Matlacha Island is tiny village located at the Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve, sandwiched between Cape Coral in the mainland, and Pine Island, which happens to be Florida’s Largest Island. It preserves that Old Florida small town charm, with great seafood restaurants, quaint shops and galleries. Most of the buildings are colorful and all the people we encountered we pleasant, helpful, and looked happy and stress free.
On this particular trip we stayed at the Sugar Sand Beach RV Resort, the only one on the island. It is a very small resort with only 10 RV sites. It doesn’t have the plethora of amenities many RV resorts have, but the location, the view, the fishing dock and free kayaks among other pleasant surprises more that make up for that. Also it has the fastest unrestricted Wi-Fi of any RV park we’ve seen anywhere.
This place is an easy getaway to Pine Island and Cape Coral. We decided to leave Pine Island for another trip. In Cape Coral we visited the Wicked Dolphin rum distillery and the Brewtober Festival. They were both a lot of fun, especially for rum and craft beer lovers like us.
Other than that, we spent the whole weekend relaxing, kayaking, biking, and eating fabulous seafood at this location which is remote enough no to be too overrun with tourist crowds. The only crowded area was the bridge. Crowded with local people fishing. No wonder it is colloquially called “the fishingest bridge in the world”. Fishing seems to be the main local pastime. Another great thing that adds to the uniqueness and small town feel of Matlacha is the absence of any chain stores of fast food franchises. All the business seemed to be locally owned mom and pop shops.
We definitely fell in love with this town and hope we can return soon. The RV park however is booked solid for the high season so we’ll have to wait until the fall, and hopefully get site #1, like we did this time.