Are you a newcomer to Naples or a frequent visitor?
If you’ve been here before, perhaps you already know the history of this Southwest Florida gem. If not, we invite you to explore and enjoy.
The phrase “sleepy little fishing village,” often used to describe Naples of the past, paints charming imagery of a quiet community. Luckily for us all, Naples’ rich history is nicely preserved thanks to organizations like the Naples Historical Society and Naples Backyard History.
Here are a few Naples attractions you’ll want to see when you’re here…
The Naples Pier
If you haven’t visited the Naples Pier yet, we highly recommend a visit to this historical site. The pier is a place of nature that touches many senses. There is nothing like the sound of the ocean, the sight of brown pelicans lined up like sentries, and the smell of suntan lotion from nearby beachgoers. At the pier, you may see people surfing, fishermen catching many types of fish, and on most days you can see Marco Island to the south and Bonita Springs to the north. Even seasoned residents make time to walk the Naples Pier. Why? Because it’s a great way to take in the Gulf of Mexico, and that never gets old. (View the Live Cam of The Naples Pier)
While you’re at the Pier, you’ll find Palm Cottage nearby. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, Palm Cottage was built in 1895 and is the oldest house in Naples. You can see this treasure by taking a tour offered by the Naples Historical Society.
The Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens, once known as Jungle Larry’s, is located on the east side of Goodlette-Frank Road just south of Coastland Mall. The zoo features an astounding variety of animals, reptiles, birds and educational programs, making it a source of pride for all Neapolitans and a Naples Florida attraction not to be missed during your visit. We’ve put together a locals guide for your day at the Naples Zoo.
Naples Botanical Garden
The Naples Botanical Garden is a newer addition to the community, established in the past two decades. If you go, remember to bring your camera, because the most spectacular plant life and colors await you…so much so you’ll want to bring something home. Alas, a photo and your memories will have to suffice.
This waterfront staple of the Naples scene is located on the Gordon River as it makes its way out to the Gulf through the Inter Coastal Waterway. Tin City is a place where you’ll find boutiques featuring local fare including seashells, art, tropical attire, jewelry, hand-made soaps, and more. Tin City’s ambiance is like no other experience in Naples, and while the parking may be sparse, it’s worth the effort.
Avoid the traffic…
Naples Trolley Tours is a great way to see many things in a day without the hassle of traffic and finding a parking spot. The trolley offers a fully-narrated tour, and you will be able to tour at your own pace.
With all its historical sights to see, Naples has kept pace with the rest of the world and is, in fact, a bustling mecca for world-class shopping, the arts, fine dining, the best golf courses (among many out outdoor recreation opportunities) and so much more.
We’ll continue to write about more Naples attractions soon, so stay tuned…
In the meantime, after all of your touring, we hope you’ve made a reservation to have lunch or dinner with us. One gets quite hungry during a whirlwind day exploring the Naples sights. We look forward to seeing you.