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Port Of Call – Captiva, Fl – ‘Tween Waters Marina
The walkway from land to OLOH is as charming as it gets.

Port Of Call – Captiva, Fl – ‘Tween Waters Marina

After a terrific two week stay at Burnt Store Marina it was time to again point OLOH south and continue our adventure.  The immediate plan was to rendezvous with our dear friends who transplanted from New Jersey to Sarasota at the end of 2016 and brought their beautiful 45 Prestige Out Of Africa with them. As they were willing to motor south to connect with us we had come up with a few destinations that would be great places to hang for a few days and that would also put us a travel day away from Marco Island where we plan to stage for our Gulf crossing to Key West.  Once again we learned how tight dockage was as our first couple of choices were completely booked up.  Then it was suggested that we try the marina at ‘Tween Waters Island Resort and Spa on Captiva.  ‘Tween Waters is just south of South Seas resort where we had been just a few weeks prior and while we were hoping to get a bit closer to Marco, the place looked fantastic to us and our friends have enjoyed several stays there.  As it’s a small marina (just 22 slips) I wasn’t anticipating any better luck with availability so I was thrilled when the very friendly gentleman who answered the phone enthusiastically told me that they had room for both boats.  Score!

That next morning we bid farewell to our friends at Burnt Store and set out on a sunny, warm and windy morning to essentially backtrack the last trip we took, traveling around 26 nautical miles to the skinny but manageable entrance channel to ‘Tween Waters.  Out Of Africa had joined us in Punta Gorda the night before and as they travel faster than we do, they left about an hour after us which timed out perfectly for us to rendezvous at the entrance channel where we were able to follow them in.

Out Of Africa out of Sarasota in Punta Gorda

As we got close to the marina we knew we had a narrow channel and some skinny water to navigate.  Skinny water means there is not a lot of water depth below the boat.  Fortunately, these waters have sandy bottoms which are forgiving if you bump them at a slow pace – but no one wants that to happen!  Shoaling waters are like pelicans around this area – they are everywhere so a slow go is best practice.

As we approach ‘Tween Waters Marina, beautiful homes and boats are nestled into the lush vegetation.

Yes, that’s a house but there is a nice mix of beachy homes and cottages as well.

Following our friends on Out of Africa into the marina.

 Upon hailing the marina we had our first experience of witnessing marina manager Harry Cullen in action.  His welcoming voice gave us our docking assignment and precise instructions on what lines he would like at the ready to tie us up.  Harry originally comes by way of Wappingers Falls, NY and was pleased to know we were from New York’s Hudson Valley as well.  Although it was our first time here he greeted us like old friends which is something we have found to be a defining characteristic of the best marinas we have stayed at.  After thirteen years at “Tween Waters it is clear that Harry loves his job as much as ever and he is inevitably a big part of why so many boaters return to this special place.  Please be sure to watch our interview with Harry at the bottom of this post.

Room with a view – the scene from OLOH’s salon.

View from OLOH’s observation deck.

View from the writer’s desk. If the sky tells a tale then surely X marks the spot of one of our favorite places!

The beach at ‘Tween Waters is fantastic and usually quiet. You can get great cabanas for 15 bucks a day.

One of two pools.  They also have a beautiful serenity pool where the noise is kept to a minimum. And, that’s the best photo I’ve taken of myself (Tim) in years – those are some nice piggy toes.

The poolside Oasis bar serves great cocktails and fresh, delicious snacks and meals.

Jasper’s happy place.

The beauty of ‘Tween Waters is in its old-Florida simplicity and charm.  It is un-fancy in the best possible way and the scenery is hard to beat.  Probably the nicest view we’ve had out of our salon since acquiring OLOH.  The beautiful Gulf beach is a three-minute walk from the boat, the two pools are terrific and there are two restaurants on site that always seem to have a good crowd.  We’ve been eating mostly onboard but did have dinner on our arrival night at the Crow’s Nest Bar and Grille and enjoyed some fun entertainment from Gatlin.

One of the highlights of our stay was being able to take our dinghies to the Gulf side of North Captiva Island which is accessible only by boat.  We anchored the dinghies just off the beach and spent two terrific days playing in the sand with Jasper getting the most exercise he’s gotten in months, running around off-leash and reveling in beach frisbee and a bit of splashing around.

Heading toward Redfish Pass with the king for a day on the beach.

An amazing day at the beach with great friends! Thanks, O’Keefe’s for coming to see us!

The beach to ourselves with freedom to roam (and sniff).

Beach Dog.

After a sandy day at the beach, a little doggy wash down was in order and it was Jasper’s first boat bath on OLOH!

We certainly would have been content to have simply just sat around on OLOH, taking in the spectacular view but we there was so much to see.  We also spent some time gunkholing (taking the dinghy into shallow or shoaling water and meandering from spot to spot).

We spent some time gunkholing in the classic Yachtsman fashion. Here we discovered a little bayou on Buck Key where we watched the sunset.

The sunset from Breynard Bayou on Buck Key.

Poetry in motion…  Joy is sun on watered sand and for this legged beast to run, a splash becomes a freedom pass unleashed, unfettered, unbound at last!

We took the Roosevelt Channel…carefully…down to Blind Pass for a wonderful afternoon of gunkholing, watching dolphins catch fish and playing on sandbars with Jasper.

 We’ve stayed in a lot of places and have been to a lot of marinas, but the setting here makes it one of our favorite stops ever.  And the vibe that permeates at ‘Tween certainly calls out to likeminded people.  We met some very friendly boaters on the docks, coming and going during our stay, and had the great privilege of connecting with the crew from Miss Norma, a beautiful, new Ranger Tug currently in the midst of traveling America’s Great Loop.  Every now and then along this journey, you are fortunate to meet people with whom you get the feeling that it’s the start of a great friendship.  This was one of those times.  Prior to getting Miss Norma last September – their first boat(!) – they were on quite a journey of their own that has inspired countless people around the world.  You may already know their story – and it is definitely worth learning about.  Click here to be taken to their Facebook page or just do a web search for “Miss Norma.”  Inspiration guaranteed.

The good people you meet along the way – Miss Norma dockside.

OLOH likes it here.

Our last sunset at ‘Tween Waters.

Obligatory beach selfie.

After extending our ‘Tween Waters stay by two days it is time to make our way to Marco to get ready for the big travel day to Key West.  See you out there!

Please be sure to subscribe to the blog on the top right of this page to get notified when updates are posted.  And please leave any comments or questions below – we love to hear from you & know that you’re along for the ride!  You can also follow us on Twitter at @MYOLOH and for plenty more pictures and video find us on Instagram.  And the M/Y OLOH Facebook Page is live so please like us & follow us there as well.  

This Post Has 8 Comments
  1. Yet another fabulous blog! The visuals are spectacular! Love this place. It did remind me of old Florida. The interview with Harry was a great addition. I am sure you will happen upon others to catch on camera! Keep it up!
  2. Looks glorious. Of course Harry was great, his roots are in Wappingers Falls! I doubt there is ever reason to have your patience tested there, but if they ever are you have Serenty Now!! P&L
  3. OMGosh! Award-winning photos! Such a gorgeous place! Oloh is a mighty fine looking yacht! And Jasper had a ball too...looks & sounds like paradise to me!

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