Naples, Florida, is part of what’s nicknamed Florida’s “Paradise Coast.” The beach city resides on the Gulf of Mexico in southwest Florida and has diverse activities for residents, including nature attractions, dining and shopping, art and culture events, and much more.
For seniors, there’s always something enjoyable to explore in Naples, home to the Pineapple House at Sapphire Lakes. The following are 10 activities and attractions to check out.
1. Naples Botanical Garden
The Naples Botanical Garden is one of the few tropical botanical gardens in the country, with an emphasis on rainforests, flowering trees, succulent displays and other tropical plants. The garden features many ADA-accessible paths that take visitors through its nature-filled exhibits.
There are also lots of learning opportunities at the garden, including interactive drop-in programs with garden staff, guided tours, weekly birding events, gardening classes, nature art classes and more.
2. Revs Institute
Revs Institute is a historical car museum and working educational institution dedicated to the study and preservation of classic vehicles. The museum spans 80,000 square feet across three stories and hosts the Miles Collier Collections, which include more than 100 classic automobiles dating as far back as 1896.
In addition to touring the museum, visitors can plan for events like outdoor Cars & Coffee gatherings, where visitors can show off their own cars. The museum also hosts docent-led group tours for car clubs and other big groups.
3. Audubon’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary
Audubon’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary resides among Everglades nature and includes exhibits, bird-friendly gardens and a 2.25-mile boardwalk that takes visitors through the biggest old-growth bald cypress forest in North America. The swamp is home to diverse wildlife, including red-bellied turtles, white-tailed deer, wading birds, raptors, alligators, songbirds and otters. Visitors can take a guided tour along the boardwalk, which presents photo opportunities in beautiful nature.
The sanctuary also frequently hosts a variety of special events, including monthly lectures, after-dark tours, special guided walks, beginner swamp walks, sunset strolls, guided forest meditations and community science programs.
4. Naples Historical Society Palm Cottage
The Naples Historical Society is the best local resource for learning about Naples history. It sponsors tours of the Historic Palm Cottage, as well as walking tours of the Naples Historic District.
Palm Cottage is the oldest house in Naples. Constructed in 1895, Palm Cottage is a Landmark in the National Register of Historic Places and serves today as a house museum that offers docent-led tours, with docents sharing historic facts and unique stories about the home and the Naples community.
For those interested in walking tours of the Naples Historic District, you can book a 2-hour tour (90 minutes of walking) online. Each tour must have a minimum of four attendees in order to take place. Private walking tours are available for groups of 12 people.
5. Lowdermilk Park
Lowdermilk Park is a beautiful beachfront park with lots of places to relax or engage in activities. The park includes sand volleyball courts, picnic tables, gazebos available for rent, ADA-beach access mats and a children’s playground.
Visitors can also access the Flip Flop Beach Grill, a concessions stand serving hamburgers, hot dogs and sausage, salads, sandwiches, coffee and soda.
6. Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens
Animal lovers can see a ton of diverse wildlife at Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens. The zoo’s paved paths take visitors into tropical settings that animals like bears, pythons, lions, monkeys, giraffes and anteaters call home. The zoo also has beautiful flora and fauna, with plants dating back more than 100 years in the zoo.
In addition to seeing the animal exhibits, visitors can take a primate expedition cruise that features monkeys, apes and lemurs; attend a zoo keeper talk to learn about specific animals in the zoo’s care; and see a botanical garden exhibit.
7. Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park
Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park is another beloved destination for beach lovers in Naples. The beach has lots of birding and wildlife spotting opportunities (look out for loggerhead sea turtles), as well as fishing, kayaking and paddleboarding on the water.
In addition to relaxing on the sand, visitors can partake in activities like geo-seeking, hiking, picnicking, scuba diving, snorkeling and swimming on the pet-friendly beach. There’s also a concession stand and boat ramp. Beach wheelchairs are available by reservation.
8. The Bird Gardens of Naples
The Bird Gardens of Naples is a unique destination and avian resource center that houses 200 birds, including parrots, macaws, cockatoos and a variety of other tropical birds. The site hosts free self-guided tours Friday through Sunday, and bookings must be made in advance.
9. Third Street South
Third Street South, two blocks from the historic Naples Pier, is a top spot for those looking for high-end shopping and dining in Naples. The area has an array of garden-surrounded restaurants, coffee shops and bakeries, as well as wine and gourmet food shops.
Every Saturday from mid-November through April, Third Street South hosts the Third Street Farmer’s Market from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. The market sees live music, as well as hosts local purveyors.
For shoppers, you can head to Third Street South to find antiques, fine jewelry, art galleries, home décor, clothing, accessories and more. Check out the Events on Third calendar to find seasonal events, pet events and more.
10. Holocaust Museum & Cohen Education Center
The Holocaust Museum & Cohen Education Center in Naples is a vital institution covering the history of the Holocaust. The museum includes more than 1,000 original artifacts and photographs related to World War II and the Holocaust in its permanent collection. There are also rotating special exhibits, on topics like forgeries and the Holocaust.
In addition to touring the museum’s exhibits, visitors can attend book discussions, film showings and special events like potlucks. Private tours are also available.
Interested in Naples? Visit the Pineapple House at Sapphire Lakes
In addition to all the ideas listed here, the Pineapple House at Sapphire Lakes senior residence has plenty to do on-site, too. This assisted living, memory care and short-term senior care residence in Naples has a variety of daily programming activities for residents, including happy hours, aerobics classes, games, trivia and more. Residents can visit the library, outdoor pool, game room, fitness room and other common areas to relax and connect in the community.