My Sanibel Island Recommendations

My Sanibel Island Recommendations

Sanibel Island Recommendations

I’ve been visiting Sanibel Island since I was born. My mom grew up going there and once my mom and dad got together he joined her family and then once they had my brother and I, they started their own annual tradition. So to say my family is experts on the island is an understatement, making these Sanibel Island Recommendations crème de la crème😉

We visit Sanibel Island each year for a week, spending all day at the beach just about everyday except for our shopping day where we hit up all of the Island’s shopping spots. We’ll also grab fresh pastries in the morning a few times, I share below where to do that. And almost every night we venture out to one of the Island’s delicious restaurants. At this point we have go-to dishes at most of the places and we look forward to eating them all year!

Sanibel Island Recommendations

My Sanibel Island Recommendations

Where to eat:

Coffee and Tea:

Ice cream:

Where to shop:

Where to do groceries:

Both of these have bakeries for fresh goodies.

  • Bailey’s General Store, I love their coffee bar
    • Their chicken salad is AMAZING. Perfect beach snack with some crackers.
  • Jerry’s, bigger than Bailey’s.
    • Pick up some old Florida tortilla chips and salsa here, so good

Where to stay:

You can use rental realtors (a few are V.I.P., Royal Shell, King Fisher) or VRBO for these. Remember these buildings have been around for decades, so each unit’s level of update varies. Make sure to look at photos and ask questions on any preferences you may have. Below are the places I’m familiar with, but there are plenty more. Some offer more of a pool experience for those who enjoy that. We’re more beach people and don’t go in the pool at all.

  • The Sundial, resort feel
  • Loggerhead Cay if you have pets
  • Sandy Bend, there is a cottage set back a little (it’s so cute) and then a small building that’s practically on the beach with 8 units and a shared rooftop patio
  • Casa Ybel, resort feel

What to beside the beach:

  • Bike around the island, rent from Billy’s Rentals
  • Go shelling during low tide, Sanibel Island is the world’s Shell Capital!
  • Go golfing, you do need to be a guest at some of the hotel’s in order to use their course
  • Go trail-walking, there’s quite a few on the Island

Sanibel Island Recommendations

Sanibel Island Tips for First Timers:

  1. BRING BUG SPRAY WITH YOU. If you plan on being out and about after 5pm and there is no wind, the no see ums are relentless and will chew you up.
  2. If you’re only used to shell-less sand, prepare to wear sandals/water shoes on the beach. Not really necessary for once in the water, but the beach is full of shells in certain areas.
  3. Keep an eye out for red tide warnings in the news. This can happen in the Gulf of Mexico waters, which is what Sanibel is. You may not know far enough in advance to plan your trip around it, but you will know if you need to cancel it. Some people are ok with it, but if you have allergies it’s really rough on the eyes, skin and respiratory system. Also, you might get dead fish showing up on shore.
  4. If you go during high season, make reservations for dinner. Otherwise, you’ll be fine without.
  5. If you decide to take some sea shells home with you from the beach, be sure to check there is nothing living in them. If there is and it dies in there, it will STINK within a few days.


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