We went on a sailboat trip to Cayo Costa Park this time, but it was to the North Captiva side of the park. We were a little disappointed as there was a lot of seaweed in the water, and shelling was just okay, but the sailboat itself (first ride on a sailboat for most of us, from 9 to 70 years old!) was great. It's a catamaran and you can sit on the net with the water rushing below.
We didn't do a lot of sailing as the wind wasn't too up, but they did do a little. The trip was mostly dolphin free, but as if on cue, we were near the South Seas Resort pool going towards the dock, and a few decided to pop up :)
Talking about popping up, the dock area itself had several (!) manatees, which were really cool to catch going to the surface for a breath. There was a cow and a calf, as well as what could have been a bull by his size. It's really neat watching the swirls of dust, the bubbles, and trying to see where they'll pop up next.
As for recommendations, we would recommend the Cayo Costa Park shelling trip to Cayo Costa itself instead of the trip to North Captiva. It seemed like the the Cayo Costa side had a lot more shells and wildlife than the North Captiva side.
Note for passengers: bring your own beverages, and a few bucks for tips. Our captain and guide were great, unfortunately we brought no cash because we just didn't think about it. Sorry guys, next time though :)
Another note: definitely take the dolphin cruise if you want to see dolphins, they are much rarer on the other cruises.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.