North Captiva is a private residential community featuring secluded beaches and a respite from the crowds. Part of the Lee Island Coast in Southwest Florida, North Captiva's access is provided by private water charters, schedule d public ferry service, and a private airstrip. Golf carts and bikes are the only form of transportation on the island, keeping the environment pristine. The island has 5 miles of white, sandy beaches and offers outstanding s helling. ¾ of the island is an undeveloped 700 acre state land preserve - perfect for a day of hiking and exploring to turn up undiscovered treasures. The island also features fine dining, shopping and private club facilities.
The Calusa Indians dominated the barrier islands off the coast of Florida for nearly 2,000 years thriving on the island's abundant natural resources. Their numbers grew until gold-hungry Spaniards discovered their island paradise. A series of battles ensued wiping out nearly the entire population.
The next segment in history has one conjuring up images of Pirates of the Caribbean with tall-masted schooners and pirate ships. This little barrier island became a popular refuge from a turbulent sea for the swashbuckling set. Pirates like Jose Gaspar repaired war-torn ships and imprisoned beautiful women, thus the island was named Captiva. The barrier islands to the north were named after Pirate Gaspar - Gasparilla and Little Gasparilla.
North Captiva and Captiva were one continuous stretch of beach. In a 1921 hurricane, Redfish Pass was created and the two were separated.
During the 1960's, approximately 10 homes were constructed and six subdivisions platted. At that time, three canals were dredged, originating from points around the perimeter of what is now Safety Harbor.
By the mid 70's, nearly 50 homes were constructed on the northern tip of the island from Gulf to bay. It was obvious that North Captiva was destined to follow the path of the highly developed barrier islands to the north and south. With a potential build-out of 4,500 homes, the charming island ambience of North Captiva would surely be lost.
However, in 1975 the state of Florida acquired six parcels of land totaling over 350 acres - almost half of the entire island. This timely acquisition came under the environmentally endangered land program, a swift and direct move to preserve this resource from over-development that has impacted most of Florida.
Today, there are just over 370 homes and about 50 year-round residents on North Captiva Island with an anticipated total build-out of approximately 600 homes. North Captiva has a very active civic association and the members are making every effort to ensure that the island's natural beauty is protected and that growth is kept in balance with the environment. The members are also actively engaged in protecting the island's many creatures, some of whic h are endangered. North Captiva Island is one of the few places left where man can live in complete harmony with nature and escape the overbuilding. This unique island is not for everybody. But then, it was never intended to be .
With the absence of motorized vehicles the island remains a haven for all.