I want to tell you a little bit about Sanibel & Captiva Island with the Kids! Before I do though, let me tell you a little secret. Marty and I are prepping to take the bees on a road trip in the camper. We aren’t headed to Miami like we did back in April and you can read about that trip and (living in 175 square feet of rv) here! We are headed north. But that’s it. I can’t give away any more secrets so you will have to keep checking back to Three Busy Bees to see where we are off to.
Sanibel & Captiva Islands are located in southwest Florida near Fort Myers. They are in the Top 10 Best U.S. Shelling Beaches, according to Travel And Leisure. My sister lives fairly close to Sanibel and Captiva Island so we took the bees, my niece, and my nephew for a day trip. While it was a family outing it was filled with lots of learning. Marty and I have been to a lot of beaches in the U.S. and dozens in the Caribbean. Sanibel and Captiva are in my top 10 for sure.
Sanibel & Captiva Island with the Kids!
As you read above, the shelling is phenomenal. You will find the most shells at low tide and after a storm has made its way on shore from the Gulf of Mexico. The water churns up the sea shells and they litter the sand. Shelling is a lot of fun for the kids (and adults), but it can be illegal if you remove any shells with inhabitants inside. So before you pocket a shell, check the inside!
There are two varieties of shells – Gastropod (conchs, whelks, etc) and Bivalves (clam, etc).
Types of Shells
What Beaches Are The Best?
Lightning Beach & Fishing Pier
Gulfside City Park
While you can walk the beach, collect shells, and put together your own mini science class,
there are a few centers to help you.
Science & Nature Centers
Tarpon Bay Explorers
Bailey Matthews National Shell Museum
Clinic for Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW)
Sanibel is by far one of the best family beaches on the East Coast (well in this case- the Gulf of Mexico too). The sand is soft under your toes. There is an abundance of shells with over 250 species. Even the birds are plentiful with over 250 species of them as well. If we could have spent a week there, I would have. It’s still on our list for vacation spots with the rv. However the hotels, resorts, and vacation homes/condos are all wonderful choices. We have vacationed before with friends and family where we all pitch in for a vacation home. It makes for a more adventurous time. The kids will have friends and cousins to play with. You will have many adults to interact with. Plus everyone pitches in to help make food, watch the kids, and share memories with.
When you head to southwest Florida, don’t forget your bikes and helmets. Paradise Pathway (bike path) will give you a personal tour of the island that you won’t forget.