Tropical Naples is situated on a barrier island with seven miles of white sand beaches between Naples Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Visitors can escape to the “crown jewel of South Florida” for sport fishing, hunting, boating, sea excursions, sun bathing, beach combing, over 35 golf courses and spectacular sunsets on the Gulf of Mexico. Just south of the city is Marco Island, the largest of Florida’s ten thousand islands with bays, canals and creeks.
Elegant resorts and hotels include the Ritz, Bellasera, Hotel Escalante, Vanderbilt Inn, Trianon Naples, the Registry Resort, Cove Inn on Naples Bay, and Naples Beach Hotel. Other highly-rated accommodations are the Cove Inn, Hotel Escalante, Comfort Inn & Suites, or Vanderbilt Inn.
Naples offers many cultural venues, from the Collier County Museum, art galleries and Philharmonic Center for the Arts with over 400 events.
Popular restaurants along Fifth Avenue South and Third Street South offer a variety of cuisines. Mediterranean style Bayfront Resort on the Gordon River offers six dining options from casual to lavish such as IL Bellagio, Stoney’s Steakhouse and Catch 22. Snook Inn on Marco Island will accommodate diners arriving by water. Enjoy a three-course meal at The Dome in the Figge Conservatory at the Naples Museum of Art before an evening’s performance at the Philharmonic Center.
Explore nature and wildlife at the Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and its Briggs Memorial Nature Center, Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens, or Wiggins State Park Beach.
Beautiful beaches on the Gulf of Mexico include Lowdermilk Park and beach, Vanderbilt Beach, and Naples Beach. For fun things to do try the Babcock Wilderness Adventure tour, take a “safari wagon” or an airboat ride into Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve, Big Cypress National Preserve or the 5000 square mile Everglades National Park. Boat and kayak rentals are also available at the Naples City Dock.
Major events include Old Florida Festival, Clyde and Niki Butcher's Annual Labor Day Weekend Gala.
Great shopping can be found along Third Street South in Old Naples, Fifth Avenue Shops, Tin City, Crayton Cove, and Venetian Village.
Written by: Natasha Lawrence