Rainbow Springs State Park offers 1,470 acres of serenity and adventure. Thanks to its clear blue waters, gardens, and hills, many visitors have found peace here. This park is the perfect place for a relaxing getaway, and with its mix of natural history and modern architecture, history buffs and adventure junkies alike will find plenty to discover.
You may find it hard to believe this outdoor oasis was once a theme park complete with a zoo and rodeo. By 1974, the park failed and closed due to other attractions around the area, but it later reopened as a public park in the 1990s. Today, Rainbow River is a National Natural Landmark, and thousands visit each season to soak in the vibrant blue waters and enjoy countless recreational activities. Book an RV in Marion County and start planning your getaway to Rainbow Springs State Park.
Thanks to the crystalline blue waters, swimming is Rainbow Springs State Park's most popular attraction. Folks have flocked to this area for over 10,000 years to experience this tropical paradise where the water temperature averages 72 degrees year-round. Water levels in the swimming areas range from five to 18 feet deep, and there's also a small wading pool for toddlers. Canoeing and kayaking are also favorite pastimes.
The hiking trails at Rainbow Springs offer a unique range of sights to see. The man-made waterfalls left over from the 1930s theme park are among visitors' favorite views. Along the trails, be sure to watch for wildlife. This area is a haven for birdwatchers, and you might spot a hawk or owl on your excursion along the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail.
Take a serene stroll through the park's gardens, picnic with the family, and stop and take pictures in front of the famous Rainbow Springs Waterfall. RV camping at Rainbow Springs State Park is a great way to take your time and fully explore this swathe of natural beauty.
Snorkeling isn't offered at every state park, but it is at Rainbow Springs State Park. Either wait until the crowds die down and explore the headsprings, or go snorkeling right from Rainbow Springs State Park's campground. This exhilarating adventure puts you up close with a variety of fish and turtles. Many families adore snorkeling here, but keep in mind the water has no shallow areas, and crowds are abundant during certain hours of the day.
Camping at Rainbow Springs State Park
Rainbow Springs State Park has more than 45 sites for tent and RV campers. Full hookups are available to RV campers traveling in motorhomes up to 103 feet long. Some sites are more shaded and offer more privacy than others, but the majority of sites afford campers a decent amount of privacy.
Near the campground, you'll find a playground and clean restroom and shower facilities. Laundry facilities are also available. Rainbow Springs State Park campground is a fair distance away from the park's main swimming areas, but you can access the river from the campground to swim, fish, or launch your canoe.
Pets on a leash or under physical control are welcome to tag along for your RV camping trip at Rainbow Springs State Park.
Exploring the Area
The fun doesn't have to end when you're finished camping at Rainbow Springs State Park. Fill up your rental RV at one of the many gas stations in Dunnellon and hit the road. You'll find plenty of shopping, dining, and entertainment opportunities within a short drive of the park. Plus, this part of Florida offers no shortage of natural beauty.
While renting a camper in the Dunnellon area, don't miss the chance to take a pontoon boat tour of the Withlacoochee River. Local adventure companies offer narrated tours that allow visitors to admire the area's preserved forests and protected wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled and you just might spot an alligator lurking in the water. Herons and egrets also make regular appearances.
Rainbow Springs State Park is just a short drive west of Ocala, where you'll find big-city attractions as well as Florida wilderness and wildlife. Visitors with a keen interest in military history will want to stop by Fort King National Historic Park, the site of a 19th-century Army post. Ocala's Appleton Museum of Art exhibits acclaimed pieces from international artists. Downtown Ocala offers a variety of upscale eateries and historic attractions.
Ocala National Forest is 30 miles east of Rainbow Springs State Park. Natural pools and canoe areas are created from the multiple springs around the area, and hundreds of ponds, lakes, trails, and more are available to see and explore. Hiking, kayaking, and lazy floating are all extremely popular activities at the forest. Renting an RV might be the best idea for this excursion, as it's impossible to see all the scenery in one day.