15 Fun Dog-Friendly Beaches in Naples, FL Your Pup Will Love

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Located in Florida on the Gulf of Mexico, Naples is a tourist city with a variety of attractions like parks, shopping, dining, and art. Some of the most popular places to visit in the city include the Venetian Village, Naples Zoo, and the Naples Botanical Garden to name a few. Most visitors also enjoy Naples Pier, the Naples Depot Museum, and the Naples Art Institute. However, many of these spots do not allow dogs. 

Two of the large parks here that you will love in Naples are Delnor-Wiggins State Park and Clam Pass Parks. But the main thing Naples is known for is its beaches with white, sugary sand and turquoise waters. In fact, the city was named as having the Best All-Around Beaches in the US in 2005 by the Travel Channel. 

With 10 miles of oceanfront, you and your fur baby will surely be able to find your favorite. We found 15 of the best dog-friendly beaches in Naples to get you started. 

Lee County Dog Beach (Bonita Beach Dog Park)

Lee County Dog Beach, also known as Bonita Beach Dog Park, is located along the southern edge of Lover’s Key State Park, about 20 minutes up the beach from Naples. What makes this park worth the trip is the fact that the whole little island is a dog beach. However, you will need to be aware of the tides because it is on a tidal flat, so you will need to wade through the water to get there at high tide. 

The park is on the Bonita Beach Causeway across from Pelican Landing, but you will have to follow the signs to get there. The water is shallow and warm, so your pooch can enjoy the water without worry. Your fur baby can frolic with other pups as much as he wants. Dogs have so much fun here. Many people without dogs visit just to watch them play. You will need to bring your own dog poo bags and some water for both of you, but they do have a porta-potty. 

Keewaydin Island

Just to the south of Naples, Keewaydin Island is eight miles long and totally dog-friendly. The barrier island is one of the largest and is a haven for loggerhead sea turtles to nest, so keep your pup on a leash and away from the turtles. You will need to take a boat ride to get there and back. You can rent a boat or kayak in Naples and paddle over or use a water shuttle service like Hemingway Shuttle. 

Remember, it is a rugged and secluded island with no public restrooms or water. However, you will probably not be alone on the beach no matter what time of year you visit because many visitors to Naples spend quite a bit of time here. Locals enjoy it, too, for its wildlife and serenity. Be sure to bring doggie cleanup baggies to pick up after your pooch and enough water for both of you to drink. 

Naples Dog Park

Naples Dog Park on Riverside Circle is 1.4 acres of lush green space, with one acre for big dogs and a little less than half an acre for the smaller pooches. The park itself does not have a beach, but it is near Gordon River, where you can take your canine companion for a dip in the water. The park is very well cared for by the city as well as the locals who visit almost every day and provides doggie pickup bags and lots of trash cans to clean up after your pooch. 

In the middle of the space is a shade structure called The Palmer House with benches and drinking fountains. In addition, you can give your pup a bath at the dog cleaning stations before leaving if he gets dirty. Across the street, Baker Park is also a dog-friendly park where you can take your pup on a hike as long as he is on a leash. 

Rover Run at Veterans Community Park

Rover Run is a popular off-leash dog park located at Veterans Community Park and is surrounded by several dozen water features, from tiny ponds to good-sized lakes. It has two acres of play space with separate sections for small and large fur babies. There is plenty of shade and several benches for the pup parents, and water fountains for the pups. You will need to bring your own doggie bags, though. 

You and your canine compadre are also welcome in Veterans Community Park as long as you keep him on a leash at all times. The large park features several ball fields as well as racquetball, tennis, and bocce ball courts. You can also find pickleball courts and a covered hockey rink. You could also enjoy a picnic at one of the pavilions or the other picnic area. If you have any human kids with you, there is a playground for them too. 

Golden Gate Paws Park

Not far from the coast, Golden Gate Paws Park was the first East Naples dog park where pups can run free with no leash. It is inside Golden Gate Community Park and is fairly new, opening in 2016. If you have a small dog or one that is not fond of rough dog play, there is a fenced-in section just for them. The other side is for the rambunctious pooches. Both sides have Mutt Mitt dispensers and lots of trash cans for cleanup. 

Since it is almost always hot in Naples, the park also has a kiddie pool in each dog section and hoses to fill them up so your canine companion can cool off when he wants to. There are water fountains as well as benches for the pooch parents and a variety of toys and obstacles for dogs to play with. The community park also welcomes your dogs on a leash and has playgrounds, a fitness trail, picnic areas, and restrooms. 

Koreshan State Park 

About 20 miles north of Naples, Koreshan State Park is a huge space along the Estero River that allows dogs on a leash. The historical park is named after the Koreshans, a group of people, and Dr. Teed, their leader, who lived there in 1880. In 1961, the few Koreshans left gave their 305 acres to the state to use as a park, and this is what it has been used for ever since. The nature trail along the river is home to more than 100 species of birds, as well as alligators, otters, foxes, and bobcats. 

If you want to stay longer, reserve a campsite for you and your fur buddy. You can choose between 60 secluded spots with picnic tables and fire rings. While you are there, take the time to see the historic cottage, bakery, and Monkey Puzzle Island, as well as the Hedwig Michel gravesite and the general store. You can also go fishing, kayaking, or watch for the wildlife on the bamboo landing.

Bark and Play Dog Park

Bark and Play Dog Park in Bonita Springs has six acres for your fur buddy to play off the leash in a safe, fenced area. This one is unique because it has separate areas for medium dogs as well as small and large dogs, so everyone has a space, no matter their size or activity level. After all, some dogs are not able to roughhouse with the big dogs, but they are too large for the small dog section. 

The grass is always green, and there is almost always a few friendly neighborhood pup parents to talk to while you watch your dog play. In addition, there are plenty of benches and seating areas in the shade with wooded areas so your pooch can run through the woods. Leitner Creek runs through the park for pups to play in, and there is a dog washing station to clean up your pup before getting back in the car. 

Canine Cove Dog Park

Marco Island is the largest in the state’s Ten Thousand Islands on the Gulf of Mexico. Located on Marco Island, just a few minutes from Naples, Canine Cove Dog Park is a special spot for dog lovers and their canine companions to spend the day enjoying the surrounding waters of the ocean as well as the lake inside the park. Yes, the park has its own pond, but please be mindful of the pelicans and ducks that reside here. 

Inside Canine Cove, you will find numerous benches for the humans and lots of running room for Fido. There are separate spaces for big and small dogs, and each one has water fountains for pups and their pup parents. It is a popular spot, so your dog will almost always have someone to play with. Be sure your dog has a collar with an ID and rabies tag, and bring your own doggie poo bags for cleanup. 

Paw-Radise Estero

It may not have a beach, but this place deserves mention anyway. If you have a dog and live in or visit Naples, Florida, there is no reason why you should not visit Paw-Radise Estero. It is an indoor dog park, so you never have to worry about those afternoon thunderstorms. Besides being an awesome leash-free park, Paw-Radise has a whole slew of agility equipment like tunnels, weave poles, and hoops to jump through. There is also a slide and a fire hydrant. 

Now, this is not just for dogs to have fun. You can also enjoy wine and beer as well as appetizers and snacks. They also have coffee, soft drinks, tea, juice, and water. Everyone can find something they like here. They are open every day of the week, but dogs over 30 pounds are welcome Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Dogs 30 pounds and under are welcome Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. There is a small fee if you are not a member, but it is worth every penny. 

K-9 Corral at Estero Park

Located just a few feet from Paw-Radise, Estero Community Park boasts 55 acres of space for the whole family to enjoy. But Fido will be especially happy at the dog park, K-9 Corral. This fun park is by the playground on the east side of the community center. You will find lots of room to play, plenty of shade, and seating for pup parents. There are separate spaces for small and large dogs, and has water features and a doggie shower. 

Although Estero Park is a few miles from the coast, there are four large lakes where your fur buddy can get his feet wet. Outside the dog park, you will have to keep him on a leash, but there is so much to enjoy, such as disc golf, horseshoe pits, volleyball, and trails to explore. There are also places to go fishing or have a picnic, as well as restrooms and water fountains for your convenience. 

Lovers Key State Park

Located on Black Island between Fort Myers and Bonita Beach, Lovers Key State Park and Beach features a variety of fun things to do on over 700 acres. Four barrier islands make up this park, with tidal lagoons, canals, and an unspoiled area where wildlife flourishes. You will almost always catch a glimpse of some kind of creature, like dolphins or manatees, as well as hundreds of bird species. And even though it is an island, the city built a road to it in 1965, so you can get there by vehicle, tram, boat, or you can even walk. 

The beach stretches about two miles along the Gulf of Mexico and was listed as one of the Top 10 Beaches in Florida by the Travel Channel. Please do keep your pup on a leash, though and do not let him annoy the wildlife. You should also keep your fur baby close because alligators have been seen in the area. Also, bring plastic baggies to clean up after your dog right away. 

Lowdermilk Park Beach

This is a premier park that is very popular with Naples residents as well as visitors. Not only does it have a fantastic beach, but it also has a variety of amenities and activities inside the park. Kids can enjoy two different playgrounds, and you can play volleyball in the sand or have a picnic at one of the picnic areas. There are even two gazebos you can rent if you have a large group. The park also has showers and restrooms for you and your fur buddy. 

Lowdermilk Park is a busy place, so be sure to keep your canine companion on a leash at all times. Another way to play is to rent a paddleboard or surfboard at Gnarly Harley Adventures or one of the other shops in the area. And when you get hungry, there is a concession stand in the middle of the park that serves hot dogs, burgers, sandwiches, and more. 

Freedom Park Beach

With 50 acres of wild space and restored wetlands, Freedom Park is Just to the northeast of Lowdermilk Park on Golden Gate Parkway. The park boasts several lakes and creeks, and boardwalks to get around them. You may not find a beach here, but your fur baby is welcome to splash in the water as long as he is leashed. Also, keep him close to you because alligators have been known to hang out in the water. 

Besides the lakes, you can also enjoy the view of the area from one of the six lookout sites and pavilions. Public restrooms and water are available at the Exhibition Hall, and there are often food trucks in the parking lot to grab some grub. The trails also take you to the Gordon River and marshes, where you will see a plethora of flora and fauna. Keep your canine companion on a leash and pick up after him right away. 

Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park

Between the Barefoot Beach County Preserve and Vanderbilt Beach, Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park has more than 45,000 acres for you and your fur baby to enjoy. This is another park with one of the Top Ten Beaches in the USA. It is almost 200 acres of white sand and beautiful turquoise water. Your dog will need to be on a leash at all times in the park, and you will have to pick up after him, so bring your own bags. 

There are many activities here you can both enjoy, like kayaking, paddle boarding, and fishing in the Gulf of Mexico or one of the other bodies of water like Water Turkey Bay or the Cocohatchee River. The park also has a beach trail that is about one mile or a ¼-mile boardwalk trail. When hunger strikes, there are a few concession stands in the park, or you can visit one of over a dozen eateries nearby. 

Sanibel Island

Located just northwest of Naples, this barrier island is a well-known tourist attraction. With azure waters and white sandy beaches, this is the pleasure spot for those looking for some luxurious sunbathing and swimming. It is five miles wide and 15 miles long and features a 6,000-acre wildlife refuge as well as home to manatees, gators, tropical birds, and even some dolphins. There are rental sites where you can get kayaks, bikes, or whatever else you need to have fun. 

In addition, you will also find seven public parks on Sanibel Island. Lighthouse Beach Park has 45 acres with picnicking, a fishing pier, and a stunning lighthouse. Tarpon Bay is a small beach with picnic areas, restrooms, and showers. Gulfside Beach is 27 acres of sand and surf, showers, restrooms, and picnic areas. Bowman’s Beach is the largest, with 50 acres of playgrounds, a fitness trail, a gorgeous beach, restrooms, showers, and picnicking. 

The Final Woof

Once you have visited all the beaches, why not take a cruise with your fur baby? Bark on the Ark Dog Cruises is an eco-cruise in Naples Bay near Keewaydin Island. Nauti Exposures is another place that offers tours, but this one is on a kayak. 

You could also take your pup shopping at Miromar Outlets, where almost all of the shops and restaurants are dog-friendly. Coconut Point Mall is also a great spot where 95% of the stores allow dogs. Besides all that, you can even visit the Naples Backyard History Museum to see all sorts of historical displays of the city. 

Ready to eat? Take Fido to Nervous Nellies for everything from steaks to oysters. 

Photo of author
Patty Oelze is a freelance writer who is also in the process of getting her PhD in Psychology. She has been writing about dogs and other critters for about 10 years and has a plethora of animals at her home including several cats, some chipmunks, a dozen raccoons, two foxes, one coyote, and herds of deer. She and her husband have been living in the Missouri Ozarks for years where she enjoys taking care of wildlife, fishing, photography, boating, and of course, writing.

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