Pristine shell-strewn beaches
, fragrant tropical flowers, and not a single traffic light on the entire island. Year-round sunshine tempered by breezes from the Gulf. Best tarpon fishing in the world. Streets that make a statement: Damn If I Know, Damn If I Care, and Damn If I Will. Welcome to Gasparilla Island or, as it is better known (for its main community), Boca Grande. Gasparilla, approximately an hour’s drive south of Sarasota, is one of a string of barrier islands scattered along southwest Florida’s coast between Tampa and Fort Myers. Bordered on the west by the Gulf of Mexico
, on the north by Little Gasparilla Pass, on the east by Charlotte
Harbor, and on the south by Boca Grande Pass, the island is accessible by toll bridge or boat. Boca Grande (Spanish for “big mouth”) Pass, one of Florida’s deepest natural inlets, accounts for its early history. Calusa Indians were drawn to its rich fishing grounds. Railroads that once carried phosphate mined in central Florida to the island’s deep water harbor later transported distinguished guests for the winter season. Today Boca Grande’s population of nearly 800 more than triples during winter and spring. Visitors come for their own reasons, which range from exhilarating angling to somnolent afternoons under a palm tree. The above description is an excerpt from "Florida: Off the Beaten Path." Whether you're a visitor or a local looking for something different, this chapter from the Off the Beaten Path series will help you take the "road less traveled" and discover hidden attractions, unique finds, and unusual locales that most tourists miss.
© Copyright Diana and Bill Gleasner published by Insiders' Guide all rights reserved.
This travel guide comes from:
Florida Off the Beaten Path Guide Book