It’s been a year since we took our first vacation with our motorhome, “The Silver Box.” That trip was over Spring Break, with camping stops in Florida and South Carolina. It had been a long winter, and we were very anxious for shorts-and-sandals temperatures, long bike rides, and a chance to finally try the motorhome experiment. Fortunately, it was a successful experiment.
But all experiments need to be repeated, and so we started to think about the elements that contributed to that original feeling of Spring Break success. It wasn’t that hard to reduce last year’s experience to a formula of scenic campgrounds plus warm weather plus outdoor exercise plus great restaurants. Yes, I know that last component doesn’t fit with most definitions of “camping,” but then, does a motorhome?
The challenge is to squeeze this formula into the classic Spring Break timetable of 9 days in March. From our home in central North Carolina, driving south-southwest is the fastest path to warm weather. We decided once again to focus on Florida, but this time the Gulf Coast rather than the Keys; and again to stop in South Carolina, but this time Charleston as well as Hilton Head Island. We switched the outdoor exercise plan from biking on the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail to kayaking in Sarasota Bay and Palma Sola Bay. There was also a lot of walking through downtown Charleston, though the exercise value was unapologetically compromised by too many stops at great restaurants.
We stayed at three scenic campgrounds: James Island County Park, just outside of Charleston; Hilton Head Harbor RV Resort & Marina; and Holiday Cove RV Resort in Cortez, Florida. The latter campsite was dockside on a canal that served as our boat launch, and there was no need to find another: during three days of kayaking, there were many sightings of great blue heron, green heron, great egret, ibis, cormorant, pelican, osprey, and even dolphin! I’ve added some of the better photos, nearly all captured while paddling, to the Florida Coasts collection.