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Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area

Destinations

Situated along Florida’s northeastern coast, Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach puts RV campers in touch with 144 acres along Florida’s pristine shoreline. The land, itself, is a barrier island. To the east is the Atlantic Ocean. To the west is Florida’s Halifax River. Amid an area packed with modern amenities, the park offers RVers an unusually private respite amid protected forestry and shoreline.

Location

Located approximately 20 minutes north of Daytona Beach and 30 minutes south of St. Augustine, RVers can enjoy beach-side views right from their RV.

History

The park memorializes the heroic death of Gamble Rogers, a celebrated folk musician. Upon hearing a child screaming for someone to save a man struggling in the water, Rogers dove in. Although he reached the man, both were eventually overcome by the heavy surf and the powerful riptide. As a singer-songwriter, Rogers spent his life memorializing Florida and its people and is now memorialized, with honor, by them.

Photo credit floridastateparks.org

RV campsites

Many commercial campsites are overcrowded RV parking lots. The state park, however, offers 32 spacious RV spots, peppered with trees, each site with its own unique view. For motor homes, the spaces range in length from 27 feet to 40 feet and offer electric and water hookups. All offer back-in access. Tents are permitted, and three of the spaces are handicap accessible. All of the campsites can accommodate up to eight campers.

On-site activities

Park activities are designed to keep campers pleasantly informed, relaxed, and comfortable.

  • daily eco-tours
  • picnic sites
  • canoe launch
  • boat ramps

Reported favorites include paddle boating and canoeing. Seashell collectors will not be disappointed. Of course, swimming and surfing are favorites for water lovers wanting to stay cool in the heat of the day.

Amenities

The park is known for its cleanliness and generous amenities, which include shower station, laundry, restrooms, and nearby parking.

Beaching

The area is known for its cinnamon sand, and the state park keeps the park trimmed and landscaped. The beach and trails are level, making them comfortable for hiking or biking. Although the park parallels nearly one-half mile of shoreline, campers have access to miles of uninterrupted shoreline along Florida’s coast.

Gamble Rogers State Park map.

Must-do activities

Scheduled park events – crafting

Popular among campers are the scheduled events, many of which focus on local arts and crafts. People can learn about ancient Timucuan pottery, for instance, which represented one of the native Floridians’ most important technologies.

Eco-tours

Florida travel means one thing: eco-tours. At Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach, eco-tours are half exercise, half guided tour. The tour covers Florida wildlife, particularly the sea turtle. Additionally, tourists learn about the evolving ecosystem as well as the Atlantic surf, its currents, and the rip tides.

Horseback riding

Nearby is the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway. It offers 70,000 acres through which campers can enjoy biking, hiking, or horseback riding on over 300 miles of trails–yes, that is correct: 300 miles of trails.

Day trips

Fun Florida travel does not mean driving for hours. Only 18 minutes away is the Daytona Beach area where the northern cinnamon sands turn white. For families, the Daytona Lagoon offers go-karts and water slides. For science-and-tech lovers, the Daytona Museum of Arts and Sciences offers visitors the opportunity to view one of Central Florida’s largest exhibits, consisting of over 30,000 pieces.

Beach-side lunches are available at both Chart House and Sloppy Joe’s. Chart House is an upscale eatery specializing prime rib and seafood. Of course, Sloppy Joe’s is famous for its sloppy joes. Both restaurants offer vegetarian and gluten-free menus.

Once sated, families are encouraged to enjoy a dessert at Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory Tour, a favorite destination for nearly one-hundred years. After heading back northward, vacationers are encouraged to enjoy the views along a two-mile scenic hike from the park to Flagler Beach Pier. One-way, the walk is a fairly easy forty minute stroll. Keepsake photos are recommended.

Photo credit floridastateparks.org

The senses

When it comes to RV camping, it is understandable that most of the things-to-do involve visual activities. However, because this particular state park is so private, and since the surrounding area is so far removed from the Daytona Beach party crowd, it is important to take the time to simply sit, feel, and listen.

For instance, after dinner at the campsite comes beach chairs on the beach. The aroma of grilling hangs in the air, and sand is a welcome feel beneath the feet. As the sun sets, the sounds take over: the crash of the wave, the gulls, the wind. There are few experiences more soothing. This is RV camping at its calmest.

For more information go to the park’s Florida State Parks page or call 386.517.2086.

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