Pine Island/MatlachaPine Island is the largest barrier island along the entire Gulf Coast of Florida and is the 118th largest island in the United States. Pine Island serves as a hub for the local commercial fishing industry and is very different from Sanibel or Captiva for not having any beaches. Surrounded by mangroves and three aquatic preserves, Pine Island offers a rural yet boating lifestyle that residents appreciate. Matlacha is located along the Matlacha Pass and connects Pine Island to the mainland. Home to the Matlacha Pass National Wildlife Refuge, visitors and residents alike enjoy birdwatching and hiking along the nature trails. Matlacha is known as a fishing village and is home to many art galleries, local shops, and seafood restaurants. Matlacha and Pine Island offer mostly waterfront cottages and single-family homes.
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