I moved from Minnesota to Naples in 2016 to - let's be honest - escape the miserable Minnesota winters. I had always dreamed of living in the tropics. When the stars aligned for the move, I jumped! Or rather, I drove. 3 days. 3 kids. 3 cats. After being here for 7 years, I'd like to share why I love Naples so much!
1. Tropical plants & animals. Naples is surrounded by lush, tropical landscapes whether natural or planted. There's an abundance of palm trees (I still don't know all their names) and huge, really awesome birds! The alligators are fascinating, the otters are entertaining, and the armadillos are just plain weird! There are so many parks to explore. The Botanical Gardens are enchanting, especially during the holidays. If you don't mind rustic, which I don't, the CREWS trails show the natural beauty of Florida.
2. Sugar sand beaches. Naples is known for its pristine white-sand beaches, crystal clear water and warm Gulf temperatures. While those living here don't spend time at the beaches like vacationers do, we absolutely appreciate what we have! It's not ususual to find me watching a sunset or spending a Sunday morning walking on the beach. I will admit I am guilty of "tomorrow is a better day", but I absolutely love living near the water! My daugher and I were recently certified for scuba. The water was so warm we didn't even need a wetsuit.
3. Safety. Naples is known for its low crime rates. While it's important to always be aware of your surroundings and make good choices, I feel comfortably at home knowing we have a strong sense of community and excellent law enforcement.
4. World-class Dining. Naples is home to some of the finest restaurants in the state! We have a wide range of cuisines, both international and local. Depending on the mood, I can find exceptional Thai or Mexican or Italian! I love meeting friends on 5th Avenue (so many great options!) or celebrating happy hour at Mercato. I have several tried-and-true favorites, but I am always up for trying new places and am seldom disappointed!
5. Thriving arts scene. Naples is known for its exceptional arts community. We have galleries, theater and performing arts. We have local dance companies as well as traveling productions! Bonita Springs' Center for the Arts and the Barbara Mann Theater are just a short drive away, and of course we are home to Artis, the Gulf Shore Playhouse and the Sudgen Community Theater. My favorite is the local dance studios' holiday performances at Mercato!
6. Schools. I'm not sure why Florida seems to have a bad reputation for education. My kids excelled in the local public schools, and are currently attending excellent Florida universities. If you are thinking of moving here and for some reason are stuck on education, please check out GreatSchools.com or SchoolDigger.com. I think you will like what you see! We have a wide range of options for public, private and charter schools!
7. Clouds. I don't know why I am so fascinated by clouds, but I am. The clouds here seem to be lower, more dramatic, more intense. I love watching our storms roll in. You can literally see the wall of water coming at you in the summer! And then 2 hours later, it's sunny again! :)
We all have reasons why we choose to live where we live. I love Florida and would welcome the opportunity to show you why I love being a Floridian!