A Locals Guide Beaches Naples Florida | Ep # 7 | Lavish Living in Naples, FL

A Locals Guide to Beaches Naples Florida

We all know that Naples is known for it’s warm white sandy beaches, it draws people from all over the world to our area. But maybe you’re not sure where to go or which beach fits what you’re looking for. I’m Kim Menkhorst, luxury Realtor here in Naples Florida and here’s my list of all the beaches in our area.

This video is covering the beaches along the coast from north to south and here’s what you can expect at each location.

Fort Myers Beach – Fort Myers Beach is located on Estero island, a stretch of sand off the coast and 7 miles long. Known more by locals as being more a party beach since the Long stretch of Beach has bars, restaurants and hotels. 

If you’re in the area and don’t feel like going to the beach You can go to Ostego Bay Marine Science Center which showcases local marine life. There are also nature trails that run through Matanzas Pass Preserve, a long, sandy beach faces the Gulf of Mexico. To the East you’ll find the 1900 Mound House Built on an ancient Calusa Indian shell mound, that has archeological exhibits.

Lovers KeyLovers key is a secluded barrier island and state park, south of Fort Myers beach. since it’s a state park, there is a small admission fee around $2-$8 depending on the number of occupants in a car.  It’s a popular location for fishing, you can catch snook, trout, redfish and tarpon depending on the season and there is a bait shop onsite. You can also shark fish after hours only 1 hour after sunset. They have boat ramps and you can bring paddle boards. You can also Bring your bicycles for 5 miles of trails. Plus this park participates in Geo caching and has multiple locations for peaceful picnics. It’s a popular location for weddings as well as tours and wildlife sightings. 

Barefoot beach – while barefoot beach is off of Bonita Beach Road in Lee County, it’s actually located in Collier County. When you’re a full time resident in Collier county, you can get a FREE beach parking sticker good for any public beach access. All you have to do is go to the DMV or park location where they hand them out and bring your license and car registration. It’s good for a year. When you take a left into barefoot beach you’re heading south and actually go back into Collier County once you get to the beach, meaning Collier residents can park for free.  Beautiful huge homes like the beach here so you feel like you’re driving through a community until you get to the beach. Watch for protected tortoises in the parking lot. If you’re looking for seashells barefoot beach is a great option. Tons of shells and even sea glass can be found. The sand here is very rough, not like the soft sand found further south in Naples but again, if you want to see shells, this is a great place. 

Delnor Wiggins Park – Located off Immokalee road as far west as you can go is Delnor Wiggins state park. Even with a beach sticker there is an admission fee to pay to get into the park. Price is also based off of the number of occupants in a vehicle but on federal holidays it’s free! But you know what free means, it’s busy. They have 5 parking lots, restrooms and lots of shade and picnic tables which draws a crowd. It’s probably the only beach in Naples that has shade which is why everyone loves going there. Lot 5 has driftwood which is also a great place for photos. You are allowed to scuba drive and snorkel. There is a hard bottom reef near section 2. But be cautious at section 5, no swimming is permitted at the pass because there are dangerous currents there. 

Vanderbilt Beach – Located as far west as you can go on Vanderbilt Beach Road, is Vanderbilt beach. A large parking garage open to the public makes Vanderbilt beach a very popular location. Combine that with hotels that have beachfront bars and dining. Like Gumbo Limbo at the Ritz Carlton, the turtle club and Laplaya. Like most beaches, it’s a popular place to gather for sunset and of course don’t forget you need to clap when the sun goes down each night. There are fire throwers that come out to the beach at this location and overall, a really great location to enjoy the beach  

Clam Pass – Clam pass can be found at the end of Pine Ridge Road, just past the Naples Grande hotel. There is a gate and if you have a beach sticker you can park for free, otherwise you need to pay a fee. Clam Pass Beach Park amenities include a picnic area, concessions, restrooms, and outdoor showers. You can also rent beach chairs, cabanas, and watersports equipment there. Just be aware that it’s a LONG walk to the beach. A half-mile stroll on the wooden boardwalk or tram ride through a mangrove forest to access the beach. Along the trail you can view marine life, coastal birds, and butterflies before reaching a 3,200-foot stretch of white sand beach. The Conservancy of Southwest Florida offers guided nature walks Monday through Saturday from December to April. Tours depart from the tram stop at 9 a.m. Reservations are not required

 Lowdermilk Park – Lowdermilk Park is one of Naples’ premier beachfront parks. Centrally located off Gulf Shore Blvd and accessible to the public, the park features plenty of parking spaces, a concession stand, sand volleyball courts, two children’s playgrounds on a HUGE grassy area, picnic tables, benches, restroom and shower facilities, and two gazebos that can be rented for a fee. They also have some cute tiki huts on the beach. Lowdermilk park is a popular spot for weddings and hosting parties alike and they also have community events and fundraisers there a few times throughout the year. If you’re looking for a place to spend the entire day or where you can do something besides hang on the beach, this is one of the top beaches to go to. 

Park Shore Condo Beach Area – Located up and down Gulfshore Drive N, this quiet and secluded stretch of beach area is the perfect spot to hide away from it all. There is private beach access for ONLY park shore condo owners who opt in (if you’d like information about that, comment below), but there are plenty of public beach access points. If you have a beach residents sticker, you can park for free but if you don’t, you will need to pay by machine at these locations. Plus there are a very limited number of parking places open. Remember to bring snacks and water with you as you won’t find any concessions or public restrooms along this private beach strip. It’s close to Venetian Village so you can go grab lunch overlooking Venetian Bay, take a look around the local shops or grab an ice cream at the Ben & Jerry’s.

Naples Pier – The iconic Naples Pier is located on the Gulf of Mexico at the West end of 12th Avenue South. The Naples Pier is a favorite location for sightseers and locals alike featuring restrooms, showers, a small concession stand with covered eating area, and beach supplies. It’s a great place to play volleyball right on the beach. 

The pier serves as a great place for fishing and sunset photography. It does get extremely busy during season so be sure to get there early. You can also walk to 3rd street to grab a bite to eat once you leave the beach. 

Beach at 5th Ave – This beautiful beach area is just a short walk from downtown Olde Naples along 5th Ave. In fact, 5th avenue ends right at the beach.  There is a little turn around spot, but no parking, so guests can park for free in covered garages at the other end of Fifth and enjoy a stroll to and from the beach through a picturesque street lined with mansions and fruit trees.  The best part, spend the evening shopping and dining along 5th then stroll down to the beach to watch a breathtaking sunset.

Gordon Drive Beach area – Said to be the address of some of the most beautiful and expensive single-family estates in the entire country, the allure of Gordon Drive is hard to surpass. The beach side of Gordon Drive is where you will find some of the city’s largest Gulf-front estates. It’s easy to see why this highly sought after area attracts some of the city’s wealthiest residents. Since the beach is in front of homes, it’s less crowded and has some cool older pilings which makes it a great photo spot. Similar to the other areas parking is limited in these small parking lots so you’ll need to plan. 

Marco island – The beaches at Marco Island are MUCH wider than any beach in Naples  tiger tail and Marco beach are the 2 public beaches but parking is the biggest issue down in Marco.  On tiger tail, it’s a long walk from the parking lot unless you want to wade through the waist deep water. There is a concession stand in the park that rents jet skis, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and other beach necessities. There are a few other options for parking and I will link the best guide for parking below  since that’s the biggest issue there 

Has your favorite beach spot made the list? If not, comment below and let me know where you like to dig your toes in the sand here in SW Florida. 

Be sure to like, share & subscribe to my channel here as well as my newsletter on my homepage. I’ll see you soon!

See more episodes here


Kim Menkhorst, Premiere Plus Realty 239.776.0093

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