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Photo courtesy of Chelle Koster Walton
Collier Museum at Government Center
Type: Historic Sites, History Museums, Museums
The flagship location of Collier County Museums' excellent five-campus empire, the Collier County Museum retraces nearly one million years of Southwest Florida history. The more than... Read More
The flagship location of Collier County Museums' excellent five-campus empire, the Collier County Museum retraces nearly one million years of Southwest Florida history. The more than 10,000-square-foot space spans exhibits as diverse as prehistoric mastodons, ceremonial masks made by indigenous peoples and the first settlers' struggle for survival. The skeleton of an Ice Age giant ground sloth hanging from the ceiling greets visitors. You can also explore attractions outside, including the museum's native gardens, restored cottages, a vintage swamp buggy that kids can climb into, a working archaeological lab, a 1910 steam locomotive from the county's cypress-logging era and a recreated Seminole fort and Calusa Indian camp.
- Mon-Sat 9am-4pm
- Free; Donations Appreciated
- Free Things to Do: "The morning hours are the least crowded and coolest time to explore the museum grounds."
- Things to Do with Kids: "In mid-November, the museum hosts its Old Florida Festival, a weekend of historic re-enactments and demonstrations."
- Best Attractions & Activities, Museums: "In early March, the museum hosts its Old Florida Festival, a weekend of historic re-enactments and demonstrations."
- Best for Free Things to Do Because: It is the best historical museum in the county hands down; admission is free, but donations are accepted.
- Best for Things to Do with Kids Because: In a park setting, it has natural kid magnets such as a prehistoric giant sloth skeleton, fort, locomotive and swamp buggy.
- Recommended as Best Attractions & Activities Because: One of a handful of county historical museums, this is the original and most comprehensive.
- Best for Museums Because: The Naples' area first and definitive historical museum, it presents history in an entertaining fashion.