In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Can you sleep on the beach in Florida? We will recommend the best places to sleep on the beach in Florida and give you a few tips and basics of camping in the middle of nature.
Can you sleep on the beach in Florida?
In Florida, you cannot sleep along developed beaches, meaning spots where people have their homes, or in front of restaurants. Still, there are areas supervised by the Bureau for Land Management, National Park Service, and the U.S. Forest Service along the beach, that are great places for free camping in Florida.
If you want to go on an adventure with your tent or trailer on the beautiful beaches of Florida, check out the campsites in the table below.
|Campsites along the beach in Florida||Details|
|Bahia Honda State Park||Located in the Archipelago of the Keys, Bahia Honda State Park is one of the most beautiful places to camp in Florida. This nature reserve offers you palm trees, coral reefs, lagoons and beautiful white-sand beaches. |
RVs and tents are accepted at various sites on the island, which have electricity, water, a grill and picnic tables.
|Curry Hammock State Park||Curry Hammock State Park in the Archipelago of the Keys offers a 28-spot tent and RV campground within 100 feet of the ocean. It is a sparsely populated place, made up of mangroves and marshes, which can be explored by canoe or kayak. |
Remember to book in advance, places are coveted.
|Canaveral National SeaShore||On the east coast of Orlando, the Canaveral National SeaShore stretches along the shoreline between New Smyrna Beach and the Kennedy Space Center. It is a popular spot for surfers and fishermen with its 37 km of beaches. |
Several campsites accommodate RVs and tents on the shore.
|Flagler beach||Want to wake up to the sound of the waves? At the Beverly Beach campsite, it is possible! It is located in Flagler Beach, near the Palm Coast, just a few yards from the ocean. |
Open 12 months a year, it offers more than 400 m of waterfront and gives you access to a grocery store, Wi-Fi and RV equipment.
|Turtle Beach CampgroundSarasota region||To spot dolphins at any time of the day (promise-swear-spit, they’ve adopted this place) stay at the Turtle Beach Campground south of Siesta Key in Turtle Beach. |
This site, with 39 lots, which welcomes travellers with tents and caravans, is located 700 feet from the beach. Price $ 60 per night in high season.
|Bahia Honda State Park Campground|
by Calusa Beach
|Although it is no longer possible to camp on the Atlantic side of this state park located at the tip of the island of Bahia Honda in the Keys archipelago due to the ravages of Irma, which is a shame Because the beaches of Sandspur Beach and Loggerhead Beach and the surrounding campgrounds were among the most beautiful in Florida, the site still offers 56 pretty campgrounds (Buttonwood and Bayside Campground) for tents and caravans on the Gulf of Mexico side. |
On site, take the opportunity to swim at the small beach of Calusa Beach, and do not forget to take the path that leads you to The Old Bahia Honda Bridge, the view from the bridge over the turquoise waters is spectacular!
|The Red Coconut RV Park||With its campgrounds located directly on the soft, pristine white sands of Fort Myers Beach, the Red Coconut RV Park is Florida’s true camper’s paradise.|
Of its 250 courses, 60 of them are within yards of the Gulf of Mexico. Plus, this dream site is minutes from vibrant downtown Fort Myers Beach, and less than 6 miles from the deserted beaches of Lovers Keys State Park. Don’t forget your camera, the sunsets in South West Florida are breathtaking.
Price: US $ 98-125 per night in high season.
|St. Augustine||Located in northeast Florida, the town of St. Augustine has many beaches where it is possible to camp with views of the Atlantic Ocean, for example, the North Beach Camp Resort at St. Augustine Beach and the Anastasia Island State Park. |
And if you’re bored of the beach, you can also visit downtown St. Augustine, which is considered the oldest city in the United States.
|Everglades||Head to the tip of the Florida peninsula at the southern end of Everglades National Park! The Flamingo campsite is open year-round and accommodates tents and RVs. Services include electricity, solar panel showers, picnic tables and grills. |
During the day, you can explore the magnificent Everglades Park, with its 300 species of birds, crocodiles and manatees.
|Biscayne National Park||Camping in a national park made up of 95% water is possible! Biscayne National Park, located in South Florida offers two camping sites: Boca Chita Campground and Elliot Key Campground. Note that RVs are not accepted, only campers with tents can stay there. |
Perfect for daytime exploring Biscayne Bay, one of the most popular scuba diving sites in the world. You will discover a rich aquatic fauna, but also shipwrecks dating from the 19th century.
|Fort Myers||In southwest Florida, the Fort Myers area is the perfect destination for those seeking tranquillity away from the hustle and bustle of Orlando and Miami. You can sleep at Red Coconut RV Park, a very vintage campground with beachfront locations. |
Don’t have an RV? No problem, you can rent one on-site! This is a perfect base camp for exploring the town of Fort Myers and its stunning Sanibel and Captiva Islands.
|St. Petersburg||A coastal city in northwest Florida, St. Petersburg is cradled to the east by Tampa Bay, and to the west by the Gulf of Mexico. Nicknamed “The Sunshine City”, it is sunny 360 days a year, making it a particularly popular destination for tourists. |
You can practice many activities there: windsurfing, paddleboarding, kitesurfing, etc. Two beach campsites can accommodate you: Fort DeSoto Park Campground and Madeira Beach Koa.
Note: Since beachfront campgrounds are so popular with travellers, it’s always best to book months in advance, sometimes even up to a year in advance. If you don’t have a reservation, take a chance and contact them. Sometimes there are cancellations!
Tips for camping on the beach in Florida
There are official campsites on the coast everywhere, offering a protected and demarcated area to pitch your tent. But wild camping is often an attractive alternative for those who are looking for better contact with nature. As long as you are authorized to do so. In this case, follow some basic rules so that your stay is just as pleasant for the neighbourhood as it is for you:
- The first rule of all hikers and campers: respect the environment! It is a living space that you have chosen to occupy, to be as less intrusive as possible.
- At nightfall, do not leave anything lying around your camp. No tables, no chairs, no empty cans and even less your garbage.
- High tides can be treacherous! Don’t get too close to the shore.
- When you leave, be sure to clean the area and leave it cleaner than when you arrive.
Camping on the beach in Florida: Campfires and music
Having a nice campfire by the water, strumming the guitar and singing loudly until dawn sounds like a cool movie scene. In reality, it can quickly turn into a bad idea. All activities involving making fires are prohibited on beaches.
This includes campfires but also barbecues. Violators face a fine of $50 and will be evicted from the scene manually by the police. Do you doubt it? Keep in mind that beach fires in the middle of the night can be seen from a great distance!
The same goes for noisy parties: avoid if you do not want to be dislodged. So forget the endless tom-tom evenings and other djembes, especially near homes. Always keep in mind that the coast is a public place and that we must respect the tranquillity of others. How you would like yours to be respected.
The bottom line
We wish you the best of luck in finding a great place to spend your vacation on the beach in Florida. And if you have visited one or more of the above campsites, we’d love to hear about your experience. Do not hesitate to contact us!