We usually visit Sanibel Island every March for our anniversary. This year, we decided to go over Christmas. My husband was able to score five nights at the Periwinkle Park & Campground, which is a RV campground on Sanibel Island. We knew we loved Sanibel Island, but we didn't know what to expect with the Periwinkle Park & Campground. We were just happy that we were going to be able to take our RV on the island and stay in it, which costs a fraction of what it costs to stay in a hotel on the island.
The Periwinkle Park & Campground has many trailers that are permanent on the property, but there is an area that is an RV campground, too. The area with the permanent trailers seems to be owned mostly by snowbirds, because all of the license plates there were from out of state. The stay at the campground was really enjoyable. All of the campsites seem quite equal, with some being back-in and some being pull through. When you reserve a spot at the Periwinkle campground they do it the old fashion way. You don't reserve it online. You send in a deposit check with the dates you want and then you wait and see if you get it. If you do, they let you know and you can plan accordingly. When you show up, you have to pay by check or cash, they don't take credit card payments. We also could not pick our spot ahead of time. We were randomly assigned one when we arrived, which still turned out just fine.
The campground was very quiet, clean, and offers a great location. Here's a little about the main areas:
- Campsites. They all seemed similar, with none standing out as being so much better than others. They are not big or small, but comfortable. Each site has a nice clean cement porch that you will have right outside your RV door. They offer a full hook up, too. There are no fire pits and bonfires are not allowed. Dogs are also not allowed at the campground.
- Campground. Again, it was nice and quiet and clean. They have community restrooms/bathhouses, a laundry room, clubhouse, recycling center, and more. There is also, for some reason, a lot of birds there! They have a bird area that has many exotic birds in cages, some that talk to you as you go by, lemurs, and there are many ducks and other water birds in the ponds. They also have an area where you can get your propane tanks filled right at the campground. They also sell ice there for $2 per bag.
- Location. The location is wonderful. If you take a bike, you can ride it all over Sanibel Island right from the campground. There is a nice beach access that is around .60 miles out the back of the campground. Or, you can ride your bike the other direction to quickly access stores, restaurants, and more. We rode our bikes all over the island, taking them to the beach, lunch, for joy rides, and more. Sanibel Island is very bike friendly, with nice paved bike trails all over the place. We got up early and went down to the beach to see the sunrise (10 minutes to get there by bike), biked the island, and would go back in the evening, too. The beach access near the campground does not have a restroom, but others that you can bike to do have them. Take a bike lock if you have a valuable bike and want to lock it up at the bike rack.
The Periwinkle Park & Campground at this time is around $55 per night for two adults, and you pay $5 for each extra person per night (kids, guests, etc.). That is a great deal, considering the cost of hotels on the island. Nearby, there are plenty of restaurant options, Billy's Bike Rental, convenience stores, and a grocery store. We also found a nearby bookstore, where we stocked up on a few more books.
If you have never been to Sanibel Island, there are a lot of great things to do there, including taking a drive through the wildlife refuge, visiting the shell museum, the CROW center, the nature center, and this time around we also left the island to go to the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, about an hour away. Sanibel Island is also the best place in Florida for shelling. There are literally millions of shells all over the beach, ready for you to sift through and find treasures to take home.
Two thumbs up for the Periwinkle Park & Campground. We look forward to going back again!
Here are pictures from our trip: