Travel Guide to Florida

2014 Travel Guide to Florida

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RV site at the Chassahowitzka River Campground in Central West Florida Pines, the 71-site RV park has full hookups and a laundry facility. Centered on Paradise Cove Water Park, it's a place for summer enjoyment, with a driving range, mini golf and batting cages amid nearly 300 acres. From the pool deck at Lake Okeechobee Outpost in Pahokee, you can see water as far as the horizon—the vast Lake Okeechobee is one of America's largest lakes. Bring an RV, pitch a tent or rent a waterfront cottage at the only place you can camp on the "Big O" shoreline. It's rustic, but to be expected—it used to be a state park. SOUTHWEST Step back into Old Florida and pitch a tent under the oaks at Fisheating Creek Outpost in Palmdale. An ancient forest shades the tentfriendly section of the campground, which hugs the cypress-lined banks of Fisheating Creek. The creek is one of Florida's wilder places to paddle, with canoe and kayak rentals and shuttles available near the camp store. A quiet place for an RV getaway, Ortona South Campground on the Caloosahatchee River is managed by the Army Corps of Engineers. The well-groomed 51-space campground perches above the Ortona Locks so you can watch sailboats go by and get in some fishing from the piers. Set your camper up and settle in for the season at Rock Creek RV Resort in Naples, where winter activities keep residents abuzz at the clubhouse and around a heated pool. CENTRAL EAST Sheltered by a canopy of live oaks, the 177 sites at Manatee Hammock Campground south of Titusville are riffled by breezes off the Indian River Lagoon and have a view of rocket launches at Kennedy Space Center. With 30 tent sites plus a game room and swimming pool, it's a popular destination for family camping. Tent campers have their own escape at quiet Lake Ashby Park in Volusia County, where the playground and restrooms are within an easy walk of the deeply shaded primitive campsites. CENTRAL Watch the sun rise over the marshes of Lake Lowery at Oak Harbor Lodging and RV Park, a 198-site family-owned campground that feels like a nature park. At Cherry Pocket Fish Camp, rustic cabins and RV sites provide out-the-door access for fishing on Lake Pierce; at night, their famed restaurant draws diners from around the region. A county park on a breezy peninsula, Trimble Park is a birder's delight, with shady tent and camper spaces not far from antiquing in Mount Dora. Splash in a spring in the Ocala National Forest by spending a night at one of several popular campgrounds; Alexander Springs has the best swimming, snorkeling and paddling for all ages. Ocean Pond Campground in Baker County tent out to Anclote Key State Park—accessible only by kayak or private boat—and camp on that quiet island? CENTRAL WEST Paddlers love Chassahowitzka River Campground, the launch point for adventures in watery Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge. Near Dade City, Withlacoochee River Park offers primitive tent sites ideal for families to take the kids on their first camping trip, as well as RV sites near a replica 1840s village. With 238 sites, many of which look out on Tampa Bay, Fort De Soto Park is on every camper's list. But did you know you can take a NORTHEAST In Jacksonville, you can't get closer to the beach than Huguenot Memorial Park Campground, which features 71 sites on a spit of sand at the mouth of the St. Johns River. Campers at Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area in Flagler Beach enjoy a soft strum of the waves at night and can borrow bedtime stories from a campground library for the kids. 2014 TRAVEL GUIDE TO FLORIDA 71

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