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Old 11-30-2014, 01:51 AM   #1
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Florida Keys - Booking a Dec Trip

Our biggest vacation of the year occurs in December because the entire family has 2 full weeks off. We've always wanted to go to the Keys, but haven't ever booked it early enough to get a spot. This time, I'm planning way ahead for Dec 2015! I'm hoping for some advice from those of you who have done this before. First, where's the best camping in the keys with at least electric and water that has great swimming right by the campsite? Lastly, what's the best way/technique to book it? Most sites seem to open reservations up 11-12 months ahead of time, but is there a technique to ensure I book a great campsite for at least 10 consecutive days? Any info would be greatly appreciated!

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Old 11-30-2014, 06:43 PM   #2
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The best park in the Keys, IMHO is Bahia Honda State Park. The park is located on Bahia Honda Key, a beautiful island on the south end of the 7-Mile Bridge connecting to Marathon Key. Bahia Honda SP has a small campground with a number of the sites right on the beach located in the bay at the south end of the key. We have stayed there with our 20 ft Flying Cloud. Some of the sites are tight, but the park is terrific. There is swimming in the protected bay, as well as along a couple of miles of beach on the east side of the the key. Marathon key is the next key to the north and has shopping, restaurants and other attractions. Key West is about 2 hours to the south, close enough for a day trip.

Check out the Florida State Parks at Welcome to Florida State Parks. You can register online through the Florida park website using ReserveAmerica. It is essential to sign up as soon as you are permitted to make your reservations (I think it's about 11 months in advance) since all of the Keys camping gets filled up well in advance.

Good Luck with your Florida vacation. It's good that you're planning ahead. If I can help with any specific questions, let me know.


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Old 11-30-2014, 07:18 PM   #3
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We like Bahia Honda too but it is very, very popular like a lot of the FL State Parks in the winter. To have a chance of getting in you'll need to make your reservations 11 months in advance to the day, the minute reservations open for that day ( check the website for the time). That's no guarantee though and the more flexible you can be on the first day the better - if youre not able to get a spot you can try for the next day or the next day. Or you can keep checking back for cancellations but it will be unlikely that you'll get the 10 days you need with a cancellation.

We've had two computers cued up and ready to go the minute reservations opened, pressed the button at opening time and were not able to get a spot. it may be easier to get a spot in a commercial campground but I'm not familiar with any to make a reservation.
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Old 12-19-2014, 01:48 PM   #4
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For me I already book in bahia , long keys stat park and John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and this year we just book in jolly jumper

stat park didnt have pool and wi fi !!!

we seen it last year and book it only 1 month in advance ...

yes it more money then a stat park but smaller and more suitable for us

a realy nice place to be ....
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Old 12-19-2014, 01:59 PM   #5
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What Karen said.....and it doesn't matter when you going. My bro-in-law played the first minute, first hour, first day game for 2 sites for June 2015, last July. Stayed up through the midnight hour, at opening time. (there are other scheduling games as well, that I won't go in depth about) He got 2 sites, but still couldn't swing next door sites.

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Old 12-19-2014, 02:28 PM   #6
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We have stayed at Bahia Honda SP (no sewer) and John Pennekamp SP (sewer), both are nice and Bahia is our favorite. All sites at Long Key SP sit at the waters edge (Atlantic.) Curry Hammock is the other state park in the Keys.
Sites can be reserved 11 months in advance and come available at 8:00 a.m. eastern time. Sites that open up on a given day can be reserved for the current day and up to 14 days ahead. As mentioned before these parks are very difficult to book due to popularity.
good luck!!

Remember its not the destination, but rather the journey.... its what's in the middle that matters the most!
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Old 12-19-2014, 02:32 PM   #7
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8 AM, hmmmmm. So my bro-in-law was some 16 hours LATE!!!!!! I'll have to "discuss" this with him. Oh, well we're in and set for June at Bahia.


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