A place known for glass-bottomed boats gliding down clear waters, Silver Springs, FL is a relaxing destination to rent an RV and get ready to explore. Nestled right in the center of Florida, this little town is named for its group of artesian springs. The land the waters flow in was purchased by the state and became part of the Silver Springs State Park, which offers a variety of fun activities for tourists.
Silver Springs was a theme park before the State Park was created. If you want to get some city exploring in with your luxury RV nearOcala, remember that its seat is Marion County, and has a lively downtown area full of modern amenities.
The Great Outdoors
But if natural springs are your thing, head on over to the Silver Springs State Park and enjoy the water. The system of sixteen springs are a gushing body of water that is close to 500 million gallons. They form the Silver River and feed into two other larger rivers, including the St. John’s River, which is Florida's longest river at 310 miles.
To explore the water, kayaks, canoes, and motorboats are available for rent. The most popular tourist activity when visiting Silver Springs is taking a ride in the famous glass-bottomed boats that were invented in Silver Springs. The guided boat rides allow guests to travel over the crystal clear water with a view of the underwater life beneath them. While you'll mostly see fish, the springs house aquatic creatures of all kinds. You may be lucky enough to spot a tortoise or an alligator!
If you are here for awhile, then Silver Springs State Park is just the place for you. While hiking, biking, or camping in a tent or your rented motorhome, you will see some of the many critters that call Florida home. There are plenty of deer, boars, and birds of all species scattered throughout the 5,000 acres comprising the state park. Occasionally, you may catch a glimpse of an armadillo, bobcat, or bear. The best part is you will hear tons of monkeys chattering in the trees. Some say these are some that escaped from one of the six Tarzan films shot in the area.
If one state park isn't enough, after you rent a motorhome in Silver Springs, take it to Rainbow Springs State Park right nearby in Dunnellon, FL. With warm water that people swim or paddleboard in year-round and walking trails leading to scenic waterfalls. Rainbow Springs might be too tempting to pass by. If you have not had your fill of springs, there is Juniper Springs, located within Ocala National Forest. These springs feed the same 315-mile long river, St. John’s, and provide you with a place to soak in a subtropical setting.
Not yet done with outdoor activities? Ocala is known as the Horse Capital of the World due to 30 percent of their farms being equestrian. The county is home to more horses than anywhere else in the nation. Visit a local horse farm or several, since you have an abundance to choose from, go on a guided tour or try horseback riding.
Whene you're ready to get out of the sun (after all, Florida is called the Sunshine State for a reason), head on over to the Silver River Museum and Environmental Education Center to learn more about the natural history of Marion County.
You're sold already and are eager to book an RV in Silver Springs, but what about parking your rented home on wheels while you're out on the water or hiking through the forest? Fortunately for you, Silver Springs is very RV friendly. You have almost a dozen RV parks to choose from, and you can even post up for the night right near the state park.
Only three blocks from the springs, the Silver Springs RV Resort could be a great place to stay. This resort has easily-accessible paved roads, large sites, and group activities such as early morning nature walks. Another choice a short distance away is Wilderness RV Resorts at Silver Springs which offer more comfort and convenience. With firepits, a heated pool, and fishing areas-you'll really feel like you're vacationing. Wilderness RV Resorts offers a clubhouse and a library if you're in need of more entertainment. Most importantly, necessities such as WIFI, showers, and laundry facilities are available.
If your main options are booked, just a little farther away is the Tall Timber Trailer Park. This is a 55+ community that also offers temporary RV lot rates. Once you have your camper rental from Silver Springs settled into a cozy spot, run whatever pressing errands you might have before you continue exploring the neighborhood. The town has an RV repair shop, multiple gas stations, and a Walmart should you wish to camp out in their parking lot for a free night or two, just be sure to ask ahead of time. After that's complete, continue having memorable adventures in your chosen vacation destination.
Exploring the City
After you end up sunburned from boat rides and sore from hiking, you might want to visit the city and relax in the way you do when exploring other cities: dining on local cuisine and strolling through museums. While some of the RV parks and resorts do offer their own restaurants and cafes, when youre in the city, you have a few more interesting selections.
Start off with some authentic wagyu beef-rich, creamy, and raised locally in Marion County. Have it in a burger or a stew like you would back home, but better. Or try something surprising, like traditional French cuisine such as escargot or duck a' l'orange. But before you stuff yourself to the brim and begin dreaming about retiring to your camper rental in Silver Springs, don't forget to visit the museums.
The Appleton Museum of Art offers five galleries and an auditorium displaying a wide assortment of European, American, and Contemporary fine art. If you aren't into the classics, maybe instead you would prefer to amuse yourself with the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing. Have the time to catch a play, musical or concert? Look up what's playing at the Ocala Civic Théâtre and catch a show.
Should you crave more adventure, head to Orlando, which is about 62 miles from Silver Springs. Venture to one of several theme parks and have a wild and memorable time. If theme parks are not your thing, consider venturing a little further to Jacksonville to see where the St. John's River enters the Atlantic Ocean.
When your feet are tired and your belly is full, finish off with a glass of wine at one of the local wineries in Ocala/Marion County. Repeat the list tomorrow, and fill in what you had to skip due to the misfortune of the day having only 24 hours to play with. By the end of the trip, you'll want to look into moving to this small town that is found right beside a miniature metropolis. But do not worry-you can always rent an RV and come back next year!