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2018 Road Trip – Florida to California and back

We started our first Florida Road trip to California in 2018. Going from Florida to California and back, in a Honda CRV. We removed the back seats and added a platform to the back. This allowed us a great shelf for our camping gear.

modified honda for car camping road trip and boondocking
modified honda for car camping

Leaving from our Central Florida home, traveling up the east coast into South Carolina, North Carolina, and then into Ohio and Michigan. From there westward.

Our Missions:

Experience glorious nature – Hike Trails, Visit National Parks, Redwood Forests, Pacific Ocean, and Deserts

Maintain Daily Practice of Yoga and Meditation

Cook and Live Simply

Visit with Friends and Family

Work Trade on a Farm or Intentional Community

See some Epic Music

Highlights from our Florida Road Trip

Silver Springs State Park.

Located in Ocala, FL. The first spot we camped in.

Home of the Glass Bottom Boats and the Gateway to the Ocala National Forest. 

Glass Bottom Boat at Silver Springs State Park Florida
Glass Bottom Boat at Silver Springs State Park Florida

They still run the original glass bottom boats that were made in the 60’s. You get a tour guide and learn about the history of the park. We definitely had to take a ride in one and it was amazing. What a beautiful site to see the bubbling springs coming up.

Silver Springs Campground Trail in Florida
Silver Springs Campground Trail in Fl

Such a swampy and interesting place, neither of us had visited before. This place is unique, it used to be owned by ABC and they filmed hundreds of movies here.  This includes the Creature from the Black Lagoon and Tarzan. 

There are a couple of interesting things about the park.  One is that there is no swimming allowed.  I’m not sure why, but there is no official swimming area.  You can launch your own kayak there if you like.

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Article of interest: How Do I Make Money on the Road?

It rained most of time we were there, but we made due. Usually, we would hang this tarp from the trees to make a roof. Most Florida state parks don’t allow you to tie anything from the trees so we came up with this. We parked the car close and threw the tarp over. This gave us a little “porch” to hang out in and cook our food in. It actually worked really great. There was enough room to put both of our camp chairs and the cooler as a table and cooking surface.

Made a covered porch out of a tarp at silver springs campground florida
Made a covered porch out of a tarp at silver springs campground florida

Be sure to reserve a spot online for the campground, they do fill up fast.

The cost is $18-$24 per night.

Vintage Trailer Supply

Article of Interest: RV Camping in Florida

While visiting you need to be aware that there are invasive monkeys there, and apparently, they have been known to carry something the signs call “deadly herpes”.  I don’t know what the heck that is, but don’t want any.  Luckily, we didn’t see any monkeys and they are working on moving them all.

Florida Road Trip Must

Of Course it took us a long time to get out of Florida. We have so many favorite places and amazing friends and family there, it was hard to leave.

Before we did finally leave Florida, we had to stop at our favorite camping and music venue. Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, Jacksonville, and Fernandina Beach.

Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park

We’ve had the pleasure of spending lots of time at this park. The beautiful spanish moss hanging from the old oak trees and the Suwannee River that runs along the property. Not only is it an amazing place to camp, but also, a place to enjoy music festivals with music loving friends.

sitting on a giant adirondock chair at spirit of the suwannee music park in Florida along our road trip
Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park

They host several different music events every year. This includes their biggest fest, Hulaween. A Halloween festival with String Cheese Incident, who play many sets throughout the long weekend.

They also host a free kids music camp every year and the smaller festivals are very kid friendly with lots of activities to enjoy.

Big Talbot Island State Park

Located on one of Northeast Florida’s unique sea islands, Big Talbot Island State Park is primarily a natural preserve providing a premier location for nature study, bird-watching and photography. Definitely not a place to miss when doing a Florida road trip.

Article of Interest: Free Camping Resources

Additionally, bring a bicycle, in-line skates or a stroller and enjoy the 2.9-mile off road paved multi-use Timucuan Trail that runs parallel to A1A. Stop along the way to read about the park’s natural and cultural resources at the interpretive panels.

Ending the Florida Road Trip

All Stays camping
ALLSTAYS Camping App: Find Camping resources

Fernandina Beach, FL

Fernandina Beach is a city in Nassau County, Florida on Amelia Island. It is the northernmost city on Florida’s Atlantic coast, and is one of the principal municipalities comprising Greater Jacksonville. Interestingly, this area was first inhabited by the Timucuan Indian tribe.

Palace Saloon Fernandina Beach Florida menu and history info sheet
Palace Saloon Fernandina Beach Florida, the oldest saloon in FL, open since 1903

We stopped into the oldest saloon in Florida and met some friendly folks along the way. It is a quaint little town and well worth the stop.

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