The best DISPERSED camping near
Tarpon Springs , FLORIDA

232 Reviews30 Campgrounds

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Most Recent Tarpon Springs Camping Reviews
Great Manatee and bird watching opportunities at this quaint campsite.

This was the first stop after picking up our Caravel Airstream (from Airstream of Tampa). The campground is quaint, clean and easy to find however the spots are a bit tight and spaced fairly closely together. "Backing in' to spot #49 was a bit of a challenge as this is a fairly new hobby for us! Everyone we met was super friendly. The campsite has their own dock (next to the Trading Post) where you can rent canoes and kayaks. You can see manatees and numerous native birds.  We will absolutely be back!

Update

I just wanted to update the review. As of mid January, 2021…sites are covid spaced, no host, all sites are reserve only . 

I have camped here several times, in different seasons. Late spring into summer river is high and fast. This time of year low and slow. By March/April its really low. Now, in mid Jan, its still easy to get to the "lake" , later on you may have to portage a short way depending on rainfall. 

Camping there has always been fun, its almost dry camping, shower's hot. Not for big rigs (go to silver lake) no elec. $15 + fee

Campsites are actually on the Little Withlacoochee river..with makes a junction with the… Withlacoochee!

Great Place to visit

As a beginner camper the time I have spent on these campgrounds has been a lot of fun. Got to go there with a group of 8 guys and were able to have enough space to be by ourselves and plenty room for activities like frisbee, football, and soccer. Canoeing to your camp site is the way to go. We did the 8-mile trek which wasn't too bad for a group of 30 year old guys that are out of shape. However the campgrounds do get pricey. Either way its a great time for a group.

The best!!!

Love this place so many trails

Camp Site # 9

Starkey’s Campground has everything you could want or need. Friendly staff, plenty of critters, and beautiful trails to walk.

Campsite #9 has so far been my most favorite spot here. It’s VERY spacious (could easily fit 5 large tents here) and the back of the site has a trail that leads directly to The McNeil Homestead. If you’re looking for a bit of a spook, I highly suggest walking this at night time.

This campsite is the only one that has a turning grill on the fire pit, so you won’t have to bring any cooking gear.

Great place to camp, especially site # 9.

Favorite spot, but be weary of raccoons!

Fort De Soto will forever be one of my favorite camp grounds. The beautiful weather, the critters, the terrain…all of it. Expect a nice, calming breeze rustling through the trees whisking you off to sleep. It’s totally zen.

All sites are pretty spacious, but I highly recommend riverside if you can snag one (a tad bit pricier). Note that the dog friendly site has great spots, but a little less privacy.

The best part about this spot, hands down, is the people you’ll run into there. People from all over the US travel just to spend a few nights there, and you’ll find yourself making new acquaintances every time.

The camp store just a short walk away has all the necessities you could ask for (even a snack bar a full Icecream shop!) should you forget anything, but most things are a bit pricier as to be expected. Should you need anything, I highly suggest running down to the 711 just a few miles away from the campground. They have firewood year round, and it’s 7 dollars as compared to 10 dollars a bag at the camp shop.

CRITTER WARNING

Be mindful of the raccoons at this campground. They are absolutely everywhere (most likely due to people feeding them in the past) and will have their hands in your cooler the moment the sun goes down. I highly suggest keeping food in your vehicle.

Sweet spot in the middle of CMA

Great location, decent size campsites. Right in the middle of Croom Motorcycle Area and trail access for OHV is 10ft from out campsite.

Bathrooms aren’t heated so can be cold at night.

Amazing view of the stars at night

Expect to hear dirt bikes and ATVs all day if you camp here.

Nice sites, crammed in wall to wall

Really beautiful area. Sites w/grills that can fit 2 cars. Foliage between sites so they are visually private but can get loud depending on your neighbors. Plenty of space for hammocks.

Camp store on site has firewood, bug spray, sunscreen, all the basics.

We tent camped in July and it was truly the hottest I've ever been. Character building.

An island to yourself!

As others have noted, boat access only, primitive put-your-tent-wherever type camping. BYO everything, and please bring it all back.

No skeeters in October.

Pack it (everything you'd need) in and pack it (all of your trash!) out

Get your permit online.

Park off the Pinellas Byway before you get to the DeSoto bridge, paddle between Summer Resort Key and Sister Key and you're there. One of the easiest island paddles out there - just a little over a mile. Pick a spot on the beach and you're good to go (in the green area public use area, see map attached).

The key is right across from South Beach at DeSoto so you're bound to hear some loud music from motor boats during the day, but it clears out and feels super remote by evening.

Excellent weekend trip.