This was our first trip to this park, just outside of Naples,Florida. It has trails and boardwalks that goes through a swamp in central Florida. I was hoping there would be more birds here since it was the end of April and spring migration was still going on but the boardwalk was pretty quiet.
One cool thing about the park was all of the old trees which kept the boardwalk shaded.
It wouldn’t be a swamp with alligators but it was fun seeing the otter near the boardwalk.
Views from the boardwalk taken with my phone.
After the park, Brett and I left Naples behind and headed home to Tampa. I wanted to take some pictures of the Sunshine Skyway bridge as we drove over but the love bugs were so bad that our windshield was covered in them. The funny thing is that our car wasn’t nearly as bad as other cars and vans that had come from much farther south. Of course, Brett washed the car as soon as we got home.
View of the beach from the Naples pier before sunset.
Shots above are from the Naples beach at the hotel we stayed at. All private condos on both sides of our hotel so the beach was pretty quiet.
View from our room. Watching the sun come up in the morning and then the storms roll in during the afternoon before dinner. We didn’t splurge for a beach view since we live in Tampa and spend a fair amount of time on the beach. If you are coming from up north, I highly recommend getting the beach view anywhere you stay if possible. We stayed at the Edgewater Beach Resort which was nice and quiet while we were there.
Our view eating lunch at the Tin City marina.
Back at our hotel after dinner. One night the storms came in so no sunset.
The last night we were there, a huge fire had been burning close by and covered the sunset in smoke.
Lots of pretty flowers at the Naples Botanical Gardens.
Lots of little critters too.
Shots of the gardens during our long weekend in Naples for a staycation in late May.
The one picture I took at the Naples Zoo above. A statue of a turtle in the ocean made out of recycled plastic which was cool. I didn’t love the zoo. It was a few minutes from our hotel so we stopped in before lunch. I felt like you couldn’t see the animals very well based on how they had the exhibits set up. You had to wait in line to board a small boat to cruise around a small pond to see the primates. You couldn’t just walk around and view them. It was too hot to wait so we left. We are spoiled living so close the Tampa zoo which is soooo much better.
While we were in Naples we took a boat ride around the bay and out to a spoil island. We passed the big boats and big houses near the marina.
It was a beautiful day out and there was not much traffic on the water.
We saw so many dolphins along the way. They were coming right up to the boat. The bottom two shots I took with my phone.
A lot of the channel markers had osprey nests on them. Most of the babies were grown up and yelled as we went by.
We cruised for almost an hour to a spoil island where there was no one else on the beach. Just us and a few other people that were on the boat. We walked around for close to an hour looking for shells.
Not many birds on the beach but far away we saw an osprey had caught a fish and had landed on the beach with it before taking off again.
Several years ago I went to visit my sister when she was living in Sioux Falls. I only spent half a day in the city before heading to Rapid City and it was drizzling the entire time.
We spent an afternoon in the Badlands.
One morning we got up early and went to Mount Rushmore and drove around the area including Custer State Park.
The funniest thing back then was seeing the soda machine in the bathroom.
Blooming things at the Naples Botanical Gardens.
In the butterfly house, we got to see some butterflies emerging before they had started flying.
Zooming in across the street from the gardens, it looked like someone was clearing a field.Probably another subdivision going up.
We spent a hot morning walking around the Naples Botanical Gardens during our trip in late April. So many bright colors.