Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve


This reserve protects 110,000 acres of coastal lands and marine estuaries at the northern end of the Ten Thousand Islands, just south of Naples and north of Marco Island. A two-story learning center features an auditorium where guests watch an excellent video, along with a marine touch tank and 2300-gallon aquarium with a climb-in bubble. From there, popular activities include kayak and boating tours, a nature walk and birding excursions.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Naples attractions

1. Naples Botanical Gardens

5.93 MILES

This outstanding botanical garden styles itself as ‘a place of bliss, a region of supreme delight.’ And after spending some time wandering its 2½-mile…

2. Rose Marina

6.28 MILES

Home to charter boats and a sightseeing fleet, and also the jumping-off point for boat tours, a pirate cruise and fishing trips.

3. Tigertail Beach

7.53 MILES

This white-sand, family-friendly beach is ideal for shelling, tide-pool exploration and hanging out at the playground. It also happens to be a fantastic…

4. Palm Cottage

8.55 MILES

The oldest home in Naples and last remaining tabby-mortar cottage in Collier County, this quaint abode was built in 1895 for Henry Watterson, the editor…

5. Cambier Park


Pretty, picnic-friendly park in the main retail corridor.

6. Naples Municipal Beach

8.63 MILES

Naples' city beach is a long, dreamy white strand that succeeds in feeling lively but rarely overcrowded. At the end of 12th Ave S, the 1000ft pier is a…

7. Naples Nature Center

9.62 MILES

One of Florida's premier nature-conservancy and advocacy nonprofits, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida is a must-visit destination for anyone…

8. Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens

9.85 MILES

Caribbean Gardens is an Old Florida attraction that's been updated into a modest zoo. It has narrated boat rides in a lake to visit free-roaming, island…