Top 3 Kid-Friendly Activities in Sanibel Island

You don’t have to look far to find all sorts of exciting kid-friendly activities in Sanibel Island. From animal exhibits to shell museums, ice cream shops to the beach, we cover our three must-see activities for kids this season.

Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife

screech owl

We have seen a renewed focus on nature, especially wildlife, in the last few years. It seems that more and more people are recognizing the fragility of so many renowned species. 

This has given the Clinic for The Rehabilitation of Wildlife even greater purpose, as the local community offers unprecedented support for its non-discerning wildlife rehabilitation. Turtles to owls, skunks to snakes, the clinic services bring even mistakenly-maligned creatures back to health. Current residents include a Barred Owl, an Eastern Indigo Snake with puncture wounds, a large Red-Tailed Hawk, a Loggerhead found unable to submerge in water, and the furriest Eastern Screech Owl with a left wing injury.

You can visit the clinic yourself and see how these animals are cared for and even learn a bit about what you can do to avoid unintentionally harming an animal. Even discover useful wild birding tips in Florida for your nature travel. Daily presentations are 11 a.m. They cover why animals come to the site, what the rescue plan is, and how we can all work together to protect all animals. 

Overall, the exhibit hall includes interactives, videos, a children area, camera feeds for many of the animals, and outdoor enclosures. Guests can also visit the hospital in a limited capacity and see the care required to help these animals firsthand.

The clinic is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily at 3883 Sanibel Captiva Rd. It is $12 per person ages 13 and older and $7 for ages 4-12. 

Sanibel Sea School Program

Sure, you can always just hang out by the beach and watch the Florida flowers bend in the wind. But the Sanibel Sea School Program is your direct access to all its many secrets. The school offers activities and seasonal camps to learn more about the importance of the local beaches. Camp members will snorkel, surf, shell, wade, fish, kayak, and more as they uncover the natural mysteries of Sanibel Island. 

two girls swimming in ocean

There are daily programs available for walk-ups, but we recommend visiting the website and reserving a spot prior to visiting. Programs vary based on the season and most are divided by age. 

Sea Squirts will rock flip, crab, and muck about in the mangroves while learning about sea turtles and dolphins. The theme changes weekly and the program is $36 per session per student.

We also recommend the Sanibel Courses for older kids, ages 6-13. This will incorporate hands-on learning, field experience, and light traveling. Sessions are $55 per person.

kid snorkeling

Summer camp is open for all ages under 18. They run Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Registration begins February 6th.

Finally, you can review the after school programs from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Classes include beachcombing, surfing, ocean art, and canoeing. It’s $20 per student per session all year long.

All classes work out of the office at 455 Periwinkle Way. It is an ideal location for beach adventurers and students will find plenty to do in the immediate area. Visit the website for specific schedule details. We encourage you to contact the team for spot availability as physical distancing considerations are in place for 2021.

Plan Your Next Stay

Explore Sanibel Island with your loved ones and visit the best kid-friendly activities while on your vacation. Check out our available properties on Sanibel Island!

Visit Sanibel’s Best Homemade Ice Cream

little girl eating ice cream

It’s a bold claim, but Sanibel’s Best Homemade Ice Cream may be able to hold up to the title. 

Owner Laurie Verme always wanted an ice cream shop. After obtaining support from Alice, her daughter, the two worked together to help solidify this dream in 2017.

There are flavors ranging from the wild to the traditional. These include Pumpkin Gingersnap, Georgia Peach, and Butter Pecan.

But we also love some of the weirder concoctions. The Purple Cow is a rich mix of black raspberry and chocolate chips while the Sanibel Sea Shells is a Butter pecan base ice cream with nuts, chocolate, and toasted coconut. Kids will love Pelican Poop- delightful vanilla ice cream soaked in rainbow sprinkles and marshmallow fluff.

All orders can be requested in a bowl or cone. The shop is located at 362 Periwinkle Way. It’s open every day from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.