In addition to spending time on the fabulous beaches, my other most favorite activity on Sanibel Island was a hiking tour across the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge. Visitors can walk, bike, drive, or kayak
through the wildlife refuge and will encounter mangrove forests, swampy rivers, unbelievable vegetation...and lots of wildlife, for example alligators and mosquitoes. We decided to hike and we were disappointed at first that we didn't catch a glimpse of one single alligator. Yet, when we got close to one of the swampy creeks, we were in for a surprise - a perfecly camouflaged, tiny little alligator jumped up and tried to snap at us. Fortunately, we were good at running and the only thing that did snap after all was my camera's shutter release button. Take a look at the result.
Equipment: For hiking you'll need to wear light comfortable clothes and sturdy shoes, so the alligators can't snap at your toes. A hat and sunglasses are also recommended, sunscreen, as well as mosquito repellent - alternatively, you could wrap yourself into a mosquito net. Bring plenty of water as it's hot and humid on Sanibel Island and especially in the wildlife refuges full of mangroves. You might also want to bring a few snacks - for yourself, in case you get hungry and for hungry alligators.
The Island is very friendly to bicycles. They have bike paths everywhere and rental shops with all manner of bicycles. We brought our own.
Equipment: errr, a bike would be helpful
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