5 Free Things to Do in Sanibel

Sanibel Island is known for its stunning beaches and incredible wildlife, providing something new to discover every day.

This destination is also great for families on a budget because there are tons of cheap or free activities occurring throughout the year. No matter what your group is interested in, you can have it all without breaking the bank.

Our Sanibel Island beachfront rentals give you quick access to the shore and are also close to these five other free attractions.

overview of sanibel island lighthouse

Sanibel Public Library

You may think that all libraries are the same, but the one in Sanibel truly stands out from the crowd. Of course, you can find the new bestseller to read on your downtime, but the library also offers fun events all year long. Teens will love the VIP After Hours programs on Wednesdays, or stop by on Mondays for a movie matinee. A full calendar can be found on their website, but many of their events are open to the public and do not require registration in advance.

Sanibel Island Farmers’ Market

The Farmers’ Market has been operating since 2008 and welcomes visitors from near and far. You’ll find everything from local produce to freshly baked bread and pastries, as well as other products from local artisans. This is a great opportunity to meet the locals and explore what makes Sanibel truly special. The Farmers’ Market operates on Sundays from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. It is set up at Sanibel City Hall, located at 800 Dunlop Road, and parking is available at multiple locations nearby. Please be advised that this is not a dog-friendly event, so you may want to skip it if you’ve got your furry friend.

Scenic Drive at the Sanibel Causeway

For an incredible view of the water, take a drive down the Causeway. You’ll head over the San Carlos Bay into the mainland over three miles of bridges. The concept of the Causeway dates back as early as 1912, but today’s bridges were built in 2004. Three separate bridges make up this road and provide magnificent views of the Bay. You can also visit the Causeway Island Park and their beaches. While heading inland is free, you will incur a $6 toll coming back to the island.

Periwinkle Way

While you certainly have the chance to spend money on Periwinkle Way, you can have just as much fun window shopping and exploring the culture of Sanibel. The gorgeous landscaping speaks for itself, but if you need more to look at, stop into any of the shops for a browse. Smell the locally-made soaps and candles or check out some unique souvenirs. Periwinkle Way is quick to reach from our Sanibel and North Captiva Island rentals. Head in early to beat the crowd!

Sanibel Lighthouse

One of our favorite destinations here at Gopher Enterprises, the Sanibel Lighthouse is located at the end of Periwinkle Way, so you can visit both stops back to back! This attraction is rich in history and gives you a true taste of Florida. The lighthouse has been a staple of the area since 1884 and is a popular stop for locals and visitors alike. It provides some perspective into the city’s past and is a great way to wrap up your afternoon.

Plan Your Visit

If you’re on a budget, our featured rental complexes on Sanibel Island are sure to give you plenty of options and leave some extra cash in your pocket. Gopher Rentals is proud to be the vacation rental coordination service dedicated to making your getaway experience as relaxing and fun as possible. Contact us today for more information about our Sanibel and Captiva Island rentals.