Here’s our list of some of the Best Snowbird Destinations for RVers as a nervous nation still worries about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Most all RV campgrounds in the big snowbird destination states are now open, though most also have normal health procedures in place, like social distancing and masks in public and restrictions on visitors and crowns in common areas.
But there’s no stopping snowbird season, with the first wave taking off at the end of October and the second and larger one in December.
Snowbirds flock to the southern states, along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts and the desert southwest.
RV Snowbirds used to almost exclusively be retirees or seniors. But these days, snowbirds are any age and enjoy a wide range of amenities. For those that work from “home” or want to spend all day surrounded by nature—or even a casino, we have found the best snowbird destinations for the upcoming season, high-rated campgrounds to book this winter.
And they are not just in Florida. In this article, we travel from Florida to Arizona and list well-reviewed campgrounds in each state. Some allow stays up to 14 days, while others allow booking for the entire season.
What is a snowbird?
Just in case the term needs definition, the word snowbird refers to a northern tourist who vacations in the south during the winter.
The estimates of the number of snowbirds who migrate to the warm southern states of the U.S. every year range from a low of about 2 million to a high of 6 million. Some rent condos and homes but a large percentage make the migration their RVs. Some stay in one place during the entire snowbird season – usually, December-March, while others move from place to place.
The idea is to avoid cold weather, and more and more snowbirds are leaving earlier, right around Halloween, and staying later, until late April.
Canadian Snowbirds are in a tough spot this year
Because of COVID-19 and the closing of the US/Canadian Border, many Canadian snowbirds who come down in October are in a state of flux this year. As we write this in mid-September, there are many who car calling for the border to be closed through the end of 2020. Fulltime Canadian RVers who stay in campgrounds that normally close for the season in mid-October because of the cold, are worried about where they can go should the border be closed.
Canadian snowbirds make up a big part of the population that flocks to the best snowbird destinations for RVers in the U.S. and should the border remain closed, it will present a major headache.
While that dilemma works itself out, here’s our list of the best snowbird destinations:
Best Snowbird Destinations for RVers in Florida
We start in Florida at a wildly popular county park and a Florida State Park with a pristine white sand beach and stunning sunset. Both are value-priced during the snowbird season, but they do book fast. Two have 14-day season limits. The third allows seasonal bookings.
Fort de Soto County Park – St.Petersburg, FL
This county park is located near Saint Petersburg, FL. While you could spend your time exploring Saint Petersburg, we think that you will find plenty of adventure while relaxing in this park. Here is a review from Campendium:
“Fort de Soto is one of the best campgrounds we’ve stayed in. The sites are large and filled with trees and palms. We were lucky enough to get a water view site for easy fishing, watching the birds, and beautiful sunsets.” –Lynn on Compendium
Bring your gear to this camp and spend your time surrounded by Florida nature. If you are lucky enough to get a water-side site, you can launch your kayak directly from your site. This campground has 238 electric/water sites. Your maximum stay is 14 nights.
We have three 7-Day Travel Guides about Florida RV Travel that feature lots of the best snowbird destinations for RVers::
- Florida’s Gulf Coast Travel Guide
- Florida’s Atlantic Coast Travel Guide
- The Florida Keys Travel Guide
Topsail Hill Preserve – Santa Rosa FL
This is a Florida State Park that camps like a private campground. Enjoy WiFi, large bathhouses, and full hook-ups. Walk, bike, or ride on the free shuttle to the campground’s beautiful white sand beach. Or spend an afternoon hiking on their many marked trails.
TopSail is only 30 minutes from I-10 but feels like its own tropical island. When you are not in the campground, you can bike or drive along the famous RT 30A. (rent a bike too).
You can only stay up to 14 days at the campground, but even a long weekend is a perfect escape.
Camp Gulf – Miramar Beach, FL
Located just east of Destin in the Florida Panhandle. Camp Gulf rents seasonal and by the day, with some spots right on the sugar-white sand beach.
There are lots of activities in a community beach house and a pool should te Gulf waters be a bit chilly,
Camp Gulf is minutes from one of the largest outlet shopping centers in the South and Destin abounds with excellent restaurants and things to do.
Best Snowbird Destinations for RVers in Alabama
In Alabama, we visit both a state park and a private RV Retreat Park. Both are an excellent way to enjoy everything that the Gulf Coast of Alabama offers, including some superb gulf food.
Gulf State Park – Gulf Shores, AL
Imagine 2 miles of beautiful white sand beach. Gulf State Park is always awarded great reviews. It is a state park with a long list of amenities, and full hook-ups are available.
“Turn your RV into a beach house”– Ray S on TheDyrt.com.
After walking the beach, you can also enjoy the beach pavilion with picnic tables or the onsite Nature Center. There is also a swimming pool and day use at Lake Shelby for fishing and kayaking. Plus, Gulf State Park is close to many restaurants boasting that Gulf Coast seafood. Unfortunately, your maximum stay in this paradise is 14 days.
Island Retreat RV Park – Gulf Shores, AL
If you would like to extend your Winter stay in Alabama, consider Island Retreat RV Park, where monthly sites are available. You will enjoy top-line amenities at this RV park that include miles of beach, a pool, concrete pads, free WiFi, cable TV, FHU, a dog park, and a nearby boat launch.
Plus, Island Retreat RV Park was rated as the 2019 “Top RV Park to Celebrate Christmas.” If you plan to celebrate Christmas on the road, this may be the RV Park for you.
Best Snowbird Destinations for Rvers in Mississippi
In Mississippi, we recommend two private RV parks, each with its own personality. One is beach-side, and one gives you a taste of Cajun Country, within a 45- minute drive of New Orleans.
Cajun RV Park– Biloxi, MS
“Your Home Away from Home…Only More Exciting” That’s their motto as they invite Snowbirds to stay in this park for the night, a week, or a season.
This campground lets you enjoy all the sights of Biloxi, MS. It is right across the street from the beach. You can enjoy all 26 miles of Biloxi beach from your RV home. Or hop on their free shuttle to the area casinos.
This is a family-friendly resort, and most pets are allowed. (see website for restrictions) If you work from your RV, this is an excellent spot with free WiFi and cable TV.
If you enjoy a beach boardwalk environment, this is the campground for you. Walk or bike to many fun amenities. Just note that some campers stated that you can hear the boardwalk fun from the campground.
Sun Roamers RV Resort – Picayune, MS
This RV Resort just completed an extensive 3- year renovation. It is now offering nightly, weekly or seasonal rates. Sun Roamers is in Picayune, MS, and is only minutes from I-10 and a short 45- minute drive to either the beach or to New Orleans.
The resort has all of the amenities that you would expect. Plus, you can enjoy the Olympic size pool, fish in their large pond, or visit nearby casinos. You will also find golf nearby.
Best Snowbird Destinations for Rvers in Texas
In Texas, we suggest a campground in two popular snowbird destinations for RVers —South Padre Island and San Antonio.
South Padre Island KOA – South Padre Island, TX
This campground has all the amenities you expect from a KOA, while also offering snowbird extended stay programs. You can even book a pull-through site with the KOA branded patio and enjoy palm trees and a beautiful beach.
The campground is family-friendly as well as dog-friendly .
If you are working from your RV, South Padre Island KOA offers free cable and WiFi. If you are too busy to cook, order from the onsite restaurant.
Guadalupe River State Park & Campground – San Antonio, TX
Enjoy both the sights of San Antonio, TX, and the nature of this state park. Expect warm sun during the day and chilly nights in the mid-’30s. You will find peace and quiet, the river, and lots of history.
“Guadalupe River State Park is a beautiful piece of wilderness. This is a great place for hiking, mountain biking, and horse riding, as there are many trails for those activities”-Josue on Trip Adviser.
Or you can spend your days exploring San Antonio and enjoying their famous river walk and history sites. This camp is only 30 miles from the city center.
Campsites are a mixture of electric, electric/water, and a few FHU. You can only stay up to 14 days. Dogs are allowed. If you are looking for a value-add place to camp, near San Antonio, this is a high-rated campground to consider.
Best Snowbird Destinations for RVers in Arizona
Snowbirds love to visit Tucson and the popular Quartzite, AZ. There are many blogs written about BLM land camping in Quartzite, so we decided to tell you about an RV resort that is open to all ages.
We also travel to Tuscon and provide a resort solution that is an age-qualified for 55+.
Holiday Palms RV – Quartzite, AZ
Snowbirds are RVers of any age. If you have looked for a place to park in AZ, you may have noted that many are age qualified for 55+. This RV park is open to all ages and is loaded with amenities. Enjoy the large pool, planned activities, and guided tours from any of the 245 FHU sites.
The campground is close to many nature activities and area restaurants or amenities. Book a short-term stay or stay long term.
CLICK HERE to read an article about Quartzsite, AZ and why it is one of the best snowbird destinations
Voyager RV Resort – Tucson, AZ
This resort in Tucson, AZ, has been awarded the 2020 Trip Advisor Hall of Fame. It boasts an endless array of things to do and places to go. You can stay either a day or the entire season.
Note that this resort is open to only RVs, but pets are allowed in this resort-style site. There are over 600 FHU sites. This is an age-qualified 55+ Resort.
Resort amenities include a spa, restaurants, golf, hiking trails, clubs, a full calendar of events, and even a health center.
Your Snowbird Travel Route
Enjoy the season in one site or link a few of these campgrounds and RV resorts to enjoy the winter exploring. Most of the sites listed can easily be accessed by traveling I-10 westward from Florida to Arizona.