More Roost-Worthy Campgrounds and Top-Flight Sights
Snowbirds follow several popular routes to and from warmer winter climates: from I-95 on the east coast to I-35 in the Midwest to I-5 on the west coast. Now that you have our suggestions for stops in the northern stretches of these interstates, here are some spots farther south, which can make great final winter destinations in and of themselves.
I-95: Myrtle Beach, SC
Beach basics meet RV extras (free cable and Wi-Fi) at Ocean Lakes Family Campground, which has 893 pull-through, full-hookup sites. Although it’s 70 miles off I-95, the setting is worth the trip: 310 acres with eight lakes and prime Atlantic Ocean beachfront, all just four miles south of Myrtle Beach. For a ride or spectacular light show, visit the SkyWheel on the Ocean Boardwalk in Myrtle Beach. More than a million LED bulbs illuminate this 21st-century version of a Ferris wheel. The Original Benjamin’s Calabash Seafood sets a high bar for low-country cooking. It was the first restaurant on the Grand Stand in Myrtle Beach to offer Calabash-style cooking, meaning lighter than the traditional deep-fried dishes.
I-95: New Smyrna Beach, FL
The 202-site New Smyrna Beach RV Park and Campground is 15 minutes south of Daytona—one of the few places where cars are allowed to drive on the beach–and about 5 miles west of New Smyrna Beach’s lengthy stretch of sand. There are 199 sites (89 of them pull-through) with water, electricity, and sewer hookups; some slots can accommodate RVs up to 60 feet. Master naturalists at the nearby Marine Discovery Center can escort you on a number of marine adventures. SoNapa Grille pays homage to its California roots with a wine list and menu that evoke Sonoma County and Napa Valley.
I-35: Oklahoma City, OK
The big-rig friendly Twin Fountains RV Park can accommodate vehicles up to 75 feet. It also has 26-foot-wide paved roads and a personal escort to your site. Expect full hookups at all 152 sites (67 of them pull-through), abundant green space, rig-side patios, and loads of onsite facilities. Nearby is a noteworthy monument in two parts: the 50,000-square-foot Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum and its 3.3-acre Outdoor Symbolic Memorial. Combined, the two are moving reminders of the 1993 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. For more than 100 years, it’s been all about the beef at Cattlemen’s Steakhouse in the historic Stockyard City district.
I-35: Corpus Christi, TX
At Pioneer Beach Resort on Mustang Island you can be a beach bum in the comfort of your RV thanks to boardwalk access to the sand and facilities that include two swimming pools. More than 350 of its 400 sites have full hookups; all have free Wi-Fi. Step aboard the USS Lexington Museum on the bay, and step into the museum’s exhibit area–the ship itself, which carried aircraft into the Pacific Theater during World War II. It’s casual dining and cash only at Snoopy’s Pier, a fisherman’s hangout with a private 600-foot pier and great seafood, desserts, and views.
I-5: San Diego, CA
Accolades abound for the Chula Vista RV Resort and Marina (552 slips) on San Diego Bay. Its 237 full-hookup sites can accommodate rigs up to 45 feet. The setting is virtually Mediterranean; the truly resort-like facilities include a pool, a spa, a fitness room, and two full-service restaurants. You can preview the nearby 100-acre San Diego Zoo on a 35-minute guided bus tour or from the Skyfari aerial tram. More than 4,000 animals from 800 species live in habitats that recreate those in the wild. Contemporary cuisine and live jazz set a high bar at Croce’s Restaurant & Jazz Bar in San Diego’s historic Gaslamp Quarter.
I-5: Palm Desert, CA
The operative word in Emerald Desert RV Resort is “resort.” The 251 landscaped spaces in this 32-acre oasis have views of the San Jacinto Mountains and can handle rigs up to 60 feet. Sites often overlook a golf course, a putting green and tennis courts, or heated pools. For a respite from the desert heat, head about 20 minutes north of the city of Palm Springs, and take the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway to the Mountain Station. It’s often 30 degrees cooler than at the Valley Station. Cabbage soup put family-owned Sherman’s Deli & Bakery on the map. But the deli sandwiches keep customers coming back.