Visitors flock to W.P. Franklin Campground for its well-kept facilities and location on the Caloosahatchee River, where campers can fish, boat and take it easy in sunny southwest Florida. The campground, about 10 miles east of Fort Myers, provides visitors with a taste of tranquil, tropical country life. Nearby Telegraph Creek, offers exciting opportunities to canoe Florida's backcountry swamps and view wildlife.
Fishing for both salt and fresh water game fish is popular, as is boating. A unique feature of the campground is its cruiser sites, where campers sleep on their boat while enjoying the perks of the campsite facilities.
The 29 RV sites and 8 boat sites are equipped with 50 amp electric and water hookups. A boat ramp, fishing pier and trailer dump station are conveniently onsite.
The campground is almost completely surrounded by the Caloosahatchee River with just a narrow stretch of land connecting it to the shore. The Caloosahatchee River is part of the 152 mile Okeechobee Waterway that spans South Florida from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.
Visit the U.S Army Corps of Engineers visitor center across the river in the W.P. Franklin South Recreation Area. Visit downtown Fort Myers for flea markets, grocery stores, shopping and the historic Thomas Edison and Henry Ford Winter Estates, or spend a day exploring the sandy Gulf of Mexico beaches, about 45 minutes from the campground.
ADA Access: N
Lovely place with wonderful camp hosts. My only knock is it is all paved and no trees. We fished and it was kinda nice not having dirt in the camp. Whole campground surrounded by water. We enjoyed watching the boats come thru the locks and fishing.
Nice clean park on an island. This campground has water and electric hook ups at paved sites with gravel around covered picnic table, fire pit and BBQ. All sites have water access for fishing or boating. Even though sites are close together and not private, neighbors were respectful and quiet.
Clean, well-maintained campground consisting of 30 spots spread out along the edges of a boomerang-shaped island. All except for 3 sites are waterfront. Sites 22-30 and 8 boat slips are on the South end with a large parking area, boat launch, picnic area, and bath house. On the North end there is a larger bath house and picnic area along with sites 1-21. There are a few drive thru sites (11 & 19-22) and the rest are nicely angled. The concrete parking pads are level and the pea gravel is well tended. All sites have 30/50 amp electric, water, covered picnic table, and fire pit. No sewer at the sites. Dump station near the exit. There isn't much shade due to immature trees and palms. Nice fishing pier and a lending library near the middle. For kayakers the launch ramp is good and some sites on the inland side have good slope and shallow water to launch from directly. Sites facing the river are in the restricted waterway area near the locks so no boats are allowed. This is a nice quiet place to decompress.
Well kept, offers 30/50 amp service Most sites water front. Small sites but extremely clean. Down fall no sewer. Clean bath facilities. Shore or fishing peer. Boat ramp. Not much in walking trails. Sites 9.10,11 offer the best views. Wal-Mart aprox 10 miles. Tmobile cell service week 1 bar. Tv reception excellent.
WP Franklin Campground, Alva, Florida. Army Corp of Engineers Lock
WP Franklin Campground is located fairly close to Fort Myers, FL (west on Rt.80) so you are within 45 minutes to the Gulf Coast beaches (during off-season) and much, much longer during winter months. However, if you enjoy paddling or boating…you are there! Short distance hiking is closeby, as well as MTB trails.
I will begin with the positives…
•Wonderfully nice hosts
•Impeccably clean grounds, sites, docks, restrooms
•Manicured grassy areas
•On its own boomerang-shaped river island
•Charcoal grill ridiculously spotless…along with the fire pit…spaciously situated on clean, raked pea gravel
•Covered picnic table
•Long, level concrete parking pad, angled for back-in
•Water hookups/Electric at every site
•7/8 of all sites are on the river
•Mature, quiet crowd
•Several boat camper docks with electric/water
•Relatively close to Gulf Coast beaches, shopping and nightlife
•Regional park nearby offers trails (but was affected by hurricane Irma)
•Regional mountain bike trails nearby
•Water is ten feet from your site…slide your paddle craft in and go…or back your power craft down a ramp in the center of the campground
•Multiple docks, shoreline and locks to fish from
The not so positives for tent campers…
•Absolutely no privacy…at all. Palm trees are lovely but offer no barrier between neighbors
•Small campground…no trails…just surrounding water
•Literally on top of your neighbor
•No need for a nightlight. All night Streetlights penetrate tent walls/fly
•Noisy! Air traffic from RSW is nonstop, road traffic from Rt 78 and/or Rt 80 seemed nonstop (and technically it's not season yet), yappy lap dogs
•Expensive for no amenities at $30 a night
•Tent is 4ft. from campground roadway…sounds/feels like vehicles are in the tent with you as they pass
•Staying at site 27, overflow parking is ten feet away…more noise
•Prepare for mosquitos and chiggers (not bad, but just bring your repellent)
I continue to try local Campgrounds in SW Florida…so this is an attempt to see what my state has to offer. I ordinarily seek out the solitude of faraway mountain states and more rustic/primitive/backcountry camping options. This was akin to sleeping in my backyard…correction…my yard is far quieter and less busy…offering more privacy
For the RV/Camper set…this must be popular and enjoyable, even though I wasn't contented. If you are an RV/Camper…and bring your toys…using this as a base camp to launch activities…there are plenty of areas nearby to explore and enjoy the wild…on land and water!
This is purely personal, based on what I like and dislike when I desire to visit campgrounds. I will not return, but only because I am not an RV/Camper type of person.. Plenty of reviewers give this Campground five stars, so take my comments for what they're worth. Regardless, bring your earplugs, noise cancelling headphones or heavily insulated RV/camper…or revel in the noise.
Tomorrow is another day and another Campground!