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Hattiesburg is most well known for being the home of the University of Southern Mississippi (Southern Miss). However, it’s often referred to as the “Hub City” thanks to its central locations between large metropolitan areas like New Orleans, Jackson, and Mobile. Booking one of the RV rentals in Hattiesburg is the best way to explore the Deep South, as all the major attractions are just a few hours' drive away.
Hattiesburg’s historic downtown area is quite the popular attraction with tourists as it’s filled with dozens of small cafes and independent shops. The town’s retained much of its college-town atmosphere too, with a very relaxing vibe that makes it an absolute joy to visit.
The rolling hills surrounding Hattiesburg are a veritable playground for nature lovers. One of the most popular spots amongst locals is Paul B. Johnson State Park on the western edge of the De Soto National Forest. At its center is Geiger Lake, an excellent place for a swim when you visit with an RV rental from Hattiesburg. There’s a splash park for the kids and also some excellent hiking trails circumnavigating the lake.
Farther into the De Soto National Forest, you’ll find a vast network of hiking trails weaving their way through it. The forest has seen a fair amount of development, and there are quite a few campgrounds within its borders, so you’ll have no trouble finding a bathroom as you walk the trails.
Visitors just looking for a peaceful stroll will love a walk through the Medicine Wheel Garden near the Hattiesburg Amtrak station. It’s quite small, but is populated with native plant life and exudes a calmness that you won’t find elsewhere in the city.
You’ll have a plethora of RV parks to choose from when you get travel trailer rental in Hattiesburg, with most of them being just outside the city and with convenient access to major highways. One of the closest is Mike’s Place RV Park, off Highway 49 and on the edge of the De Soto National Forest. Sites have full hookups for your Hattiesburg camper rental, along with laundry facilities and some fantastic fishing at Paul B. Johnson State Park just down the road from the campground.
If you’re thinking about staying north of the city, there’s Okatoma Resort and RV Park. They’ve got some nice amenities including full hookups for the Hattiesburg motorhome rental, a large communal dining area, a beautiful pond at the center of the park, and a swimming pool for cooling off on hot summer days. This is one of the best places to take your family when you rent an RV in Hattiesburg.
There’s also the option of parking your Hattiesburg RV rental at the Wagon Wheel Hotel and RV Park just east of town on Highway 42. There are minimal amenities here, but it could be a good place to spend the night. The same could be said of camping in the Walmart parking lot in Hattiesburg, but you’ll need to ask the manager’s permission before settling in for the night.
In addition to all the great restaurants and bars near Southern Miss, Hattiesburg has a fair number of interesting attractions that are worth visiting. One of the more popular ones is the Mississippi Armed Forces Museum. It’s actually on a National Guard base, so you’ll need to get permission before entering, but once inside, you’ll be treated to fascinating displays of helicopters, planes, and armored vehicles. A self-guided tour of the facilities usually takes a couple of hours if you’re interested in reading about each exhibit.
Another must-see for military history buffs is the African American Military History Museum. It’s loaded with captivating exhibits regarding the Buffalo Soldier units and Hattiesburg’s African American residents who have served, from the Spanish American War up to the present. Many of these stories have been left out of the history books, making this an incredibly important place to visit if you want to hear an accurate account of these conflicts.
Animal lovers will want to plan an afternoon at the Hattiesburg Zoo, which is home to more than 50 different species. It’s not as large as many metropolitan zoos, but what it lacks in size it more than makes up for with its variety of animals, including zebras, alligators, llamas, iguanas, and even ostriches. There’s also a train ride to take your family around the premises.
If the kids are coming along for the Hattiesburg RV rental trip, consider setting aside an afternoon at the trampoline park or water park in town. Both spots are great places for the kids to run off some energy after being in the RV for so long and the latter is fantastic on hot summer days.