Aerial view of Cabbage Key, Florida.

Aerial view of Cabbage Key, Florida. Fred Mays photos.

Florida is a big, very populous state with lots of tourists, and consequently finding a little quiet peace on the beach gets harder all the time.

Yeah, there are over 1,350 miles of coastline, and you would think that’s enough to give everybody their own place on the sand. But no, everybody seems to want to pile in the same spot you picked.

But there are places where you can get away from the crowds and enjoy a little sand dune solitude. Here are my picks for couple’s getaways on Florida’s Gulf Coast where you can find great beaches, fine restaurants, and comfortable hotels.

Cabbage Key

Cabbage Key bar adorned with currency on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Cabbage Key bar adorned with currency on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

The attractions here are the quiet, laid back atmosphere, a great bar and a fine dining restaurant at the Cabbage Key Inn.

The bar’s “wallpaper” is made up of hundreds of dollar bills stuck up by customers. There are eight cottages and six rooms in the inn for overnight stays.

A perfect setting for a romantic getaway weekend. Prices range from $100-$145. If the cottages sell out there is the co-owned Tarpon Lodge across the Intracoastal Waterway on Pine Island.

There’s not much sandy beach on Cabbage Key, but if you’re looking for solitude this is the place to be. The Key is an isolated island in the protected waterway north of the popular Sanibel-Captiva destination. You can only get there by boat, either your own or a short water taxi trip from Pine Island.

The Key makes a great spot for bird watching and fishing. There is a short hiking and nature trail around the island.

This is an excerpt of an article by Fred Mays that originally appeared on