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How to Get to Captiva Island


Captiva Island has everything you need for the perfect Florida vacation. Sun, surf, sand and sunsets. When you are visiting, the first thing you need to plan out is how to get to Captiva Island. When you are making your Florida vacation itinerary, don’t forget your directions for how to get to Captiva Island.

By Brand Ambassador | March 25, 2021

Captiva Island has everything you need for the perfect Florida vacation. Sun, surf, sand and sunsets. When you are visiting, the first thing you need to plan out is how to get to Captiva Island. 

When you are making your Florida vacation itinerary, don’t forget your directions for how to get to Captiva Island. A flight to Southwest Florida International Airport is the most direct route, followed by a 90-minute car ride south to Captiva Island, which is accessible with a 38-mile car ride to Captiva Village. 

We have all your Captiva Island transportation questions answered for you below. 

Can I Drive to Captiva Island? 

Captiva Island is a great vacation spot for a Florida vacation. Even better? Captiva Island is an island you can drive to. Located about an hour away from Fort Myers, it’s a clear shot by car when you cross the Sanibel Causeway. When you hit the high point of the bridge, wave goodbye to the mainland and say hello to a Sunshine State vacation as you’re on your way to Captiva Island!

Do You Need a Car on Captiva Island? 

The answer is yes and no. If that’s confusing, let us outline the modes of transportation for you b below: 

  • You need a car to get to Captiva Island via the mainland and Sanibel Island by driving over the Sanibel Causeway, through Sanibel Island, and over the Blind Pass Bridge.
  • You can access much of the island by means of a Florida boat rental once you get here. 
  • Much of North Captiva Island, which is separate from Captiva Island, is accessible by boat.

North Captiva is approximately four miles long and just a half-mile wide. There are fewer than 400 homes built on North Captiva, leaving much of the southern part of the island a natural habitat. The island just north of Captiva Island, Cayo Costa has a beautiful state park for you to enjoy. 

Do you know why North Captiva is separated from Captiva Island? In 1921, a very powerful hurricane tore through the area, leaving in its wake two islands and creating a deep pass known as Redfish Pass, between the two now separate islands, from Pine Island Sound to the Gulf of Mexico. 

While Captiva Island is the area most vacationers know, there’s an aura of mystery around North Captiva that is exciting to explore from the convenience of just a quick boat ride!

Driving Directions to Captiva Island Tips

There are some driving direction tips when getting around Captiva Island that will help you, especially during times of high traffic in season. 

  • Remember that a car is not always the best mode of transportation for certain destinations. When in doubt, grab a boat and bypass the traffic. 
  • The beach is accessible by car or boat at Turner’s Beach and Alison Hagerup Beach, known to locals as Captiva Beach.
  • Use a boat ride to head to places to like Wild Child Art Gallery and other galleries on Pine Island, across the Sound. This will cut your travel time in half because a car trip to destinations like this can take two hours. 

Looking for driving directions from the airport? Interstate 75 is not your best options. Follow these directions below to get there quickly and safely:

  • At Southwest Florida International Airport, take Terminal Access Road to Treeline Avenue and head north to Daniels Parkway.
  • Turn left to go west on Daniels Parkway and turn left to go south on Ben C Griffin Six Mile Cypress Parkway.
  • Stay on that road and its name changes to Gladiolus Drive.
  • Bear left and go over the ramp to get onto Summerlin Road and take it west to the Sanibel Causeway. Along the way, Summerlin Road changes to McGregor Boulevard but you won’t even notice.

You're almost there! Follow these directions next:

  • Proceed to Sanibel Island.
  • At the four-way stop, turn right to head west on Periwinkle Way.
  • At Palm Ridge Road, bear right.
  • At the stop sign, continue straight onto Sanibel-Captiva Road.
  • Once you cross the Blind Pass Bridge, you will be on Captiva Drive on Captiva Island.

Can You Get to North Captiva Island By Car? 

can you get to north captiva island by car

This is one of many barrier island experiences in the area that’s accessible by boat. 

Pretty cool and exclusive, right? Well it’s not exclusive if you rent a boat and enjoy all that North Captiva Island has to offer, including: 

  • Beautiful beaches
  • Bicycle and electric golf cart access for those who pay for them once you arrive.

Fun North Captiva Island Fact: There is a very short grass landing strip for small private planes on North Captiva. It’s not an airport. People who live along the landing strip have their planes parked along it in their backyards. It’s not open to the public but look for small planes on your trip and impress your friends and family with your Captiva knowledge!

How to Take a Ferry or Water Taxi to North Captiva Island

Now that you know North Captiva Island is accessible only by boat, if you need another mode of transportation other than your own Florida boat rental, we have you covered below:

How Do I Take a North Captiva Ferry

There is a ferry service that runs from Captiva Island to North Captiva. Jensen’s Twin Palm Marina and Cottages™ offers a water taxi and island tour to spend a few hours or the whole day enjoying the area from a boat. 

Take advantage of this time to also get advice from Jensen Marina’s fishing guides and charter boat captains. These folks know everything there is to know about the area. 

How Much is the Ferry to North Captiva Island and Other Islands?

Ferry rides and chart boat excursions can be reserved at Jensen’s Marina™ and the price varies depending on how long you will be out on a boat. Marina representatives can help you plan your trip.

A trip to North Captiva Island is great for a lunch-by-boat excursion to places like Mainstay North Captiva Restaurant and Gift Shop, Barnacles Bar and Over the Waterfront. 

A ferry ride to Cayo Costa is the preferred trip to enjoy the state park and have a picnic lunch. 

Cabbage Key is also a popular lunch spot for a Cheeseburger in Paradise. After lunch, enjoy the short loop walking trail through the island to walk off your meal and enjoy the observation tower. 

How Do I Take a North Captiva Water Taxi? 

There is a North Captiva water taxi service that is available through other charter services that are based on hourly rates and runs every 30 minutes or so based on demand. Allow up to three hours in your travel schedule for variations in water taxi travel.

Is There a Ferry to Cabbage Key? 

Did you know you can take a ferry to Cabbage Key located in Pine Island Sound? It can only be reached by boat, so you can also visit Cabbage Key by ferry from Captiva. You can also rent a boat or charter a boat cruise to visit the area. 

Located near Mile Marker 60 on the IntraCoastal Waterway, Cabbage Key is approximately one hour by boat from Captiva Island. While you are there, you can also plan a fishing excursion, or visit nearby Cayo Costa State Park, where you can enjoy beaches, go shelling and look for dolphins, birds and other Florida wildlife. 

What Airport Do You Fly into for Captiva Island? 

The Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) in Fort Myers is the closest major airport to Captiva Island. It is 36 miles to Captiva Island from the Fort Myers airport. It offers a modern facility and rental cars available on site. Other airport options available that are farther away but still within driving distance include:

  • Tampa International Airport (this is a 140-mile car ride to the south)
  • Sarasota International Airport (this is a 90-mile car ride)
  • Orlando International Airport (it’s a 4-hour car ride from the amusement ride capital)
  • Miami International Airport (a 3.5 hour car ride across Alligator Alley)
  • Punta Gorda Airport (a 54-mile car ride)

How to Get to Captiva Island from Fort Myers

how to get to captiva island from fort  myers

The easiest way to get to Captiva Island is by vehicle. If you are coming from Southwest Florida International Airport, you would drive through South Fort Myers to Sanibel Island, then continue north to Captiva Island. 

Do I Need a Car in Fort Myers?

We would recommend renting a car in Fort Myers at the Southwest Florida International Airport to make it easier to pick up and drop off your rental car at the end of your Captiva Island vacation. 

What Car Rental Companies are On-site at Fort Myers Airport?

The following rental car companies are at the Southwest Florida International Airport: 

  • Alamo Rental Car
  • Avis
  • Dollar
  • Budget
  • Thrifty
  • Sixt
  • National 
  • Hertz
  • Enterprise
  • Fox Rent a Car
  • Easirent Car Rental

The on-site car rental location at the airport is on the ground level of the parking garage. When you arrive on your plane, head downstairs and after you claim your luggage, walk across the street to the garage and look for the rental car location. 

When you are returning your rental car after your vacation, follow the car rental return signs as you approach the airport terminal building. 

How Big is Captiva Island? 

how big is captiva island

Captiva Island’s beautiful beach shorelines are 2.5 miles in length. The island itself is 4-miles long. In total, the island encompasses 1.64 square miles and has a population of approximately 500+ residents. 

Other options to get to Captiva Island include a shuttle bus, taxi, or a ride sharing service such as Uber or Lyft.

Find Florida Boat Rentals that Work For You 

Now that you are here on Captiva Island, it’s time to plan that boating experience and special trip to North Captiva Island, Cayo Costa or Cabbage Key in your very own Florida boat rentals. What kind of boat are you looking for? 

We offer the following boat rental opportunities for you at Jensen’s Marina™: 

Pontoon Fishing Boats

Pontoon boats are perfect for a casual cruise through the Intracoastal Waterway or a fishing excursion. This is the option you want for a family boating trip or a small party that can include you and 11 of your closest vacation friends. Our 24-foot pontoon boat has a 115-horsepower motor to handle your needs. 

Rent a Center Console Boat

Center console boats are your pick for smaller fishing parties. Our 18-footer center console boat can hold up to five people and all of your fishing and lunch picnic needs.  

Rent a Boston Whaler Boat

Our 18-foot Boston Whaler with a 150-horsepower Yamaha four-stroke motor is another solid Florida boat rental choice for groups of up to six people. These boats come with a 1,000-pound weight capacity to handle you, your vacation crewmates, fishing gear and boat cruise materials such as coolers and more!

Come Stay at Jensen’s Marina™ Today!

You know how to get to Captiva Island now. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to set your clocks on island time and enjoy everything that the Jensen’s Captiva Island experience has to offer. 

Jensen’s Twin Palm Marina and Cottages™ is the best place to rent a boat on Captiva Island. Rent a boat, enjoy a sunset cruise and plan a fishing trip with your friends at Jensen’s Marina™ on Captiva Island today!

Stay awhile longer too! Jensen’s Marina™ offers beautiful cottages on Captiva Island so you can unwind, plan a lengthy fishing trip with your friends or bring the family to relax and take some boating trips. There are so many things to do in Captiva Island. Come make a marina reservation and a cottage reservation today!

Jensen’s Twin Palm Marina and Cottages™

15107 Captiva Drive
Captiva, FL 33924

(833) 668-7768
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