‘Must do’s’ while visiting Captiva
It is easy to get hooked by Captiva, where there are incredible sunrise and sunset views from the white-sand beaches. There are also amazing opportunities to stroll, shop, recreate, pause from life’s work outside of paradise.
Sister island to Sanibel, Captiva is just over a small bridge at Blind Pass that crosses Turner Beach, the ideal place to catch fish or discover colorful shells. The island’s beaches stretch for five miles to the northern tip at Redfish Pass, which was created by a hurricane.
From Blind Pass, Captiva Drive is a winding journey past lush tropical landscaping, gorgeous homes and vacation rentals.
Dining on Captiva will fill a hungry soul with culinary treats. Andy Rosse Lane, named after a colorful islander of another generation, is home to fabulous restaurants like Key Lime Bistro, where breakfast, lunch and dinner are served with a touch of Key West in the atmosphere; and the Mucky Duck, where the sunsets are applauded, beer is always cold and the menu specializes in fresh seafood.
Situated along the Roosevelt Channel, the historic Green Flash restaurant overlooks Pine Island Sound and the pristine beauty of Buck Key. One’s culinary journey wouldn’t be complete without a stop at The Bubble Room, known for its large slices of delicious cakes.
For seafaring folk, an adventure out on the water can be arranged by charters like Captiva Cruises, through some marinas, and with rentals from Sunny Island Adventures and YOLO Watersports. Those seeking to experience the true island living can also consider renting a golf cart to get around town.
Fishing the Redfish Pass can produce memorable results. The Redfish Pass connects Pine Island Sound with the Gulf of Mexico and the perfect conditions to attract fish, especially redfish, which lends to its name. With the tidal currents strong from both directions, Redfish Pass acts like a funnel, which catches baitfish in its wake. That draws in the sport fish like redfish, sheepshead, tarpon and ladyfish.
Captiva shops are clustered at the north end of Captiva Drive and on Andy Rosse Lane. Stroll along the village paths from shop to shop taking in the antiques, casual fashions, pottery, furniture and unique gifts for that special someone in your life.
Places to go
• Captiva Civic Center, 11550 Chapin Lane, 239-472-2111
• Captiva Memorial Library, 11560 Chapin Lane, 239-533-4890
• Historic Captiva Cemetery, 11580 Chapin Lane, 239-472-1646
• World’s Smallest Fishing Museum, 15107 Captiva Drive, 833-668-7768
Things to do
• Alison Hagerup Beach Park, 14790 Captiva Drive
Located at the end of Sanibel-Captiva Road, directly behind the South Seas Island Resort. There is a beach parking lot with direct access to the beach.
• Turner Beach Park, 17200 Captiva Drive
Located on both the Sanibel and Captiva side of the Blind Pass Bridge, the beach is popular with shellers and fishermen. Signs warn against swimming because of the swift currents.
• Jensen’s Twin Palm Marina, 15107 Captiva Drive, 833-668-7768, https://jensensmarina.com
• McCarthy’s Marina, 11401 Andy Rosse Lane, 239-472-5300, www.mccarthysmarina.com
• The Marina at ‘Tween Waters, 15951 Captiva Drive, 239-472-5161, www.tween-waters.com
• Yacht Harbour and Marina, 5400 Plantation Road, 239-472-5111, www.southseas.com