When you are planning rv destinations, the sky is the limit. Most of us will choose warmer climates in the winter and cooler ones in the summer. Sometimes that means you have to head north or south; other times all you need to do is head for a higher or lower elevation. One RVer I met handed me a business card with the slogan, "Chasing 75 degrees." Since it was mid-May, about 36 degrees and spitting snow, he wasn't having much luck.
One of the most amazing destinations in winter is Quartzsite, AZ. This is, literally, an RV city. Hundreds, maybe thousands, of RVers spend a month or two or more, parked in the desert on BLM land. And, if you don't want to spend that much time with no hookups, there are RV campgrounds available as well. I spent a couple of months in the desert there one winter and loved it.
Head south from Quartzsite about 1-1/2 hours and you'll be in Yuma, AZ, another popular winter destination, especially for seniors.
If you like to be near the ocean, almost all the good rv destinations along the West Coast are either state parks or national forests which is great as the rates are generally lower than a private campground would charge. You can't beat the beauty.
To find RV campgrounds in national forests, go to the U.S. Forest Service website. Most maps also show state parks and national forests and have a little symbol indicating camping. I stayed in several of the state parks along the coast in Washington, Oregon and California and would love to go back sometime.
Here are some of my favorite resources when I need inspiration.
The absolute best site I've found for finding state parks with RV camping, Wal-Mart locations, other places like Wal-Mart that will let you dry camp overnight, and just about anything else you want to know is: Allstays Travel.
If you're carrying guns, they have the laws for the states you'll be traveling in - some states are not gun-friendly. Click here for that information.
Convict Lake Campground - Inyo National Forest, CA
You can purchase a membership at the Allstays site if you feel you need to download the various directories - for instance if you travel in places where an internet connection is hard to find. However, if internet access is not a problem, they welcome your use of the site free - I use this site frequently. For you technologically advanced souls, they now have an app for your i-phone for just $5.99.
Two very useful tools, without which I wouldn’t leave home, are the Trailer Life RV Parks, Campgrounds & Services Directory, and the Trailer Life Directory RV Road Atlas map book which shows you the location of most of the RV campgrounds in any given state. Woodall's also has a very thorough directory of parks and campgrounds. Both of these campground directories now have an app available. The directories can be purchased at Good Sam's site.
Convict Lake - Inyo National Forest, CA
US National Parks - This is an incredible country; we have so many magnificent national parks, monuments, forests, and historic sites. An RV is a wonderful way to see them, and if you're a Senior citizen you can't beat the price - it's free to enter the park & campsites are generally half price.
Most of the national parks are located in the northwestern and southwestern parts of the country, but the eastern side is gorgeous, too. One summer I headed that direction, visited the Canadian Maritime Provinces, then Acadia National Park in Maine and on down the coast - it was a great trip!
US State Parks - Many states have wonderful state parks with RV campgrounds, both with and without hookups. If you plan to spend a lot of camping time in a particular state, see if they offer an annual pass that will save you some money.
Many states allow veterans to camp free in their state parks - a wonderful way to support our troops. So, if you're a veteran, be sure to ask.
NOTE: Do check ahead when planning your rv destination at a state park; many states are closing some of their parks due to the current budgeting problems. Also, parks in the most popular areas are apt to be booked well ahead.
Most of the time I enjoy traveling alone but there are other options available and there are definitely times I would feel more comfortable choosing one of them. Check these other possibilities at RV Tours and Caravans.
If you join one of the many RV clubs, check to see what they offer. Many of them plan frequent get-togethers during the year so you have a chance to hang out with other RVers, have potlucks, and share activities.
If you're concerned about possible travel emergencies when traveling outside the U.S., fear not. Good Sam TravelAssist services travel with you, no matter where you are!
Whatever your rv destination, if there are other RVers around, you'll find they are generally outgoing, enjoyable people, a great source of information, and very willing to help out when needed.
Do you have any questions? Any comments? This is your chance to let me know what you're thinking, so please do. I really enjoy hearing from you.
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Thank you for a great RV resource!
This site has been an amazing resource for me and I know it will continue to be so as I make my escape plans :-) Thank you for the message, Becky, …
looking forward to rv destinations
Really enjoyed your site. My husband and I hope to rv most of the time before long. Wish you were on Facebook to follow. We love western USA! Judy, …
love this rv adventures site
Really enjoyed your site. My husband and I hope to rv most of the time before long. Wish you were on Facebook to follow. We love western USA!
Saguaro National Park, Tucson, AZ
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Here's a network of people around the world who are willing to offer free parking to RVers for a night or two on their own property. This is a wonderful idea for all those who love boondocking. It costs $24.95/year to become a member so you can use the services – discounted to $19.95/year if you can offer free parking on your property in return.
Mid-summer 2010: Wonderful visits to Devils Tower, Bighorn National Forest, the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Refuge and Glacier National Park. I love this part of the country!