Where to Eat in Southwest Florida: Marco Island, Naples, and the Everglades

That cloud on the horizon is probably a harbinger of sleet, freezing rain, and a cold wind that sneers at layers upon layers of wool and down. The birds are headed south for the winter, demonstrating that “bird-brained” can mean pretty darn smart.

Here at the Blog we are committed to public service. Just search “health” for public service posts. Think of the physical and mental health benefits involved in basking by the pool (use your sunscreen!) sipping a stress-soothing beverage as opposed to being mired among people coughing and sneezing all over you, or slipping on ice and winding up in a hospital. To address these issues, we already have provided a list of the best places to eat along I-95 from Washington, DC, all the way to Florida and on to Key West. Now we turn to the other side of Florida, the Gulf Coast.

So here is a curated compendium of the best places to eat in Southwest Florida, in Marco Island and beyond from Naples all the way into the Everglades. The list, which hits all price points, is dominated by fresh seafood. Steak places abound in the area, but when I’m in Florida I’m trying to counter a year of meals at barbecue places. In addition to seafood, we love a couple of excellent Italian options, as well as the two best Cuban restaurants on Florida’s West Coast.

The farther south the warmer, and on the West Coast the farthest south you can go is Marco Island. The beaches are firm for walking, the shelling is superb, the sunsets are magnificent, and the fishing village of Goodland is nearby with lots of small boats bringing in fresh shrimp, fish, oysters, and stone crabs every day.

We’ve tried both coasts, as you can see by searching “Florida” in the Blog, and we prefer Marco Island, with a villa at the excellent Marriott Crystal Shores as our base. There’s a lot to do, or not do, as you prefer. As in the song, it’s wintertime and the living is easy.


And while you’re at it, click “follow” on our front page to receive blog posts in your email box.  Or bookmark us and check in from time to time.  If you’re planning a trip, you can “Search” the name of the destination city, state, or country for good restaurants (in Europe, often close to sites, like the Louvre or the Van Gogh Museum, that you’ll want to visit in any event). And stick around for news, all manner of recipes, and the occasional book or movie review and fine arts and architecture commentary.  Comments, questions, and suggestions of places to eat or stories to cover are very welcome.  And check out our Instagram page, johntannerbbq.

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