This campground is a real surprise--clean, spacious, grassy sites, very quiet and scenic setting. No showers and pit toilets only, which basically requires a self-contained unit for extended stays. 14 days maximum, but you can move to Buffalo Park at this point for 7 days and then come back. We much prefer this over Buffalo Park, but others find the riverfront setting of Buffalo Park much more preferable. This wasn't even full over July 4. And, hallelujah... no fireworks. First and only time we've stayed someplace on the 4th that we had no illicit fireworks. You could describe this as a suburban setting, best for those touring the Chicago area or requiring no entertainment as there is absolutely none.
This place is an absolute gem. Perfect blend of real camping--allowed to have clotheslines and fires, great separation between you and neighbors, definitely in the great outdoors. 1/4 mile walk to beach which is used primarily by campers. A bit disconcerting to see a ReMax realtor sign from the boardwalk! That's the thing about this place--you are directly across the street from a WalMart, less than 1/4 mile from extremely busy US 98, the main Destin strip. Although you hear a lot of road noise, you really can't see any commercial structures except the aforementioned ReMax building. There is new construction in the area, and I'm not sure this sense of rustic camping will last. They've done an excellent job of maximizing the small amount of land they actually have for the park. In fact, on the way to the beach, you can see the remnants of old hwy 98, which has been partially covered with sand. I liked the gravel pads, which allows you to keep things clean without feeling as suburban as paved spurs.
This campground is a great surprise. Where can you camp for $12 a night, complete with water and sewer hookups, modern and clean restrooms, laundry facilities, with stuff to do? Only disappointment, website says they have swimming, but signs say don't swim because of alligators. 3 nice nature trails. Great boat launch. As a previous reviewer commented, you're camping on dusty sand, so everything gets dusty. We have a small vinyl rug, which helps keep you feeling clean. Huge sites, paved interior roads, all of which help. Nice little store, close to conveniences, overall, a good camping experience.
This park isn't our cup of tea, but I can see why folks love it. Apparently this was originally a private campground, and if we could find private campgrounds like this one, we'd be more willing to try them. Spacious sites, clean, quiet, organized, lots of activities. We played tennis which was great, as this isn't usually available in state parks. What we didn't like is the beach access. Very long hot walk if you don't bring bikes. Tram available, but running only once an hour, requires considerable attentive planning of your day. Not much fun to walk the park, and the day use area, although it borders a nature preserve, is absolutely sterile. It would be great if trails were readily available and publicized.
We camped here years ago and weren't impressed. But we came back to try again and now realize that this one is all about the campsite you end up with. We happened to be on the lagoon, able to pull in forward and have total privacy about 15' from the water. But, even some of the interior sites are fine. But some are terrible. Directly across the road from us were 3 tent sites that together might have equalled 1 decent sized site. Every single day we were here, all 3 sites were occupied, generally by multiple tents, and multiple vehicles. The center site, 141 was basically squeezed completely out by the other campers. They could barely fit a two man pup tent, the picnic table, a small car and the fire ring. On the other hand, we couldn't have had a nicer site--spacious, private, perfect view. We could have pulled a boat right up to the site if we were boaters. The beach here is a bit far to walk to, but bikes work, or there is parking at beachside. Powder white sand, hard packed near the water, makes for a wonderful play or walking beach. Of course, the fact that the weather is perfect also helps. The park doesn't have WiFi, but there is a marina across the water whose WiFi ($9.95/day) is strong enough to log onto. We're using an AirCard with Cingular and coverage is great.
Nice campground and nice park. Good hiking. The FDR historic site is exceptional and reminded us how much Roosevelt's terms in office changed the face of America, especially rural America. Most sites are excellent and are selected after registration.