Castillo de San Marcos National Monument
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Introduction

Looking for a great new place to explore in eastern Florida while on vacation? Plan a stop to visit Castillo de San Marcos National Monument. You'll have a great time exploring this little piece of America's history.

Castillo de San Marcos National Monument is found on the western coast of Florida's Matanzas Bay. The fort remnants are located in the city of St. Augustine and are one of the region's most popular attractions. Castillo de San Marcos National Monument pays tribute to the struggle of different cultures learning to cohabit peacefully together. The structure marks the oldest and largest brick fortress within the United States.

Though Castillo de San Marcos National Monument was never taken by force, it was an important fortress for protecting the Florida coast from attack by sea. In addition to its use as a battlement, the monument's coast also served as a safeguard for Spanish ships returning to the homeland with treasure.

The fort is comprised of a unique material known as coquina. Coquina is a unique type of limestone formed through pieces of crushed shells. This material was an important part of the building's protection strategy as it was capable of absorbing objects lodged against it instead of succumbing to structural damage such as cracks or chips.

If you're planning your next RV stay in Florida and looking for some fun places to explore, consider a trip to Castillo de San Marcos National Monument. It is a great place to learn more about local Floridian history and culture.

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RV Rentals in Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Transportation in Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Driving

The route from Jacksonville, FL to Castillo de San Marcos National Monument is 41 miles in total. To follow this path, begin on FL-10 E, taking the exit for I-95 S until you reach the turn for FL-16 E in St. Johns County at exit 318. Follow this highway until you reach the turn for N Ponce de Leon Boulevard. Your destination can be seen just up the road. A path that leads from a major city, you can expect to find highways of both two and four lanes. Traffic moves fluidly along well-maintained roads. Occasionally, you will encounter road construction, so be prepared to experience delays.

Daytona Beach is 56 miles from Castillo de San Marcos National Monument. Begin by traveling on I-95 N to FL-207 N in St. Johns County. From here, you will take exit 311, continuing straight to S Ponce de Leon Boulevard. The monument can be found ahead. The highways in this path are well-maintained and comprised of stretches of two and four lanes. Traffic moves at a moderate pace. Road construction occurs occasionally.

Parking

Parking is available via a lot on the grounds on Castillo de San Marcos National Monument.

Public Transport

There is a shuttle bus which transports people from St. Augustine to the monument. Refer to the monument's website for a schedule and fares.

Campgrounds and parking in Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Campsites in Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Reservations camping

St Augustine Beach KOA Campground

St. Augustine Beach KOA Campground offers year-round camping for RV and tent campers to enjoy. Reservations are highly recommended.

Not your typical camping facility, St. Augustine Beach KOA Campground offers far more than standard amenities including cable TV, power and water hookups, a tour shuttle, and Wifi. For your convenience you will also find other amenities onsite like laundry facilities, picnic tables, banana bikes and paddle boats for rent, and a playground. There is also a pool that is open year-round for guests to enjoy.

Generator use is permitted, and dogs are welcome on the grounds, so long as they remain leashed and quiet. The property is home to a dog park as well.

First-come first-served

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Spring

Day Trip to St Augustine Lighthouse

The St. Augustine lighthouse attracts a lot of visitors each year. Originally built on Anastasia Island between the years 1871 and 1874, it remains a functional beacon of light, guiding sailors on their journey today. It bears the distinction of being only the second lighthouse constructed in the region.

In 1994, a non-profit museum was opened on the same site. Here visitors can learn more about marine life in Florida. It is open 360 days per year, closing only for holidays. Some of the educational exhibits include maritime shipbuilding activities, marine archaeology, and local culture.

Summer

Picnicking

Both Castillo de San Marcos National Monument and the nearby St. Augustine Beach KOA Campground offer an abundance of places where families can enjoy a picnic lunch. Enjoy a treat at one of the picnic tables outside the fortress at the monument site or take a seat in the sand along the shores of the beach to spread out and sample the feast you brought along from home.

Your dog may join you on your picnic adventure but must remain leashed in accordance with St. Augustine by-laws.

Swimming

Whether you fancy a dip in the ocean at St. Augustine Beach or splashing in the pool at the campground, you won't want for places to cool off and practice your best doggy paddle on a hot summer's day. Swimming is not supervised at either locale, so be sure to only swim during optimal weather conditions.

After your swim, you can enjoy working on your suntan on the beach or lounging in a deck chair by the pool.

Bring snacks and drinks or pick up some treats at the on-premise convenience store. Fido may join you on the sandy portions of the beach but is not permitted in the ocean or in the pool.

Fall

FIshing

The waters at St. Augustine Beach are a popular place for fishermen looking to capture their next haul. You can paddle out in a canoe, take out your power boat, or fish from the shore, depending on your preference.

After you've caught your fill, you can fillet your haul to bbq over an open fire or a propane range back at your campsite.

Be sure to purchase a fishing license before heading out on your journey.

Paddle Boating

If you fancy a day out on the water, why not rent a paddle boat and hit the open waves? There is a rental stand where families can pay a fee to enjoy paddle boats or banana bikes for a different view of the region's Anastasia Island.

While out on the water, you can try your hand at doing some fishing or take the plunge and go for a refreshing swim in the crisp, cool waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

Winter

Beach walks

The beautiful shores of St. Augustine Beach make it the perfect place to enjoy a beach stroll. The scenery is incredibly beautiful,. offering breathtaking vista views of the open ocean and mainland coastline.

If you're especially lucky, you may find a few seaside treasures to take home as a memento from your holiday. Tired of walking? Why not recline in the sand and just enjoy a good book or the view of the stars in the night sky?

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