Monday, January 5, 2015

Sanibel Sunday

The last time we visited Sanibel Island, it was overcast and cool.  We didn't have ideal beach or photo conditions and it left me wanting to go back on a better day.  So, this year I waited for the holiday crowds to thin out and for some ideal weather.  We got both this past Sunday.  With an early start we unhooked the RV and drove the short six miles over the bridge and causeway to spend the day at Sanibel Island.

Sanibel Island is so different from the surrounding Fort Myers area.  Its very tropical and quaint.  There's no high rises or urban sprawl and there's limited public areas.  There's only one main two lane road that traverses the island and traffic can be a crawl.  Also, there's not many places to park an RV.  With our early 9:00 am start we lucked out and had very light traffic.  Our target destination was Bowman's Beach, which is about midway up on the island.  Bowman's has a small public parking lot with restroom facilities.  It also has a few parking spots for small RV's (less than 30 ft).  We got there when the lot was pretty empty and got our pick of a nice shaded spot to park the RV for the day.  Bowman's is a nice spot to enjoy a great beach and do some shelling.  It's also a good spot to stay parked and bike up to Captiva Island.

We spent a few hours at the beach with ideal conditions - a cloudless blue sky, brilliant sun, and a light southwest breeze.  A nice way to spend January 4th, while friends and family are freezing back in New England.  We got there when the tide was about half way in, so its wasn't great shelling conditions.  My wife was very disappointed.  But, our timing was great as the beach (and parking lot) quickly filled up.  Here are some beach pictures.

Sad Wife with no shells

Bowmans Beach

Bowman's Beach

After about 2 1/2 hrs of beach sitting I was starting to roast, so we got on our bikes and made our way up to Captiva Island.  Captiva village was 6 miles away (12 mile round trip).  More miles than I've biked in awhile, but I was up for a challenge.  Sanibel is great for biking as it has a nice bike path the entire length of the island that parallels the main road.  From Bowman's, Blind Pass, the inlet between Sanibel and Captiva, is about 3 miles away.  Blind Pass has a nice beach and is very picturesque, but there is limited parking.

Blind Pass Beach (from the Captiva side)
 As you cross over to Captiva, you enter another world.  It the land of the 1% or maybe the top 1/8 of 1%.  Its Florida's small tropical version of the Hamptons with multi-million dollar beach bungalows carefully hidden behind beautifully manicured tropical fauna.

The little village of Captiva is another 3 miles from Blind Pass.  We were on a mission to get the wife to The Bubble Room for desert.  The Bubble Room is very unique with its kitschy decor and world famous desert cakes.  We went all in with 3 pieces of cake.  They were all delicious, but I especially like the Orange Crunch Cake.

J. Dawg at The Bubble Room with Cake!

While there, we explored the small village area and checked out the beach at the Mucky Duck.  Its such an idyllic area and well worth a visit. Parking is very very limited on Captiva and forget about trying to drive an RV up to Captiva.

Captiva Beach from the Mucky Duck
Its good that we had a 6 mile bike ride back to Bowman's as we needed the exercise to work off the cake from the Bubble Room.  It was a great way to spend a day - beach time, biking, shelling, picture taking, and eating.


  1. Sounds amazing. So are all the islands actually land connected or through the trails are there bridges? I didn't see what Anne had for dessert. Looks beautiful. Good start ride-6 miles.

    1. Between the islands we had to ford across shark infested waters, swim underwater in rip currents, crawl across razor sharp coral, fight off flesh eating barracuda, and then there were the man o' war jelly fish. Its not for the faint of heart especially doing it on a bike, but we were on a quest for deserts at The Bubble Room. We shared all the cake you see in the picture.

  2. By this point I can see you are getting very relaxed. That or Annie is wearing off on you. The sarcasm in this reply is rather at a high. That or you really wanted cake. Imagine all this with bikes being carried overhead. You are one determined man. You had me until the barracuda...

    1. Linda, I apologize for the sarcasm. It was my attempt at being a comic. I stick with being just a writer. The road connects Sanibel and Captiva. There's a small bridge over Blind Pass. We were very determined to get cake.