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Camping

Camping Along the Byway

Welcome to Florida, nature’s playground. The Sunshine State has mystified visitors since the first explorers dug their heels into the earth here five centuries ago. And now it belongs to you. Florida is a buffet of sun, surf, soft breezes and fresh air. The temperate climate allows for year-round camping and endless outdoor activities. Once you lay your head to sleep on Florida soil, the land will overtake your senses.

If you are on a mobile device and have trouble viewing the table below,
check out this chart that breaks down camping amenities by location: Byway Camping Amenities.

Campgrounds
Description
Trailer/RV
Tent
Concessions
Camp Store
Canoe Rental
Showers
Cabins
Alexander Springs Recreation Area


49525 CR 445
Altoona, FL 32702

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There are 27 first-magnitude springs in Florida, and Alexander Springs is one of the easiest for visitors to enjoy. A broad and naturally gently sloped spring pool becomes a natural water park for swimming, snorkeling and canoeing. The water is a constant 72°F and extraordinarily clear.

Alexander Run begins here, which is a six mile stretch of river for canoeing and kayaking. Tent and RV camping available.

See Also: More about Alexander Springs, Swimming, The Springs - Byway Video Clip

Links: Alexander Springs - Ocala National Forest

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Astor Landing Campground & Marina


25934 Holmar Dr.
Astor, Florida 32102
(352) 759-2121

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Located on the banks of the St. Johns River, surrounded by the Ocala National Forest, facilities include full hook-ups, boat docks with water, a bath house with hot showers and a playground for the kids.

Directions:
From the S.R. 40 bridge in Astor, go west on S.R. 40 for 1 mile to Alco Road, go south on Alco Road 4 miles to Astor Landing.

Links: www.astorlanding.com

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Ben’s Hitching Post


2440 NE 115th Ave.
Silver Springs, FL 34488
(800) 977-3920

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Located on the edge of the Ocala National Forest and close to Silver Springs and all its facilities. An activity-oriented RV community for full timers or part timers: Bingo, Shuffle Board, and Bocce Ball Tournaments, potluck and holiday dinners as well as a community fire pit.

Directions:
SR 40 east of Silver Springs. Turn south on NE 115th Ave.

Links: http://benshitchingpost.com

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Big Scrub Campgrounds


Latitude :
29.0507289673124
Longitude :
-81.7560642207509

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Perennially popular with ATV riders, the Big Scrub Campground is in the heart of the Big Scrub in the south central portion of the Ocala National Forest. There are 62 sites.

A trail head provides riders campsite-to-trail access for the Ocala Adventure Trail.

Directions:
Accessed from SR 40 by driving south from Mill Dam on Pipeline Road, a signed but unimproved road, for approximately 6 miles.

See Also: OHV Riding

Links: Big Scrub Campgrounds

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Buck Lake Campground (Group camping)


Latitude :
29.0984535952967
Longitude :
-81.6508586227417

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Buck Lake Group Use Area provides primitive camping for groups up to 50. Campers have access to Buck Lake to enjoy fishing and semi-private boating (limit 25 horsepower).

Amenities are limited to one vault toilet, picnic tables and fire rings. There is access to hiking on the Florida Trail via a scenic trail that loops around the lake for 1.7 miles.

Directions:
Buck Lake Group Use Area is located west of SR 19 between Altoona and SR 40, north of CR 445. Access is via unimproved roads.

From Ocala: follow SR 40 east for 32 miles to the intersection with SR 19, past Juniper Springs Recreation Area. Turn right (south) and continue 4.6 miles. Look for the sign. Turn right on FR 535, which after a half mile turns into FR 595C. Continue 0.9 mile to FR 595-2 and turn right. Continue 0.6 mile and turn left. Continue another half mile to the Group Use Area.

Links: Reserve Buck Lake

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Camp Ocala


18533 NFS 535
Altoona, Florida 32702
(352) 759-2288

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Camp Ocala is a traditional camping and environmental complex. It is located on the shores of Sellers Lake in the Ocala National Forest, conveniently close to Juniper and Alexander Springs. Modern sleeping, dining and meeting facilities dot the picturesque landscape.

Camp Ocala is open to the public year-round and may be reserved for a variety of uses: School field trips, Church retreats, Family reunions, Business meetings, Teacher In-service training, Civic Organizations, Athletic Groups, Weddings and more.

Directions:
Camp Ocala is located 4.5 miles south of the intersection of State Road 40 and 19, and 12 miles north of Altoona. Roadway signs indicate Fire Control Center on top and Camp Ocala on bottom. The Camp is located one-half mile west of SR 19. See the map for more details.

Links: More About Camp Ocala


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Elite Resort at Salt Springs


25250 East County Road 316, Salt Springs, Florida 32134

1-800-356-2460

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In the heart of the Ocala National Forest on Little Lake Kerr, the 70 acre RV Park has 475 RV sites. Family-focused and pet-friendly. Two large pools. Rental Cottages available.

Directions:
HWY 19, south of Palatka, at the junction with 316 in the community of Salt Springs.

Links: Elite Resort at Salt Springs

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Fore Lake


Latitude :
29.2702256593273
Longitude :
-81.9184742738861

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With 31 sites tucked in the shade of oaks and pines along shimmering Fore Lake, the Fore Lake Campground is a quiet spot for camping on the western edge of the Ocala National Forest.

Directions:
Drive 5.1 miles north on SR 314 from Nuby's Corner (junction of SR 40 and SR 314). Turn left at the Fore Lake sign and continue 0.7 miles to the recreation area.

Links: Fore Lake

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Hopkins Prairie


Latitude :
29.2758587322548
Longitude :
-81.6937161720927

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Hopkins Prairie borders the byway along SR 19. The Florida National Scenic Trail, Pat’s Island and the Yearling Trail traverse parts of the prairie. The Hopkins Prairie Campground is a seasonal destination for campers looking to get a bit off the beaten path. It sits right along the Florida Trail and offers opportunities for fishing and birding along miles of prairie shoreline. Vault Toilets available.

Open: Oct 1-Jun 1
Closed: Jun 2 - Sep 30

Directions:
The turnoff for Hopkins Prairie is 9.2 miles north along SR 19 from the intersection with SR 40. Turn west onto the dirt road and follow the signs to reach the camping area.

Links: Hopkins Prairie

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Juniper Springs Recreation Area


26701 SR 40,
Silver Springs, FL
(352) 625-3147

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Sparkling springs swimming area with historic Mill House, picnic area, campground, and trails. This campground was named one of ReserveAmerica's Top 100 Family Campgrounds in the United States.

Juniper Springs is one of the oldest and best known recreation areas on the East Coast. Located between Ocala and Ormond Beach along SR 40, this complex of swimming and picnic area, campground, and trails was constructed in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).

Directions:
Juniper Springs Campground is located inside the Juniper Springs Recreation Area. It is along SR 40 between Mill Dam and SR 19, just 9 miles west of Astor and the St. Johns River.

Links: Juniper Springs Campgrounds, Juniper Springs Recreation Area

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Lake in the Forest Black Bear Resort


19115 Southeast 44th St.
Ocklawaha, FL 32179
(352) 625-6275

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This is a great spot for kids, with supervised activities, a pool, a beautiful nearby lake, and plenty of space for kids to run wild. The activities include games, crafts and even Karaoke in the evening. It has a very social atmosphere.

The lake is a great fishing spot, and mist often sits on the lake in the early morning. You will probably spot a gator if you look off the docks or go out fishing. This is a lake with too many gators for swimming. People enjoy spotting bears near this camp, too.

Located in the middle of the byway at Forest Corners, there are cabins for those who don’t want to rough it as much as a tent. RVs are welcome. This is a low-maintenance way to get closer to nature with the whole family. Great jumping – off spot to wander elsewhere during the day and return for night festivities.

Open Year Round.

Gates Closed: 5pm – 9am

Directions:
Off SR 40: 16 miles east of Silver Springs; 12 miles west of SR 19 intersection. Turn south on 183rd Ave. Rd. and follow signs.

Links:Lake in the Forest


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Lake Delancy East


Latitude :
29.4297163579586
Longitude :
-81.7864781814931

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Lakefront campground with 29 campsites along the eastern shore of Lake Delancy in the Big Scrub. A boat ramp provides access for anglers into this popular bass fishing lake.

Open October 1st – June 1st.
Closed June 2nd – September 30th.

Directions:
From Salt Springs, drive north along SR 19 to the "Lake Delancy" sign on the left side of the highway. Turn left. Follow this access road to the turnoff on the left into the campground.

Links: Lake Delancy East

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No hookups. Small trailers and pop-ups only.


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Lake Delancy West


Latitude :
29.4269152492125
Longitude :
-81.7893963905866

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Lake Delancy West provides an OHV recreation area along Lake Delancy with OHV corrals, access to numerous marked OHV trails along the Ocala North OHV Trail System, and camping along the lake. The recreation area also serves as a trailhead and designated campground along the hiking-only Florida Trail.

Directions:
From Salt Springs, drive north along SR 19 for 5.7 miles to the "Lake Delancy" sign on the left side of the highway. Turn left. Follow this forest road, FR 75, around the north side of the lake to the campground and day use area entrance clearly marked on the left.

Links: Lake Delancy West

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No hookups. Small trailers and pop-ups only.


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Lake Dorr Recreation Area


Latitude :
29.0123907961022
Longitude :
-81.6370048200383

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Along the northwest shore of Lake Dorr, Lake Dorr Recreation Area is set under the deep shade of an oak hammock. Offering tent and RV camping, Lake Dorr also has a boat ramp and picnic area overlooking the lake.

According to local historian, Walt Disney’s grandparents lived nearby here (and are buried in Paisley Cemetery.

Current conditions indicate no tent or soft sided campers camping due to recurring bear activity.

Directions:
Drive north along SR 19 from Altoona and watch for the sign on the right, across from the Pittman Visitor Center.

Links: Lake Dorr Campground

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Showers
Lake Dorr Cabin
Lake George State Forest


Lake George State Forest
5458 North Hwy 17
DeLeon Springs, FL 32130
(386) 985-7815

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Lake George State Forest offers many recreation opportunities. Bluffton Recreation Area is located on the St. Johns River and offers FISHING, PICNICKING, and a 3/4 mile interpretive NATURE TRAIL. While there is no boat ramp available, CANOES AND JON BOATS may be launched from the bank. Fishing is also available at Jenkins Pond.

The forest is open to visitors during daylight hours. HIKERS, BICYCLISTS and EQUESTRIANS are welcome on roads, designated trails and permanent fire lines. Contact us to obtain a State Forest Use Permit for PRIMITIVE CAMPING or for vehicle access to portions of the Mary Farms/Dexter Units (except during Special Opportunity Hunts).

Directions:
From the junction of US 17 and SR 40 in Barberville, drive west 5.8 miles towards the town of Volusia at the Astor Bridge to the second sign for Lake George State Forest on the left. Turn south on St. Johns River Road. Drive 0.7 of a mile down this bumpy road to reach the state forest entrance.

Links: Lake George State Forest, Lake George WMA, Dexter/Mary Farms Unit

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Lake Waldena Resort


13582 E. Highway 40,
Lot 300
Silver Springs, FL 34488
(352) 625-2851

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RV camp on the edge of the Ocala National Forest on Lake Waldena. Activity-oriented RV park offering 104 sites, planned activities for adults, children’s playground, beach, and rec room.

Directions:
Just off SR 40, 8 miles east of Silver Springs.

Links: Lake Waldena

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No Canoe Rental


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Mill Dam Recreation Area


Latitude :
29.1807885786987
Longitude :
-81.8326426077427

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In the shade of live oaks overlooking 168-acre Mill Dam Lake, Mill Dam Recreation Area offers two different experiences for the public. Between March 16 and September 30, it’s a day use recreation area with a large swimming area and sandy beach accessible by wheelchairs. For the remainder of the year, October 1 – March 15, it becomes a group campground / recreation area for both day use and tent camping.

Directions:
Mill Dam Recreation Area is due east several miles along SR 40 beyond the Lake George Ranger District Station. Look for the prominent sign on the left after you pass Mill Dam Lake.

Links: Mill Dam Recreation Area

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Tent

October 1 -
March 15

Group Reservations Only

Reserve Online

Or call
1-877-444-6777

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No Concessions


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Olde Mill Stream RV Resort


1000 North Central Ave. (SR 19)
Umatilla, FL 32784
(352) 669-3141

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Family owned and operated premiere adult RV resort with “small town charm” offers a secure gated community with 296 sites on the edge of the Ocala National

Forest on Lake Pearl in Umatilla. Heated pool, clubhouse, game room, lots of planned activities.

Directions:
On SR 19 in downtown Umatilla. South of SR 40 on SR 19.

Links: Olde Mill Stream RV Resort

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Parramore's Fantastic Fish Camp & Family Resort


1675 S. Moon Rd., Astor, FL. 32102
(800) 516-2386

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Located in Astor on the east bank of the St. Johns River near the Ocala National Forest. Fishing and family oriented campgrounds with pool, boat ramp, game room, fish & bait shop and cabins for rent.

Directions:
Just off SR 40 in Astor, 25 miles from Silver Springs and 25 miles from Ormond Beach. Turn north on Riley Pridgeon Rd. just east of the St. Johns River Bridge in Astor.

Links: Parramore's

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Powell’s Campground


25716 Powell Drive.
Astor, Florida 32102
(352) 759-2121

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Located in Astor on west bank of the St. John's River near the Ocala National Forest, in Lake County “Bass Capital of the World.” Full hook-ups, trailer parking, game and rec room, fish and bait shop.

Directions:
From SR 40 in Astor, turn south at Alco Rd., bear to left and stay on Alco Rd., turn right at Holiday Dr.

Links: Powell's Campground

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Rodman Campground


410 Rodman Road
Palatka, Fl 32177
(386) 326-2846

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Focused around the vast Rodman Reservoir, the Kirkpatrick Dam, and the Ocklawaha River, this recreation area is a magnet for anglers looking for bank fishing along the dam. An accessible pier and a boat ramp provide a variety of fishing opportunities.

On the opposite shore below the dam, a recreation area maintained by the Office of Greenways & Trails has an additional pier as well as an easy canoe launch into the meandering original channel of the Ocklawaha River.

Directions:
Follow SR 19 south from Palatka or north from Salt Springs. Turn west on Kirkpatrick Dam Road and continue several miles to the spillway. Parking is provided on both sides. Restrooms, paved boat ramp, picnic tables, and fishing pier are on the east side. The west side is managed by the Office of Greenways & Trails, and includes an unimproved boat ramp, fishing pier, and access for canoe launch.

Links: Rodman Campground


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Salt Springs Recreation Area


13851 SR Hwy 19,
Salt Springs, FL 32134
(352) 685-2048

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Salt Springs Recreation Area is one the recreational jewels of the Ocala National Forest. The recreation area is located in the lush, semi-tropical setting of central Florida. Within the recreation area is a natural spring rising from vertical fissures (cracks) from deep within the earth. The presence of potassium, magnesium and sodium salts give the waters in the spring a slight salinity. Hence the name Salt Springs.

Directions:
From I-75 to Ocala: drive east on SR 40 for about 12 miles, then turn north on CR 314 for another 18 miles. Turn north on SR 19 for about a half mile to the recreation entrance of the left.

From I-95 east of Ormond Beach: take SR 40 west over the St. Johns River through Astor. Continue to the traffic light at SR 19. Drive north to Salt Springs. Continue past the CR 314 junction for about a half mile to the recreation entrance of the left.

Links: Salt Springs



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Silver River State Park & Museum


1425 N.E. 58th Avenue
Ocala, Florida 34470
(352) 236-7148

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The park has a full facility campground and 10 luxury cabins. There is also a primitive campground.

The park has more than 10 distinct natural communities, dozens of springs and miles of trails. Visitors can canoe on the crystal clear river, hike or bike along one of the nature trails. The picnic area features three pavilions with grills that may be rented for group outings and a playground for the youngsters.

The park is home to a pioneer cracker village and the Silver River Museum and Environmental Education Center (The center is operated by the Marion County School District in cooperation with the park and is open to the public on weekends and holidays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00. p.m.) In addition there is camping, picnicking, canoeing and a hiking trail. Admission to the Museum is $2.00 per person. Children under 6 are free.

Directions:
Silver River State Park is located east of Ocala, 1 mile south of S.R. 40 on S.R. 35. From Interstate 75, take exit 352 onto SR 40 east, about 9 miles to SR 35. From Interstate 95 take exit 268 to Route 40 west, about 60 miles to SR 35.

Links: Silver River State Park, Silver River Museum

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St. Johns River Campground


1520 State Road 40,
Astor, FL 32102
(386) 749-3995

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Located in Astor near the Ocala National Forest and the St. Johns River. Over 50 RV sites, 4 cabins and tent sites. Recreation Hall, Laundromat, shuffleboard, playground.

Directions:
On SR 40 in Astor, just east of the St. Johns River Bridge; 25 miles from Silver Springs and 25 miles from Ormond Beach.

Links: St. Johns River Campground

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Tiger Bay State Forest


4316 W. International Speedway Blvd.
Daytona Beach, FL 32124
(386) 226-0250

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Recreational activities include hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, picnicking, boating, fishing, hunting, nature study and photography. HORSEBACK RIDING and BICYCLING are allowed on forest roads designated for their use only. Tiger Bay State Forest contains 1 HIKING trail (Buncombe) in the Florida Forest Service’s Trailwalker Hiking Program and 1 EQUESTRIAN trail (Rima Ridge) in the Florida Forest Service’s Trailtrotter Program.

There are TWO PRIMITIVE CAMPING AREAS on Tiger Bay State Forest. An equestrian campground has been added to the Rima Ridge Tract with five primitive campsites, five small horse corrals (16’ x 16’ each), and a non-potable water supply. Contact Tiger Bay State Forest to obtain State Forest Use Permits for either of the primitive camping areas.

Tiger Bay State Forest is managed as a Wildlife Management Area by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). Indian Lake and Rattlesnake Pond are open for FISHING and small BOAT use. HUNTING for whitetail deer, hogs, and small game is permitted during designated seasons.

Directions:
Access to the Rima Ridge Tract is also available by taking SR 40 approximately 5 miles west of I-95, the entrance is on the left side of the road.

Links: Tiger Bay State Forest, Tiger Bay WMA, Rima Ridge Unit

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Tent


Two Primitive
Camping Areas

Contact
State Forest
for use permit.


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Wilderness RV Resort


10313 East Highway 40
Silver Springs, Florida 34488
(352) 625-1122

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Premiere RV resort on the edge of the Ocala National Forest with over 400 sites (permanent & RV). Unique roadside retreat fashioned as a national park, motor court, and welcome center offers planned activities, game & rec room, social hall, exercise gym, beach, trading post & café.

Directions:
Just east of Silver Springs, (12 miles east of I-75) on SR 40.

Links: Wilderness RV Resort

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