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Natural Awakenings Naples and Fort Myers

Free Nature Walks at Barefoot Beach Preserve

Jim Truluck

Visitors can enjoy free guided nature walks led by area naturalists along the boardwalk through a maritime forest and coastal strand at 9 a.m. Saturdays through the end of April at Barefoot Beach Preserve, in Bonita Springs. The 45-minute educational experience teaches participants about the importance of barrier islands and how our ancestors used Florida’s state tree and native plant communities, followed by lecture series presentations at 10 a.m.  

With 342 acres of natural land and one of the area’s last undeveloped barrier islands, Barefoot Beach Preserve is an excellent example of the shifts in habitat that occur within a very narrow strip of land with only slight changes in elevation and moisture, and beach and sand dunes supporting the growth of sea oats, providing nesting sites for sea turtles during the summer months. The park also maintains a tropical coastal hammock of sabal palm, gumbo-limbo and sea grape trees, among many others. The site is also home to the protected gopher tortoise.  

Location: 503 Barefoot Beach Blvd. meet at the Learning Center. For more information, visit

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