About Captiva Island

If it's paradise you're after, then this surely must be the place to die for.

An island with miles of unspoiled sandy beaches fringed with waving palm trees, spectacular sunsets and an absence of high rise buildings make Captiva one of the most perfect holiday settings in North America.

Film makers use it regularly to portray Hawaii and last year it was named one of the three most romantic beaches in the USA in the annual Dr Beach survey of the country's best beaches which, of course, includes Hawaii!

It's definitely one of the most exclusive spots in the USA but it's not just the beach, with its 250 different types of seashell, and the stunning sunsets that bring shell hunters and holidaymakers back to tiny Captiva each year.

At its heart is a quirky village with a quaint mix of restaurants such as the Bubble Room, unusual shops, homes and condos that help the island retain a small town feel, even amidst enormous wealth and a few world famous residents.

A history of Captiva Island

Long ago when dreaded pirates ruled the seas, the famous Captain Jose Gaspar captured fair young maidens and brought them to the calm shores of a secluded island off the coast of Florida. Time past, his legend grew, and in the 1870's the peaceful solitude surrounding the area became ideal for homesteaders to take root and make their fortunes. The beautiful land that was destined to become an exclusive retreat was destroyed by hurricanes in 1921 and 1926, causing people to lose hope and abandoned the island. However, in 1927, Clarence Bennett Chadwick arrived determined to find success. Almost 20 years later, he had built a key lime plantation empire and sold the land to a hotel company, eventually becoming the South Seas Island Resort. In 2004, the island could not escape the power of Hurricane Charlie and was devastated once again. A strong resolve made its way out from the depths of the storm and Captiva Island was rebuilt and remains a tranquil sanctuary and timeless destination.

A unique island on Florida's gulf coast

The island, which is a protected nature reserve is only four miles long. Half is in private ownership, with Millionaire's Row luxury homes on gulf and bay side of the San-Cap road leading from neighbouring Sanibel Island to South Seas Island Resort which occupies the last two miles of the island.

These islands, which were once key lime and coconut plantations, have fought hard to preserve their character and are in many ways very different to the rest of Florida.

You won't find stoplights or street lights. High rise buildings are not permitted - nothing can be taller than the tallest palm tree - and American burger and restaurant chains are conspicuous by their absence. The pace of life is slow and whole families can be seen leisurely pedalling along the cycle paths linking the islands.

Captiva is also the gateway to the outer islands. And there is never a shortage of things to do on the water. Paddle the nature trail through the bayou in a kayak, hire a boat or book yourself a fishing trip with a local captain. Perhaps take the Jensen water taxi and head up to Cabbage Key or North Captiva for a leisurely lunch.

Alternatively, do nothing. Chill out on Captiva's amazing beach, spotting the dolphins and manatees as they play in the safe warm waters of the gulf. Finally, sipping an exotic cocktail as the sun sets on another perfect day in paradise.

One of the top 3 beaches in North America

One of the top 3 beaches in North America

Miles of sandy beaches and beautiful shells

Miles of sandy beaches and beautiful shells

The quaint Bubble Room restaurant

The quaint Bubble Room restaurant

One of the most perfect holiday settings

One of the most perfect holiday settings

The marina at South Seas Island Resort

The marina at South Seas Island Resort

An easy pace of life for the whole family

An easy pace of life for the whole family

Watch the amazing sunsets with the locals

Watch the amazing sunsets with the locals

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Captiva Island

Homes and Villas

Monday 06 Apr 2020

Reservations

1-800-669-0508