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If you like to be close to water, this DeBary campground is worth a look. Lake Monroe Park is one of the oldest parks and motorhome camping sites in Volusia County, and with moss hanging in oak trees and a nice trail to a spring, it's one of the most scenic, too. The sites vary in length, shade, and privacy. You can either camp under the full Florida sun, seek shelter in partially shaded sites, or find a spot away from other campers.
Water and electric hookups are available, along with restrooms, showers, and a dump station. And if you come in towing a boat or driving a big rig, maximum site length is 85 feet. The volleyball court is a nice place to break a sweat before heading out to your outdoor pursuits. There is also a playground for the kids to warm up before you take them bicycling or hiking on the trails. Enjoy a picnic in designated areas or plan a gathering at the pavilion. If you plan to take to the water, the boat ramp sees plenty of activity, as well as the fishing docks and the boardwalks.
You don’t have to go far either to see teeming wildlife. Lake Monroe Park is surrounded by diverse habitats that support a variety of flora and fauna, so put your campervan rental to good use and explore the natural wonders this side of Florida is famous for, most notably the Ocala National Forest and the Canaveral National Seashore.
Wintering manatees in the hundreds can be seen in the clear blue waters of the Blue Spring State Park. Raptors and wading birds also frequent the area and are often seen when you hike along the spring run or on the 4.5-mile Pine Trail. To appreciate the park's many wonders from the water, glide on a kayak or canoe, or join a guided riverboat cruise from the state park to the St. Johns River.
To see wintering waterfowl, take your DeBary camper rental to the 21,500-acre Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge tucked between the St. Johns River and the De Leon Springs outflow. Follow miles of trails on human-made dikes forming the pools to see the refuge's avian residents or climb the observation towers for sweeping views. Two hundred bird species have been counted in the sanctuary, with the swallow-tailed kites one of the most populous.
The largest sand pine scrub forest in the world lies just an hour's drive away when camping at Lake Monroe Park Campground. Ocala National Forest spans more than 430,000 acres, and within its boundaries over 600 lakes, springs and rivers provide visitors abundant water-based recreation. One of the forest's most popular attractions is the densely canopied and winding course of Juniper Run. To see a giant sinkhole that served as the watering hole of pre-1900 settlers, follow the Yearling Trail through the Big Scrub. Or if you want to cover more ground and see the forest's diverse ecosystem, search for an RV in Volusia County that could take you through the 60-mile Florida Black Bear Scenic Byway. Then make stops along the way to hike a trail, kayak a river, or enjoy a picnic.
The Atlantic Coast lies less than an hour's drive away when you camp in an RV near DeBary, and you can have a slice of an undeveloped beach all to yourself at the Canaveral National Seashore. Here wildlife viewing and stargazing are exceptional, fishing from the beach is excellent, and kayaking at the Mosquito Lagoon pure bliss. Even better, you can time your visit during one of the rocket launches and witness an unforgettable spectacle just a few miles south of the peaceful Playalinda Beach.
For a fitting introduction to DeBary, set foot in one of the oldest intact buildings in Volusia County. Frederick DeBary, a wine merchant transplant from New York City, was one of the earliest settlers in the area when he opened a hunting lodge here he called "DeBary Hall." Now part of a ten-acre historic site, the Italianate hunting estate is rich with history; it once entertained the luminaries of the day, including Presidents Ulysses S. Grant and Grover Cleveland.
Fill your tank in one of the more than a dozen gas stations in DeBary and stop in one of the many convenience and grocery stores for supplies before heading out of town. DeLand House Museum, one of west Volusia's well-preserved treasures, contains an outstanding collection of historical articles that offer a window into Central Florida life more than a century ago. If your tastes are artistic and contemporary, Deland's Museum of Art houses multimedia exhibits from regional and national artists while its installations can be enjoyed on a "Sculpture Walk" around the city.
When you rent a camper near Lake Monroe Park Campground, Orlando is only half an hour's drive away, but you can leave your RV rental in DeBary, Florida and take the SunRail to the theme parks capital of the Sunshine State. A wealth of magical adventures awaits, so bring the kids – and the child in you – for this fantastic trip of a lifetime.