So what to do with all that extra furniture? You can contact any of the usual donation centers – St Matthew’s House, St. Vincent De Paul, The Salvation Army, Goodwill and Shelter for Abused Women and Children. Search online for Naples Consignment and Resale Stores where you can sell furniture. There are several of these and some will also do pick-ups. For antiques and valuable artwork, you can call Auctions Neapolitan (239-262-7333).
Besides the larger chain stores such as Publix, and Walmart, there is Wynn’s Market with great wines and is the closest to Port Royal, Aqualane shores, and Olde Naples. Oaks Farms is on Davis Blvd off the East Trail. Traveling North on the 41, there is Food n’ Thought and near the Coastland Mall, Freshmarket close to the Moorings and Gulfshore Blvd; Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s near Pelican Bay, and Pelican Marsh (areas North of Vanderbilt Beach Road). These are all pretty much located right off the US 41. There are several Farmers Markets on weekend mornings around town, the most popular is on 3rd St. South. Watch the local paper where these are.
Fresh Seafood can be bought at Captain Kirk’s opposite Cambier Park, at Star Place in the strip mall in mid-town on the 41N, Randy’s Fish House on the 41 North of Vanderbilt Beach Road, and at all the grocery stores in town. Or get your own Fishing License (239-252-8176) and go fishing off the most photographed landmark in Naples – the Pier!!
Shopping and Eating
Some of the most popular areas for new residents, tourists and “foodies” are 5th Avenue South, 3rd Street South, Tin City, City Dock, Mercato, and Village on Venetian Bay. Popular shopping centers are the Coastland Mall, Waterside Shops, and the Outlet Mall on the U.S. 75 about half way between Naples and Fort Myers. Several strip malls all along the U.S. 41 North and East have numerous restaurants providing a variety of cuisine. Follow this link to search on the Naples Illustrated Website for any and every restaurant in Naples: Naples Illustrated Restaurant Search
See what's happening on 5th Ave S. on this live Inn on Fifth webcam.
There is a super Walmart at the intersection of US 951 (Collier Blvd) and David Blvd towards the East side of town. A super Target at US 75 and Immokalee Road, Sam’s at Airport-Pulling and Immokalee and Costco near the Lowe’s on Airport-Pulling, North of Pine Ridge Road. Sam’s and Costco of course require membership. Although GFS (Gordon’s Food Services), does not and it is right opposite Costco.
Stuff to see
The Naples Tourist Information Center located on the SE corner of the 41 and 5th Ave S., provides brochures and information on airboat rides, boat cruises/rentals/fishing excursions, everglade tours, jet ski tours of the Thousand Islands south of Marco Island, trips to view alligators or manatees, or where to rent bicycles. The Naples Princess and the Sweet Liberty do daily sight-seeing and sunset cruises.
There is a great place that you can drive to yourself to see alligators. It is about a 40-minute drive along the 41 East to where it intersects with Turner Road where there is a parking area and boardwalk from where you can view the reptiles and some birds from closer up. Along the way you will pass the smallest post office probably in the US and Joanie’s Crab Shack, a little country restaurant where you can experience original Florida style. And while you are at Turner Road, traveling just another 10 minutes along the East Trail, will bring you to the world famous studio of Clyde Butcher showing his masterpiece photography of the everglades and Southwest Florida.
Dinner and a Movie
The Naples Daily News has an insert on Fridays in which restaurants advertise their “happy hour” and “early bird” special dinner pricing. Movie reviews with all the movie locations and viewing times is also in this insert. The newest theaters with the most comfortable seats are Pavillion and Silverspot Cinemas (at Mercato). Doing a quick internet search will provide you all this information at your fingertips!
I have found “Yelp” for Smartphone users useful in locating hairdressers, nail salons, spa services and other businesses located close to where you live.
In Naples, there are three popular “sunset dinner on the beach” locations: The Turtle Club at Inn on Vanderbilt, La Playa Resort, and Naples Beach and Golf Resort which has great Sunday evening sunset entertainment.
Theater, Art, Nature and the Beach
For other cultural pastimes, keep an eye on the The Naples Daily News for information on shows at Artis Naples (previously the Philharmonic), Naples Players, Sugden Theater, and the Barbara B Mann and other theaters in the Fort Myers area. For art lovers, there are a slew of galleries on 5th Ave. and 3rd St. and there is the Naples Museum of Art, The Von Liebig Art Center, and Collier Country Museum. For more information you can contact the United Arts Council, at 239-263-8242.
For an entertaining and education experience take your children to the Children’s Museum, and the Naples Water Park for fun in the sun, and the Naples Zoo, free for Naples residents every first Saturday of the month. For the garden enthusiast, don’t miss a chance to visit the Naples Botanical Garden. There are several park and recreation areas in the area. Lowdermilk Park has public volley ball play areas, Cambier Park a tennis wall, a children’s play park and basket ball court. View map of State Parks in the area.
For some cerebral stimulation, Hodges University provides Adult Education life-long learning programs, and Collier Adult Education, run short training programs at high school venues. There are several libraries, the main branch being on Central Avenue (239-262-4130).
Taking the coastal roads towards Fort Myers takes you past Lover’s Key, a preservation area for great beach time, kyaking and bird watching. Fort Myers beach is known for its rows of restaurants and inns on the beach and also for being a “Spring Break” destination. Punta Gorda which is an hour’s drive north along the US 75, is a quaint tourist area that was upgraded after hurricane Charley blew through here in 2004. Another great day trip is up to Sarasota, and stopping over at Siesta Key.
Radio Stations, TV Channels, Climate, Sport
NPR is on 90.1, another popular talk radio channel is 98.9. The rest are a variety of music providers.
Log on to the Comcast web site and you are able to view the local TV channel descriptions.
You are probably here because of the well-known warm winter climate. Daily forecasts are on the Weather Channel on TV, most local channels provide these during news forecasts and of course logging on to Weather.com and searching zip code 34105, will give you a good idea whether you can play golf or tennis! Search for Public Golf Courses in Naples FL for a list of these.
Many of the recreational parks have Public Tennis Courts and other facilities such as basketball courts, volleyball courts, lighted tennis courts, lighted softball field(s), exercise jogging trail, open play area and picnic areas. Germaine arena hosts the music and local ice hockey events. Click here for a complete list including Naples Dog Park.
Naples Community Resources
Most of the information provided here is West Naples centric, since that is the side of Naples where I live and know the best.
Orientation for New Residents
If you are new to Naples, understanding the local description of the main routes around Naples is helpful to find your way around!! The U.S.41 is also referred to as the “East Trail” (from 5th Avenue East towards Miami) and the “North Trail” (from 5th Avenue north) and business locations are often indicated as “along the Tamiami” (from its original purpose of connecting Naples to Miami). “Alligator Alley”, the U.S. 75 highway, now connects the West Coast to the East Coast via a toll road. Also all “streets” run north/south and all “avenues” run East West. Central Avenue is the midpoint dividing Avenues N and Avenues S of it. Streets start from 1st on the Gulf side and increase as you move inland. So the smaller the number the higher the price of the house!
Link to Naples Illustrated Magazine for up-to-date information on Naples and to search restaurants.
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