If you’re ready to escape the daily grind and reconnect with nature; it might be time for a Southern USA camping trip. There’s something magical about waking up to the sound of bird calls and falling asleep to the chirping of crickets. In the Southern U.S., you can find a wide range of stunning campsites where you can enjoy this peace and tranquility.
Southern USA Camping Trip: Best Places to Visit
The sites are located mostly in national parks and wildlife refuges, allowing you to choose whether you’d like to breathe in salty sea air, swim in a natural desert hot spring, ride on horseback through the forest, enjoy Appalachian Mountain culture during your stay, and more. Here are four of the best places to go camping in the South:
If you’re a keen, coastal birdwatcher, or you enjoy a good bit of history, you’re sure to love camping at the Fort De Soto Park in Florida. Choose between the five islands in the park, all located on the Gulf of Mexico. History buffs can enjoy the Fort de Soto attraction in the center of the park; while birdwatchers will be entranced with over 300 species to sight and identify. Kids can have a splash around on the beach near the family campgrounds or enjoy the wilderness in one of the primitive camping areas.
Stargazers can enjoy clear nights and darks skies at Texas’ Big Bend National Park. Big Bend is designated as an International Dark Sky Park and is one of the top 10 places in the world for looking up at the night sky. During the day, there is lots to do, including backpacking, cycling, horseback riding, and fishing. Big Bend has three campgrounds that are open year round.
The William B. Bankhead National Forest in Alabama has the perfect mix of modern camping grounds (open through October) and primitive camp areas that are accessible all year with a permit. Enjoy a forest escape filled with creature comforts at the lodge and restaurant, or venture into the backcountry areas—the choice is yours. For everyone, there is hiking, canoeing, and horseback riding, with spectacular waterfalls along the way.
Discover the magic of the Appalachian Mountains at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, bordering on North Carolina and Tennessee. This is one of the most biologically diverse parks in the country, featuring forests, waterfalls, swamps, marshes, and even caves. Choose from the many backcountry and frontcountry campsites; some are seasonal and others are year round. Make the most of the many activities on offer: auto and bicycle tours, hiking, fishing, picnicking, exploring historical log buildings, and attending special workshops and classes.
Tips for Making Your Southern USA Camping Trip the Best One Yet
While planning for your camping trip; there are a few things you can do to make your journey smoother, safer, and more enjoyable.
First, use high-quality camping gear that’s in good condition and can withstand the weather at your campsite. Second, take advantage of watching for wildlife in all weather by taking a pair of waterproof binoculars. Third, check in regularly with weather.gov for weather updates before heading off on your trip, so you know about any severe weather warnings and road closures that could affect your plans; have a backup plan just in case.
Be safe and enjoy the delights of camping in the South!