Tour of Cabbage Key, Florida: The Gulf Coast’s Beautiful Hidden Island



I visit my parents in Fort Myers, Florida a few times a year, and we’ve taken a lot of amazing boat rides around the area! On my last trip, we rented a boat from Pine Island and did some sightseeing around Pine Island and North Captiva Island before heading to Cabbage Key (if you don’t want to rent a boat, there is a ferry that will take you to Cabbage Key). The man we rented the boat from was very excited to tell us all about what to see on Cabbage Key since it’s a bit of a hidden gem in the Gulf Coast, and if you want to check out some islands while you’re in Florida, Cabbage Key is a great one to visit!

Tour of Cabbage Key, Florida: The Gulf's Coast Beautiful Hidden Island

Boat ride to Cabbage Key

You can see some pretty places on the way to Cabbage Key! We saw a lot of neat houses and stopped at North Captiva for some ice cream. We also saw lots of dolphins! Every time I visit Fort Myers and Bonita Springs, I see TONS of dolphins, even just right along the shore on the beach. I haven’t seen one jump completely out of the water yet, but they get pretty close to the boat and show off some tricks.

Boat trip in Cabbage Key, Florida

Boat trip in Cabbage Key, Florida

Boat ride in Florida

Dolphins on boat ride in Florida

Dolphins on boat ride in Florida

Dolphins on boat ride in Florida

Dolphins on boat ride in Florida

Boat ride to Cabbage Key, Florida

Tour of Cabbage Key

If you’ve heard of Cabbage Key, you may have heard that that’s where Jimmy Buffett wrote “Cheeseburger in Paradise.” There isn’t any evidence to that, but it’s the locals’ claim to fame. Not many people live on Cabbage Key, and you can see a lot of the houses on the nature trail.

Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant is the only inn and restaurant on the island, and it’s been run by the same family since the 1970s. We went there for lunch, and they had some pretty great shrimp! We also got their frozen key lime pie, but it didn’t have a graham cracker crust, which I prefer with key lime pie.

Boat ride to Cabbage Key, Florida

Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant

Cabbage Key Inn and Restaurant

Pink flowers on Cabbage Key

Water tower in Cabbage Key, Florida

There is a small water tower on the island, and you can climb it for some pretty views! It probably takes only a minute to climb, so it isn’t a strenuous climb, don’t worry. There are also some tortoises right near the water tower. We were there in the middle of the day on a hot day, so all the tortoises were hanging out in the shade, but one of them did poke his head out to watch people passing by!

View from water tower on Cabbage Key

View from water tower on Cabbage Key

View from water tower on Cabbage Key

Purple flowers in Florida

Tortoise on Cabbage Key

Cabbage Key water tower

Cabbage Key, Florida

Yellow house on Cabbage Key, Florida

Past the water tower, you can walk along a nature trail. There are a few houses along the way and lots of different flowers and plants to check out. The island isn’t very big, so it won’t take you long to walk around and take in the sights.

Green cactus in Florida

Cabin on Cabbage Key, Florida

Nature trail at Cabbage Key, Florida

Nature trail at Cabbage Key, Florida

Red hibiscus in Florida

Boat ride to Cabbage Key

If you’re looking for a hidden gem in Florida, Cabbage Key is a great place to explore for a day! Plus, the views of the islands and dolphins on the boat ride are great 🙂

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Blog, Florida, North America, Travel, USA

  1. Christine says:

    I need to get over there and check this out. I’ve actually never been to Ft. Myers either, just through it. Living in Orlando, it isn’t too far away. Thanks for sharing this lesser known gem!

  2. How cool that you saw dolphins!!! This place looks so dreamy! Such gorgeous flowers! And the water!

  3. Andi says:

    I spent a couple of weeks in the Keys and I’m not sure if got here or not! This is such a great area and I would love to go back for more time!

  4. Alicia says:

    Cabbage Key looks like a gorgeous holiday spot! I actually hadn’t heard of it before reading this post! It’s always so magical seeing wildlife in their natural habitat – especially sealife I love it! Thanks for this post really informative, it’s been a few years since I last visited Florida albeit for Disney but I do hope to return to the US one day.

  5. Natasha L says:

    Really lovely little spot, I visit Florida and the keys almost every year and I always go to the same place so I think next visit I’ll mix it up and try for Cabbage Key! Would love to spot some dolphins, that always makes for a fun day, hahaha!

  6. I need to go here to see the dolphins! This looks absolutely amazing thanks for sharing!

  7. Amanda says:

    So refreshing!

  8. tonya says:

    Seeing a turtle must have been pretty cool! Looks like a nice get away.

  9. Kristen says:

    Looks beautiful! Love the bit of rumored Jimmy Buffet lore too 😉

  10. Heidi Roland says:

    Looks amazing! How nice that you were able to visit a few time this year so far!

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