The long, dark and cold days of winter are almost here, but if you’ve got house on wheels there’s no reason to stick around and endure another season. Make the most of your RV by packing up and driving south to bask in sunshine and spectacular sunsets. Don’t know where to stay? Here’s a brief look at the most popular places RV snowbirds go in winter: South Florida, Southern Arizona and Baja California, Mexico.
Central and South Florida
Stop dreaming of a cheeseburger in paradise and go live the Parrothead fantasy in RV snowbird destinations like Sanibel Island, the Florida Keys, and Sarasota among many others. Follow the stream of migrating RVers and head as far south as you can for the best winter weather. Right away you’ll notice it’s popular and pricey, but the good news is that Florida has a wide range of accommodations for RVers with every kind of budget.
For example, some RV parks like Pelican Lake Motorcoach Resort near Naples cater to motorcoach crowds who prefer a country club environment – and at $150 a night during the high season – don’t mind paying for it. Alternatively, bargain-minded RVers can actually find a surprising number of low cost and free campsites in Florida by searching the internet for places like Deep Creek Preserve, a state-owned forest and west coast wetlands area near Arcadia.
Keep in mind that winter camping in Florida shouldn’t be made with a spur-of-the-moment decision. Advance planning pays off since you’ll need reservations wherever you go, especially during the snowbirding season.
No, we’re not talking about visiting the Grand Canyon, which is cold and partially snowy by the time you read this. Snowbirds tend to skip the colder northern half of the rocky state and head directly south. You’ll find them gathering in popular Arizona snowbird RV parks in places like Mesa, Yuma and Tucson, where temperatures hover in the low 70s all winter, even in January.
Great weather isn’t the only reason to snowbird in Arizona. You can find just about any kind of campsite from rustic to resort, at a variety of price points. The most expensive snowbird accommodations are located in cities like Mesa, where full-service parks such as Mesa Spirit RV Resort host over 1800 snowbird guests each season. But if busy RV resorts aren’t your thing, just wander west to Quartzsite where thousands of acres of public land await boondocking enthusiasts. A pass to dry camp with plenty of elbow room costs as little as $40 every two weeks or $180 per season, which includes free use of a public dump station, trash removal and the best sunsets west of the Mississippi.
Baja California / Baja California Sur, Mexico
Feeling adventurous? Join the large numbers of snowbirds RVing in Mexico’s two least populated states, Baja California (the northern half of the 806-mile long peninsula) and Baja California Sur, the narrow, southern end of the region. Most Baja RVers will tell you that reports of crime are exaggerated and the area is perfectly safe for tourists. Whether you decide to travel with experienced RV caravans or explore Baja on your own, the western states are a gentle introduction to the more rugged and adventurous mainland Mexico RV destinations. You’ll find a nice selection of full-service RV parks like Kiki’s RV Camping Hotel in San Felipe, along with an incredible number of free and low-cost beachfront boondocking campgrounds from north to south, on both the Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortez stretches of scenic coastline.
Don’t sit out another winter wishing you had escaped from the weather. Your RV is the ticket to your second summer of the year – all you need to do is turn the key and start driving south.
About the author: Rene Agredano
Rene Agredano, a Coach-Net member since 2015, is a self-employed full-time RVer who enjoys writing, jewelry design and animal advocacy. Her adventures with a three-legged dog and husband Jim are chronicled at LiveWorkDream.com
Kay H. ~ “The Roadside assistance provider, Allen, was Extremely knowledgeable, helpful, and courteous. He arrived quickly and had my car back on the road in a flash.”