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22 Nov 2019
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Things to do on Sanibel

As the weather cools down in Florida and the humidity drops into much more comfortable levels, you know that means the holidays are on their way.  We’ve touched on some Christmas-related events (such as Luminary) in recent posts, but Thanksgiving is big on Sanibel and Captiva, which is pretty impressive when you don’t have any native wild turkeys.

For those looking to visit Southwest Florida for Thanksgiving (and there are still several condos available to rent at the lowest rates of the year), please note there is plenty to do on Turkey Day.  Now, despite our condos having fully-applianced kitchens and beautiful dining rooms, we realize that some visitors came here because they DIDN’T want to cook or prepare a massive feast.  And that’s all right.

As you may be aware, Sanibel has two full-service supermarkets, Bailey’s General Store and Jerry’s Foods.  Both will have limited hours on Thanksgiving Day, but are also offering fully-prepared meals to take to your home or condo.  Heat, serve, and take full credit (that last one’s optional).  Be sure to check out the ads on their respective websites to take full advatage.

If you don’t feel like sitting at home or cooking, there are several restaurants that *will* be open that day.  Some appear open for their regular menu (Dante’s Pizza, Blue Rendezvous Bistro, Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille on CAPTIVA, Sanddollar Restaurant), but others will be offering turkey specials or an extravagant Thanksgiving buffet.  Reservations are required in many cases, highly suggested regardless. See a short list that we put together below.

But wait…there’s more in store for the weekend.  Black Friday becomes holly-er and jollier at the Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa on Captiva with their annual Tree Lighting Celebration.  The event is free to the public and will feature decorations throughout the resort (including Santa on a palm tree), sing-a-longs and live holiday music, cash bars, snacks, a visit from the North Pole’s most famous couple (Mr. & Mrs. Kringle), laser shows, SNOW (yes, really!), culminating in the lighting of the Resort’s always-fantastic 30-foot Christmas tree and awesome fireworks display on the beach! Though parking options are to be announced, we have found in recent years that hiring a cab to drop off and pick up may be best.  There are three island-based taxi companies to call to arrange transportation; Sanibel Taxi ( 888-527-7806), Island Taxi ( 239-472-4888) and Sanibel Double D Taxi ( 239-472-3458).  Proper footwear is recommended for this “winter weather” (flip-flops are acceptable), and guests are encouraged to decorate themselves (especially if they light up) for this illuminating experience!

The weather for Thanksgiving weekend (according to will be very comfortable with highs in the mid-80s and lows in the mid-to-lower 60s.  We at Sanibel Holiday would like to extend our warmest holiday wishes to you!


Restaurant Hours

Bailey’s Supermarket


Thanksgiving:  7a.m. - noon

Pre-order Thanksgiving Dinner starting at $139.99


Jerry’s Supermarket


Thanksgiving: 6 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Pre-order Thanksgiving Dinner starting at $99.99


Bleu Rendez Vous


5p.m. ~ 8 p.m.

Reservations Required




4 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Turkey Dinner Specials

Reservations requested


Sundial Beach Resort & Spa.


Buffet 1p.m. - 7 p.m.

Adults: $58  Kids 4-12: $29  Under 3: free


George & Wendy’s Seafood Grille


Dinner starting at 5 p.m. – 10 p.m. (reservations suggested)

Thanksgiving special: $20  Kids: 5-10 $7  4 or under: free

Entertainment: Buckeye Ken 7 p.m. – 11 p.m.


Doc Ford’s Captiva


11 a.m.-10 p.m.


Old Captiva House

239-472-5161 x423

12 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Buffet reservation needed

Adults: $59  Children 10 & under: $19.95  


Thistle Lodge


11 a.m. -7 p.m.

Thanksgiving Day Buffet

Reservations Required

Adults: $54.95 Children under 10: $19.95


South Seas Resort

Captiva Ballroom


11:30a.m. ~ 6:30p.m.

Reservations Required

$75 adults, $35 kids 5-12 under4 free


Dante’s Pizza


5 p.m. ~ 10 p.m.


Sand Dollar


 Buffet 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Dinner 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.


Crow’s Nest

239-472-5161 x4

Buffet 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Reservations Required

Adults: $49  Children 10 & under: $14.95