Weather information for Captiva Island, Florida
Perhaps you already know that Captiva is subtropical, that its location miles into the Gulf of Mexico moderates the climate year-round, so it's never sweltering hot in the summer and never bitter cold in the winter. Those of us who live on Captiva permanently (and have done for many years) can tell you that the weather is usually perfect. But it does vary slightly with the seasons, and this page should give you some idea what to expect on your visit.
The National Weather Service provides temperature data for Captiva Island which we have graphed above. The red band is the normal temperature range for each day of the year. For example, pick a certain day or time of the year. The bottom of the red band for that day is the normal low temperature, and the top of the red band is the normal high temperature. These are the averages over the many years that the National Weather Service has recorded data, and are approximately what you can expect. As the numbers show, it's relatively pleasant on Captiva pretty much all year. But you already knew that!
In the graph, the two blue lines represent the year-round average high and low temperatures. If you want to remember only two temperatures for Captiva, you should do fine with these two. Average high temperature is 85 degrees F, average low is 64.
Rain is what keeps Captiva Island so lush and green. But unlike Hawaii (where it may rain several times every day), Captiva's rain tends to finish and then go away. In the summer, there may be a strong thunderstorm in the late afternoon. These are fascinating to watch, but after a good drenching they pass and the sun comes back out. The average rainfall ranges from a low of 1.8 inches in February to 5.8 inches in September. This would seem to indicate that September is the rainy season, but actually it is one of the most beautiful months on Captiva.
What's the best time to visit? Well, there are many answers and it depends upon your preferences. Let's begin with high season which generally covers the first half of the year, but includes Thanksgiving and Christmas weeks. Captiva is the best place in the country during winter months, and it's breathtakingly beautiful throughout spring months. But highest demand of the year means you should make all your reservations plenty early (air, car, accommodations). You may need a sweater on some days in January and February, but bring bathing suits too.
Demand falls off starting with the shoulder season (May), and Captiva is absolutely delightful. Some years ago, summertime was an off season. But now Captiva is quite popular as a vacation destination during June through August. The sun is bright, the Gulf water is warm but refreshing, but temperatures are still nice and steady sea breezes keep things comfortable. Sunblock and insect repellant are essentials in the summer months.
Fall is Captiva's lowest season in terms of visitors, yet the weather is largely magnificent. We highly recommend a visit from September through mid December if you can schedule around school and work. Officially, it's hurricane season (see below), but the probability of bad weather disrupting your visit is statistically very small. Buy trip cancellation insurance if you like (it's quite reasonable), but don't hesitate to visit if you can. Here's another good Web site for seasonal information: http://www.birdingsanibel.com/timing.shtml.
These major tropical storms are a fact of life in this part of the world. But Captiva generally doesn't have problems with them, compared with other US coastal resorts or the Caribbean islands. Still, we try to be prepared in case a big blow does head our way, and the National Hurricane Center in Coral Gables, Florida, keeps an eye on possible storms throughout the hurricane season (June to November). Plan your Captiva trip with confidence, but cover yourself financially: we offer cancellation insurance that will compensate you in the event that weather disrupts your vacation. It also covers identity theft, job loss, plus other cancellation reasons, and is also available to our UK customers.
Sunrise and Sunset
Being tropical, Captiva experiences longer days than most of the United States, especially in the winter months. Average sunrise ranges from 7:15 AM in December to 5:34 AM in June. Average sunset is 5:34 PM in December and 7:25 PM in June. The long daylight hours are a healthful restorative for those enduring a long dark winter up north. But remember, the sunshine can be very bright this far south, and Captiva gets a lot of sunshine. If you are not accustomed to it, or have sensitive skin, be sure to take precautions such as sunblock, hat and shades. Enjoy!!!
Astronomy, Star Gazing, and Moon
See our Star Gazing (and Moon Gazing) page.
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