Rent An RV And Camp on Florida’s Best Beaches

My neighbors are planning retirement and going to move from urban Tampa to a more rural county.  This, however, does not mean a total downsize of their activities for they recently purchased an RV and discovered they could less expensively travel the nation and vacation in some cool places.  They also found that you could stay on some of Florida’s best beaches at shocking amounts of savings.

Florida is extremely RV friendly with no special drivers licenses needed.  Many RVs are manufactured here and their used RV lots are as large as the automobile lots.  Besides, you can rent RVs and camping tents from pioneer rustic to family resort size almost anywhere in Florida.  Even if you are looking for a beach and plan to stay at a nearby motel, these are great summer beaches.

Here are my favorite beach-side spots with RV and tent facilities.  Florida’s State Parks had great facilities and lower rates and in many cases better location than commercial campgrounds.  Some have cabin facilities.

Fort Clinch State Park is located at the very northeast tip of Florida looking across the Saint Mary’s River into Georgia.  The park has 32 RV or tent facilities and a historic fort seized by the Union during the Civil War.   The big bonus here is the wonderful Victorian port village of Fernandina Beach with a fun downtown, dozens of notable bed and breakfast sports, and Florida’s oldest saloon (The Palace) and oldest small hotel (The Florida).

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Fort Clinch – Campground is to the right on the bayou

You can rent horses at Amelia Island State Park at mid-island, the only state park where you can ride on the wide and hard Atlantic beach, but if you want another great RV and tent park you need to travel ten miles south to Little Talbot Island State Park with its five miles of beautiful , almost deserted sandy beaches.  The bonus here is the estuarine waters of Myrtle Creek and Simpson Creek, ideal for kayak or canoe.


Riding Along Amelia Island Beach

Fifty miles southward is Anastasia State Park, just ten minutes from historic Saint Augustine.  The park has great facilities and a nice, wide Atlantic beach, but the north end is near the Inlet so rough currents are a serious issue if you have small kids.  The bayside, however, is a good boating and kayaking site.

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Anastasia Island Has A WIDE Beach

Where are the best RVing and camping beaches?  The Panhandle has some neat beach spots – perhaps less crowded in winter when the water is colder.

At the extreme western tip of Florida’s beaches is the Fort Pickens Campground on Pensacola Beach next to the fort the Confederacy could never conquer. This is the beautiful Gulf Islands National Seashore.  The campground has 200 full facility sites and boat access on the Intracoastal Waterway.  Historic Pensacola is a bay boat trip away and the summer is when the restaurants and clubs on Pensacola Beach is most active.

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Fort Pickens Campground – Water On Both Sides

  The Destin area has great beaches.  Topsail Hill Preserve State Park on Santa Rosa Beach has 140 RV sites and 29 cabins, 1,640 acres of nature trails, and access to three miles of very white sandy beaches.  The park is named for a 25-foot sand dune.  Perhaps the state’s best commercial campground is not far away.  Check out the beach-side Camp Gulf Holiday Travel Park in Destin .

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Camp Gulf Holiday Park at Destin Beach

If you really want to get away from the tourist traffic and walk on a deserted beach ranked third best in the USA, look up St. George Island State Park. There are 60 campsites here and full facilities.  The Park is on the far east end of the island so the only visitors are staying in the park.

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Follow The Lone Gull to St. George Island Beach

 On the Gulf Coast we in Tampa Bay can’t stop suggesting Fort DeSoto County Park located southwest of downtown Saint Petersburg on a series of islands jutting into the entranceway of Tampa Bay.  Rated one year the best beach in the nation by Mr. Beach, this park has RV sites inches from kayak and boat launch, three large beaches, food facilities, two big fishing piers, and a massive Spanish-American War fortress.

FLORIDATRAVELER fort desoto campground

Having A Water View Is Not An Issue

Although the park is extremely popular with day-trippers, it is so large and the campgrounds so isolated , you will feel you are in a rural campground. The amount of recreational activities and rentals are high since there is the added market of visitor renters.

If scuba and snorkeling are high on your agenda then you need an RV park in the Florida Keys.  There are lots of private RV campgrounds in the Upper and Middle Keys, but two lower cost state parks have great locations.

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Beautiful Bahia Honda State Park

Bahia Honda State Park deserves its national reputation due to its location, kayaking and boating opportunities, and two nice beaches.  With the giant US1 Bridge nearby, you won’t think you are in a wilderness, but you will feel you are staying in a neat beach resort.

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At Long Key State Park You Snorkel Next To Your RV

Lesser known is Long Key State Park with 42 waterside RV hookups.  The beach is not so good but if you kayak or boat, it is a wonderful location.  Where else can you catch your evening meal just minutes away from the barbecue?






About floridatraveler

Historian and travel writer M. C. Bob Leonard makes the Sunshine State his home base. Besides serving as content editor for several textbook publishers and as an Emeritus college professor, he moderates the FHIC at
This entry was posted in adventure vacation, attractions, diving, environment, florida history, Florida parks, Florida sports, florida vacations, Historic Forts, mcbobleonard, Recreational Experiences and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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