Naples, Florida may be in a period of transition following Hurricane Ian, but the community has shown its resilience, coming together to welcome back residents and tourists. One of the best ways to support Naples and surrounding areas is to get out to local businesses and community events. While not every business has recovered enough to open this month, if you’re looking for things to do in Naples in December, we’ve got you covered with a list of ideas.
1. Handel’s Messiah – A Live Performance
Enjoy this beloved choral holiday tradition as the Naples Philharmonic appears in a special performance with the Naples Philharmonic Chorus. With the Naples Philharmonic conducted by Radu Paponiu and the Naples Philharmonic Chorus directed by Jeremy T. Warner, this year’s rendition of Handel’s Messiah is sure to delight.
Get your tickets early for this festive tradition. Experience the powerful combination of orchestra and chorus as they perform together at Artis Naples.
Thursday, December 1st
2. Holiday Artisan Market – Mercato Shops
Looking for a unique decoration or a special gift for that one person who has everything? Be sure to support local artisans this season by visiting the annual Holiday Artisan Market at Mercato Shops.
Enjoy live music while you wander the market. To add a bit of flavor to your shopping, be sure to stop by Bubbles Bar to pick up a glass of Prosecco or a mimosa.
Kids will love the opportunity to write letters to Santa while you shop at more than 25 local artisan booths, including those selling handmade items such as clothing, jewelry, fine art, and more.
Three Saturdays in December: 3rd, 10th, 17th
Suite 3135 (Across from Z Gallerie & Tommy Bahama)
12:00 – 4:00 pm
3. Home for the Holidays — a TheatreZone Production
Described as exuberant, extravagant and a feast for the senses, this TheatreZone production will ignite your holiday spirit. Featuring song and dance, unique choreography, and spectacular visual effects, this heartwarming holiday show is sure to inspire audiences to sing along to classics, as they celebrate the power of music.
Buy your tickets in advance for this event. Both evening shows and matinees will run in early December.
Friday, December 9th - Sunday, December 11th
13275 Livingston Road
Friday: 7:30 pm
Saturday: 2:00 pm + 7:30 pm
Sunday: 2:00 pm
4. Christmas Boat Parade
This annual holiday tradition is sure to be met with a new appreciation this year, as many boats have suffered damage and hardship from the recent storm. This year, the Naples Christmas Boat Parade is scheduled for the evening of Saturday, December 10th.
Organized by the Marine Industries of Collier County, the Christmas Boat Parade allows boat owners and sponsored boats to light up the night with spectacular lights and festive designs.
The parade can be viewed from several locations, including Naples City Dock (ticketed), Kelly’s Fish House, Pinchers Tin City, Naples Landing and more. Be sure to call ahead for reservations or to buy tickets.
Saturday, December 10th
Naples City Dock and other viewing locations, Naples
6:15 pm – 8:30 pm
5. Comedian Carmen Morales – Live Performance
Carmen Morales will appear live in Naples at the Off the Hook Comedy Club this December. Morales, who has appeared on HBO, Showtime, Hulu and The World Famous Comedy Store in Los Angeles, is sure to entertain with her captivating style and opinionated quick wit. You may have caught Morales performing on Netflix or heard her hit podcast “No Sir Don’t Like It.”
If you’re looking for a night of laughs this holiday season, grab your friends and book your tickets in advance.
General and VIP seating available:
Wednesday, December 14th
Off The Hook Comedy Club, Naples
6. Naples Ballet — The Nutcracker
Don’t miss this classic holiday tradition. Fans of all ages will love this vibrant performance of The Nutcracker, Tchaikovsky’s timeless tale. Join Clara and her Nutcracker Prince as they embark on a magical journey. Performed with the Naples Philharmonic, this beautiful retelling of The Nutcracker features local members of Naples Ballet, as well as international soloists.
Introduce your young fans to the Sugarplum Fairy, the Rat Queen, the Nutcracker Prince and more. As these tickets sell quickly, be sure to buy yours early.
Tuesday, December 20th; Wednesday, December 21st
5833 Pelican Bay Boulevard, Naples
7. Johnsonville Night Lights in the Garden
Showing every night in December, except the 24th, 25th, and 31st, this popular event at the Naples Botanical Garden is sure to light up your holiday season with color, music, and joy.
Stroll through spectacular light displays, and grab a bite to eat at Fogg Café or the Berger Shop in the Garden. Kids will enjoy exploring make-believe campfires and tents, as part of a family-friendly exhibit on the Performance Lawn. Some nights feature live music or other special events.
Tickets are available for Naples Botanical Garden members first, then the public.
Nightly in December, excluding the 24th, 25th, and 31st
Naples Botanical Garden
4820 Bayshore Drive, Naples
6:00 pm + - ticketed timing
8. Community Chanukah Celebration
On December 21st, at Mercato on the Lawn, the Jewish Federation of Greater Naples invites you to celebrate Chanukah and the lighting of the Menorah. Be sure to join the fun—attendees will be treated to entertainment, food and music.
This family-friendly event will feature the Naples Klezmer Revival Band, donuts, gelt and the Israeli creations of Chef Dalia.
While this event is free to attend, organizers ask that you register at www.jewishnaples.org
, so they may get a sense of expected numbers.
Wednesday, December 21st
Mercato on the Lawn
Mercato Shops, Naples
9. New Year’s Eve Cruise
Ready to welcome 2023 in style? Make sure you reserve your spot on Pure Florida’s New Year’s Eve fireworks cruise. Leaving from the historic Tin City docks, this cruise will tour through Naples Bay and Port Royal canals, followed by a Gulf of Mexico cruise, reaching the Naples Pier for a spectacular fireworks show.
This cruise departs at 6:00 pm and lasts approximately two hours. Tickets are $145 each and include dinner and a complimentary drink ticket. Don’t miss your chance to celebrate New Year’s Eve on the ocean.
To reserve your spot on Pure Florida’s New Year’s Eve cruise, call the reservation team at 239-263-4949.
Saturday, December 31st
Pure Florida Cruises
Departing from Tin City Shops, Naples
If you’re looking for things to do in Naples in December, you might be surprised how many options are available. The city has been rapidly recovering, following Hurricane Ian, restoring infrastructure and necessities as well as amenities and hope. Whether you are in the mood for a sunset cruise, a theatre performance, a festival of lights, or a good laugh, there are plenty of things to do in Naples this year. As a precaution, be sure to double-check the status of events before you head out.
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