Visit a National Preserve Park for a Great RV Vacation

An RV vacation to a unique national preserve site can provide a great getaway for the whole family.  And this one in Florida, is a perfect winter destination all by itself.  The preserve that we recommend you visit is the Big Cypress National Preserve.  An easy drive from Miami, this park has a great mix of climates that is comfortable any time of year.  This is the place to go for wildlife viewing, paddling fascinating waterways, and RV camping.  El Monte RV Rentals in Miami will provide the ideal RV for your trip!

View of the Big Cypress National Preseve in Florida

View of the Big Cypress National Preseve in Florida

In Big Cypress National Preserve you will find a couple of RV campgrounds which are open all year.  The Midway Campground is first-come, first-served and has twenty-six separate RV sites.  There is also a dump station.  This is a great place to make your home base while you explore the rest of the preserve.

Before you get completely settled in, you may want to take some of the scenic drives in the area.  There are plenty of pull-offs where you can stop and watch wildlife, as well as, take in some wonderful views.  Loop Road is 27 miles of forests with pines and dwarf cypress trees and, of course, numerous animals and birds.  The Turner River / Wagonwheel / Birdon Roads Loop is a favorite of birders as there are a wide variety of wading birds that come to feed along this route.

You are going to be experiencing Alligator Alley in real-time and must bring your camera in order to not miss a shot of one of the most popular sights in southern Florida – alligators! And, of course, hiking is always something that will get you out there, up close and personal with nature here at the preserve.  The Kirby Storter Boardwalk is a great path for those with young ones with them.  Short and sweet, this route will take you into the heart of the Big Cypress swamp.  You will find a whole network of hiking trails in the preserve so you can really see all the corners of this most fascinating swamp area.

One of the best trails in Big Cypress National Preserve is the section of the Florida National Scenic Trail that stretches across Florida.  Three parts of this trail are within the park’s boundaries.  There is the northern boundary to Interstate 75, then the section of Interstate 75 to Highway 41, and Highway 41 to the Loop Road.  The latter is best in the winter season as there is no flooding as there is during rainy season.

Canoeing Fun in Big Cypress National Preserve

Canoeing Fun in Big Cypress National Preserve

If the weather permits, you will be lucky because you can follow the canoeing trails and really experience the swamp as it should be experienced.  Newbies to paddling should take the Lefthand Turner River Trail.   More experienced paddlers can take more difficult paddling trails like the Turner River or the Halfway Creek Loop.  Right now is the paddling season.  It goes from November through March.

Yes, a winter vacation to Big Cypress National Preserve is a wonderful trip to take in an RV.  You will be happy to get out of the cold winds, blizzards, and freezing temperatures.  Book your RV rental today!

El Monte RV

El Monte RV Rentals and Sales

For information on renting an RV in Florida  – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida  – CLICK HERE.

To buy a well-maintained, used motor home,  CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: Big Cypress National Preserve and Canoeing Fun are both by BigCypressNPS and are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.  Thank you!

Posted in bird watching destinations, blog, Cost effective RV Vacation, educational trips, Family RV vacations, family trips, family vacations, Florida, Florida National Parks, florida rv vacation, florida vacation, March Vacation Ideas, Miami, Motor Home Camping, Motor home vacation blog, motor home winter vacations, Motorhome, Motorhome Camping, National Parks, National Scenic Byways, North American National Preserve vacation, Pet Friendly Vacation, RV, RV blog, RV Campgrounds, RV Campgrounds, RV Camping, RV destination, RV Destinations blog, RV educational trips, RV Rental, RV Rentals, RV Road Trip, RV Sales, RV trail hiking trips, RV Travel Tips, RV Vacation, RV Vacation Ideas, RV Vacation News, RV Vacations Southern States, RV Winter Vacations, United States RV Vacation, Vacation Adventures, Vacation Planning, weekend RV trips, wildlife, wildlife RV vacation, wildrife preserve vacation, Winter Fun, Year-Round RV Parks | Leave a comment

Visiting Jacksonville on a Florida RV Adventure

A winter vacation in Jacksonville, Florida can put new meaning into “vacation.”  The Florida coast offers a marvelous combination of seaside beauty and southern hospitality.  With so many sights to see and so much to do, the whole family will be busy constantly, with very little downtime (unless some is desired, of course).  Florida has some wonderful weather, too!  Jacksonville has lovely beaches and plenty of historical and scenic spots.

Boy at Seaside Playing with Seagulls in Jacksonville, Florida

Boy at Seaside Playing with Seagulls in Jacksonville, Florida

You can easily pick up an RV rental at El Monte RV Rentals and Sales in Orlando and head up to Jacksonville for your vacation.  You’ll discover some great RV campgrounds with lots of amenities, such as the Flamingo Lake RV Resort or the Fleetwood RV Park.  Either is conveniently located to give you easy access to enjoy all the sights and touristy things there are to do in Jacksonville.

One of the first stops in the city will be the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, a thrill for those of any age.  Animal exhibits are always fun to tour, and the animals love your company!  It’s an experience you won’t want to miss.  Another popular place to visit is the Veterans Memorial Wall  on East Adams Street.  This is a memorial honoring all veterans from all branches of the service.

Flamingos in Jacksonville Zoo, Florida

Flamingos in Jacksonville Zoo, Florida

If you want to enjoy a little outdoor recreation, you can drive a bit north of the city to the Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve.  Here is your chance to see coastal wetlands and the animal life that makes their home here.  As you wander the dunes and absorb the seaside ambiance, you’ll realize how relaxing it is to breathe that wonderful sea air.  Stop at the Visitor Center so you can get well-informed about how to make the most of your visit to this preserve.

On one part of the preserve is the Kingsley Plantation, a place where you will discover some fascinating history.  There is no admission fee and you can explore the plantation and imagine you were there in an historic time lapse.  You’ll learn even more history of the time period of the slaves if you take the ranger program.

Museums provide a unique kind of education.  The arts should always be admired and studied, and the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens will certainly engage your artistic sensibilities.  The gardens are a wonderful place to enjoy some solitude amid its natural beauty along the banks of the river.  You must also make your way over to the Museum of Science and History to learn even more about this amazing state of Florida.  More art is available to view at the Museum Of Contemporary Art Jacksonville.

If you can bear leaving Jacksonville even temporarily, you will have to head south to St. Augustine.  This will be a bonus to your trip to Jacksonville.  Stop and see Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth and the St. Augustine Light.

Premier El Monte RV Rental Motor Home 2014  Model

Premier El Monte RV Rental Motor Home 2014 Model

You will certainly love this opportunity to explore some of the Florida coast and see the sights that Jacksonville offers.  It will be one motor home vacation that will go down in your books as one of the best!

For information on renting an RV in Florida – CLICK HERE or to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida – CLICK HERE.  To buy a used well-maintained motor home, CLICK HERE.

El Monte RV

El Monte RV

Picture credits: photo of boy with seagulls by V2112 and the flamingos by Rob Bixby are licensed under the Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license.

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Planning an RV Vacation so All Goes Smoothly

You want your RV vacation to be the best that it can be for everyone.  After all, a vacation is supposed to relieve all the stress built up from living day-to-day in your workaday world.  But if you are not fully prepared, you will be adding stress to your vacation days.  Let’s see how we can prepare you for your RV vacation and have a worry-free getaway.

Florida Keys, Florida USA

Florida Keys,

First, you need to know your destination and how you’ll get there.  You will find El Monte RV Rentals all over the United States where you can obtain the ideal motor home for your trip.  We offer free  “RV Camping Itineraries” that provide  mapped-out courses and destinations for your convenience.  These are located on our website.

You can either “fly-drive” to your destination or pick up your motor home locally and enjoy the drive and adventures along the way that only RV travel can offer!  Don’t forget that in many cases you can take advantage of our free airport shuttle service in major airport cities.  Check our website for availability.

Here’s a possible RV Travel Itinerary:  you can rent an RV from El Monte RV Rentals in Orlando, find a nice camping spot, visit some Orlando sights, and then head to the Keys for more fun.  On the way to the Florida Keys there are plenty of sights to see and you’ll want to allow time to stop and enjoy them all.  You may want to refer to previous postings on our Monty’s Musings blog to learn about many exciting destinations to visit in Florida in your RV.

From Orlando, you could head east to Fox Lake Sanctuary, then south on Interstate 95 to the Florida Keys and beautiful Key Largo.  For a winter vacation, you really can’t beat the Keys.  You will meet creative types who spend their time making unique art, beachcomber types who relax all day along the sandy beaches, and swim with the dolphins.  Use Google and maps on the Internet to plan your route and everything you want to see on the way.

If you don’t want to bring your pets along, you can contact a pet-sitter or the kennel in advance to ensure they have an opening for your time away.  But if you prefer keeping Fido with you, it’s good to know that El Monte RV is a “Pet-Friendly” company and supports taking the family pets along!  Also remember to check out the weather forecast for that area for the time you will be there.  It is surprising how accurate these weather forecasts can be.  You will then know what to pack, or even if you should put off your vacation for a few days to miss a storm.

You will want to prepare your smartphone and laptop for the trip.  Download some apps to make your vacation more exciting.  You can find apps online and pick the ones you’ll use the most.  Perhaps you’ll choose the one which forecasts weather down to the hour or perhaps the one which identifies animal tracks.  There are many to choose from.

Now begin to pack for your trip.  First make a detailed list of every item you want to bring and as you pack them, mark them off.  This way you’ll forget nothing.  Remember, when packing clothes, roll them instead of folding.  This prevents wrinkles.  There’s lots of storage in motor homes, so taking “it all with you” is usually not a problem!

When you prepare and plan out your trip, you will find everything less stressful and more enjoyable.  Have a great RV vacation!

El Monte RV Official Logo

El Monte RV Official Logo

For information on renting an RV in or near Orlando, Florida – CLICK HERE or if you need to rent a motor home outside the state of Florida,  -CLICK HERE

Picture credits: The photo of Florida Keys was found on Flickr Commons. It is licensed under the Explore/Creative Commons license.

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Travel to Orlando for a Wide Array of Things to Do

There are many fun things to do around Orlando.  Taking an RV motorhome and using it as the home base for your Orlando vacation is probably the best way to spend your getaway time in Central Florida.  Once you settle down in a comfortable RV campground, you can begin your adventures.  Retiring to your RV campground in the evening enhances your vacation experience.  Your family takes in all the city-life attractions by day and soaks in the outdoor camping experience by night.  Kids love to camp!  It’s a win-win vacation!   Here are just a few attractions you will love.

  • Sea World Orlando – This is a great attraction for family members of all ages.  Just at Sea World alone there is a long list of things to do.  Get a behind-the-scenes tour to learn about what goes on in the background every day at Sea World.  Then there are the up-close tours of dolphins, penguins, and sea lions.  Visit Shamu’s Happy Harbor®.  Try one of the paddle boats for a tour of the beautiful lake.  Be sure to see Dolphin Cove with the interactive dolphin pool.  Shark Encounter® is one of the most popular Sea World exhibits.

    Sea World - Orlando, Florida

    Sea World – Orlando, Florida

  • Universal Studios – It is really time to cut loose and experience some adventures in Orlando.  This is what Universal Studios Orlando offers – adventures!  This is a real working studio and film production facility that is unlike any other.  You will get on rides that will take your breath away, become a part of a major movie, and even enjoy some special dining options.  Shopping is great here too!
  • Universal’s Islands of Adventure – If you thought Universal Studios was exciting, wait until you see Universal’s Islands of Adventure!  The rides are more thrilling than you could ever imagine, and the most popular shows are on every day.  Some of the most
    Universal Islands of Adventure - Orlando, Florida

    Universal Islands of Adventure – Orlando, Florida

    popular adventures here are the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Marvel Super Hero Island.  Ever wish you could see the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park up close and personal?  Now is your chance!

 

  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park  Encounter many exotic animals as you explore six different lands, including Discovery Island and DinoLand.  The animals number more than 1,700 and you can visit every single one if you wish. This is Disney’s Animal Kingdom and you will love it!

    Disney's Animal Kingdom - Orlando, Florida

    Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Orlando, Florida

  • Magic Kingdom Park - is another place for the family to come when visiting Orlando.  You will see fireworks, enjoy music parades, and get to shoot photos of you right beside one of the beloved Disney characters.  Visit Fantasyland and ride the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad!  This will be remembered as one of the best times of your life!  Walk Main Street and experience all the happiness that this spot provides.  Let the kids thrill to the Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin.  Magic Kingdom is just that – magic!
  • Epcot – More attractions at Epcot for the family.  Here you will share in the cultures of eleven different countries.  Entertainment is big here too, and all ages will find something to love.  Epcot’s visitor rating ranks as the third most visited theme park in the United States, and the sixth most visited theme park in the world; it fascinates both adult and child alike!

In between all the exciting activities, you will have a place to retire and relax before the next adventure – your RV.  Save money by fixing your own meals, collecting easy recipes before you leave for your time in Orlando.

This can be a vacation of a lifetime.  With so much to do and see, Orlando provides a destination that everyone must see at least once in their lifetime.

For information on renting an RV in or near Orlando, FLorida – CLICK HERE or if you need to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida,  -CLICK HERE

Picture credits: The photo of Sea World Orlando (top) by Ricymar, the Island’s of Adventure photo by Avrene, and the photo of Disney’s Animal Kingdom by Kellyv are from Flickr Commons. It is licensed under the Explore/Creative Commons Attribution license.

Posted in blog, family trips, family vacations, Festivals, Florida, florida rv vacation, florida vacation, Motor Home Camping, motor home winter vacations, Motorhome, Motorhome Camping, Orlando RV locations, Orlando vacations, Pet Friendly Vacation, RV, RV Campgrounds, RV Campgrounds, RV Camping, RV Camping Resources, RV destination, RV Rental, RV Rentals, RV Resort, RV Resort Vacations, RV Road Trip, RV Sales, RV Theme Park Vacations, RV Vacation, RV Vacation Ideas, RV Vacation News, RV Vacations Southern States, RV Winter Vacations, Theme Park vacations, Vacation Adventures, Vacation Planning, wildlife, wildlife RV vacation, wildrife preserve vacation, Winter Fun, Year-Round RV Parks | Leave a comment

The Best Way to Visit Orlando – in an RV

Everyone loves an Orlando vacation, no matter their age.  The number of attractions in the area is enough to keep an entire family busy for well over a month!

Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Yes, Orlando, Florida, is a wonderful vacation destination.  And even better – an RV vacation!    Rent an RV at the Orlando El Monte RV location to experience the convenience that comes with  having an RV vacation.  It can end up costing a lot less, too!  We are only 20 minutes from Walt Disney World.  And for those in the market to purchase a well-maintained motor home, our Orlando RV location has a nice selection from which to choose as well!   RV rentals and sales has been our business for over 40 years!

So once you have your RV, the opportunities just expand for your Orlando vacation.  When visiting Walt Disney World (probably THE most popular attraction in the Orlando region), you will discover the best place to camp is Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort.  You can hike the surrounding trails, go horseback riding, or do some beachcombing.  You are close enough to Walt Disney World that you can easily access all the fun!  Even if you have been here before, it is always a unique and memorable experience.

Disney World's Fort Wilderness Campground, Orlando, Florida

Disney World’s Fort Wilderness Campground, Orlando, Florida

You won’t want to miss the sea animals at SeaWorld either.  The shows are fascinating with whales and dolphins and many other sea creatures, all being extraordinarily entertaining.  If you have a video camera, you will want to ensure the battery is charged because there are a lot of things to film.  Once you have your fill of Sea World (if that is even possible), visiting Universal Studios Orlando should be next on your list.  This is where you will get the flavor of the world of movies.  You make your way behind the scenes to discover what it is like to make cinema thrillers.

By the way, you will find a number of great RV campgrounds where you can stay for different segments of your vacation.  There is the Lake Whipporwill KOA with full hookups that also offers  a pool and hot tub.  Two others include the Tropical Palms Resort and Campground and the Orange Blossom KOA.  You can RV-camp in your top choice the entire vacation or move around as the mood strikes.

El Monte RV Orlando, Florida, Location

El Monte RV Orlando, Florida, Location

If you have kids along, you’ll want to add Legoland Florida to your itinerary.  The rides are a huge thrill for the younger set and the older set too!  Adults and children from all over love the Orlando Museum of Art, enjoying the beautiful array of inspiring artworks.  The Bok Tower Gardens gives you the chance to see lovely gardens and a fascinating mansion, the Pinewood Estate.

Of course, there are even more things to do around Orlando.  Don’t forget to stop in and see Ripley’s Believe It Or Not where you will be enthralled with the various facts and stories that are VERY hard to believe until you see them with your own eyes.  And no trip to Florida is complete without seeing the alligators at Gatorland.

Gatorland near Orlando, Florida

Gatorland near Orlando, Florida

Enjoy the attractions and retire to your RV rental to reflect on the day’s adventures.  This is one RV vacation that can’t be beat – Orlando with its many attractions.  You will discover just how easy and inexpensive this type of getaway can be!

For information on renting an RV in or near Orlando, FLorida – CLICK HERE or if you need to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida,  -CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: The photo of Disney World (top) was taken by Jeffrey Zeldman, the photo of Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground by Darren Wittker, and the photo of Gatorland by “makelessnoise” were found on Flickr Commons.  They are all licensed under the Explore/Creative Commons Attribution license.  Monty would like to extend his appreciation for the license to use these pictures to promote RV traveling and vacationing in Florida.  Thank you!

Posted in Art Vacations, blog, Disney World RV vacation, Disney World vacation, educational trips, family trips, family vacations, Florida, florida rv vacation, florida vacation, Motor Home Camping, motor home winter vacations, Motorhome, Motorhome Camping, One-Way RV Rentals, Orlando RV locations, Orlando vacations, Pet Friendly Vacation, RV, RV Beach Vacation, RV Campgrounds, RV Campgrounds, RV Camping, RV coastal trip, RV destination, RV educational trips, RV Rental, RV Rentals, RV Resort, RV Resort Vacations, RV Road Trip, RV Sales, RV Travel Tips, RV Vacation, RV Vacation Ideas, RV Vacation News, RV Vacations Southern States, RV Winter Vacations, Vacation Adventures, Vacation Planning, wildlife, wildlife RV vacation, wildrife preserve vacation, Winter Fun, Year-Round RV Parks | Leave a comment

An RV Vacation to Miami for the Complete Dining Experience

If you have ever dreamed of the ultimate culinary dining experience, now is your chance to make that dream come true.  You can hit the road and head for Miami on an RV vacation to enjoy the rewards of eating some of the best-tasting food in the country!   Miami, Florida, is a culinary paradise with many ethnic food offerings from all over the world — from Peruvian to Cuban and beyond.

Dining in South Beach, Miami

Dining in South Beach, Miami

In no particular order, let’s look at some of the best places to eat in Miami.  Once you get settled in a lovely RV camping spot, you can start your eating adventure.  If you love Italian food, your first choice should be Casa Tua in South Beach.   Order some delicious stone crab or try the lamb chop.  You won’t be disappointed!

For some incredible Mexican delights, try the fare at Los Tres Amigos.  They have some take-out too.  You might like the Mexican herbs used on the tripe and beef dishes.  Order Pollo a la Parrilla, which is simply grilled chicken with rice and beans.

If your appetite is demanding Greek dishes, Mykonos on Coral Way is the perfect destination.  Those who eat the Chicken Gyro Platter rave about how delicious it is.  The Vegetarian Mousaka is the ideal dish to order to avoid meat for this meal.

Now let’s do a dinner over at El Meson del Paraiso, a completely unique experience in Peruvian food.  Their seafood is “to-die-for” and they offer some lucuma ice cream to top off the meal.  Don’t expect very fancy dining, but expect great food and a satisfied appetite.

Some go wild for Indonesian cuisine – but, whether you go wild or are simply ready to try a bit of this original taste, Indomania is the place to go.  The menu is translated for easy ordering.  The traditional meals and the special treats are enough to make you want to come back again before leaving town.

The Akashi Japanese Restaurant and Sushi Bar is not just known for its excellent food but is also respected for its amazing artistic presentations.  Order salmon, yellowtail, or shrimp or go for the sushi boat or a tempura dish.  The lighting sets the mood; the food brings it all together for a tantalizingly memorable dining experience.

Visit and dine in Coconut Grove at Le Bouchon du Grove.  This is French cuisine in a warm Franco atmosphere.  You’ll think you are in France as you savor the French onion soup.

The next meal will need to be in Little Havana.  Eating Cuban food can mean more than just a meal; it can also mean making some local Cuban friends.  You will love the authentic menu at Versailles.  Everyone loves the plantains and the double fried tostones, as well as the Cuban bread.

Naturally, you may prefer traditional fare and should head to Brickell for dining at Tobacco Road.  You see, in Miami, no matter what your preferred dining pleasure is, you can find any food choice you want to satisfy the most discerning of appetites!  Choose restaurants with live music or quiet nooks to relax and enjoy a meal.  Come back often on an RV vacation to savor Miami’s array of cuisine.

For information on booking an RV Trip in or near Miami, FLORIDA,  –CLICK HERE or if you need to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida, CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: The photo of South Beach, Miami, was taken by Phillip Pessar on Flickr Commons.  It is licensed under the Explore/Creative Commons Attribution license.

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Travel from Sarasota, Florida, to the Everglades this Winter

Florida beckons to take the chill out of winter with its mild weather, gorgeous beaches, and great attractions.  It is the perfect time to take an RV winter vacation and get away from the hustle and bustle of the daily grind.  Getting out on the open road offers a needed break, an adventure that clears the mind and boosts inspiration.  The west coast of Florida is a good place to start your getaway.

Sarasota, Florida

Sarasota, Florida

While in Sarasota, Florida, there are many things to do, so you should consider spending some time here.  If you have children with you, you will most definitely want to stop and see the Children’s Garden & Art Center.  Both boys and girls have a wonderful time playing here.  There is a fairy garden where the little ladies can engage in make-believe and a tree fort for the young men to let their imagination run wild.

Both kids and adults love the Crowley Museum and Nature Center because you learn all about the early settlers in Florida, and there is nothing quite like getting that taste of history to make your trip all the more interesting.  Prior to continuing down the coast, also visit the Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary.  It is wonderful to see the lions, tigers, and other animals that were rescued and can now live happy lives.

The weather in Florida during the winter months can vary greatly; but more often than not, you’ll find very mild weather conducive to a visit to the beach.  At Fort Meyers there are some wonderful beaches, and you can also enjoy plenty of shopping and fine dining.  Marvel at the amazing sunsets over a glass of wine.  You will find more shopping at Cape Coral, just a hop, skip, and a jump away.

Two more places to stop before you reach the Everglades – the Matlacha Pass National Wildlife Refuge with a wide array of wildlife, sea life, and birds and Collier-Seminole State Park with one of the largest mangrove swamps anywhere.  But be prepared for the Everglades, as there is no other park that matches the wonders of this one!

Everglades National Park gives you the opportunity to enjoy so much of nature.  You will, perhaps, glimpse a Florida panther.  You might come face-to-face with a gentle manatee or see an American crocodile in action.  You can learn more about the park and what to look for by stopping by the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center Gallery.

Of all recreational activities available in Everglades National Park, hiking is one of the favorites. There are numerous hiking trails where you can traverse the unique landscapes.  If you love birding, the Bear Lake Trail is the one to take; and if you want to see mangroves and open coastal prairie, take the Christian Point Trail.

You will find this Florida winter RV vacation to be fabulously relaxing.  It is going to be one that will stay in memory as one of your favorites!

For information on booking an RV Trip near Sarasota, Florida, – CLICK HERE or if you need to rent a motor home outside of the state of Florida, CLICK HERE.

Picture credits: The picture of Sarasota, Florida, is from Flicker Commons by Jim Brickett.  It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution license.

Posted in bird watching destinations, blog, Cross Country Trip, educational trips, family trips, family vacations, Florida, Florida National Parks, florida rv vacation, florida vacation, honeymoon vacation ideas, Motor Home Camping, motor home winter vacations, Motorhome, Motorhome Camping, National Parks, Pet Friendly Vacation, RV, RV Beach Vacation, RV Campgrounds, RV Camping, RV Camping Resources, RV destination, RV educational trips, RV Rental, RV Rentals, RV Sales, RV Travel Tips, RV Vacation, RV Vacation Ideas, RV Vacation News, RV Vacations Southern States, RV Winter Vacations, State Park RV Camping, State Parks, Vacation Adventures, Vacation Planning, wildlife, wildlife RV vacation, wildrife preserve vacation, Winter Fun | Leave a comment

Stop in St. Augustine on your Florida RV Vacation

One of the oldest settlements in the U.S. is historic St. Augustine, Florida. The rich heritage here is worth some time spent devouring the sights and sounds, the fascinating ambiance and the landmarks. Of course the beaches are also a major attraction any time of year. And there is a lot more than just history to bring you here! Read on!

Flagler College St. Augustine College

Flagler College St. Augustine College

You will have a wide choice of RV parks so you can remain for a time to explore. One that comes highly recommended is the Stage Coach RV Park.

This park is close to all the places you have on your itinerary for St. Augustine. You’ll find full hookups and a relaxing atmosphere.

Check out Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth while here. Get a tour and discover the area that Juan Ponce de Leon found in 1513. This area has such a rich history.  The Archaeological Park is an entertaining sight for the whole family. This is the spot where America began, settled years before Jamestown and even before the Pilgrims landed.

The oldest structure in St. Augustine is the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument. See some re-enactments of history as people dress in the costumes of days gone by and show you what life was really like in those early days. Be sure to allow at least one or two hours for your visit so you can see everything possible. Enjoy exhibits and walk through the fortress. There are also Ranger Programs where you can learn so much of the history connected with this most fascinating place.

Next comes the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum where you may wish to get some exercise and climb the steps to the top. Fabulous views can be enjoyed from the top of the lighthouse. Learn the story of this nation’s oldest port. This lighthouse is now in the spot where a Spanish watchtower once stood. The watchtower was the first lighthouse in Florida, protecting ships beginning in 1824.

The outdoors beckons at Anastasia State Park. There are so many activities here, such as hiking, walking self-guided nature trails or watching all the wildlife. The tidal marshes are home to a wide variety of life. Theses marshes are also a great place to paddle. RV camping is available, close to the beach and all the fun.

If you are a real history buff, you’ll love the Lightner Museum with the amazing collections of costumes, furnishings and more from the 19th century. See beautiful cut glass and some wonderful samples of Tiffany stained glass.

Naturally, you want to see an alligator farm and you can experience all the magic of this part of our animal kingdom at St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park. Not just alligators, but tropical birds, crocodiles and lemurs will be there. You can see it all from the tree tops if you opt to ride the zip line. See a show or two. The fun is truly never-ending.

If you’re interested in booking an RV trip in St. Augustine, FL, El Monte RV has an RV pick-up location in Orlando, FL

Picture credits: The picture of a Flagler College in St. Augustine, FL is from the Wikimedia Commons. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

 

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Some of the Best RV Camping on a Vacation in Florida

Where else can a traveler find a lovely seaside climate to explore during the winter months but beautiful Florida? Taking an RV camping excursion in this southeast state may be one of the best yet, particularly when everyone else in the United States is experiencing snow and sleet conditions. Let’s begin our journey in the panhandle of Florida and travel south all the way to the southernmost tip of the US.

Bridge in Key Largo

Bridge in Key Largo

Pensacola is the ideal start to an RV trip through Florida. The Portofino Boardwalk has all sorts of activities for all ages, including shopping for unique gifts to take home. Pensacola Beach is great any time of year. Biking is a favorite pastime at the Gulf Islands National Seashore. Stop by one of the free concerts for some entertainment. Make your home base at the Perdido Cove RV Resort and Marina with all the amenities you could need, and then take off to visit the National Museum of Naval Aviation in town.

Discover more of fascinating Florida attractions in Jacksonville. Walk the beaches, see what events are happening at EverBank Field and explore the city. You can stay at Flamingo Lake RV Resort in North Jacksonville while you take your time to see everything this northern Florida destination has to offer. This park is rated highly by RVers the country over. They have a laundry, a great pool and even a beach on the lake to enjoy.

Further south you’ll come to St. Augustine. The attractions here are numerous. The St. Augustine Wild Reserve offers tours by appointment. Since St. Augustine is one very historical spot, you won’t want to miss the Ximenez-Fatio House which is within the city’s oldest settlement. Other places of interest include the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum, Fort Matanzas and the St. Augustine Alligator Farm. There are all sorts of beaches where you can enjoy beachcombing. The Bryn Mawr Ocean Resort is a full service RV camping resort with full hookups and is the perfect place to stay.

After your visit in St. Augustine is done, head south to Daytona Beach. If you are a racing fan, you certainly can’t miss a stop at the Daytona International Speedway. The family will also love the Daytona Beach Pier and all the fun amusements available here. Recommended is the new resort for RVs, the Daytona RV Park. It is close to everything, including the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse, fishing piers beyond compare and fine dining. Many of their sites are pull-through and can accommodate very large RVs. Get free WiFi and basic television service.

Pop inland for a visit to Orlando next. When you come to Florida it is a large mistake to pass by all the fabulous sights in this vacation destination. Even if you have been there a million times before, Walt Disney World can be enjoyed again and again. Sea World and Universal Studios are big must-see spots. Play golf or simply enjoy your RV site at Lake Whipporwill KOA. They have a pool and hot tub, big rig camping with full hookups and a lake right there where you can boat or fish.

Only 120 miles southeast and you are at Port St. Lucie. Discover parks, lovely beaches, golf courses and museums to explore. Be sure to stop by the Port St. Lucie Botanical Gardens and in Fort Pierce see the amazing display of tropical bonsai trees at the Heathcote Botanical Gardens. Fishing is wonderful here too. You can do a deep sea fishing excursion and perhaps catch a swordfish, tuna or sailfish. RV camping is available at the Port St. Lucie RV Resort with paved sites, a solar-heated pool and laundry room.

Next stop is Ft. Lauderdale where you can enjoy many varied events and art exhibitions. Get exercise along Riverwalk, then return to your spot at the Yacht Haven Park and Marina surrounded by water canals and boardwalks. Although you could spend days just exploring this city, you will want to head to the Florida Keys as soon as possible. Key Largo is waiting, with so much to see and do. Stay at the Point Of View Key Largo RV Resort and sit to enjoy the sunset as the cool ocean breezes blow.

Finally, the end of your trip at Key West, where the swaying palms make you forget it is winter. The Bluewater Key RV Resort is close enough to Key West to make it easy to access all the attractions. This is one Florida vacation that will stay in memory for years to come.

If you are interested in booking an RV Vacation in Florida, El Monte RV  has rental pickup locations in  Miami and Orlando.

Picture credits: The picture of a bridge in Key Largo  is from the Wikimedia Commons. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

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Visit Florida Winter Festivals for Family Fun

Florida winter festivals can fill winter days with music, art and friendly faces. Traveling throughout the state for fun-filled events can make the colder months pass quickly and pleasantly. Below are some festivals held in Florida that provide a unique opportunity to get out of the house and enjoy the mild Florida weather.

Sunset in Sarasota, Florida

Sunset in Sarasota, Florida

West Palm Beach is the place to be on November 16. The Palm Beach Jazzfest will be held in the Meyer Amphitheater downtown, right on the waterfront. One major national headliner will close the show, so stick around for the whole musical event! On top of the music, there will be art, foods galore and plenty of excitement. This all day event goes from noon until 10 pm with many shows worthy of toe-tapping and applause.

If you love fairs, then the Broward County Fair is the go-to spot on the 21st of November. The fair runs from 21 November until 1 December in Pembroke Pines, Florida. Of course the rides are the favorites of the kids, but everyone loves the games and shows. Don’t forget to get a funnel cake! Stop by and see all the animals, too. There will be sheep, cows, goats, rabbits and many more! The live entertainment will enliven your day.

It is time for giving thanks on the 28th of November and what better way to celebrate Thanksgiving than by attending the Thanksgiving Bluegrass Festival! A delicious dinner will be served on the grounds in Brooksville. All day music will make this visit worth your while. This event actually runs through the 30th, so stay awhile and visit with the new friends you are sure to meet. There is even RV camping nearby with hookups.

Travel to Harmony, Florida for the 6th Annual Harmony Winter Festival on the 6th of December. There will be caroling, music, face painting, visits with Santa and snow slides. Yes, snow in Florida! Harmony is a real winter wonderland this time of year. You may be amazed by the Ice Frozen T-shirt Contest, and it is definitely a must-see! The kids will love the bounce house and hot cocoa.

Sarasota is a great place to spend some time around the holidays. From 13 December to 22 December, the Snow Fest Sarasota provides fun for the whole family. Activities include snow slides, ice skating, and reindeer rides! Now, who wouldn’t thrill to riding a reindeer? Yes, it is all happening at the Snow Fest – pony rides, circus performers, caroling and even a Magic Workshop. Don’t miss this!

After your own Christmas celebrations, head for the Keys for the Florida Keys Celtic Festival on January 10th and 11th. There is nothing like a live Celtic band to inspire or pipes and drums to thrill. Discover an entirely new culture in Marathon Florida this winter. Then in January from the 16th to the 26th, stop and enjoy the 16th Annual Coral Gables Bluesfest in Coral Gables.

The festivals in Florida during the winter months are just what you need to get a break from the hectic workaday world. Enjoy!

Picture credits: The picture of the sunset in Sarasota, Florida  is from the Wikimedia Commons. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

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