Karen D.

Sanford, FL

Joined May 2018

Born in San Jose I have camped, hiked, backpacked, kayaked, ran, biked, snorkeled, dove & swam across this beautiful country!!

Manatee Springs State Park

We recently camped at Manatee Springs and the highlight of this park is their beautiful swim area with a dock all along the head spring. The campsites were fair and the bathrooms were not bad and included showers. There was a nice trail w/boardwalk that was great for viewing the swamp and flora & fauna. The boardwalk went down to the Suwannee River that offered a great place to fish or to view some big Sturgeons that start jumping around dusk.

We felt that the campsites were a little neglected compared to other Florida State Parks we had visited.

There is a nice cafe that also serves beer & wine.

We viewed the "Dive Spring" called "Catfish Hotel" which had a inch layer of green scum that was not very appealing except to mosquitoes.

There is a nice playground and this would be a great place to picnic with family and friends.

*There is also Fanning Springs State Park that is approx. 10 min. away that also has a GREAT swimming hole!

Camping with a Beach!

We loved Fort Pickens for many reasons…BEACH…BEACH…BEACH! Not only that but there is an amazing Fort to explore!

Picture your campsite nestled among live oaks draped with Spanish moss…a short hike and you are either at the beach or at the Fort!

A few of the campsites were not ideal…our tent site had some type of water facility next to it. The sites are close together with little privacy. That being said…the campground is all together beautiful and we enjoyed our camping experience.

Our campground was across the street from a lovely boardwalk that takes you right to a beautiful sugar white beach that goes on for miles and miles with no restaurants, condos, etc. Just nature at its best!

The Fort is so cool and the park offers tours and there is also a great gift shop. You can also explore the bay near the fort and beach comb along the shore.

We were surprised to find that the beginning (or end) of the Florida Trail is near the Fort. We rode our bikes several miles on the trail.

The bathroom facilities at the park were fine and we had a nice campfire.

This is a AWESOME campsite for all ages…and especially for kids…so much to explore and learn. If you have kids, encourage them to join the Jr. Ranger Program and they will get a cool pin made from wood (they will need to fill out a booklet that is very informative).

We have camped here twice and totally plan to camp here in the future!

Florida Waterfall and Camping

Falling Waters State Park is a great place to bring your family to create some lasting memories!

The falls are quite beautiful and there is a nice trail that takes you right down to where you are facing the falls and you can look down into a long dark pit.

The park is not large but is very nice and has a sandy beach swimming hole with bathroom/changing facilities and a super picnic area with a awesome play area for the kids.

We were a little disappointed as one of the main trails around some interesting sink holes was closed and in need of repair.

The campsites are nice but fill up fast!

A great place for a family reunion or picnic!

Great Campground and a Cave to Explore!

My husband and I were pleasantly surprised at our stay at Florida Caverns State Park. Although not a huge cavern such as Carlsbad or Mammoth, Florida Caverns did not disappoint.

We found plenty to do at the park. We rode our bikes several miles on the many trails in the park and had a blast. Roots and rocks galore…but excellent mountain biking. The campsites are very nice with good bathroom facilities. The swimming hole rocks and the water is crystal clear. So much to do…mountain biking, hiking, swimming, geocaching (we found a cache), kayaking and even horseback riding.

The cave tour was nicely done and we were impressed as there are some nice formations and the trail near the cave was amazing…a short hike that will give you an idea of what a Florida swamp looks like and you can view several sink holes and alternate cave entrances (closed off of course).

Lot's of stuff if you are into horses…stalls, trails, corrals and a horse camp facility…pretty cool!

Another great place to camp for all ages…beautiful, fun and perfect for families with children.

This is "The Real Florida"


Beautiful Blue Springs State Park near Orlando Florida

Amid all the bustle and bustle of the Orlando lies a beautiful blue oasis called Blue Springs State Park.

My husband and I were amazed by the crystal clear water and loved swimming above the opening of the cave at the Spring head. Bring your snorkel gear or even better your dive gear if you are looking for a awesome adventure!

Manatees reside here during the winter months (Nov - March) and we were lucky to observe two Manatees during our stay who had been injured and were recovering…such amazing animals!

This park offers camping, swimming, tubing, kayaking (on the St. Johns River) and the boardwalks above the swamp are great for hiking and nature viewing.

The campsites are situated in a way so that there are trees all around and campers get the feel of privacy. The bathroom facilities were nice and there is a great little store that also rents tubes for floating the river.

This is another beautiful Florida State Park that is great for all ages…especially families with kids.

In the summer months GO EARLY as the park quickly fills up to capacity!!

Silver Springs...Great campsites that reflect "The Real Florida"

My husband and I camped at Silver Springs Campground in our 33' RV and we loved the spacious sites this park offers! We rode our bikes around the campground and were amazed as almost all the sites were huge! Live oak trees with Spanish moss…this campground is truly the "Real Florida". Each site is shady, clean and the the bathroom facilities are close by and have a washer & dryer along with a sink..

The park also has several pretty cool looking cabins/cottages that were nestled in the forest. There is a museum and even a library!

You can hike or drive over to the adjacent Silver Springs (we rode our bikes) and take a boat tour of the mag. 1 crystal clear spring! We got lucky and scored with Oscar Collins, who has been a tour boat captain at Silver Springs for 49 years…he takes the tour to the next level with his knowledge, wit, and what can we say…the man is a Rock Star!

The park offers a launch where you can either rent a kayak or use your own to navigate the beautiful and serene Silver River and you just might see a gator or two…we did! The grounds at Silver Springs are beautiful with all types of flora & fauna. Grab a quick lunch at the restaurant or have an ice cream.

This park is one of our favorites in Florida and is great for all ages…especially for families with children. A fun place for adventure and exploring!