Miami to Naples

Mar 31st, 2006, 10:08 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2006
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Miami to Naples

Many thanks to everyone who gave me some help with my April trip to Miami for 3 nights with www addresses which I've noted. From Miami I then go across to Naples for 9 nights. Here, and for everywhere I go on holiday my main interest is in photographing birds, animals and plants so I would like to spend time in the Everglades. I also grow orchids at home as a hobby and want to see some of these as well in habitat if possible, otherwise in botanical gardens.
Thank you in anticipation.
cymraes9 is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 10:27 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
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Not in Naples, but don't miss Parrot Jungle in Miami especially if you love photography. There used to be an Orchid Jungle near Miami too but I'm pretty sure it's gone.
AustinTraveler is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 10:30 AM
  #3  
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First of all, I assume you will drive from Miami to Naples via US 41 not the often recommended Alligator Alley I-75?
Of course, you could easily spend all day taking that route with lots of wonderful nature stops along the way, and you'll be interested in the Clyde Butcher museum and gallery along the way (www.clydebutcher.com). If you aren't familiar with his photography, he has the nickname "the Ansel Adams of the Everglades".

You'll want to see Corkscrew Sanctuary northeast of Naples and the Conservancy on Goodlette Road in Naples. They can also give you a wealth of information, and you can sign up for a small boat trip or even kyacking in the bay. The Conservancy has a second smaller but more remote location down towards Marco as well.

There are some Orchid growers here. Most are hard to find and out to the east. Look them up in the yellow pages and arrange to go visit -- I've heard that Jade is one of the best. They will also have many suggestions for viewing other orchids. It seems to be a friendship among the growers more than a competition.

We have a relatively new Botanic Garden here on Bayshore Drive. I'm ashamed to say I haven't been, but you should go!

And if all else fails you'll still be able to catch our most common bird here, soon to migrate back north in April -- the snowbird!

 
Mar 31st, 2006, 10:31 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 373
Visit Fairchild Tropical Gardens while in Miami. Besides being a beautiful oasis with a great orchid house, there is an exhibition in the gardens by Chihuly, a glassblower that raises the garden experience to a new level. It is gorgeous. Check out the everglades national park website because the rangers lead very interesting walks on the weekends - last weekend there was one of wildflowers.
amcc is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 10:51 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 188
Sarasota has a wonderful Botanical Gardens known throughout the world. It is Marie Selby Botanical Gardens--www.Selby.org. It has over 6,000 live orchids and 20,000 plants and is located directly on Sarasota Bay. A beautiful setting.

However from Naples it would be at least a two hour drive north or even more depending on the time and day.
SiestaLinda is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 10:59 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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From Naples, it would be about a 45 minute drive to Fort Myers, where you would find the Edison/Ford Estate, which has botanical gardens - their web site is www.edison-ford-estate.com, - the web also tells you what will be in bloom while you are there. It might interest you for some photos ops, some orchards were in bloom times I'd been - as well as some other unusual plantings from around the world and an unusual sausage tree and an old banyon from 1925...

I would also suggest considering a side trip - about 30 minutes - on way to Marco Island, at the Isle of Capri - we have often gone out on their canoe excursion thru the Briggs Nature Center late afternoon to the ABC Islands, which is South Floridas largest bird rookery - you are then tehre when all the birds come back to nest and it is quite a site and a photographers treasure -

you could look at options on :
http://www.marco-island-florida.com/active.htm

But here is some info on it:

Canoeing & Kayaking
"The main attraction for paddlers is Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, which encompasses Rookery Bay, its namesake, and 110,000 acres of uplands, islands, and estuaries from Gordon Pass at Naples to Everglades National Park. Some 150 species of birds live in the estuarine research reserve, including bald eagles, ospreys, roseate spoonbills, black skimmers, and least terns...Rookery Bay opened a 16,500-square foot visitors center and marine laboratory in 2003. To reach the visitors center and headquarters, located between Marco and Naples, turn right off CR 951 south of US 41 on Tower Road. You can also access a canoe trail through Rookery Bay and visit The Conservancy's Briggs Nature Center by turning right off CR 951 on Shell Island Road, just south of the Rookery Bay headquarters."
by Jeff Ripple, author, Day Paddling - Florida's 10,000 Islands and Big Cypress Swamp

Also, if you do go there, grab a Marco Island newspaper and see if there are any known bald eagle nests - we have spent many an early evening sitting outside our car watching eagles teach their babies to fly or bring them food - b/c if they are building on a site and find a nest, all building stops until the eagles are gone - usually there is an article in the paper or you can ask the Briggs Center.

have fun !
escargot is offline  
Mar 31st, 2006, 11:58 AM
  #7  
Neopolitan
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cymraes, I think you'd better consider doubling your time here.
 

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