7 Reasons Not To Visit Cabbage Key

(Okay, so I really love Cabbage Key...)


7. No French Fries

With Rob Wells, owner of Cabbage Key
Having a breakfast discussion with owner Rob Wells, before setting out for Mrathon Key.

The food at Cabbage Key is great—and there’s so much more than just the famous “Cheeseburger in Paradise.”

The inn on Cabbage Key is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But since Cabbage Key is located on a pristine barrier island in Pine Island Sound, there’s some kind of regulation which prevents having a grease trap.

So no deep fryer. But you know what? With the awesome steak, daily fresh-caught seafood and other choices, I don’t miss the deep fryer a bit.

6. Wild Animals!

Mallard ducks on Cabbage Key
Mallards near the inn.

I hope you don’t have an irrational fear of mallard ducks, huge tortoises, herons, osprey, raccoons, or any number of other animals…because you’ll probably see ’em here!

There’s actually a nature walk around the island—on which you’ll undoubtedly see some interesting flora and fauna—and you can climb the water tower for a very nice view. But you’re likely to spot a tortoise, egret, mallard or raccoon just sitting on the patio at lunch or happy hour.

5. The Cellular Service Is Almost Nonexistent

Cabbage Key

Yep, you may have to leave work behind for a few hours. Of course, for you diehards, there’s wifi at the inn. (And I have to admit I’ve used it, and can even sorta get it down at the dock.)

Then again…isn’t cellular something you can do without for a little bit? Tell the folks you’re going to Cabbage Key, and when you’ll be back. And enjoy the Zen.

4. No Pool

The water tower at Cabbage Key.

…unless you count the galvanized tub the mallards use. You can stay at the inn if you don’t have your own boat, but there’s no pool.

Then again, a pool’s not what you came here for. Nope, you came here for a taste of Old Florida and to enjoy nature, if you know what you’re doing.

3. It’s Pretty Quiet At Night

Nighttime at Cabbage Key
Nighttime at the Cabbage Key dock.

Well, unless it’s New Years or something. The restaurant and bar at the inn close at 9:00 or 10:00 p.m. (I forget which, for some reason) and the only people on the island at night are those with their own boats, and staff. I call that a plus.

2. Not Much Shopping

The Gift Shop at Cabbage Key
Gift shop manager Tracie (left), The Admiral (center) and unknown guest.

Well, sure, there’s a gift shop (renovated after Hurricane Irma), where you can pick up some cool Cabbage Key merch and make all your friends back home jealous. But if you’re looking for acres of chrome and glass retail space, you’re in the wrong place, my friend.

1. Jimmy Buffett’s Not Here

Cabbage Key

It’s true. Despite the fact that “Cheeseburger In Paradise” may have indeed been written about Cabbage Key, I haven’t seen Jimmy Buffett here yet.

But that’s okay. I come to Cabbage Key for the unique Old Florida vibe, natural beauty and great folks.

So please don’t visit. I want it all to myself. But if you must, you can find more information here. And tell ’em Bradford Rogers from How Not To Sail sent ya.

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Bradford Rogers
Producer. Performer. Sailor. Multimedia Ninja. Author of How Not To Sail, host of the How Not To Sail podcast and YouTube channel.


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