Top 12 Florida Beach Campgrounds on the Gulf Coast 2024: Escape to Winter Bliss

Best Gulf Coast Beach Campgrounds Florida

I’ve learned that if you’re aiming for a spot at a Florida beach campground, be prepared for stiff competition. The best strategy is to plan your winter getaway a full year in advance – yes, for the next year! These campgrounds are incredibly popular, so securing a reservation is crucial if you want to claim that perfect spot.

However, don’t lose hope. I’ve found that there are always cancellations. By being persistent in calling and flexible with the openings available, you can often find a way. Persistence really pays off.

To help out, I’ve compiled a list of 11 of the best Florida beach campgrounds. Take a look at these options, plan well, and you’ll be all set to enjoy your own piece of paradise!

Key Takeaways

  • Pensacola Beach RV Resort, Navarre Beach Campground, Destin West RV Resort, Henderson Beach State Park, Turtle Beach Campground, Camp Gulf, Topsail Hill Preserve State Park, Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park, St. George Island State Park, Sunset Isle RV & Yacht Club, Ho-Hum RV Park, and Fort De Soto Park Campground.
  • Book your camping spot a year in advance due to high demand, but keep an eye out for cancellations for last-minute opportunities.
  • These campgrounds offer a range of amenities from pet-friendly options, heated pools, and private beaches, to proximity to local attractions and nature trails.
  • From full-hookup RV sites to more rustic campgrounds, each location caters to different camping preferences and needs.
  • Explore off-the-beaten-path adventures in Florida, including hiking, historical sites, local arts, natural springs, and cultural festivals.

Best Gulf Coast Campgrounds in Florida for Beach Lovers

Pensacola Beach RV Resort

My recent stay at Pensacola Beach RV Resort was a delightful experience. Set between the tranquil Quietwater Beach and the Gulf shores, it offered a picturesque setting that was both serene and beautiful. The resort was wonderfully pet-friendly, which was a major plus for me as I could bring my dog along.

The amenities, including a heated pool and playgrounds, were perfect for families. I particularly appreciated the cleanliness and convenience of the laundry and shower facilities. The private beach area, with its comfortable chairs and lounges, provided a perfect spot for relaxation. The Tiki Bar on the beach was an added bonus, creating a fun and relaxed atmosphere.

The resort offered a variety of sites to suit different needs, ranging from standard to premium. Although some sites were a bit close to each other and there was occasional noise, these were minor compared to the overall positive aspects of my stay. The resort staff were attentive and the grounds well-maintained, enhancing the overall experience.

  • Accommodations: Offers 72 spacious, full-hookup sites.
  • Amenities for Your Stay: Each spot includes a level concrete pad for RVs and a grassy area for pets.
  • Relaxation and Fun: Features a tiki bar right on the beach with lounge chairs.
  • Conveniences: Equipped with picnic tables, flush toilets, showers, laundry facilities, a swimming pool, and a playground.
  • Connectivity: WiFi is available throughout the resort.
  • Rates: Nightly charges range from $70 to $130.

Navarre Beach Campground 

Things to do at Navarre Beach CampgroundEach morning, I woke up to the gentle sound of waves from the private beach at the end of the campground. The full hookup sites were spacious, and the level concrete pads made setting up my RV a breeze. The grassy areas were a hit with my pet, and the overall atmosphere of the campground was peaceful and welcoming.

The range of amenities truly enhanced my experience. I spent relaxing afternoons by the pool and enjoyed evenings at the tiki bar on the beach, soaking in the stunning sunset views. The convenience of having showers, laundry facilities, and a playground made the stay comfortable for my whole family. The nearby Turtle Conservation Center was a highlight for the kids, and the easy access to local seafood markets allowed us to indulge in fresh delicacies. With reliable WiFi, I stayed connected when needed, rounding off what was a perfect blend of relaxation and modern convenience.

  • Location and Accessibility: Situated at 9201 Navarre Parkway, Navarre, FL. Easily accessible from Hwy 98 and close to local attractions.
  • Beach Access: Features a quaint beach at the campground’s end, complete with pier access ideal for boating enthusiasts.
  • Accommodations: Offers a range of full hookup sites equipped with picnic tables. Cabins available with a beachy vibe.
  • Amenities: Includes well-maintained flush toilets and showers, laundry facilities, a dump station, and a heated pool. A pet-friendly area with a double-gated, lighted pet park is also available.
  • Recreation: Boasts a playground, clubhouse with large screen TV, and activities like line dancing, casino trips, and fishing expeditions.
  • Dining and Entertainment: Offers a market and clubhouse serving daily breakfast and dinner, plus karaoke nights. Nearby local seafood market.
  • Family-Friendly Activities: Close to a Turtle Conservation Center, offering fun for the entire family.
  • Connectivity: Provides WiFi and cable TV for guests.
  • Rates: Nightly rates range from approximately $70 to $95, with variations depending on the season and site type.

Destin West RV Resort

My friend recently stayed at Destin West RV Resort on Okaloosa Island and he had a delightful experience. The resort’s location between Fort Walton Beach and Destin offered stunning views of Choctawhatchee Bay. He say he appreciated the full hookups at each site, along with amenities like Wi-Fi, cable TV, and a pool. It was also great that the resort is pet-friendly, making it an ideal choice for travelers like him who don’t want to leave their pets behind.

One thing that stood out was the resort’s proximity to attractions like the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort, Boardwalk Recreation center, and the Gulfarium. The nightly rates were a bit steep, but the convenience and beauty of the location made it worthwhile. However, he did notice some areas for improvement in terms of staff interactions and overall maintenance. Despite these minor issues, the resort’s picturesque setting and facilities made his stay enjoyable.

  • Scenic Location: Nestled between Fort Walton Beach and Destin with views of Choctawhatchee Bay and close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Full Hookups: Each site includes full hookups, along with picnic tables.
  • Facilities: Offers potable water, flush toilets, showers, laundry, a playground, Wi-Fi, cable TV, and a pool.
  • Pet-Friendly: Welcomes pets, adding convenience for pet owners.
  • Access to Nearby Attractions: Walking distance to the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort, Fudpuckers, Boardwalk Recreation center, put-put golf, the Gulfarium, and fishing pier.
  • Rates: Nightly rates range from $114-139.

Henderson Beach State Park

How to reach Henderson Beach FloridaAnother friend of mine recently shared their experience at Henderson Beach State Park. They were impressed by the park’s close proximity to Destin and the easy access to the beautiful beach. The campsites offered a good level of privacy, which they really appreciated.

They also mentioned the convenience of having electric-water hookups at most spots, along with the essential amenities like picnic tables, grills, and clean facilities. The park’s nightly rate of $30, plus the entry fee, was deemed reasonable for the value it provided.

My friend especially noted the park’s family-friendly aspect, with a playground that was a hit with their kids. Their overall experience was positive, making it a recommended destination for a peaceful and enjoyable camping trip.

  • Location: Near Destin, FL, in the serene area of Henderson Beach.
  • Beach Access: Short walk to a stunning beach.
  • Privacy: Good separation between campsites.
  • Convenience: Close to shopping areas.
  • Facilities: Electric-water hookups, picnic tables, grills, flush toilets, showers, and a playground.
  • Rates: $30 per night, plus a $6 park entry fee.

Turtle Beach Campground 

Turtle Beach Campground Is It Worth ItI had the pleasure of staying at Turtle Beach Campground on Siesta Key, and it was a delightful experience. Being able to beat mainland traffic by never leaving the island was a huge plus, and the free island trolley made exploring even easier.

The demand for campsites speaks to its popularity, and the prices, ranging from $42 to $60, still felt like a great deal. Despite some tree loss over the years, the campground retained its charm as a shady oasis just steps from the Gulf of Mexico.

The 2017 renovation was evident in the modern amenities, and the top-notch restrooms, showers, and laundry room made the stay comfortable and convenient. It’s a spot I’d highly recommend for a beachside getaway.

  • Location: On Siesta Key, a great staycation spot for Sarasota residents.
  • Convenience: Avoid mainland traffic with a free island trolley stopping at the campground.
  • Demand: Campsites sell out quickly, with prices ranging from $42 to $60, with surcharges for weekends and holidays.
  • Natural Beauty: Despite some tree loss, it offers a shady haven just steps from the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Renovation: Completely renovated in 2017 with paved drives, fresh landscaping, and modern hook-ups.
  • Amenities: Top-notch restrooms, showers, and a laundry room.

Camp Gulf

Is Camp Gulf Miramar Pet FriendlyMy colleague recently visited Camp Gulf in Miramar and couldn’t stop raving about it. They described it as the ultimate splurge, with the front row sites offering an unparalleled beach experience. Although pets weren’t allowed on these premium sites, the breathtaking views of the ocean and the white sandy beach made up for it.

The cost of about $200 per night for these spots seemed steep, but they felt it was worth every penny for the experience. They also enjoyed the added comforts of private restrooms, community spaces, and the convenience of having two swimming pools and a well-stocked camp store on site. Overall, their stay at Camp Gulf was a memorable and luxurious beach camping experience.

  • Location: In Miramar, a popular private campground.
  • Beach Experience: Front row sites offer views of crystal-clear ocean waters and white sugar sand.
  • Pet Policy: No pets allowed on the front row beachfront sites.
  • Pricing: Front row beachfront sites are around $200 per night.
  • Amenities: Includes private restrooms and showers, a community room, two swimming pools, and a full-service camp store.

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park How Much it CostMy aunt recently camped at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park and was impressed by its well-maintained grounds and privacy. The mature trees around each site provided a secluded feel, and she loved the hiking trails and biking paths. The comprehensive amenities, including Wi-Fi and cable TV, added to the comfort of her stay. At $42 per night, plus the park entry fee, she found it to be a great value for the experience and the facilities provided. Her feedback was overwhelmingly positive, making it a spot she’d love to return to.

  • Location: Near Santa Rosa Beach.
  • Landscaping: Well-maintained with mature trees offering privacy.
  • Recreation: Offers great hiking trails and biking paths.
  • Facilities: Electric-water hookups, picnic tables, grills, flush toilets, showers, laundry, pool, Wi-Fi, and cable TV.
  • Rates: $42 per night, plus a $6 park entry fee.

Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park 

A friend’s family recently camped at Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park and loved it. They mentioned the stunning water views and the well-maintained trails as highlights. The privacy provided by the natural separation of sites was a big plus for them.

They were also pleased with the facilities, which included all the essentials for a comfortable camping experience. The affordability of the park, with rates between $16-20 per night, was a pleasant surprise. Their overall experience was so positive that they’re already planning a return trip.

  • Location: Off Choctawhatchee Bay near Niceville.
  • Scenery: Offers beautiful water views and nice trails.
  • Privacy: Sites separated by trees and/or shrubs.
  • Amenities: Electric-water hookups, picnic tables, grills, flush toilets, showers, laundry, and a playground.
  • Rates: Very affordable at $16-20 per night, plus a $6 park entrance fee.

St. George Island State Park

Is St. George Island State Park too expensiveI recently visited St. George Island State Park and was absolutely captivated by its gorgeous white sand beaches, just a short quarter-mile stroll from the campsite. The kayaking opportunities in the bay were fantastic, and the state park’s trail system provided a great way to explore the natural beauty of the area.

The campsite was well-equipped, with most sites featuring electric water hookups, all at 50 amps. The availability of picnic tables, flush toilets, showers, and a dump station made my stay comfortable. And at $24 per night, plus the park entrance fee, it felt like great value for such a beautiful location.

  • Location: Close to the beach, only ¼ mile from the campsite.
  • Activities: Offers kayaking in the bay and a great trail system in the surrounding state park.
  • Beach Access: Known for its beautiful white sand beaches.
  • Facilities: Most sites have electric-water hookups (all 50 amp), picnic tables, flush toilets, showers, and a dump station.
  • Rates: $24 per night, plus a $6 park entrance fee

Sunset Isle RV & Yacht Club

Best sites in Sunset Isle RV Yacht ClubA couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of staying at Sunset Isle RV & Yacht Club near Carrabelle. The first thing that struck me was how impeccably clean and peaceful the place was. With only 27 sites, it had a cozy, exclusive feel, and each site was equipped with full hookups.

The amenities like picnic tables, grills, and a pristine pool added to the charm. I remember evenings spent under the stars, the convenience of on-site Wi-Fi and Cable TV, and the overall tranquility that made my stay memorable.

The rates, averaging around $50-$60 per night, felt quite reasonable for the quality of the experience. This place was a true gem, offering a quiet retreat away from the hustle and bustle, perfect for anyone seeking a serene getaway.

  • Location: Situated near Carrabelle.
  • Tranquility: Known for its cleanliness and quiet atmosphere.
  • Capacity: Features 27 sites with full hookups.
  • Amenities: Offers picnic tables, grills, flush toilets, showers, a pool, dump station, Wi-Fi, and Cable TV.
  • Rates: Nightly rates average around $50-$60.

Ho-Hum RV Park

How Much Ho Hum RV Park CostsHo-Hum RV Park is a unique spot near Carrabelle, well-known for its scenic location by the water. Many of its sites offer picturesque views of the bay and include a fishing pier, making it a favorite for anglers and nature lovers. It’s important to note that this park is labeled as “adults only,” catering specifically to those seeking a quieter, more grown-up atmosphere.

The park offers full hookups at each site, along with picnic tables, and essential amenities like flush toilets, showers, laundry, Wi-Fi, and cable TV. With nightly rates between $29-$39, it presents a peaceful, adult-centric retreat by the water.

  • Location: Situated near Carrabelle, close to the water.
  • Views: Many sites offer great views of the bay, with a fishing pier.
  • Adults Only: Marketed as an “adults only” park, not family-friendly.
  • Pet-Friendly: Allows pets.
  • Facilities: Full hookups, picnic tables, flush toilets, showers, laundry, Wi-Fi, and cable TV.
  • Rates: Nightly rates range from $29 to $39.

Fort De Soto Park Campground

Can I Rent A Bike at Fort De Soto Park CampgroundMy mom last year visited Fort De Soto Park Campground near St. Petersburg and had a fantastic experience. She loved the waterfront sites and mentioned how convenient the electric-water hookups were. She enjoyed kayaking on the water and found the option to rent bikes directly from the camp store quite handy.

The facilities, including picnic tables, grills, and clean restrooms, were well-maintained, adding to her comfort. At $40-$45 per night, she felt it was a great deal for the beautiful location and amenities offered.

  • Location: Close to St. Petersburg.
  • Sites: Offers waterfront sites, all with electric-water hookups.
  • Activities: Options to kayak or rent a bike.
  • Amenities: Picnic tables, grills, flush toilets, showers, laundry, and a playground.
  • Rates: Nightly rates range from $40 to $45.

What to Expect From Weather on These Places?

Best Months to Visit Florida BeachesWhen planning a camping trip to Florida’s beach campgrounds, it’s important to anticipate the weather conditions you might encounter. Florida’s climate is generally warm and sunny, making it a great destination for beach camping.

However, the state is also known for its humidity and occasional thunderstorms, especially in the summer months. Winters are milder and less humid, but still pleasantly warm compared to much of the United States. It’s always wise to check the local weather forecast before your trip and prepare accordingly, bringing rain gear and sun protection to enjoy your beach camping experience comfortably.

Off-the-Beaten-Path Adventures: Excursions and Activities Beyond the Beach

Does Florida Have Hiking TrailsAs someone who has explored beyond the sandy shores of Florida’s beaches, I can tell you that the state offers an abundance of adventures that go far beyond the typical beach day. Venturing a little off the beaten path has led me to some incredible experiences, ones that have added depth and excitement to my camping trips.

Hiking Trails and Natural Escapes

Florida’s landscape is surprisingly diverse. Near many beach campgrounds, I’ve found trails that wind through lush forests, lead to hidden springs, or offer panoramic views of the coast. For example, near Henderson Beach State Park, the nature trail offers a serene walk through coastal dune ecosystems. It’s a peaceful contrast to the bustling beach and a chance to immerse myself in the tranquility of nature.

Historical Sites and Cultural Explorations

Florida’s rich history can be explored through its numerous historical sites. Near some campgrounds, like Fort De Soto Park, I discovered historical forts and learned about the region’s past. These visits offer a fascinating glimpse into the area’s history, from Native American heritage to Spanish explorers and beyond.

Art and Local Craft

In many small towns near these campgrounds, local art galleries and craft markets are hidden gems. These places showcase the creativity and culture of Florida’s residents. I’ve spent delightful afternoons browsing through unique art pieces, handmade jewelry, and other crafts, often finding the perfect keepsake to remember my trip.

Natural Springs and Parks

Florida is dotted with natural springs, and many of them are just a short drive from the coast. These springs, with their crystal-clear water and abundant wildlife, offer a refreshing change of pace. Activities like snorkeling, canoeing, or just a simple picnic by the water can make for a perfect day trip.

Local Festivals and Events

Depending on the time of year, various local festivals and events can add an unexpected spark to a camping trip. From seafood festivals to music events, these local gatherings are a great way to experience the community spirit and enjoy some local flavors and entertainment.

Each of these excursions has enriched my camping experiences in Florida, making each trip memorable and unique. Whether it’s through a quiet hike in a state park, a stroll through a historical site, or a day spent at a local festival, these off-the-beaten-path adventures have shown me a side of Florida that goes beyond its beautiful beaches.


What should I consider when choosing a beach campground?

Consider the season and your camping setup (tent vs. RV). Weather conditions can significantly affect tent camping. Many campgrounds cater to both RV and tent campers, with some offering ADA-accessible sites​​.

What is the weather like in South Florida and the Keys during winter?

In winter, South Florida and the Florida Keys are highly sought after due to lower humidity, refreshing breezes, and minimal bugs. The waters are clear and shallow, suitable for wading and snorkeling​​.

Are there any recommended state parks or areas for beach camping in South Florida and the Keys?

Long Key State Park, Curry Hammock State Park, Bahia Honda State Park, and Biscayne National Park are excellent choices, each offering unique experiences and beautiful campsite locations​​.

What about the Central and Northern Atlantic Coast?

This region offers a variety of beach camping experiences, including the Sebastian Inlet State Park, Canaveral National Seashore, and Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area, each with its own unique charm and amenities​​.

Can You Legally Camp on the Beach in Florida?

Generally, camping directly on the beach is not permitted for safety reasons and to protect wildlife, such as sea turtles and nesting birds. Most beach campsites are located slightly behind the sand dunes​​.

How Much Do Campgrounds Cost Per Night in Florida?

The cost varies widely depending on the location and amenities. Prices can range from $16 to over $200 per night. State parks often have lower rates, while private resorts may charge higher fees​​​​.

Where Can You Sleep on the Beach in Florida?

Some state parks and recreational areas offer beach camping near the shore but not directly on the beach. Locations like Bahia Honda State Park and Canaveral National Seashore provide close beach access for campers​​.

How Long Can You Stay at a Campground?

The maximum stay length can vary. Many public campgrounds have a limit of 14 consecutive days, but it’s important to check the specific rules of each campground.

What Beaches Allow Camping?

Beach camping is allowed in several state parks and recreation areas, such as Henderson Beach State Park, St. George Island State Park, and Fort De Soto Park Campground, among others​​​​.

How Much Does It Cost to Stay in an RV Park for a Month in Florida?

Monthly rates in RV parks vary based on location and amenities. They can range from a few hundred dollars to over a thousand. It’s best to contact individual parks for precise rates.

Are Florida State Parks Free for Seniors?

Florida state parks offer discounted admission for seniors aged 65 and older, but it may not be free. Discounts typically apply to entrance fees and not necessarily camping fees.

Final Words

Exploring Florida’s beach campgrounds and the surrounding areas offers a diverse and enriching experience that goes beyond just sun and sand. From serene nature trails and historical sites to vibrant local arts and festivals, Florida provides a multitude of opportunities for adventure and relaxation. Whether you’re camping in a luxurious RV resort or a more secluded state park, the beauty and variety of the Sunshine State await. Remember to plan ahead, especially for popular destinations, and be ready to adapt to the dynamic Florida weather. Most importantly, cherish every moment of your journey in this unique and captivating part of the world. Safe travels and happy camping!


The information provided in this text is based on personal experiences and general knowledge. It is intended for general informational purposes only. I am not responsible for any inaccuracies, and I do not endorse any specific locations, services, or establishments mentioned. The conditions, availability, and quality of campgrounds, facilities, and attractions can vary and are subject to change. Always conduct your own research and check the most current information before making travel plans. Additionally, always follow local regulations and guidelines while traveling and camping.

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