops that line the roads. Rent a golf cart or bike to cruise through town and enjoy a casual lunch where local favorites include a fresh grouper sandwich or a basket piled high with shrimp.
You can visit Captiva Island on a day trip or spend your whole vacation there in an upscale resort. Relax under a thatched hut when you stay at Jensen’s “On the Gulf,” a boutique inn right on the beach. Coastal charm meets historic surroundings at ‘Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa, which sits on 13 acres of white sands. While there, you can move with ease between beachfront bliss and a meal to remember at the Old Captiva House restaurant — a local landmark that’s listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
Captiva Island is also the perfect starting point to reach more remote barrier islands like Cabbage Key and Boca Grande. Spot jumping dolphins and bobbing manatees on excursions with Captiva Cruises or Captain Brian on the Water, which are led by seasoned guides who are well acquainted with the local waterways. You can spend the day at Turner Beach collecting seashells from secluded coastlines or watch the skies light up in a blaze of color on a sunset cruise. Wind down with a sunset stroll along the shell-strewn Captiva Beach or take in nature’s nightly show with a cold brew and dinner beachside at the nearby Mucky Duck. Local tip: Keep your eyes open for a unique phenomenon called "the green flash," a brilliant green light that only appears in a clear sky as the sun dips below the watery horizon line.
Local businesses continue to reopen on Captiva Island. Visit this page for frequent updates as you plan your next vacation.