Reader asks ‘Where can I go primitive camping in Central Florida?’

Kyle found this beautiful spot for is primitive camp in Ocala National Forest
Kyle found this beautiful spot to camp in Ocala National Forest

Got a question?  Here at Florida Rambler, when we write about places to go and things to do, we try to anticipate your questions and answer them.

But we can’t think of everything.

Our mailbox is evidence of that: We regularly hear from readers with questions that range from very specific (Is the Long Key State Park campground open?) to the more general (What’s a good place for a beginner to start kayaking?)

We try to answer them and we’d like to invite our readers to send more. (Write to [email protected].) We think the answers are often worth sharing. Plus, when we post your questions, we can ask other Florida Rambler readers to contribute and share their collective wisdom.

To kick off this new feature, here’s a question and answer from our mail:

Q.  First, I would like to thank you for the Florida Rambler, it is a great source of information. My question is: Where can I go primitive camping? I’m relatively new to Florida and am used to camping where you would hike for most of the day, pick a spot, camp then move on the next day. I don’t understand places like Brooker Creek County Preserve (near Tampa) that has 8,500 acres and doesn’t allow camping and closes at dusk.  There must be somewhere in central Florida to go camping that doesn’t have a pre-built fire ring.  Any suggestions would be great.

Thanks, Kyle

A. Both Bob and Bonnie offered an answer to Kyle.

First Bob:

There are several trails through Central Florida that are ideal for overnight backpacking trips, I would start with the Ocala National Forest.

Also, the Florida Trail offers several opportunities for overnight trips. Here’s a good resource for the Florida Trail.

Primitive camping is also available on several kayak/canoe trails. Consider heading south to Everglades National Park, or north to the Suwanee River.

Then Bonnie:

Camping on Peace River, Florida, canoe trip
Sandy shore campsite on Peace River.

Bob gave you some great suggestions. Here are a few more ideas:

 

Now it’s your turn: What are some great destinations where you’ve hiked in and camped in Central Florida?

Post your answers in the comment field below. And if you have questions of your own, send them to: [email protected].

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Scott Perkins

    the Everglades NP offers exceptional primitive camping. We’ve entered park at the north entrance, Everglades City. Beautiful beach camping on small islands on the gulf. Spectacular setting. 5-15 mile canoe/kayak trip to several locations.

  2. Avatar

    The Ocala National Forest is a great place for primitive type camping. I’ve never visited Myakka State Park and will put it on my list of spots to camp at in the future. I bring an inflatable kayak on our camping trips because it’s portable and easy to get around with – wonder if it would survive some of these sites.

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