Naples, Italy, has centuries of tradition as one of the Mediterranean’s most intriguing cities. However, its eponymous sister on Florida’s western coast has earned its position as one of Florida’s most desirable destinations in just a couple of generations.
All That Glitters May Be Gold
While the first citizens of the city arrived in the late 1890s, the real growth of Naples commenced in 1966 with the Aqualane Shores Association’s establishment. Since that time, many stylish homes have been built along the numerous canals and waterways constructed as part of the city’s master plan.
Naples’ demographics put it in a rare atmosphere when it comes to per capita wealth and the total number of millionaires. The average prices for real estate are some of the highest in the country, with many homes selling at prices north of $40 million in 2010. With a population of just under 20,000 and approximately 10,000 homes, this is a town that attracts demanding residents from around the globe.
Because of its discriminating citizenry, many aspects of Naples fall into the category of world-class. Its boutique shopping locations, fine resorts, beautiful beaches, and elegant restaurants cater to the finest of tastes, yet the city also offers great experiences for visitors vacationing on a budget.
This is a city that is now a bustling center for international business as well as a place for a laid-back existence on the beach. Many visitors come to Naples to enjoy the Gulf and then move inward to enjoy the majesty of the Florida Everglades.
A Tourist Favorite
When vacationers finish with the Orlando attractions and head to South Florida, many set Naples as their destination city to start. While it is easy to access all parts south of Naples, it has a bounty of its own attractions to keep tourists busy. In fact, despite the large business presence in the city, tourism is the number one factor in the local economy. Thus, several attractions and activities have been added to enhance the natural beauty and gorgeous beaches.
Visitors will find an incredible number of shops, malls, and attractions to fit every taste and budget. Likewise, you can find all the south Florida culinary delights, as well as a variety of 5-Star dining opportunities. Many come to this exotic city simply to enjoy the fine golfing available on many courses or play tennis, where the Outback Champions Tennis Series is hosted annually. Of course, many are attracted to the tri-annual swamp buggy races held at the modern Florida Sports Park.
For those who want to see the amazing natural attractions that are a part of Florida, this is a city with numerous options. Just a few of the special attractions in and around Naples include:
- Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary
- Picayune Strand State Forest
- The Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge
- Everglades National Park
- Big Cypress National Preserve
If you’ve never visited Naples, you’ve missed one of the real jewels in its crown. If you visit once, you’ll be sure to come again.