Captiva Island Florida - South Seas Island Resort
Submitted by Joanne B. Monticello office
The South Seas Island Resort is located on 330 acres on the northern tip of Captiva Island with 2 1/2 miles of white-sand beach. There is a yacht harbor and marina where luxury crafts can rent slips for extended stays. It is not uncommon to see manatees and dolphins in the harbor.The South Seas Island Resort is promoted as a luxury resort because of the many services and amenities. This resort is also a great place for moderate-price travelers because there are several reasonably priced villa options that include a FULL kitchen with gas grills also available.
Moderate-price travelers can also find many family activities that are free or reasonably priced. These include fishing on the T-dock (fishing equipment can be rented), nature center, kid's games and an arcade.The island has a very natural atmosphere.
Captiva is north of Sanibel island which is connected to Fort Myers by a three-mile-long causeway. The palm- and pine-tree lined islands are famous for their beaches and the incredible variety of shells on their shores. They are reluctant to allow too many intrusions of the modern world: there are no stoplights on either island, and buildings on Sanibel are "no taller than the tallest palm tree.â€ The 6,400-acre J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge makes up a good portion of both islands. The Refuge offers a 4 mile driving wildlife trail in addition to many walking/bicycling or canoeing trails.The resort offers numerous activities on-site for an additional charge, including golf, tennis, guided fishing, water sports, sailing school, dinner/sunset/dolphin cruises and kids/teen clubs.
The Fort Myer's area offers numerous attractions and activities, including museums, historic sites, theatres, parks, and guided tours. Fort Myer's is also home to the Minnesota Twins and Boston Red Sox during Spring Training.
We enjoyed spending time on the beautiful ocean beaches. The water in Florida is a quite cold this time of year so we looked into several different activities to keep us busy. However, my kids wanted to spend most of the time on the beach even with the cold water they went body surfing and boogie boarding.
The hotel offers numerous room categories. It would be helpful to clearly understand your vacation preferences and plans before selecting a room. The Tennis, Bayside, and some Beach Villas are located on the south end of the resort â€" almost two miles away from the main facilities. We stayed in the 1-Bedroom Bayside Villa and were disappointed that our villa was so far away from the beach and kids activities. Additionally, our patio view of the Bayside Marina was obstructed by the mangroves.
Overall we were satisfied with our room because it had two bathrooms and was both bigger and cheaper than the hotel rooms on the north end of the resort. The hotel charges a $12 daily activity fee for each adult. The fee includes use of the fitness center, beach chair and towel services, daily newspaper and trolley. I didn't feel we received much benefit but it's a fee imposed by the hotel on all guest rooms.
There isn't a lot of shopping on the island. There is a Tanger Outlet center in Ft. Myers. I recommend grocery shopping in Ft. Myers before driving out to the resort. There were a few convenience stores but prices were twice the amount of the grocery store. We thought we would go back to Ft. Myers mid-week but never felt the desire to drive back into town.
Anybody who likes beaches and ocean related activities would enjoy this area of Florida (as long as they don't mind the cold water). This area would also interest people that like hiking or biking in the natural wildlife areas. Both high-end and moderate priced travelers will appreciate this resort and the Captiva/Sanibel islands. We saw a lot of people using the trolley to travel about the resort property â€" we rented a car and felt it was a lot more convenient driving on our own.
I vacationed on the island over 10 years ago. At the time it was very lush and tropical. There was a hurricane in the area several years ago and I wasn't sure what conditions would be on the island today. We were pleased to see a lot of palm trees and tropical vegetation -- I believe a lot effort was put into replacing damaged trees and property. In some uninhabited areas there was still evidence of hurricane damage. The hotel underwent extensive renovations in the last few years (presumably to repair damage). It appeared that many houses on the island were still in the process of being rebuilt.
I traveled with my husband, 13 year old daughter and 11 year old son. We generally like quiet, relaxing vacations without a lot of site seeing activities. I was concerned the kids might get bored but they had a great time. They all really enjoyed the resort and our spacious villa.