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Sitting just off the coast of Georgia, within an hour's drive of Jacksonville, FL, and two hour's drive of Savannah, GA, is a bunch of idyllic islands known as the Golden Isles. Enjoying miles of marshland abundant with birdlife, sandy beaches that stretch for miles, and towering dunes peppered with maritime forests, these islands attract holiday-goers throughout the year.
One of the largest landmasses in this archipelago is Cumberland Island, most of which is under protection as Cumberland Island National Seashore. The island is only accessible via a 45-minute boat ride, which leaves from Saint Marys several times a day from March through to September. RV rentals in Camden County are hot property, mainly due to the popularity of these islands, so why not start planning now and make sure you've got the perfect RV rental for your adventure through the Empire State of the South.
Spanning across 36,000 acres and with no motorized vehicles allowed, biking around Cumberland Island National Seashore is one of the most efficient ways to see as much as possible in a limited time frame. Bike rentals are available from near the boat dock, or you can bring your own with you for an additional fee. It's worth noting that all of the roads on the island are dirt tracks or packed with sand, so you'll need wider tires to be able to handle the terrain. If conditions allow, biking to the historic Plum Orchard Mansion is a must. This 19th-century grand mansion is one of only a few houses built on the island by one of America's most wealthy families at the time, Carnegie. Either visit via a guided or self-guided tour.
Boasting more than 50 miles of multi-use trails, it's no surprise that RV camping near Cumberland Island National Seashore has become very popular amongst hikers. Those with only a day to explore the island may want to consider completing the Southend Loop, a 4.5-mile trail that can take around 3-4 hours depending on personal fitness levels. Wander through a forest of oak trees laden with fluffy moss, climb to the top of dunes for panoramic views, spot birdlife in the marshes, and explore miles upon miles of undeveloped beach.
Known for its wild horses, sea turtles, armadillos, and 300 species of bird, wildlife watching is one reason why motorhome camping has become so popular here. There's a good chance of spotting wildlife such as deer, wild turkeys, and dolphins during your hiking and biking adventures around the islands. However, for the best chances of spotting some of the more elusive species like bobcats, that are more active at dusk or dawn, consider camping on the island.
Although no vehicles are allowed, tent camping at Cumberland Island National Seashore is possible and worth it to explore everything the island has to offer. Bring your tent, water, and food, and set up under the stars. There is just one campsite with cold showers and toilets, so arrive early to bag one of these spots or reserve them in advance online.
Otherwise, you'll need to find a campsite back on the mainland or a nearby island. Anyone keen for a spot of state park RV camping should make a beeline for Fort Clinch State Park, located just south of Cumberland Island. Within the park, there are two campgrounds to choose from, which together offer 63-RV friendly spots. While there are no full hook up sites in the park, many are equipped with electric and water hook-ups for your comfort. For those without self-contained facilities, there are also flushing toilets, hot showers, and potable water taps on site.
If you're looking for luxury camping facilities to match your luxury Jacksonville camper rental, head back to the mainland, where you'll find plenty of campsites peppered along Interstate Route 95, including a well-equipped KOA.
When you have an RV rental near Cumberland Island National Seashore, there are plenty of cultural enrichment activities to get stuck into. The Cumberland Island National Seashore Museum, located just outside of St Marys, is a great place to get to grips with the island's history. Learn about the Timucuan Indians who first inhabited the islands, the Spanish who arrived in the 14th century, and the British who once occupied the island.
Delve further into the heritage of the local area at the St Marys Submarine Museum, where the past, present, and future achievements of the submarine force are showcased and celebrated. Historic photographs, paintings by local artists, contemporary models, and 20,000 artifacts all form part of the collection and help to build a clear picture of the trials and tribulations of the marine force.
A final stop on your history tour around Camden County should be Orange Hall House Museum. The hall itself is considered to be one of the first examples of Greek Revival architecture in America and, for this reason, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today, visitors can take a guided tour around the three-floored mansion and extensive grounds.