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A Day for Seashells - National Seashell Day in Southwest Florida

What better place to celebrate National Seashell Day, June 20, than here in Southwest Florida, where conchs, olives, lightning whelks and scallops are plentiful along the shoreline? This is particularly true on the shores of Sanibel Island where the east-west orientation helps shells make it to the shoreline intact. One great way to enjoy this special day, besides heading to the beach and doing some shelling, is visiting the The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum on Sanibel, where shells of all kinds are on display. The museum also offers touch tanks and plenty of educational activities. The Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau (VCB) has a few tips for the day.

“When shelling, although anytime is a good time for shelling, oftentimes, the early morning at low tide is best,” explains the VCB team. They also suggest taking a private charter shelling cruise where you are sure to find some great shells, along with the chance to see dolphins, manatees and sea turtles. When the day is done, curl up with a copy of Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s classic, Gift from the Sea. “Like many of us, she found peace and solitude as she walked the shores on Captiva,” adds the VCB. Enjoy collecting the shells, but remember to leave live specimens behind, as they are protected by state law. 


For more information, contact The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum, 3075 Sanibel-Captiva Road, Sanibel; 239-395-2233;