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Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens


If you’re a parent, then you know all about drool and runny noses. But you’ve probably never experienced it like you will at Naples Zoo. Get ready for an exciting, up close adventure that will be remembered by both you and your kids for a lifetime as you feed giraffes, watch alligators being fed, take a cruise and watch fun, educational shows.



By far the coolest thing at the Zoo is feeding the giraffes.  They are right there in your face as you hand them crispy fresh leaves of romaine lettuce.  The kids will love seeing the animals up close and personal and may even get a little frightened as their big, black tongues reach out for the food and drool comes out of their mouths and hits the ground. Being right there next to the herd of young male giraffes, feeding them and yes, even smelling them will lead to lots of curiosity that you can then harness later at the library with books. This is just one of the many attractions that you’ll enjoy while visiting Naples Zoo.

Another great show is when the trainers feed the alligators. At any other zoo, you’re lucky if the alligators open their eyes or mouth, let alone move. Alligators are fun to look at regardless, but at Alligator Bay at Naples Zoo, you get to see these creatures up close and personal. The trainers get right near the waters’ edge with big chunks of food and the alligators come up and grab it from them. Your heart skips a beat as you see how fast they actually are and the kids all ooh and ahh.  There are several other shows that are fun to see like the Snake Show and Safari Show which are educational as they show a wide variety of exotic birds and animals. If you take a bit of time after the show, you can even talk to the trainers. The trainers and staff are extremely nice, polite and anxious to answer questions from young and old alike.  The excitement continues though.

The next thing to enjoy is the Naples Zoo cruise. The roughly 20 minute ride takes you around the island where you will see many different monkeys. Next is lunch and play time. The zoo has a couple of playgrounds for the kids to run and play while you get lunch ready. There are several picnic areas available, but for those who don’t have time to pack a picnic, The Wynn (the local high-end grocery store) offers affordable and healthy refreshments and lunch items alike.

The animal exhibits are fun too. There is only glass that separates you from the animals (cheetahs or leopards & black bear). That adds to the excitement a bit especially if one of the big cats comes up close to the glass like in the brochure photo. There is also an area for feeding fish (large colorful Japanese Koi) and turtles which was thoroughly enjoyable.

Finally, walking through the gardens and having close encounters with ducks and butterflies as you walk along the trail loop are all part of the fun. Your heart will be  happy with fond memories as you remember all the fun, joy and excitement you had at the quaint but impressive Naples Zoo in Florida.

Did you know:

Naples Zoo is a nationally accredited zoo and yet much more than a walk-through zoo. The nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable institution also features a full day of fun activities. The paved path winds nearly a mile past rare and beautiful animals residing within a historic tropical garden of exotic plants first planted in 1919 with a fascinating history.

In this tropical setting, you can take delight at seeing many of your favorite animals like lions, giraffes, monkeys, pythons, and bears. In addition, you’ll also discover feature exhibits and an array of more rarely seen creatures like the fosas of Madagascar or an Asian deer that barks and eats meat.

Combining conservation and recreation, Naples Zoo offers fun for every generation. You’ll also discover a number of ways to get involved in helping animals. The zoo is accredited by the prestigious Association of Zoos and Aquariums and is an institutional member of the American Association of Zoo Keepers.

Get directions to Naples Zoo