Naples in the fall means festivals galore -- arts, film, gardens and more.
Fall in Naples is just as color-splashed as it i sup North. But instead of the yellows and reds of fall leaves, autumn along the Paradise Coast is painted in blue, green and white – as in sky, surf, sand and palm trees.
Autumn weather also means blissful 70- and 80-degree temperatures that are ideal for fall festivals (think arts, culture and a little history), alfresco holiday shopping or a day at world-famous beaches. Plus, paradise is priced perfectly this time of year, with hotel and restaurant discounts and savings galore at area attractions.
Old Florida, New Flicks
Check out the Naples International Film Festival, which kicks off the United Arts Council of Collier County’s Celebrate the Arts Month with a gala and screenings of indie movies and documentaries. All of Collier County’s arts and cultural venues – from Marco Island to the historic Palm Cottage in Old Naples – will open their doors, offering more than 125 events ranging from homespun community theater, Broadway performances at the Philharmonic Center, art galleries and opera, even an alfresco movie in the park.
The Naples Botanical Garden promises to out-color even those fall leaves while the Old Florida Festival, with its cracker cowboys, Calusa and Seminole Indians, folk music, Civil War encampment and British Red Coats, relives 10,000 years of history.
Savor the Season, Shopping and Savings
Naples’ Third Street South shopping district, known for its art galleries, trendy boutiques and gourmet restaurants, sets the stage for holiday gift-buying with its annual Festival of Lights, a season-welcoming event in late November that includes a tree-lighting ceremony, street entertainers, musical performers and a one-night-only promise of snow showers.
In Naples, there’s no need to dig out the car or trudge through the slush in search of that perfect present. Locally owned shops along Fifth Avenue South, plus gift stores in nature centers, museums and hotels, offer unique gift ideas and a welcomed diversion from crowded department stores.
Of course, the soft-as-silk beaches and aquamarine Gulf waters are always close by, providing a worthy excuse to delay that shopping another day – or motivation to get finished faster.