The first time I traveled to Gasparilla Island for a wedding I was shocked that it isn’t more well-known throughout the country. It is a true gem on the gulf coast of Florida that everyone should experience once. The 7 mile long island is very small and sits between Naples and Sarasota. It’s not an easy place to get to from the south and is quite a ways from the bigger towns along the coast. There’s a toll causeway to get on the island, but once you arrive the island mostly has private homes and a few small beach clubs. Among them are The Gasparilla Inn and the Boca Bay Pass Club which I have both photographed at. I love coming here because it’s like you have the island all to yourself, the beaches are very natural and pristine and going to town is like going back in time a bit. It is truly a unique gem along the gulf coast. Since there are only two main venues here, I’ve also included a few options in the surrounding Naples & Sarasota area that are some of my favorites too.
DAVID ISHAYA OSU