- J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge
The J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge is a great place to see birds and wildlife in their natural habit.The 6,300 acre refuge has many trails for hiking and biking or you can drive along the 4.5-mile Wildlife Drive.(More information here)
2. Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum
The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum is a great place to learn about sea shells found on Sanibel and from around the world. Guided beach walks with a marine biologist are offered in addition to the daily programs. Advanced booking for the beach walk is required. (More information here)
3. Sanibel and Captiva Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center
The Sanibel and Captiva Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center is a good place to find out about restaurants, lodging, and tours available on the island. (More information here)
Looking for shells is the most popular thing to do on Sanibel Island. Over 100 different shells can be found on the beaches. (More information on shelling here & here)
5. Sanibel Lighthouse
It is a 120 year old lighthouse located on Sanibel Lighthouse beach. It is not open to the public, but you can walk around it.
6. Dolphin Cruises
Leaving from the Sanibel Marina, you can choose either the The Sanibel Thriller, the “Stars & Stripes” Motor Launch Cruise, or a private cruise. All are great for viewing dolphins. (More information here)
Watching a Sanibel sunset is a great way to end each day.
The fishing is fantastic on Sanibel! You can choose to fish offshore with one of the fishing charters, rent your own boat, or fish from one of the beaches, bridges, or docks. The Causeway, Blind Pass Bridge and the pier on the bay side are some of the most popular places to fish.
9. Cruise to Cayo Costa
The Cayo Costa Beach & Shelling Cruise is a fun way to spend a few hours. Shelling, snorkeling, exploring, and relaxing on the beach are just some of the things to do on Cayo Costa. (More information here)
10. Pinocchio’s Italian Ice Cream
A great way to cool off in the afternoon is by enjoying a Pinocchio’s ice cream. The place is so colorful, the ice cream is delicious, and they always put an animal cookie on top. (More information here)