Paradise Coast Awards List

Barefoot Beach
By JoNell Modys

Travel Experts and Consumers Give Southwest Florida’s Paradise Coast

High Marks on Numerous “Best” Lists, Rankings, Reader Polls

Travel experts, online travel site user,s and magazine editors and readers have consistently given high rankings and praise to Florida’s Paradise Coast, which includes Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades. Here is a list of some of these prestigious rankings.


USA Today's 10Best Contest
Participants of USA Today’s 10Best Reader’s Choice poll have voted Naples, Florida the nation’s top “Best Destination for Luxury Travelers.” After being selected as a nominee by USA Today’s panel of experts, Naples finished first on the list ahead of other luxury destinations including Beverly Hills and Maui.


TripAdvisor Vacation Rentals
Naples came in at #1 on the TripAdvisor vacation rental division’s list of “23 Affordable Fall Destinations.” They analyzed the prices of over 1,000 US destinations* for an autumn getaway. The locations on the list are the most affordable places to rent a vacation home this fall, all with their own special allure guaranteed to create lasting memories.
Two Naples-area beaches are on’s list of 10 Best Beaches of Florida’s Gulf Coast.
Coming in at #1 is Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park and at #3 is Clam Pass County Park.

Dr. Beach’s Top Ten USA Beaches 2015
Two of Florida’s Paradise Coast Beaches, side-by-side in north Naples, make the Top Ten USA Beaches list. Barefoot Beach Preserve County Park is #2 and Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park is #9.

Conde Nast Traveler
|Naples is named in Best Small Cities list by Conde Nast Traveler’s Reader’s Choice Awards, coming in at #20 out of 30 beautiful small cities voted upon by readers.

Conde Nast Traveler
Naples makes the list of America’s Best Food Cities for the second consecutive year in the Conde Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice Awards.

Naples ranks as the #1 Best City for Job Growth.

University of British Columbia's Vancouver School of Economics
What started as a scientific survey of the unhappiest cities in the U.S. revealed Naples, Fla. as the fourth HAPPIEST city!
Naples ranked #2 Top City to Stay for 2015 based on highest quality accommodations as ranked
by online guest reviews at hotel search engine

TripAdvisor and
Naples ranked as a Top Gulf Coast Beach Destination by the vacation rental company of leading
travel site TripAdvisor based on industry research and traveler feedback.


Dr. Beach’s Top Ten USA Beaches 2014
Two of Florida’s Paradise Coast Beach Make Top Ten USA Beaches List
Barefoot Beach #2; Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park #10

Condé Nast Traveler
2013 Reader’s Poll – Best American Cities for Foodies
Naples enters this prestigious Top 20 list at #17 on the strength of its seafood, international
cuisine and eclectic choices for cuisine at independent local restaurants.

RealtyTrac Study – Top Beach Towns 2014
Naples #2 and Marco Island #5 in Top 20 Beach Town Housing Markets
Study is based on factors including average temperature, air quality, crime rate and the number of sunny days per year.

TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Islands Awards 2014
Travelers' Choice™ 2014 Winner Islands
Marco Island named #1 Island USA and #4 Island in the World in annual readers’ poll.

Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index
Cities with the Least Miserable (Happiest) Workers
The Naples-Marco Island area is #4 on the list of least miserable, or happiest workers.

USA TODAY 10Best 2014
10Best Golf Destinations
Naples is ranked at #5 on the Top Ten Golf Destinations in the world list.

USA TODAY 10Best 2014
10Best North American Romantic Getaways
Naples is ranked at #6 on the Best Romantic N. American Getaway list. 

International Association of Golf Tour Operators 2014
2014 Golf Destination of the Year – North America
Florida’s Paradise Coast chosen as the #1 N. American golf destination by the top golf tour operators in the world.
America the Beautiful: 25 Best Beaches
Naples is names as one of the “25 Best Beaches.”

Travel Channel
Top 10 Beaches in Florida
Naples is named as one of the “Top 10 Beaches in Florida.”

Golf Digest
America’s Top 50 Courses for Women
Panther Run Golf Club included on list of “Top Courses for Women.”

2013 and Previous Years

Travel Leisure 2013
18th Annual World’s Best Awards
Marco Beach Ocean Resort, The Ritz-Carlton, Naples and LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort are all ranked on the annual reader’s choice survey as “Top Resorts in the Continental U.S.”

Smarter Travel
Florida's Best Hidden Beaches
Keewaydin Island is included in this list.

Top Places to Retire Rich
Naples is included as part of the top 25 places to retire rich.

Dr. Beach
Top 10 Beaches for 2013
Barefoot Beach is #6 on this annual list.

USA Weekend
USA’s 5 best road trips
Everglades National Park was included on this list.

2013 Travelers' Choice Destination Awards
Naples is included on top 25 U.S. destinations list.

2013 Travelers’ Choice Island Awards
Marco Island named #3 on the list of “Best Islands in the U.S.”

USA Today
Dog-friendly Florida: Top spots to vacation with pets
Naples is included on this list.

National Geographic Books
100 Places That Can Change Your Child’s Life
Book described 100 places around the world where children can learn through unique experiences.  Marco Island’s Dolphin Explorer cruise, where passengers assist and interact with naturalists gathering data for the 10,000 Islands Dolphin Project, was the only place and experience in the state of Florida included in the book. 

2013 The 10 best U.S. cities to retire in
MarketWatcheditors and researchers at rank Naples as the #7 spot to retire

U.S. News & World Report
2013 10 Great Places to Retire
Naples is included on this list.

Travel Leisure
T L’s Florida Top 10
The Everglades is included on this list as “Into the Wild.”

Condé Nast Traveler
2012 Readers' Poll
LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort and Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort, Golf Club & Spa are included in “The Top 270 Spas in North America, the Caribbean, Hawaii and at Sea.”

Yahoo! Travel
The Best of America's National Parks
Everglades National Park is included on this list as “Best for peaceful encounters with sub-tropical wildlife.”

Coastal Living magazine
2012 America’s Happiest Seaside Towns
Naples has been ranked at #2 in this list of the nation’s most blissful coastal towns.

Smithsonian magazine
2012 The 20 Best Small Towns in America
Naples is #9 on this prestigious list of culturally rich small American towns

2012 10 Best Places to Retire in the U.S.
MarketWatcheditors and researchers at rank Naples as the #3 spot to retire

Florida Travel Life magazine
2011 Top 15 Secret Islands in Florida
Marco Island is included on this elite list.

Gulfscapes magazine
2011 Best Gulf Towns Reader’s Poll
Naples is ranked at #8 in the Top Ten

U.S. News & World Report
2011 Best Florida Beaches
Naples is ranked #2 in Florida.

U.S. News & World Report
2011 Most Relaxing Beaches in the USA and Caribbean
Naples is ranked #5.

U.S. News & World Report
2011 Best Relaxing Getaways in the USA
Naples is ranked #5.

U.S. News & World Report
2011 Best U.S. Luxury Destinations
Naples is ranked #7.

2011 Traveler’s Choice Poll – Top 25 Beaches in the USA
Naples is ranked #13. 

University of Wisconsin
2011 and 2010 – Healthiest Florida County
Collier County (including Naples, Marco Island and Everglades City) is selected as the #1 healthiest county in Florida for two straight years.

Southern Living
April 2010 Top Ten Secret Beaches of the South
Keewaydin Island, located between Naples and Marco Island, is included with a very positive editorial. 

Birder’s World
2010 Reader’s Favorite Places to Watch Warblers
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary is #6.

Birder’s World
2010 Reader’s Favorite Places to Watch Hawks
Everglades National Park is # 3.
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary is #8.

Birder’s World
2010 Reader’s Favorite Places to Watch Owls
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary is #5.
Everglades National Park is #7.

Birder’s World
2009 Reader’s Favorite Places to Watch Eagles
Everglades National Park is #11.
2008 Best Places for a Long Life
Collier County ranked #4 in the USA.

AARP The Magazine
2008 - Top 10 Healthiest Cities to Live and Retire
The Naples/Marco Island metropolitan area is ranked #10 in the USA. 

Coastal Living
2007 Top Romantic Escapes
Naples was listed #1 worldwide. 

American Shore and Beach Preservation Association
2007 America’s Top Restored Beaches

Collier County, Fla. beaches were included in this list of seven restored beaches for 2007.

Dr. Beach - America’s Top Ten Beaches
2006 America’s Top Ten Beaches list as determined by Dr. Beach
Barefoot Beach, located north of downtown Naples, was named #10 on the list in 2006. 

Condé Nast Traveler
2006 20 Best Beaches in America
Naples is included on this list with an excellent editorial review.

Travel Channel
2005 America’s Best All-Around Beach

Naples was selected by a panel of top national editors as America’s Best All-Around Beach, the top beach designation for 2005. 

The 100 Best Art Towns in America by John Villani
Naples Named the #1 Small Art Town in America
2005 book by author and art critic John Villani.

2005 Top Ten Less Traveled Beaches

Barefoot Beach is included on the list.

2005 Top Ten Hidden Gems Reader’s Poll

Bellasera Hotel, Naples is on this list.

Florida Monthly
2005 Best of Florida Awards

Clyde Butcher named Best Florida Artist.

Yahoo! Travel
Top Ten USA Beaches
2003 User Poll in conjunction with National Geographic Traveler.
Naples is selected as one of the Top Ten Beaches.

Birder’s World
2002 Reader’s 15 Favorite Birding Destinations in the U.S. and Canada
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary and Everglades National Park are named to this list

About Florida’s Paradise Coast
Whether travelers are looking for a romantic escape or family getaway, Florida’s Paradise Coast — Naples, Marco Island and the western portion of the Everglades — has an array of vacation options year-round. With more than 30 miles of soft, white sand beaches, thriving arts and culture scene, distinctive dining, family attractions and the best of outdoor adventure, the Paradise Coast is truly a destination with it all. Located just two hours from Miami, four hours from Orlando and three hours from Tampa, the Paradise Coast is easily accessible from some of Florida’s largest cities. Travelers outside of the Sunshine State can fly into Southwest Florida International Airport, which provides nonstop service to 45 destinations (41 domestic and 4 international) on 17 different air carriers.

For more information about the Paradise Coast, call 800-688-3600 or visit Follow the destination on Twitter and Instagram @ParadiseCoast, and on Facebook at

Back to top of page
Read More » Collier County Government Webaward Winner IAGTO - Golf Destination of the Year 2014 ACCREDITED - Destination Marketing Organization