Marco Island vs Sanibel

Feb 9th, 2005, 08:32 AM
  #1  
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Marco Island vs Sanibel

I thought I was booking a Sanibel vacation but now I've heard some nice things of Marco Island. I guess first off, would Ft Meyers be the airport that I'd fly into since I'm already booked with airfare there. We tend to like hotels that offer all amenities. My husband golfs and my son likes pool and beach. Calm warm water. Have only seen the gulf once while in Tampa area. Enjoyed it very much. Pro's and cons of both. Thanks
janinelouie is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 11:19 AM
  #2  
 
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Yes - the Fort Myers airport is the airport for both Marco and Sanibel. Both Marco and Sanibel are beautiful. The beaches in Sanibel may be a little more "shelly" rather than sandy. I think that Sanibel may have more of an "island" feel while Marco is more "cityish" with strip malls, etc. On Sanibel the restaurants and shopping are still very tropical. I think Sanibel may have had quite a bit of hurricane damage though - not sure how much. I haven't been to Sanibel in about 10 years but I was just on Marco for 5 days (Feb. 3-7). If I had to choose - I'd try going back to Sanibel.
alvarki is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 11:43 AM
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Put another way, Marco is what Sanibel has struggled for years NOT to become. Marco was a huge filled land development. It is wall to wall with housing, tons of concrete, lots of high rise condos and hotels, and plenty of strip malls. The beaches are great, but it is often referred to as a concrete jungle.
Sanibel is the last of a breed -- a pretty true tropical island, with lots and lots of vegetation, no high rises, and lots of land use requirements providing massive breaks from over deveopment.
That said, while the beaches on Sanibel are some of the best in the world for shelling, most people prefer the wide white sands of the beaches on Marco. And if you aren't interested in making a real estate investment there, it might be possible to ignore the way that Marco has developed if you are only looking for a vacation.
Patrick is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 01:17 PM
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Do the shelly beaches interfere with swimming in the water? That's the second time I've heard that the beaches are very shelly. I don't know if I'll like that. I have no interest in real estate. Just want to unwind for 4 days on the beach. Do you know if the Hilton on Marco Island has a private beach area or are the beaches public. Will the beaches in either place be overcrowded Mem'l Day Weekend. Or is that a stupid question.
janinelouie is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 01:42 PM
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sanibel is the best choice, best beaches, more relaxed. Memorial week-end will not be as busy as you might think. Tourist mostly leave in april when it start to get hot!
rxtennis is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 02:34 PM
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All the beaches in Southwest Florida are public. Even a couple of small islands you can only get to by boat, allow others to boat there and use the beach.

I disagee about Memorial Day not being busy. First of all it is a huge time for the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale crowd to get in their cars and come over to the West coast for a long weekend. Hotels and motels do fill up then. And lots of locals start heading to the beach then (those of us who think winter is no time to swim in the Gulf!)
Patrick is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 03:10 PM
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Hi Janin-
My niece and I just got back from Marco and I wouldn't go there again. The reason is just as Patrick stated! Wall to wall concrete on the beach. I felt like I was walking downtown when I looked inland because of the resorts etc. It was not what we had in mind when we went.
I would choose Sanibel!
Praiser is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 03:55 PM
  #8  
bamakelly
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My vote is SANIBEL, hands down!

The beaches there have a lot of shells. But not so much that it interferes with lying on the beach or getting in the water. The parts that might hurt your feet are generally in a line all together, then when you walk past that line, it is all sand again. I do recommend wearing some sort of flip flop or swimming shoe, simply because you are likely to get caught up in the shelling game and might just find yourself in the middle of the shells trying to find the coveted JUNONIA shell...and for that you will need something on your feet.

Bowman's Beach and the beach at Blind Pass, between Sanibel and Captiva, are both bigger stretches of nice sandy beach.
 
Feb 9th, 2005, 05:17 PM
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Memorial Day weekend is a huge local draw in Florida. That's when families go to the beach, sort of the first day of summer. Higher priced places might have vacancies. This attests to how cheap we Floridians are -- the last thing we want to do is pay to go to the beach. We're here all the time.
Tandoori_Girl is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 07:01 PM
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Okay so the majority wins. I guess I'll stay with my choice of Sanibel. Now one more question. While i think I have it narrrowed down to the Sundial, I also was considering the West Wind Inn or the Casa YBel which you can probably see from an earlier post of mine. Now with these three, which one would have the nicest beach, and I'm refering to being able to lye out on a chair and most important swim in the gulf without cutting my feet on shells. I know it sounds crazy but trust me, I have a 7 year old son with autism and having shells below his feet while he's swimming may prove to be a problem.. Thanks for all the help.
janinelouie is offline  
Feb 9th, 2005, 07:09 PM
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Get some of those spongy water shoes. He'll be glad to have them. The water can be scarey. And get yourself a pair too, they're very inexpensive at Walmart, Target, etc. I don't know what the problem is, I've never encountered it. Irregardless, the shoes would be a good way to be prepared.
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Feb 10th, 2005, 05:40 AM
  #12  
bamakelly
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Tandoori Girl has a good tip about the spongy shoes. The water is pretty shallow for a good way out before it gets too deep. The waves can be strong, though, so you'll definitely need to be right with him. Also, there are parts of the island that are more sandy while other parts are more shelly. your best bet might be to try to call the three places you've listed and ask them about the beach outisde their resort (explain the situation). I hope you all have a loevly time!
 
Feb 10th, 2005, 05:41 AM
  #13  
bamakelly
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Oh--and be sure they all have a pool. Not all places necessarily have a pool on Sanibel.
 
Feb 10th, 2005, 06:37 AM
  #14  
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I think I will call them. Thank you all for the advice.
janinelouie is offline  
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