Exploring Captiva

The remainder of our day on Sanibel and Captiva Island was spent in the warm sun!

After breakfast we headed out to the beach at South Seas to soak up some rays and take in the sounds of the crashing waves. captiva 001We went for a walk on the beach and collected shells to bring back to Orlando to remind us of our special time in Captiva on our honeymoon.

While at the beach, we also saw a pod of about six dolphins. We think they were hunting fish because they were extremely active and were splashing and jumping around. Everyone on the beach loved watching them frolic.

Once we had enough of the sand, we changed and walked back to our car.

As we passed through the marina we saw a bunch of manatees! captiva 006captiva 005captiva 004They looked like they were having a blast, slowing swimming and eating.

We then hopped in Ryan’s car to begin our next adventure!captiva 007 We paid a visit to Ding Darling national wildlife refuge in hopes of seeing some alligators.captiva 008 Unfortunately the gators were feeling shy yesterday, but we did see a bunch of birds and fish. captiva 019 captiva 011 I almost freaked out when this little guy went flying by my face.  captiva 016 Doesn’t it look like a mini lobster bug or something?

We hiked around a short trail within the refuge before heading out for a late lunch.


We stumbled upon Gramma Dot’s on the Sanibel Marina which I vaguely remembered from my past trips to Sanibel. My memory told me I liked it before, so we ventured inside for some grub.

captiva 026 captiva 025Ryan and I shared a blackened snapper sandwich with homemade chips and peel and eat shrimp.

captiva 024  captiva 023Both dishes were packed with the flavors of the sea. Yum!

We then headed outside to sit on a bench among the boats to split a piece of coconut cake that we picked up from The Bubble Room on our way out of Captiva.

captiva 028I almost forgot to snap a picture. It disappeared very quickly.

After lunch and dessert, we piled back into the car and hit the road for Sarasota to spend a couple of hours at Ryan’s mom’s house before heading to my parents’ house for dinner.

Now we’re in a mad dash to get out the door and board our cruise! Woohooooo!

I have some wedding related posts coming up for you guys while I’m cruisin’, assuming my mom can figure out how to get ‘em up for you guys.

Stay tuned! 😀


  1. Nicole (Picky Nicky) says

    Fresh chips are the best 🙂
    Oh and manatees are so awesome! I remember my first time seeing some in Florida, they have this sort of awkward cuteness… you know? 😛


  2. Mary Beth says

    Love the Sanibel/Captiva recap–wish I would have known you were “here”, I would have crashed the honeymoon 😉 Enjoy your cruise!!


  3. says

    Julie!! Your honeymoon mirrors my vacation last year exactly! My family goes every year and we ate dinner at Gramma Dot’s so many times. The food is amazing and the view is incredible! I saw a gator once at Ding Darling but they are hard to spot. Have a wonderful rest of your honeymoon!! 🙂


  4. Allison says

    So glad you got to explore Ding Darling, it’s so neat! And yum, Grandma Dots is always a hit… especially their coconut shrimp! Did you by chance ever stop at the icecream spot just down the road from Grandma Dots called Pinocchio’s? It’s on the way to the lighthouse, and has all kinds of delicious flavors!



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