Florida destinations for happy campers
2020 provided enough drama to last a few lifetimes. Still uncomfortable with air travel and the three hour wait at the airport for international flights? Consider a nature getaway with friends, family, or another loved one to help restore inner balance. Hire an RV and cycle the open roads to one of Florida’s 191 state parks for a nostalgic throwback to childhood camping trips. We’ve selected our top six getaways that are accessible around the same time as an early arrival at the airport. For reservations and availability, consult Florida State Parks or Reserve America. Go ahead, venture out, happy campers!
Lake Kissimmee State Park
Watch the 1991 film townspeople before visiting this state park, a cow camp from 1876 where the legacy of cowboys remains alive. Perhaps the most entertaining aspect is the re-enactment of living history each weekend, which transports visitors to a time when the life of a “cow hunter” was spent raising cattle between the ages. cow camps in Florida and where downtime was spent on hard ground next to a campfire. The payment in Spanish gold doubloons was a pretty decent incentive, the actor’s cowboys say, but probably few of us city dwellers would make it through a day. Boating, canoeing, fishing, stargazing, or hiking over 13 miles of leafy trails – keep your eyes peeled for white-tailed deer and bald eagles – or venture out on horseback on well-groomed trails.
Blue Spring State Park
Hundreds of manatees inhabit this great source of the Saint John River, and although swimming with them is forbidden, it is almost impossible not to meet one of these gentle sea cows: cheeky guys take a big enjoy swimming alongside humans and participating in aquatic activities. adventure. Snorkel in crystal clear waters, float with an inner tube (rental available) down Spring Blue the natural lazy river to boil, or launch a kayak for a zen ride through the lush wooded areas surrounding the spring. Perhaps as famous as the manatees are the cave and cave diving opportunities – only for certified cave divers – and scuba diving, which is only allowed with a buddy. Visitors say the hidden and mysterious underwater holes lead to otherworldly places and swear it’s one of the best places in Florida to scuba dive. Don’t miss a visit to Thursby House, the well-preserved 19th-century home of European settler Louis Thursby, who hoped to be enriched with an orange grove and a steamboat landing stage.
Curry Hammock State Park
The largest uninhabited chunk of land between Key Largo and Big Pine Key engulfs visitors in the pristine beauty of wild and undeveloped mangroves, rock hammocks, and seagrass beds. Go wild on a Saturday night and join the local astronomy group for memorable stargazing or go on your own in search of wildlife at the 1,000-acre sanctuary, which is a centuries-old migration route. Visitors can also kitesurf or paddle the Atlantic, kayak through Curry hammockscenic waterways, travel miles of nature trails and fish for tarpon, snook, rockfish and mangrove snapper on the shore. A state fishing license is required but can be easily obtained online.
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
A scenic drive south to Key West will result in what is arguably one of Florida’s most famous dive spots.John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park in Key Largo. Adjacent to the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and the nation’s first underwater park, it’s considered an underwater Grand Canyon, offering a rare glimpse of colorful coral formations. The outside world is left behind when exploring delicate ecosystems by glass-bottom boat, kayak, canoe, or scuba dive here. Thick mangroves provide shelter for inexperienced divers, and these quiet respites sometimes result in close encounters with curious manatees, sea turtles, and dolphins. A short hike through the park exposes an ancient artesian well hidden in the mangroves, while walking trails through tropical hammocks lead to picnics, bird watching, and fishing spots. Thirty-nine RV sites are available, all dog-friendly with electrical hookups and a long list of amenities, from barbecues to interpretive programs and accessibility for people with disabilities.
Everglades National Park Flamingo Campground
One of the country’s most famous national parks sits at the southern end of Florida, where 1.5 million acres of swamps, subtropical jungles and sawgrass marshes invite visitors to commune with the nature. Fourteen endangered species reside here, which means you are immersed in rugged beauty. Yet the adventures are easily and comfortably navigable with many modern conveniences. Choose relaxation or adventure with hiking and biking trails, kayak and canoe rentals, perches for observing exotic wildlife and birds, and world-class fishing. Several campgrounds abound, but the Flamingo campsite is quickly becoming a visitor’s “favorite” for its seemingly endless views of Florida Bay, year-round cooling breeze, and camping options. The newest – and the only “glamping” alternative on the list – are Flamingo’s eco-friendly safari-style tents. Slightly raised off the ground, these fully furnished tents feature electricity, a chest of drawers, a shelving unit, one queen-size bed or two double beds, linens, a removable insect screen and a private outdoor seating area. Showers, a community grill, and a marina store are nearby for all the essentials. The RV campsite is next door with 65 sites, many with electrical hookups. Don’t feel landlocked, however. Boat options are plentiful with single and double kayaks and canoes for hire, as well as motorized skiffs and pontoons. For another adventurous nighttime option, a limited number of Flamingo Adventures houseboats are available, with air conditioning when docked. Equipped with two bedrooms, a living room, a bathroom, a kitchen, a gas oven / hob and a fully equipped kitchen, these floating houses can accommodate up to four adults and two kids, the perfect family getaway or romantic retreat.
Koreshan State Park
With its beautifully restored buildings set amidst resplendent Victorian gardens, Koreshan is named after a pioneer in the late 1800s who established his new religion, Koreshanity, on the banks of the Estero River. Step back in time in 11 homes and buildings on the National Register of Historic Places. Every Sunday a farmer’s market engulfs the historic village with fresh, locally produced produce, from vegetables and honey to soap and artisan breads. Embark on natural adventures through the 135-acre park, including hiking and bird watching through flat pine habitat and along bamboo trails. Kayak and canoe rentals are available for paddling the brackish waterway of the Estero River to Estero Bay. Beyond the abundant redfish, snook and mullet in its waters, the area is renowned for freshwater bass fishing in the hot summer months and for saltwater fishing nearby. Go back to childhood in hide and seek with the park’s self-guided “geo search” adventure to uncover trinkets, treasures and hidden information hidden by geocachers. A special website provides clues.
This national chain has several local locations in South Florida to rent three types of RVs that vary in size to accommodate three to seven people. Even the smallest motorhome has all the comforts of home, from a toilet and shower to the refrigerator, including air conditioning, hob and microwave. With optional kitchen and bath / bedroom rental kits available, little is needed to get on the road.
While the rockstar tour bus has always had a secret allure, the Class A motorhome fulfills a fantasy. Able to accommodate two to six people, it has a real bedroom, folding living room sofas, two pull-outs for more space, air conditioning, a kitchen, a shower (often a bathtub). too), cupboards and even an entertainment center. It’s just not important for fuel economy.