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Campsites are generally good sized with both paved parking pads and green grass. Unlike the sites at Flamingo, there's more brush and trees providing an element of separation and privacy from other sites. There are flush toilets, showers, water fill, and a dump station, but no hookups. If you want electric, you should make reservations at Flamingo. Many of them have good vie of the sky, nice for solar charging your batteries or enjoying the stars. Insects can be be brutal, but they weren't too bad in January. Campground is open during the winter months/dry season, before the rain, insects, and heat keep most people away.
This is a nice location not too far into the park in case you want to explore another area, but it's remote enough that if you haven't picked up all you need by the time you reach Robert is Here Fruit Stand, you should go back to get it or plan to do without for a while. Speaking of Robert's, stop for a refreshing smoothie or shake and some fruits or vegetables on your way in or out of the park…or maybe each way!
This campground and the one at Flamingo are operated by Flamingo Everglades concessionaire and they seem to be working to upgrade facilities. They're building a new station at the entrance. Reservations are available for RVs to try to ensure that those who need an RV site will be able to get one that fits their rig; tenters are asked to select their site upon arrival.
Phone access spotty with Verizon; It was decent at Anhinga Trail, worse the farther down the road you get to Flamingo.
I didn't happen across any gators in the campground while I was there, but they're definitely in the area. Didn't see a panther, either. Wildlife abounds, particularly the birds. An easy walk with great reward, especially early in the morning or in the evening is the Anhinga boardwalk. Keep your eyes peeled for the colorful purple gallinule darting across the lily pads and the anhinga spreading their wings to dry. I'm not much of a birder, but the challenge of distinguishing the ibis from the snow egret to the great egret is fun (Do you know which one has the golden slippers? The Merlin bird app is also a great tool to help you out.)
Also nearby is the Nike MIssile Site, open for tours most days during the winter, but check at the visitors' center for details because the info on the website doesn't correspond with real life. Continue on down the road to Flamingo to catch a boat tour or rent a boat on your own; explore some hiking trails along the way. Bikes are a nice way to explore the campground or longer rides through the park. Stop at the visitor's center and pick up some guides or a Jr Ranger book for the kids.
Quiet and relaxing campground(other than one camper with a very loud generator). Quick and easy check-in with the camp host. Walked the service road and the trail north of the Oasis Visitor Center. Several alligators in Monument Lake and the canal next to the visitor center. Interesting facts about local cougar population. Had beautiful sunsets on Monument Lake. Cell service was adequate. Did not us the restrooms or showers, but very clean. We would camp here again.
It is an hour drive to the campground but a good road and worth the trip. There are several points of interest along the way but we did not stop to check them out. Check-in with reservations was very quick and easy. Both campgrounds are well maintained. The T-loop showers are cold water only but the A-Loop showers are solar heated and there was hot water on sunny days. We parked in a site without services but potable water is available at nearby restrooms. Our campground was quiet except for a couple of campers running their generator during official quiet hours, but they were not an issue. The beach area is a short walk or bike ride from the campground and is not suitable for swimming, at least by our standards. There are a variety of scheduled and unscheduled activities available. The Ranger Led Programs are excellent—guided canoe trip and mobile museum. The staff are very friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable. We biked on the paved trail to the marina several times and observed crocodiles, alligators, manatees, osprey, and vultures. Don’t leave food outside unattended because the vultures will visit your site. Supplies and rentals at the concession are bit pricey. Overall we enjoyed our stay and stops at the visitor centers and Nike site.
If you can beat the bugs, stargaze and enjoy the sunrise. But take the bug seriously. Even in late January the mosquitoes or vicious. You'll want insect repellent long sleeve long pants and maybe even a mosquito net when you are out and about.
Flamingo Everglades is the concessionaire that operates this campground and the nearby marina. The campground is arranged into 2 loops (one for trailers; about half of them with electric) plus a bayside field area that also includes a group tent site. For these, you park and walk to your site, but you get a great view of the bay and sunrises. In addition, there are several new eco-tents (platform tents) with beds two chairs and lamps. I stayed in one of these.
The Flamingo area still shows the effects of Hurricane Irma a couple of years ago and some neglect. The B & C loops are not open, though NPS is working to clean them up. An employee I spoke with indicated that they hoped to have those open next year. I was there midweek and only the trailer loop was full. On the weekends they do fill up.
The campsites in the loops have picnic tables and fire rings. The bayside field sites have scattered picnic tables and fire rings in various states of rusty disrepair. The eco-tents some picnic tables closer to the bathrooms for the field sites are not occupied, you can use one of those. You can't use a stove in your tent or on your deck, so you do need to cook elsewhere.
Bathrooms include flush toilets and free showers, although the water never got very warm. They are solar heated.
Remember everything you need because it's a long trip back to Florida city or Homestead the nearest places for picking up supplies. Stop at "Robert is Here" on your way in or out for a smoothie or milkshake. The shop at the marina has some basic snacks and drinks. Tuesday to Saturday afternoons there is a food truck available. For activities, campers get a discount on bike rentals. They also rent kayaks & canoes and offer boat trips, though I wouldn't do the boat trip again.
If you choose to stay in an eco-tent, there is a cart with bicycle tires to quietly take your gear to your tent. The boardwalk lights up at night so you can safely find your way to the bathroom. You'll be conscious of the sound the zipper makes when you leave and return to your tent. These are tents and not cabins, so you may hear some neighbors talking or snoring. Even so, it was a welcome change from a sleepless, noisy night at a campground in the Keys.
If you're looking for birds, nearby Eco pond or the waterfront near the bayside campsites offer a nice variety for minimal effort.
No Verizon coverage, but I've been told there is AT&T. Wifi is available at the visitors center.
The only indication that you have reached the turn off for Pinecrest group campground is the brown tent sign. The sign for the campground itself is parallel to the road, so you won't see it until you are upon it. You'll need to reserve a campsite online in advance. Otherwise the gate to the campground is locked. Each of the 4 sites can accommodate 15 campers/8 tents as they are paired in such a way that sites 1&2 are together and 3&4 occupy a separate corner, perfect if you're group requires two sites.. Each site has a picnic table, fire ring, and half of a bear box; extra tables were gathered in the center. There are vault toilets, but no running water. Plenty to do in the area…fishing, birding, boating, hinting. Explore the preserve or neighboring Everglades. It's off the gravel loop road south of Tamiami Trail Rd.
We have only done 1-2 overnight paddle trips before, but the park rangers were very helpful in getting us set up. The paddle took about 3-4 hours each way but we took our time. There was only one place where we were unsure which direction to go, but after paddling around a bit we found our way and the rest was smooth sailing. We only saw a few other people on the water. No signs of wildlife anywhere, except for a few birds here and there. Enjoyed an awesome sunset and sunrise from the chickee. Stars were great but hard to enjoy because as soon as the sun goes down the bugs SWARM. Pack some cards or something to do in the tent after sunset before bed. Beautiful sunrise.
nice campground with tent and RV sites. The tent site we stayed had the perfect view of the sunrise over the lake without even leaving the tent! Lots of families with kids. Picnic tables and fire rings at the tent sites and very friendly campground hosts!
We transferred our reservations from Flamingo Bayside to Long pine key after 1 night at Flamingo. Long Pine Key was so much better! Nice, clean, stocked bathrooms and large showers. Also have a dish sink by the bathhouse. Bugs are 10x better here than over at Flamingo. Staff was very friendly and allowed us to transfer our reservation easily.