The islands of Captiva and Sanibel in southwestern Florida provide a relaxing vacation haven for those who wish to escape the hustle and bustle of crowded beaches and streets. Nearly half of the land area on Sanibel Island is dedicated to the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge. From Tarpon Bay in the east to Buck Key in the west, this pristine ecosystem provides many recreational opportunities for visitors.
As part of the National Wildlife Refuge System, this area is open for day use only, and no overnight camping is allowed. One of the main purposes of the Refuge is to protect native wildlife such as herons, egrets and alligators, and allow them to thrive in their natural habitat so that future generations can enjoy them as well.
To explore the Refuge, visitors can hike on one of the numerous foot trails or ride their bikes. There is also a canoe and kayak trail for marine exploration. Fishing is allowed anywhere in the Refuge, but fisherman must abide by the boat regulations and obtain all necessary permits from the State of Florida.
If you would like to learn more about the ecosystems at the Refuge and the flora and fauna that inhabit it, visit the visitors/education center, which is located two miles west of Tarpon Bay along the Sanibel-Captiva road. In the bookstore, run by the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society, you can find souvenirs, field guides, and much more.
Royal Shell Vacations rents properties on Sanibel Island and Captiva Island, with houses and condos mere minutes from the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge. To inquire about available vacation rentals, call today at 1-800-656-9111.
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