Since we are staying in Fort Myers Beach for the week, we decided to make a day trip to beautiful Naples, Florida and explore some fun options for families. My girls are animal lovers so they really enjoy going to zoos. We decided to spend the morning at the Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens. The zoo is immaculately clean and easy to navigate. The staff is knowledgeable and welcoming to guests. The exhibits encourage you to ask questions and give you tips on how you can help save the environment. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon. Here are a few of our favorite moments from our day:
Primate Expedition Cruise
This is a must-do when you go to the Naples Zoo. You get to experience a fifteen-minute catamaran ride through small islands filled with primates. We had an informative tour guide that made the ride interesting and fun for the girls. You could tell the guide cared about the monkeys, going as far as to ask us to be silent when we were going by a monkey that was new to the zoo. We saw apes, monkeys, and even some adorable lemurs. There are no cages on the islands because the primates see the water as a natural barrier. I would suggest doing the cruise at the end of your day because the covered boat is a lovely way to sit and relax after walking around all day.
Get Up-Close to some Slithery Friends
My girls fell in love with a 19 foot python. He slithered up his enclosure and went face to face with my daughter. It was such a neat way to get her interested in an animal that she was pretty grossed out by.
Feeding a Giraffe
For just $5, you can have the experience of feeding a giraffe three lettuce leaves. This is such a special opportunity since giraffes are gentle giants. These beautiful animals lower their graceful necks down to gently take the lettuce from your hands.
Ride a Camel
Another fun activity my girls were able to experience was a ride on Clyde, a stunning camel. The person that helps people get on the camel was incredible with kids. He asked them their names and then told them interesting facts about camels while they waited their turn. That night when we were at dinner, they turned to my husband and said, “Dad, did you know that camels can run up to 40 miles per hour?” I love when my kids have a fun experience and come away with new facts.
There were so many amazing animals at the Naples Zoo. You can see animals such as: Florida panther, black bear, alligators, turtles, honey badger, leopard, cotton-top tamarin, zebras, lions, leopards, and so many more. (The following pictures belong to the zoo…we were having way too much fun to stop and take pictures.)
When you arrive at the zoo, you will get a list of events happening at the zoo that day. Some events include:
Alligator Bay feeding
Meet the Keeper series
Tips for Planning Your Day
-There is ample, free parking at the zoo.
-Bring some quarters so you can feed the ducks and fish.
-At Wynn’s at the Zoo Café, they have burgers, pizza, hot dogs, drinks and snacks.
-There are several places with picnic tables where you can bring a snack or lunch to eat.
-Don’t forget sunscreen or a hat.
Admission: $22.95 Adults $14.95 Children 3-12
Hours: 9am-5pm daily
Last ticket sold at 4:00
Address: 1590 Goodlette Rd, Naples, FL 34102
Phone Number: (239) 643-7275 (make sure this is the main number and not a fax)
A warm thank you to the Naples Zoo for having us as guests. As always, all experiences and opinions are 100% my own.