Much like any place that has lots of coastal shoreline, the coasts of Florida are littered with small islands. As it turns out, several of these islands are places you can actually go. Captiva Island is one of these places.
Captiva Island has a rich history. Originally part of neighboring Sanibel Island, the two islands were separated in a 1926 hurricane. The storm surge created Blind Pass, a new channel between the islands. With its several resorts and vacation homes, Captiva Island has become a playground for all.
Sanibel and Captiva – the best known and most often visited barrier islands on the southwest Florida coast – have not always been a part of the Florida landscape. Six thousand years ago, sediments emptied into the Gulf of Mexico by the Caloosahatchee River formed the two islands, which were once joined as one. Perhaps as recently as a thousand years ago a powerful sub-tropical storm swept the peninsula, opening a narrow pass between the islands. Blind Pass has disappeared and re-opened many times since with the passing of the centuries.
Tween Waters Inn is one of these vacation resorts. Located on 13 acres, the resort has 137 rooms. These aren’t just your typical hotel rooms though. Oh no. You can choose from one and two-bedroom suites. For those that are a little more adventurous, you can stay in one of the historic seaside beach cottages. Ranging from 1 to 3 bedrooms, the seaside cottages are a great choice for families or a group of friends.
The weekend Donnie and I spent there, we stayed in a one bedroom unit. It was clean, great pool view, and we’d not think twice about going again. It was spectacular!
What fun is a resort without amenities? Luckily you won’t have to worry about that at Tween Waters Inn. With miles of sandy beaches, located on the Gulf of Mexico, you can enjoy the water or soak in the sun. You can also go fishing or shell collecting. Perhaps you just want to do some splashing around without the hustle and bustle of the beach. No problem! There’s an Olympic size swimming pool at the resort, along with a smaller pool for the younger kids. Of course, there are hot tubs too.
Perhaps you’d like to explore the Gulf of Mexico in a boat. The resort can help arrange any type of trip you’d like to take. Whether deep-sea fishing, snorkeling, parasailing, a trek to a neighboring island, or a guided tour, there’s something for everyone. You can also rent a kayak, a canoe, a jet ski, or a bicycle to venture out.
When you’re ready for some pampering, Tween Waters Inn has a spa on-site. The spa offers services ranging from manicures and pedicures to facials to massages. There is even the option for mommy and me packages with their “Little Mermaid” services for children. Even though you’re on vacation, most people could still use a little relaxation. That’s why you’re on vacation, isn’t it? Why not try a massage? With several licensed massage therapists on staff, a myriad of massage options are available. Hot stone, therapeutic, traditional, and even pregnancy massages are house specialties. I indulged with a hot stone massage with therapist Betsy. She was friendly, strong handed (as I like my massages) and is worth requesting.
There are a few options of restaurants in Captiva. I have been going there since I was a little girl so I have a few favorites, but the Mucky Duck is one that I made sure to hit this time. The restaurant is located on the beach and offers a great sunset view for dinner. The food is pretty good. Oh, and so is the wine!
So, many ask, where did the name “Mucky Duck” originate? Quite simply, from England, where drinking establishments are frequently at the heart of the local community. It is rather common for English pubs to bear names such as “The Black Swan”, “The White Swan”, “The Dirty Duck”, or “The Mucky Duck”. In 1968, Brian and Stephanie Webb happened to be at The White Swan in Edgbaston, Birmingham for “nooners” and “rounds of sandwiches”, when Stephanie remarked, “If I ever owned a restaurant, it would be named ‘The Mucky Duck’.” That particular inspiration took root, and on January 29, 1976 the old Gulf View Inn on Captiva Island was reborn as The Mucky Duck.
However the best meal we had was at the historic Old Captiva House at the legendary ‘Tween Waters Inn — Captiva’s number one restaurant according to TripAdvisor, and we could easily see why. Everything was amazing, from the ambiance to the service, and the food was just incredible. The Blue Crab Bisque was to die for but the Watermelon Goat Cheese Stack was so good that it has quickly become something I have tried to duplicate. So, so good!
This photo of Old Captiva House at ‘Tween Waters Inn is courtesy of TripAdvisor
With such a beautiful beach location, it’s no surprise Captiva Island has become an in demand wedding locale. Since the island is a popular wedding destination, it’s no surprise that The Spa at Tween Waters Inn also provides wedding packages ranging from haircuts and styling all the way to full body treatments. Because really, who doesn’t want to be pampered?
Venturing out onto Captiva Island brings you assorted restaurants, shops, and other great places. You should consider Tween Waters Inn and Captiva Island for your next getaway.