Calendar of Events

Welcome to the Shell Museum!

The Museum Mission:

  • To educate about shells and mollusks, the shell-makers, through exhibits, educational programs, library services and publications;
  • To further awareness of nature and the natural environment;
  • To promote collection-based research on shells and mollusks with emphasis on Southwest Florida and the Gulf of Mexico.

Featured Events

Live Tank Demonstration: See Live Mollusks Up-Close and Personal

08/31/12 - 04/30/15

At Shell Museum

Daily, 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. No reservations required. Come in and see a fighting conch use its foot for locomotion, watch a lightning whelk slam shut its trap door for protection, or witness scallops zip across the tank with jet propulsion skills! It's all free with admission.

Click for more details

Island Inn Beach Walks

03/18/14 - 12/31/15

At Island Inn 3111 W Gulf Drive Sanibel, FL 33957

CHOOSE PREFERRED DATE IN CALENDAR OF EVENTS TO BOOK ONLINE.(PLEASE NOTE: If you are a current guest at the Island Inn, please make your reservation through the hotel directly. If not a current guest at the Inn, book here). Join our Marine Biologist for a beach walk near Island Inn. Walks depart daily from the Island Inn lobby at 9 a.m. Learn about the shells, mollusks, and other marine life that has washed ashore. The cost is $10, and parking at Island Inn is free for beach walk participants. Space is limited so book online now by clicking Calendar of Events (top right) or by calling (239) 395-2233 to make a reservation. All participants receive a coupon for half-off Shell Museum admission.

Click for more details

Marine Naturalist Adventure

01/02/15 - 04/30/15

At Captiva Cruises South Seas Island Resort Captiva Island THIS CRUISE MUST BE BOOKED BY CALLING CAPTIVA CRUISES AT 239-472-5300.

THURSDAYS. The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum and Captiva Cruises present a one-of-a-kind experience sure to excite marine enthusiasts of all ages. Join our Marine Biologist for an unforgettable four-hour cruise with a small group aboard the 40' sailing catamaran "Adventure". Cruise Pine Island Sound to North Captiva Island. Explore both the back bay and the gulf as you learn about shells, the mollusks that create them, and the environment they live in. Enjoy a gourmet lunch on board and sail home while enjoying the Florida wildlife around you. This unforgettable trip is perfect for active families and individuals. WATER SHOES REQUIRED, no flip flops. Prepare to get wet.

Click for more details

Mollusk Matinee Lecture Series

01/07/15 - 04/02/15

At Museum Auditorium

This lecture series includes a broad range of exciting shell-related subjects combining natural history and environmental issues of immediate interest to our community. Talks will range from 30–40 minutes, followed by questions. Included with Paid Museum Admission.

Click for more details

Shelling 101

01/30/15 - 04/19/15

At The Museum.

Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays at 2 p.m. Gain insights about when and where to shell! Fun and informative presentation by Rebecca Mensch, M.Sc.

Click for more details

Giant and Colossal Squids

02/02/15 - 02/25/15

At Shell Museum: 3075 Sanibel-Captiva Road,Sanibel

On Mondays in February: “Giant and Colossal Squids” is a presentation about the two largest invertebrates on Earth. It deals with interesting facts, the history of our study of them, and the overwhelming lack of knowledge about them. By Marine Biologist Rebecca Mensch. Included with paid Museum admission.

Click for more details

Lighthouse Evening Beach Walk

03/21/15 - 03/21/15

At Lighthouse on the beach facing Ft. Myers Beach.

Saturday, March 21st. Explore the beach near the Sanibel Lighthouse during low tide with our Marine Biologist. The cost is $10 for adults and $7 for children. All participants receive a coupon for half-off Museum admission. There is a parking fee of $3 per hour at the lighthouse beach. Reservations are required. Call 239-395-2233 to make a reservation or book online.

Click for more details

Learn to Create a Sailor's Valentine!

03/23/15 - 03/28/15

At Museum

MARCH 23, 25, 27: 9 am to 3pm. In this 3 day workshop, Connie Miller teaches guests to make their own Sailors' Valentine! $100 per person, per day.

Click for more details

Steven Noll Evening Lecture

04/21/15 - 04/21/15

At Museum Auditorium

FREE TO THE PUBLIC. This presentation examines the relationship of people to the land throughout Florida history. Starting with Native American settlement, it shows how Florida has shaped human existence in the state and how human have re-shaped the state itself. “Funding for this program was provided through a grant from the Florida Humanities Council with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this (publication) (program) (exhibition) (website) do not necessarily represent those of the Florida Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.”

Click for more details

Open Daily from
10 AM to 5 PM

(Open Noon to 4 on New Years Day, Easter Sunday, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving Day, & Christmas Day)

3075 Sanibel-Captiva Road
Sanibel, Florida 33957 USA

Phone: (239) 395-2233
(888) 679-6450
(239) 395-6706

accredited by the maerican association of museums



Marine Naturalist Cruise


trip advisor

Shell photos courtesy of Henry Domke

Website Development by Effective Marketing & Creative Concepts (EMC2)