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10 FUN Things To Do in Naples, Florida with Kids

10 FUN Things To Do in Naples, Florida with Kids

Naples may once have been considered a sleepy beach town, but it’s become one of the Sunshine State’s most desirable vacation destinations for families.

There are lots of great things to do in Naples, Florida with kids. Look for beautiful beaches and opportunities to explore nature, but even then, you’ll only scratch the surface of what the Paradise Coast has to offer. 

Things to do in Naples with Kids

1. Stroll Through the Naples Botanical Garden

Things to do in Naples Florida with kids include visiting Naples botanical gardens
Naples Botanical Garden | Photo by mrhs1974

Families will love exploring multiple gardens at the Naples Botanical Garden, such as the Asian Garden featuring bamboo trees, rice paddies, statues, and temples. 

The Children’s Garden is also not-to-be-missed. Highlights include dancing fountains, tree houses, and Nature Bingo, an interactive way for kids to learn more about the garden’s herbs, plants, and flowers.

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2. Get Wild at the Naples Zoo

naples zoo tiger
Tiger at the Naples Zoo | Photo by mbarrison

Feed a giraffe, ride a camel, and take in multiple animal shows at the Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens.

Kids can even watch as alligators are fed in Alligator Bay and take a short boat cruise to see monkeys and apes before learning the ins-and-outs in a day in the life of a zookeeper. Take a break at Cub Kingdom or Cub Corral, two shaded animal-themed play areas at the Naples Zoo.

3. Take a Cruise on the Dolphin Explorer in Naples with Kids

dolphin marco island photo
Dolphin Near Marco Island | Photo by Elin B

Just down the road, on Marco Island, a three-hour boat ride on the Dolphin Explorer is an absolute must.

Help the survey team catalog dolphins as part of the 10,000 Islands Dolphin Project and take the Dolphin Challenge to earn a patch upon completing an activity booklet.

Kids will also love getting off the boat to collect shells and splash around at the beach.

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4. Explore Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary

thing to do in Naples florida with kids include visiting corkscrew swamp
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary | Photo by WilsonB

Take in the local flora and fauna at the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary as you make your way along a 2.25 mile boardwalk that takes you through marshes, cypress forests, and wetlands.

Keep your eyes peeled for alligators and turtles alongside the path. Volunteers are often available to help identify birds and other wildlife in the swamp.

5. Bring the Little Ones to the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples

Children's museum of naples, FL

Kids will love the hands-on activities and creative ways to play at the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples. Learn more about Florida by exploring Journey Through the Everglades, complete with wildlife sounds and a mangrove exhibit.

Meanwhile, Mother Nature’s House will teach children all about the weather and seasons, while the At the Beach room allows children to explore shells, pelicans, and turtles.

6. Take Your Pup to the Bonita Beach Dog Park

Bonita Beach Dog park
Bonita Beach Dog Park | photo by Flickr/.JeffryJDavis

Bonita Beach Dog Park is a dog lover’s paradise. Not only is it a great beach with beautiful white sand, but it’s the place to go if you’re traveling with a dog or if your kids love dogs.

It’s an off-leash beach. You’ll find plenty of furry friends chasing Frisbees, splashing in the water, and taking a snooze in the sand. There’s even a doggie shower station for pups to clean up after a saltwater swim.

7. Play a Round at Coral Cay Adventure Golf

mini golf

When you’re ready to take a break from shelling, splashing, and sun-seeking, head to Coral Cay Adventure Golf for 36 holes of miniature golf. Kids will love the tropical flowers, waterfalls, and palm trees that beautify the course.

With two separate courses, it’s a great place to spend the afternoon or to enjoy as an after-dinner family treat.

8. Spot Alligators at the Everglades

everglades alligator photo
Alligator in the Everglades | Photo via Pixbay

No trip to Florida is complete without a visit to the Everglades. Enter at the Gulf Coast Visitor Center in Everglades City, which is less than 45 minutes from Naples.

Take an airboat ride, go for a hike, or hook up with Naples Bicycle Tours for a guided bike tour as a family.

For kids, the Everglades Junior Ranger Program is a must. Complete a variety of activities and earn a Junior Range badge.

9. Go For a Walk at Clam Pass Beach Park

Clam Pass Beach Park Naples, FL

You’ll find fine white sand and plenty of room to spread out at Clam Pass Beach Park. Take the multi-rider golf cart out to the beach or walk along the .6 mile boardwalk through mangroves to get to the public beach, which is shared with the Naples Grande.

Free nature walks are offered in the winter and spring, providing a great way to learn more about the local scenery and conservation efforts.

10. Kayak Your Way Through the Rookery Bay Reserve

rookery bay naples photo
Photo by Andy Morffew

Take a guided tour of Rookery Bay Reserve either by boat or by kayak to explore the bays, mangrove forests, and wildlife. Families will also enjoy several short walking trails (1/4 mile each) that are marked to help visitors learn about the trees and flowers native to the area.

In the summer, look for free kids programs complete with story times, touch tanks, and crafts.

Still want more? Here are great things to do in Marco Island which shares space with Naples on the Paradise Coast.

Look for the best hotel prices in Naples, Florida

Day Trips from Naples with Kids

Sarasota photo
Sarasota, Florida | Photo by Piutus


Just two hours up I-75 from Naples, plan to spend an afternoon at Siesta Beach, which consistently ranks as one of America’s top family beaches. You’ll also want to make stops at Mote Aquarium and Save Our Seabirds, which rescues and rehabilitates wild seabirds.


Bring along a pail and hit the beach in Venice, the Shark Tooth Capital of the World. You’ll find loads of shark teeth on the beaches, along with lots of great shells. Before you leave, make a quick side trip to Ciao Gelato for tasty treats and people watching.

Fort Lauderdale

Ninety minutes from Naples, it’s worth a trip across Alligator Alley for stops at Butterfly World, the EcoDiscovery Center, and the Museum of Discovery and Science. Or, simply chill out on a land and sea Duck Tour. Here are our favorite things to do in Fort Lauderdale with kids.

Places to Eat in Naples with Kids

You’ll find a number of delicious places to eat in Naples that are perfect for kids and families. Here are a few of our favorites:

Gumbo Limbo Sunset Naples, FL

Gumbo Limbo: Choose from a variety of casual seafood options and tropical drinks at the Ritz-Carlton’s own Gumbo Limbo. Stay for sunset and ring the bell when the sun dips below the horizon.

Bonefish Grill: Go to Bonefish Grill on Sundays for delicious brunch options like Surf + Turf Eggs Benedict and Crème Brulee French Toast. Moms and dads will love the Passionfruit Mimosas.

Truluck’s: Go into downtown Naples and make a stop at Truluck’s for the popular half-price menu between 4:30-6:30 pm. Look for Oysters Rockefeller, Baja Ceviche, and Sweet Potato Fries.

Be sure to walk around downtown Naples before or after dinner and top off your meal with a stop at Kilwin’s for an ice cream cone.

Where to Stay in Naples with Kids

There are a variety of family-friendly hotels in Naples and Marco Island. Here are a few of our favorites:

Waldorf Astoria Beach Naples, FL

Naples Grande Beach Resort: Enjoy a short walk along the boardwalk behind the hotel, then hit the beach with pails and shovels for everyone. Take on the only water slide in Naples before splashing down into one of three pools. Look for the kids club and pizza-making classes on Saturdays.

Ritz-Carlton Naples: Kids will love the Nature’s Wonders program led by naturalists that teach children about the marine life and ecosystems in Florida. Walk out to the beach and build sand castles before capping off your day with a perfect sunset.

Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort: Located in the heart of Marco Island, kids can become junior explorers at the Tiki Tribe Discovery Camp. Kids will love staying here as they swim, play, and even take a tour of the hotel bakery to design their own chef hats and decorate cookies.

More Things to do in Florida

Disclaimer: The author was a guest of the Naples, Marco Island, Everglades Convention & Visitors Bureau. However, all opinions expressed here are her own.

Featured photo by: Shutterstock

Photo by travelingswede