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Old 6 Nov 19, 04:29 PM  
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#11
ChrisS
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Originally Posted by Milpston View Post
Thank you everyone for your responses.
ChrisS, you have given me some reading to do over the next couple days and itís much appreciated. Thank you.
We are looking at July. Would you recommend boat hire or just doing the organised tours?
Hi Mil - I recommend going out with Bruce, leave it to him he knows what heís doing and will take you to some super places, you will see masses of marine life and birds on the water, heís substantially cheaper than other Captís who charge much more. If you look at the link I posted about Bruce, you can see his 21 foot double the bimini pontoon boat, itís very comfortable. He recommends you take plenty of drink and sunblock, he has a huge cool box so take a bag of ice to keep your drinks/picnic very cold. We believe you see a lot more and enjoy the whole experience much better if you have a captain, who knows the waters and is fully licensed, operating the boat

I canít remember who it was, I had a message from another Dibber to say theyíd gone out with Bruce and had a superb time.
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Old 6 Nov 19, 04:34 PM  
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#12
Milpston
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Originally Posted by ChrisS View Post
Hi Mil - I recommend going out with Bruce, leave it to him he knows what heís doing and will take you to some super places, you will see masses of marine life and birds on the water, heís substantially cheaper than other Captís who charge much more. If you look at the link I posted about Bruce, you can see his 21 foot double the bimini pontoon boat, itís very comfortable. He recommends you take plenty of drink and sunblock, he has a huge cool box so take a bag of ice to keep your drinks/picnic very cold. We believe you see a lot more and enjoy the whole experience much better if you have a captain, who knows the waters and is fully licensed, operating the boat

I canít remember who it was, I had a message from another Dibber to say theyíd gone out with Bruce and had a superb time.
Chris, thank you. I will have a proper look at his website now that the Wife and I are off together this evening. I think I have found the villa we want. I just can't get the idea of me driving the boat and having it docked at the villa for a few days out of my head.
I do think you're right though maybe the reality wouldn't be quite as easy as the dream Maybe I'll see if he will do a discount to be at our beck and call for 2-3 days which would work out similar..ish cost

*edit* I haven't had a chance to have a proper look at he website yet but I'm guessing early pre-booking is a must. What happens in cases of adverse weather? That would be my main concern with hiring our won boat and if the weather is bad we have basically burnt the money.
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Edited at 05:48 PM.
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Old 6 Nov 19, 05:40 PM  
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Originally Posted by Milpston View Post
That's really interesting. I have no boating experience at all but would not be shy about having a go
Both villas we have on our short list are very close to river in the South East which is one of the reasons I have shortlisted them.
How come you only managed to get out twice in 12 days? Was that due to weather? I have visions of us blasting over to Sanibel Am I living in a dream world? We would be booking our boat separately so for a 3 day hire the cost is not insignificant.
Weather did play a part. There were lots of Thunderstorms while we were there. Everyday in fact. We weren't allowed out on the boat if there was a storm in the vicinity. The boat insurance didn't cover it.
We also had visions of nipping out to the islands etc. In reality it was 40 minutes idle speed before we reached open water. Our Captain was great & we had a good 4 hours of tuition with him. He did say that open water was another ball game & not that easy for the inexperienced. I think it depends on the size of your boat too!
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Old 6 Nov 19, 05:44 PM  
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Originally Posted by joyo17 View Post
Weather did play a part. There were lots of Thunderstorms while we were there. Everyday in fact. We weren't allowed out on the boat if there was a storm in the vicinity. The boat insurance didn't cover it.
We also had visions of nipping out to the islands etc. In reality it was 40 minutes idle speed before we reached open water. Our Captain was great & we had a good 4 hours of tuition with him. He did say that open water was another ball game & not that easy for the inexperienced. I think it depends on the size of your boat too!
Thank you. I am looking at villa with access to the Coosawhatsitsname river (within 5 mins) but now scouring information from Chris and trying to consider if that may work better for us. I really should be deciding whether to book the villa in CC the first place as I only have a few days to get that decision made.
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Old 6 Nov 19, 06:09 PM  
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Our favourite was Corkscrew Swamp, take some binoculars or I'm not sure if you can hire them. CROW on Sanibel Island is good too, do the Wildlife Walk if you have children over 13 crowclinic/events
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Old 6 Nov 19, 06:29 PM  
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We owned a villa in Cape Coral for 16 years until earlier this year, and happy to answer any questions. ChrisS has extensive knowledge also on the area, and as you can read, loves all things nature.
I will put my 10 cent in and say:
When renting a villa try and keep to zip codes 33904 or 33914 as these are just off the causeways of Vererans Bridge and Cape Coral Bridge (across the Caloosahatchee river from Ft Myers) so easy exit & access to Ft Myers, the barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva.
Downtown Ft Myers is often bypassed as a great day out but the historic area is very interesting and there are lovely walks and nice shops, restaurants and bars - as well as a great rooftop Skybar overlooking Ft Myers.
There are many waterfront restaurants (Rumrunners, Fathoms, Nauti Mermaid) on the Cape and you can see many different species of wildlife
Cape Coral has its own local beach - small but has all the amenities you would want for a day at the beach without driving for miles (tiki bar, bbq pits, kids play area, toilets, etc)
Unlike ChrisS - I am a huge shopper and enjoy eating out and there are loads of places and Malls to visit - you will be spoiled for choice!
I did a SW Florida trip report a few years ago of some of the activities and places we visited when we had friends visiting us - which can be found under my profile.
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Old 6 Nov 19, 06:47 PM  
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Originally Posted by Rebelrebel View Post
Our favourite was Corkscrew Swamp, take some binoculars or I'm not sure if you can hire them. CROW on Sanibel Island is good too, do the Wildlife Walk if you have children over 13 crowclinic/events
Thank you. Will have a look
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Old 6 Nov 19, 06:48 PM  
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Originally Posted by capecoralfl View Post
We owned a villa in Cape Coral for 16 years until earlier this year, and happy to answer any questions. ChrisS has extensive knowledge also on the area, and as you can read, loves all things nature.
I will put my 10 cent in and say:
When renting a villa try and keep to zip codes 33904 or 33914 as these are just off the causeways of Vererans Bridge and Cape Coral Bridge (across the Caloosahatchee river from Ft Myers) so easy exit & access to Ft Myers, the barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva.
Downtown Ft Myers is often bypassed as a great day out but the historic area is very interesting and there are lovely walks and nice shops, restaurants and bars - as well as a great rooftop Skybar overlooking Ft Myers.
There are many waterfront restaurants (Rumrunners, Fathoms, Nauti Mermaid) on the Cape and you can see many different species of wildlife
Cape Coral has its own local beach - small but has all the amenities you would want for a day at the beach without driving for miles (tiki bar, bbq pits, kids play area, toilets, etc)
Unlike ChrisS - I am a huge shopper and enjoy eating out and there are loads of places and Malls to visit - you will be spoiled for choice!
I did a SW Florida trip report a few years ago of some of the activities and places we visited when we had friends visiting us - which can be found under my profile.
Thank you very much. I have so much studying to do in the next couple of days
The villa that I think tops our list has zip code 33904 so thank you very much. It's nice to know we are looking at one in a good area to set up base.
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Orlando Villas/cruises 2001-2011
DLP Newport Bay Compass Club Feb 2017
October 2018 - 22 nts, Beach Club & Dibb villasTrip report *Completed*
July 2020 YC, Dibb Villa & Cape Coral - Pre-trip report cancelled ☹️
Aug 2021 Post Covid Blowout being imagineered! Pre-trip report
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Old 6 Nov 19, 07:11 PM  
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ChrisS
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Originally Posted by Milpston View Post
Chris, thank you. I will have a proper look at his website now that the Wife and I are off together this evening. I think I have found the villa we want. I just can't get the idea of me driving the boat and having it docked at the villa for a few days out of my head.
I do think you're right though maybe the reality wouldn't be quite as easy as the dream Maybe I'll see if he will do a discount to be at our beck and call for 2-3 days which would work out similar..ish cost

*edit* I haven't had a chance to have a proper look at he website yet but I'm guessing early pre-booking is a must. What happens in cases of adverse weather? That would be my main concern with hiring our won boat and if the weather is bad we have basically burnt the money.
Bruce will keep close contact, and as you don't pay until you're on his boat there'll be no loss of monies. He's well on the ball re weather and works with dates that convenience you. Bruce likes his pax to muck in, so you'll be able to steer his boat whilst he sits with his feet up

We've done self hire but, at the time, not being waters au fait we found it a burden checking markers/looking for other traffic rather than enjoying the cruise/wildlife spotting. A friend heads out from his home (south of Cape Coral Pkwy), thro Chiquitta lock, even that close to the river it's still 35 mins of slow speeds thro the canals. The river tends to be very busy as you tag on the back of a queue of boats. Admittedly we're biased, but Pine Island Sound is substantially quieter and makes for a great experience as you're immediately in open water, hence why Bruce leaves from Maria Drive Marina, click HERE for location and photo's.
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Old 6 Nov 19, 07:22 PM  
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Milpston
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Originally Posted by ChrisS View Post
Bruce will keep close contact, and as you don't pay until you're on his boat there'll be no loss of monies. He's well on the ball re weather and works with dates that convenience you. Bruce likes his pax to muck in, so you'll be able to steer his boat whilst he sits with his feet up

We've done self hire but, at the time, not being waters au fait we found it a burden checking markers/looking for other traffic rather than enjoying the cruise/wildlife spotting. A friend heads out from his home (south of Cape Coral Pkwy), thro Chiquitta lock, even that close to the river it's still 35 mins of slow speeds thro the canals. The river tends to be very busy as you tag on the back of a queue of boats. Admittedly we're biased, but Pine Island Sound is substantially quieter and makes for a great experience as you're immediately in open water, hence why Bruce leaves from Maria Drive Marina, click HERE for location and photo's.
Great. Thank you very much. So much help and advice is really appreciated. If I go ahead and book a stay in the next few days you may hear much more from me I'm afraid
__________________
Orlando Villas/cruises 2001-2011
DLP Newport Bay Compass Club Feb 2017
October 2018 - 22 nts, Beach Club & Dibb villasTrip report *Completed*
July 2020 YC, Dibb Villa & Cape Coral - Pre-trip report cancelled ☹️
Aug 2021 Post Covid Blowout being imagineered! Pre-trip report
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