Ultimate Camping Guide: Florida
Florida is yet another American state with vast areas of natural beauty, countless tourism spots and an extremely popular place to travel. With many national parks for exploring, state parks to camp in, popular camp grounds and gorgeous national forests – there’s no difficulty in finding something to do and somewhere to go. This article should cover a lot of information regarding camping in the Sunshine State, starting with….
Where to camp in Florida
There are some picturesque locations to comp in Florida, no matter the type of camper you are. Do you like forests? Vast bodies of water? Look no further than sunny Florida. Here is a list of places for you to check out:
Ocala national forest
Hillsborough River state park
Everglades national park
Jonathan Dickinson state park
Manatee springs state park
There a lovely mix of locations here, each being just the trunk of a tree of camping, with so many roots. A lot of the state parks have a mixture of establish campgrounds and dispersed camp grounds for tent campers and RV/Van campers. There a lot of camping spots along the forgotten coast, as well as at fort de Soto – some locations you can’t pass up the opportunity to camp at. When taking at a look at campsites, bare in mind that you may have to reserve your pitch. We will go into more information on this later in this article so make sure you read ahead!
What to pack for camping in Florida?
Depending on your desired location, and the type of camping you wish to experience, your inventory will differ. For backpackers and hikers, who don’t plan on staying overnight in one place for a long time and are on their feet a lot – a lightweight tent is essential for ease of your experience and simile set-ups so you can be resting as soon as you lay down your pack. Tentsile’s 2-person double camping hammock, the T-mini- is amazing for those who wish to take a rest in any location. And we mean any location! (As long as you have 3 trees to attach to that is). If you’re planning on sleeping on your journey, the Flite 2-person Tree Tent is a tried and tested tent that is perfect for those on the move. Are you flying solo? The UNA 1-person Tree Tent is exactly what you need. Don’t believe me? Just take a look yourself!
Are you a hardened camper that like to set up a base camp, and stay overnight for an extended period of time? Tentsile’s heavy-duty Safari range are perfect for any backcountry camper. Depending on the number of campers, the Safari Connect, Safari Vista or Safari Stingray will tick all of your boxes.
All campers of all types will have items in their inventory that cross over. Such as the essential sleeping bag, portable phone charger, sunglasses (an absolute must have in Florida!), sun lotion, a first aid kit, and plenty of food and water. We cannot emphasize enough that you must bring a lot of water in hot states like Florida! And maybe a hat too, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
What to consider before camping in Florida
This is an important section. You can’t just get up and go camping in any state in the Us. There are rules and regulations you must adhere to, to avoid anything that could absolutely soil your experience. Ensure you cover all the legal aspects, such as maximum stays in locations, whether you can set a fire, Leave No Trace guidance, weapon carry, absolutely anything that is on the Florida state website regarding camping. Make sure you follow the rules that have been out in place for a reason.
Another super important factor is yours and your camping partners’ safety. If you are allowed to set a fire, ensure it’s under control. Don’t over fuel it. Keep it low and safe from surrounding debris. We emphasise watching videos on campfire safety and learning as much as you can before you stick a lighter under a bed of sticks! Animals are a cause for concern when wild camping, so follow any guidance you find online and read about other campers’ experiences and do what you can to ensure you don’t run into any problems. If visiting a campsite/campground with other campers around you, ensure you keep in mind the potential for theft of your items. If possible, store valuables in the car (or don’t bring many at all!). Don’t leave your purse or wallet in your underfloor storage when you head out for a hike!
With the important stuff out the way, just make sure that you set yourself out to have fun! Consider where amenities are if you are going to a public camping location to maintain your personal hygiene and clothing. Locate your local garbage cans to make sure look after the campsite and the environment around it. Here is a link to Florida state park rules so you can brush up on them before you head out - https://www.floridastateparks.org/plan-your-visit/florida-state-park-rules.
Florida Camping tips
Here are some tips to bear in mind before you head out on your camping adventure in Florida.
Get familiar with where you are travelling, and read up the rules and regulations. As beforementioned, check the campsite rules to avoid any altercations with authorities, same goes for state parks.
Make your booking far in advance to avoid issues with reservations, and so you aren’t let down by a lack of space. If you’re planning on camping during high season, that is a must-do, as the summer is a time where all the kids are out of school and huge crowds will be planning on camping in the heat of the Sunshine State. It could be best to trade off a quieter camping trip in the low-season of spring or fall, but be aware the weather won’t be as great as summer.
Pack in preparation for the various weather, all depending on when you plan to camp. Keep an eye on the weather forecasts to see if you’ll need to bring a raincoat. Florida can surprise you!
Where can you camp in Florida?
The Sunshine State has many established and dispersed camping grounds, as well as the state parks having campgrounds littered throughout. As for backcountry camping, primitive campsites in Florida State Parks are primarily along trails built and maintained by the Florida Trail Association. Most state parks charge a nominal fee per person, between $1 and $5 per night, to camp in the backcountry. Some of the more popular primitive camping destinations have vault toilets and fire rings. Just check online for your desired location.
Where is best to camp in Florida?
This question depends on your preferred type of camp. Backcountry camper? Check out the primitive campsites that are around Florida, a quick google search will land you a place that isn’t too far from where you are entering the state. Enjoy campsites with other campers around? Check out Central Florida, there are some great bodies of water to lounge in and amenities that can cover a lot of necessities.
When does camping season start in Florida?
Bookings increase in volume around the month of June, so it’s safe to say the season starts around then.