“The geographical pilgrimage is the symbolic acting out of an inner journey. One can have one without the other. It is best to have both.” - Trappist Monk Thomas Merton

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.

I've ordered Wild Alaskan fillets from SeaBear before - they are delicious!

Wild Alaskan Salmon Dinner Fillets

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. There are several great apps available at their site, including the #1 ranked camping app, Camp & RV.

There's an incredible amount of information at their site. If you're carrying guns, you need to know that some states are not gun-friendly. Click on Tips at the top of the landing page, then choose Security under the Categories heading to find out which ones. 

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Convict Lake Campground, Inyo NF, CAConvict Lake Campground - Inyo Nat'l 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. 

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.

Frugal Shunpikers Guides to RV Boondocking - If you love boondocking, you'll find these books invaluable. There are two new ones that cover California. Definitely check them out! 

Convict Lake, Inyo National Forest, CAConvict Lake - Inyo National Forest, CA

RV Destinations in National & State Parks

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.

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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 budgeting problems. Also, parks in the most popular areas are apt to be booked well ahead.

Other Options

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.

While planning your rv travels, don't forget the beautiful countries to our north and south. Plan ahead for RV Travel in Canada and RV Travel in Mexico.

Good Sam Travel Assist

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.

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Saguaro NP, Tucson, AZSaguaro National Park East, Tucson, AZ

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