loading spinner
20899
Florida

Beautiful Sanibel Island and the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast

Discover the rich cultural and ecological heritage of Sanibel Island as you explore its museums, photograph its diverse wildlife and beachcomb for shells with an expert conchologist.
Rating (4.94)
Program No. 20899RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,499
Florida

Beautiful Sanibel Island and the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast

Discover the rich cultural and ecological heritage of Sanibel Island as you explore its museums, photograph its diverse wildlife and beachcomb for shells with an expert conchologist.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,499
Length
6 days
Rating (4.94)
Starts at
1,499
Program No. 20899RJ

Your well-being is our #1 priority

To make your experience as safe as possible, we require all participants to be fully vaccinated. See our Safety Roadmap

Enroll with Confidence

We want your Road Scholar learning adventure to be something to look forward to—not worry about. Learn more

Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
Plan ahead.
What kind of weather can you expect? Take a look!
Select your type of room
Price will update based on selection
Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Dec 11 - Dec 16, 2022
Starting at
1,499
Jan 8 - Jan 13, 2023
Starting at
1,749
Jan 15 - Jan 20, 2023
Starting at
1,749
Jan 22 - Jan 27, 2023
Starting at
1,749
Feb 5 - Feb 10, 2023
Starting at
1,799
Feb 12 - Feb 17, 2023
Starting at
1,949
Mar 5 - Mar 10, 2023
Starting at
2,699
Mar 19 - Mar 24, 2023
Starting at
2,699
Mar 26 - Mar 31, 2023
Starting at
2,699
Dec 3 - Dec 8, 2023
Starting at
1,699
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Dec 11 - Dec 16, 2022
Starting at
1,979
Jan 8 - Jan 13, 2023
Starting at
2,249
Jan 15 - Jan 20, 2023
Starting at
2,249
Jan 22 - Jan 27, 2023
Starting at
2,249
Feb 5 - Feb 10, 2023
Starting at
2,399
Feb 12 - Feb 17, 2023
Starting at
2,599
Mar 5 - Mar 10, 2023
Starting at
3,979
Mar 19 - Mar 24, 2023
Starting at
3,979
Mar 26 - Mar 31, 2023
Starting at
3,979
Dec 3 - Dec 8, 2023
Starting at
2,199

At a Glance

Pure white sand beaches strewn with 400 species of shells; wetlands and mangrove swamps; and wildlife like manatees, dolphins, tortoises, alligators and nearly 250 species of birds make Sanibel Island a tropical Eden tucked along Florida’s Gulf Coast. Get to know this fascinating island like a local. Learn why the “Sanibel Stoop” is the preferred posture on the local beaches, encounter marine life inhabiting island waters and discover the largest undeveloped mangrove ecosystem in the US.
Activity Level
On Your Feet
Walking on mostly flat terrain with some rocky, sandy surfaces 1-1.5 miles per day. Standing at cultural sites and stair climbing

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Join volunteer docents inside Sanibel Historical Village and Museum, a tribute to the island’s early pioneers where each building has been restored to its original state.
  • Meet a special kind of marine expert on a beachcombing field trip with a conchologist who helps you identify the many species of shells washed up on shore.
  • Spend a day at the winter estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, examining the lives of these two remarkable men.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Charles Sobczak
Charles Sobczak is an award-winning author who lives and writes on Sanibel Island. His first novel, “Six Mornings on Sanibel,” was originally published in 1999 and is currently in its seventh printing. He has written several other novels, a fictional memoir and a collection of selected writings titled Rhythm of the Tides. In 2010, he published a regional nature guide, “Living Sanibel - A Nature Guide to Sanibel & Captiva Islands,” which quickly became the best-selling book on Sanibel Island.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Charles Sobczak
Charles Sobczak View biography
Charles Sobczak is an award-winning author who lives and writes on Sanibel Island. His first novel, “Six Mornings on Sanibel,” was originally published in 1999 and is currently in its seventh printing. He has written several other novels, a fictional memoir and a collection of selected writings titled Rhythm of the Tides. In 2010, he published a regional nature guide, “Living Sanibel - A Nature Guide to Sanibel & Captiva Islands,” which quickly became the best-selling book on Sanibel Island.
Profile Image of Joyce Matthys
Joyce Matthys View biography
Joyce Matthys is an expert in shells, the science behind them, and the art of shell collection. Working typically with small groups, she makes sure all questions are answered and that the shells participants find during their beach walk are identified. She focuses on the scientific aspect of seashells while exercising her hobby of shell collecting.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Florida's Seashells- A Beachcombers Guide
by Blair and Dawn Witherengton
A guide to Florida seashells, including species common to the south eastern United States and the Caribbean. 252 species of seashells, with a color photo of each, as beachcombers are most likely to find them.
The Living Gulf Coast: A Nature Guide to Southwest Florida
by Charles Sobczak *Lecturer*
The Living Gulf Coast is the first comprehensive nature guide to Florida's Southwest region. The book covers six counties: Sarasota, Charlotte, Lee, Collier, Glades and Hendry. There are more than 160 parks, preserves and eco-destinations covered in this work, with sixty-one of them described in great detail. Not only does the book describe these outstanding destinations, it also covers all the major birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians found throughout the region.
Images of America Sanibel Island
by Yvonne Hill, Marguerite Jordan
In collaboration with the Lee County Black History Society. The pioneers were a contrasting group of individuals, comprised of diverse ethnic origins and cultures, yet all seemed to share a common goal of using hard work, resourcefulness, and determination to make the island their home. Their efforts and sacrifices greatly contributed to the growth and rich history of Sanibel as we know it today
Historic Sanibel and Captiva Islands: Tales of Paradise
by Jeri Magg
The story of Sanibel and Captiva Islands stretches back over three hundred years, to a time when natives roamed the islands and Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon first met and tried to subdue the Calusa Indians in San Carlos Bay in 1513. The next few centuries were flooded with pioneers, fishermen and clergymen in their quest to tame the wilderness in search of a better life. Discover how anthropologist Frank Cushing visited pioneer Sam Ellis in 1895 after the farmer discovered bones on his homestead and how President Theodore Roosevelt's men saved a little girl from drowning when he lived on a houseboat in Captiva to study local marine life. Join local history columnist Jeri Magg as she recounts the storied history of these little slices of paradise.
Meals
12 Meals
5 Breakfasts
3 Lunches
4 Dinners
The following choices may be available when requested in advance: Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Low Fat, Low Salt
Lodging
Lodgings may differ by date. Select a date to see the lodgings specific to that date.
Display
Dec 11, 2022 - Dec 16, 2022
  • Dec 11, 2022 - Dec 16, 2022
  • Jan 08, 2023 - Jan 13, 2023
  • Jan 15, 2023 - Jan 20, 2023
  • Jan 22, 2023 - Jan 27, 2023
  • Feb 05, 2023 - Feb 10, 2023
  • Feb 12, 2023 - Feb 17, 2023
  • Mar 05, 2023 - Mar 10, 2023
  • Mar 19, 2023 - Mar 24, 2023
  • Mar 26, 2023 - Mar 31, 2023
  • Dec 03, 2023 - Dec 08, 2023
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.
5 nights
Sanibel
A tranquil boutique hotel nestled amid swaying palms and sandy beaches, Sanibel Island Beach Resort is a cherished gulf-front retreat for nature lovers, shell collectors and those who enjoy outdoor recreation mixed with great shopping and dining. Guests enjoy private beach access, as well as an outdoor pool and sundeck, bike rentals, tennis courts, hammocks and lounge chairs.
5 nights
Sanibel
A tranquil boutique hotel nestled amid swaying palms and sandy beaches, Sanibel Island Beach Resort is a cherished gulf-front retreat for nature lovers, shell collectors and those who enjoy outdoor recreation mixed with great shopping and dining. Guests enjoy private beach access, as well as an outdoor pool and sundeck, bike rentals, tennis courts, hammocks and lounge chairs.
5 nights
Sanibel
A tranquil boutique hotel nestled amid swaying palms and sandy beaches, Sanibel Island Beach Resort is a cherished gulf-front retreat for nature lovers, shell collectors and those who enjoy outdoor recreation mixed with great shopping and dining. Guests enjoy private beach access, as well as an outdoor pool and sundeck, bike rentals, tennis courts, hammocks and lounge chairs.
5 nights
Sanibel
On the barrier island of Sanibel off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Sundial Beach Resort & Spa is a unique tropical island destination with miles of shell-strewn beaches. Guests stay in apartment-style accommodations in various sizes, complete with a kitchen, living room, and dining area. Directly on site are restaurants and shops with panoramic views of the Gulf of Mexico. Resort-styled amenities include state-of-the-art tennis facilities, multiple swimming pools, a fitness center, Bailey’s Marketplace, children’s activities, the Sanibel Sea School’s newest campus location, and the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique. Close to Ft. Myers, the resort and its pristine beaches serve as a perennial favorite for Florida resort weddings and the resort features conference facilities with more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space.





Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.