At the end of the boardwalk that leads from the parking lot for Clam Pass Park and also serves Naples Grande Resort guests, this feels like you have arrived to the Aegean Islands. Named for one of those very islands, it specializes in casual Greek eats. Its elevated deck furthers the illusion with views of white sand and blue-green seas. In addition to a small selection of beer and wine, it whips up traditional beach frozen drinks, smoothies and house specialties such as The Greek on the Beach: Cruzan rum, Southern Comfort, Sauza silver tequila, Florida orange juice and grenadine. Grilled burgers, flatbreads, salads and gyros will sound and taste like Greek to you.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: Part of the Naples Grande Resort, it is open to the public on Clam Pass Park's beach.
Chelle's expert tip: The grilled octopus panzanella salad makes a nice, light beach repast.
Home of the wild and crazy Mullet Festival each January, Stan's has a reputation for waterfront revelry that began with its late owner Stan Gober some 40 years ago. In keeping with the fishing community of Goodland's reputation for wacky, Stan's hosts a seasonal Sunday bash that is a mini-version of the big annual event. People eat, drink, laugh and do the Buzzard Lope dance around the open air bandstand. Known for its fishing fleet, Goodland naturally is big on seafood, and Stan's serves grouper, shrimp and crab to an avid lunch crowd usually seated outdoors on picnic tables.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: Waterfront in Goodland, it spreads out on sandy grounds with the proper casual beach feel.
Chelle's expert tip: In winter season, head out for Stan's Sunday Funday, featuring the slightly crazed Buzzard Lope - the local version of Chicken Dance.
You cannot get any more Florida than a thatched roof tiki bar on the beach, and Capri Fish House is one of the few in the Naples area. You will hear it referred to as a "chickee," a genuine product made by Seminole Indians. It is a popular spot for boaters out to wet their whistle and grab a burger or fried seafood basket. But its little bay-side beach also makes it popular among families, who come for weekend watersports and live music. They can rent kayaks and paddleboards there and make a day of it. At the bar, things stay simple with draft and bottled beer, sangria, rum runners, margaritas, bloody marys and pina coladas. Live music entertains Tuesday through Sunday. There's also an indoor dining room for those who prefer air conditioning.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: The ultimate in casual beach bar, it boasts the added convenience of bayside boat access.
Chelle's expert tip: It resides on Isles of Capri, a hidden community you reach by taking a right before the north bridge to Marco Island.
The Turtle Club has a fairly extensive and well rounded wine list with some recognizable vintner names and an intriguing selection of vintages you will want to try for the first time. Plus it offers a full selection of beer and liquor. Most come here to dine because the food is as excellent as the front row view. Salads and seafood dominate the lunch menu, plus you'll find a burger and hot pastrami on a pretzel roll, too. At dinner, choose from magnificently crafted temptations such as roasted Chilean sea bass with grilled pineapple, jumbo scallops with lemon scented grits and horseradish crusted snapper.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: It has tables planted right in the sand, steps away from the Gulf of Mexico.
Chelle's expert tip: The bar is inside, but you will want to enjoy your drink outside under a market umbrella with your toes in the sand.
Located at the base of the Apollo Condominium complex and adjacent to the access for South Marco Beach, it has the proper casual beach bar feel. It actually has two bars. The outdoor bamboo bar serves guests who prefer drinking and dining al fresco. But keep a close watch on your food: Seagulls like to zip through and help themselves. There's access to Sunset Grille right from the beach, so it gets a lot of hungry, thirsty beachers. Inside where it's cooler, the other bar provides sports televisions. Most people come for finger food, sandwiches, burgers and seafood baskets, but the menu also tackles seafood, ribs and pasta.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: Convenient to the South Beach access, it is full-service food and drink.
Chelle's expert tip: Take a break from the beach for a drink and to watch the game.
Now this is what a beach bar should look and feel like. You will find a number of resort bars that overlook the beach, but to get the real thing, travel north to Bonita Beach where you can walk right from the beach and into this beer-and-burger joint for a break from the sun. Sit out back on the beach, if you can't bring yourself to drag your toes out of the sand. Or take a table inside, where there's shade. If you're looking for air-conditioning on a hot summer day, head upstairs to order your cold one and watch the game. There's just beer and wine in the adult beverages department. The kitchen is famous for its Chicago-style pizzas, served after 4 p.m. Breakfast is served until 11 a.m. Day-long there's seafood, burgers and key lime pie.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: Adjacent to the Bonita Beach public access, it has tables right on the beach and two bars inside.
Chelle's expert tip: Sit outside and order a bucket of beer with lunch. Or come for dinner to watch the sunset.
Colorful and Caribbean in style, Quinn's has indoor and outdoor seating with soothing views of the sand and Gulf of Mexico. Live entertainment happens nightly beginning at 6:30 p.m., including a sunset fire dancer. Its specialty drinks include a passion-ginger mojito, grapefruit-elderflower margarita, cucumber mint smash and raspberry vodka with muddled fresh berries and lemonade. The same food menu runs through lunch and dinner hours. It offers a slew of casual beach eats such as ahi tuna poke, tacos, chicken wings and beer-boiled peel and eat shrimp, but there is also more serious fare such as ribeye and lobster.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: A Caribbean style beach bar, it has full liquor and nightly live entertainment.
Chelle's expert tip: Don't miss the dramatic fire dancer show entertains each evening at sunset.
It opened in 2018 to replace the former beach bar with a spiffed-up version that has also improved upon its food and beverage offerings. Craft cocktails include the Beach Mule with muddled berries, ginger beer and vodka; and the Paloma, a cooler with tequila, lime and grapefruit juice and club soda. Breakfast brings buffet and a la carte options. At lunch, flatbreads, burgers, salads, sandwiches and creative apps take this a notch up from standard beach bar fare. Dinner goes one better with local seafood prepared creatively and black angus cuts of steak with our without lobster.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: A full-service bar and grill, it overlooks the resort's beach.
Chelle's expert tip: For lunch, the Mediterranean flatbread hits the spot for vegetarians and omnivores alike.
A short walk down the boardwalk from The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, toward the beach sits this nice little al fresco homage to sandbar casual at the sophisticated resort. It is also easily accessible from the beach and open to the public. It gets its name from a native tree also called the "tourist tree" for its red peely bark. Family friendly, it's a great place for a frozen cocktail, cold beer or glass of lemonade. Its lunch and dinner menus list a typical array of noshes such as wings, tacos, conch chowder, handcrafted burgers, salads, sandwiches and dinner entrees.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: This "ritzy" establishment steps off the beach has the right vibe.
Chelle's expert tip: If you're looking for Trouble in Paradise, it's the name of a signature frozen drink here, made with spiced rum, dark rum, banana liqueur and coconut creme.
Part of the JW Marriott branding upgrade in 2075, Kane constitutes the main beach bar. Its open, tiki design works well with its Polynesian menu and sandy, watery views. A focus on rum travels to a different region, the Caribbean, but the fruity cocktails and flight tasters work regardless. Kane's adept bartenders pour more than 30 fine brands of rum from Barbados to Brazil. Shareable rum cocktails, at $37 each, serve up to three. The bar also carries Florida craft beers on tap. On the food side of things, finger foods and sliders satisfy beachy appetites. Weekends bring live entertainment.
Recommended for Beach Bars because: This is a fantasy vision of tropical vacationing on the beach.
Chelle's expert tip: Try the PuPu (appetizer) Platter and rum flight tasting for a sampling of what Kane is all about.