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Best Public Walking Trails on Sanibel Island

Walking Trails on Sanibel IslandThere are about 25 miles of walking and biking trails on Sanibel, which gives you a great opportunity to create your own path and explore the island. Or, choose one of these popular public walking trails below. Each trail offers a unique experience.

Nature Center Trails 

Enter through the SCCF nature center. For a shorter half mile walk, go to the Sanibel River Tower and back, or explore all 4.5 miles in the heart of the island through the interior freshwater wetlands.

Periwinkle Preserve

A restored migratory bird trail with an informational kiosk. Parking is available at the corner of Casa Ybel and Periwinkle Road at Jerry’s or Mango Bay. From there, walk or bike west on the Periwinkle bike path to the trail head (about 1/10 mile).

Bob Wigley Preserve

Bike or walk to the trail head, or drive and park at the Community Bank at the corner of Casa Ybel and Periwinkle Road. From there, walk to Casa Ybel bike path (about .5 mile) to two short trails in this 27 acre preserve. One trail leads to a gazebo and the other to an overlook on the Sanibel River.

Bailey Homestead Preserve

The 28.3 acres includes the family home and The Shipley Trail, which connects Roadside City Park and Pond Apple Park. The trail runs parallel to SCCF's Native Landscapes & Garden Center and begins at the Chamber of Commerce. 

Sanibel Gardens

The preserve is located just north of the Bailey Tract. Park at the trailhead and enter across from Bailey’s General Store. The trail is accessible from Inn Island Road. 

Pond Apple Park

Access the trail from the back left of the Chamber of Commerce parking lot. The trail is about 2.5 miles and is home to alligators, raccoons, and many rare and endangered species of birds.

Bowman’s Beach

The trail runs parallel to the beach, which offers some of the best remote beach space and shelling on the island. 

Lighthouse Park

Park at Lighthouse Beach and take a moment to view the Lighthouse, which is not open to the public. Also has a fishing pier and picnic area. 

Indigo Trail

The trail is four miles roundtrip and easy to access from the J.N. Ding Darling visitors center. There’s a good chance you’ll spot some wildlife along the way.

Calusa Shell Mound Trail

A short .40 mile trail provides information about the ancient history of the island and the Calusa tribe. Wheelchair accessible.

Bailey Tract

Park at the trailhead and walk or bike along the trail on loops from .3 miles to 1.1 miles. This is one of the lesser known trails at Ding Darling and is separate from the other trails on Wildlife Drive.

If you're thinking about making a move to Sanibel Island, start your home search or contact Phaidra McDermott to learn about the local market.

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