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Sanibel and Captiva Getaway Guide

These two charming islands lie on the Gulf of Mexico just west of Fort Myers, on the opposite side of the state. The beaches are world famous for their beauty, tranquility and seashells. Sanibel and Captiva are sometimes called "the Shell Islands," not because of the abundance of shells on the beach, but because the islands themselves are made out of shells.


    Getting there: Visitors can fly in to Southwest Florida International Airport (239-768-1000) in Lee County, which is served by nearly all major airlines. The islands are about a 45-minute drive from the airport. By car, take I-75 west for about three hours from downtown Fort Lauderdale, another...

  • Useful links for Sanibel

    Useful links for visitors to the Sanibel area • Sanibel-Captiva Chamber of Commerce • Accommodations directory from Sanibel-Captiva Chamber of Commerce • Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum • Sanibel Lighthouse • The J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge • Edison-Ford Winter Estates • The Bubble...

  • Weather forecast

    Weather: Current conditions and five-day forecast for Fort Myers area.

  • Eleven ways to make the most of visit to Fort Myers

    Within 24 hours of arriving in Fort Myers in March 1885, Thomas Edison bought 13 acres on the Caloosahatchee River, and before long he was planting palm trees along the dirt road between downtown and his spread. The road is now McGregor Boulevard, lined with thousands of royal palms (not all courtesy...

  • Bokeelia: Heaven near harbor on charming Pine Island

    Sanibel and Captiva are not the only islands worth your time west of Fort Myers. There's Pine Island, anchored by Matlacha at the center, St. James City at the southern end and, 18 miles distant on the only road on the island, Bokeelia on the northern tip facing Charlotte Harbor. Definitely not...