The 10 Most Popular Cities RVshare Travelers Visit in the Winter (and what to do there)

Last updated on May 25th, 2021 at 01:15 pm. Originally published on January 18th, 2021

RV travelers don’t necessarily slow down in the winter! With an entire country to explore, there are plenty of places to visit during winter, and we’ve tracked down those that are the most popular with RVshare travelers.

Unsurprisingly, the places that top the list are known for their warm weather all year round. Whether you’re headed to one of these spots to escape a cold and snowy hometown, or you simply want to see new sites and visit new landmarks, you’re sure to find plenty to do in these ten cities.

Keep in mind as you plan your travel that there may be pandemic-related restrictions in place in some of these areas. You’ll want to check websites and even call ahead of time to make sure the places you want to visit are open, and to check on whether you need reservations or whether there are other considerations.

The 10 Most Popular Cities For RV Travelers in Winter

Orlando, Florida monorail with colorful flowers and palm trees in the foreground

1.) Orlando, Florida

When you combine warm winter weather with several world-class amusement parks, you’ve got the makings of a winter vacation you’ll remember for a long time. Whether you want to spend a day kayaking at the headwaters of the Everglades or mingling with Disney princesses, Orlando has you covered!

Things to do

  • Wekiwa Springs State Park: Wekiwa Springs State Park is just a few minutes from downtown Orlando and is a great place to learn more about the flora and fauna surrounding the city. Snorkel or swim in the turquoise waters of the springs, hike the trails, and keep an eye out for deer, tortoises, turkeys, and more. If you have several days of amusement park hopping planned, this park is also a great place to take a day in between to relax and regroup.
  • Go Paddleboarding: Try stand-up paddleboarding with Paddleboard Orlando, where they offer many tours and suggestions for places to head out on your own. You can also rent a kayak or canoe from the same place.
  • Head to Disney World: This is the place most people associate with Orlando, and while there are many other exciting places to visit in the city, you can’t go wrong with a trip here! There are four theme parks that make up Disney World – Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom Park, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, and Epcot. You could spend an entire Orlando vacation visiting the Disney parks and still not have experienced everything on your list.
  • Check out other theme parks: In addition to Disney World, there are other exciting theme parks in Orlando as well. Universal has three amusement parks that include Harry Potter World and many fun adventures for lovers of Hogwarts. Legoland is another park in the city, and SeaWorld is in Orlando as well.

Other adventures

Along with theme parks, Orlando has art museums, shopping, dining, and is just a short drive from beaches and state parks where you can experience more of the area’s natural beauty. If you want to learn more about Orlando, check out our local guide to the area here.

Camping in Orlando

With balmy warm weather and plenty of natural places to explore, it’s no wonder that Orlando also has some wonderful campgrounds where you can stay. Bill Frederick Park is on 183 acres next to Turkey Lake and has plenty of shady campsites. Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort is part of the Disney parks, and is an exciting place to stay if you want the full Disney experience. You can find many more camping suggestions in our list of Orlando campgrounds here.

Houston skyline at night

2.) Houston, Texas

Houston is a thriving city, with mild weather and plenty to do. Space exploration buffs can explore the Space Center Houston, sports fans can head to a Houston Rockets basketball game, or watch the Texans play football, and there excellent shopping and dining opportunities abound.

Things to do

  • Brazos Bend State Park: This state park is less than an hour from Houston and is a beautiful place to fish, bike, camp, and possibly spot an alligator. Brazos Bend also has an observatory run by the Houston Museum of Natural Science where you can gaze at the stars without all the lights from the big city.
  • Galveston Island State Park: This park is also about an hour from Houston and you can spend the day building sandcastles, sunbathing, or canoeing one of the paddling trails on the bay side of the park.
  • Space Center Houston: The Space Center is a must-see for kids and for space lovers of all ages. There are interactive exhibits, displays of equipment that has been used on trips to space, and the largest collection of spacesuits and Moon rocks on public display in the world. The hands-on displays help visitors become part of NASA’s mission to learn more about our place in this solar system.
  • Houston Arboretum and Nature Center: Winding nature trails lead you through gardens featuring local plants, and you can learn about the animals, wildflowers, and other wildlife that thrive around Houston. The Houston Arboretum and Nature Center is a wonderful place to spend an afternoon among the flowers!

Other adventures

Along with these exciting places, Houston has a symphony, family-friendly farms, shopping, and dining, and is just a short drive from even more state parks where you can explore the area even further. If you want to learn more about Houston, check out our local guide to the area here.

Camping in Houston

As a bustling city that welcomes tourists year-round, Houston also has plenty of campgrounds where you can make your home away from home. Southlake RV Resort is close to Houston’s city center and all the attractions there. It’s a gated RV campground with security personnel on the premises, and with a pool and hot tub for relaxing at the end of a busy day. Advanced RV Resort is close to both NRG Park and Minute Maid Park, and it’s near several shopping malls and plenty of restaurants. You can find many more camping suggestions in our list of Houston campgrounds here.

Cactus in a desert in Phoenix

3.) Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix is a colorful desert city that is home to cactus and amusing javelinas (as long as they’re not threatening you or digging up your garden). The city’s beautiful desert landscape and warm weather are big draws for visitors, and you’ll find plenty to do during the winter months!

Things to do

  • Grand Canyon National Park: Although the Grand Canyon is a three-hour drive from Phoenix, it’s such an icon that you can’t visit the state of Arizona and not make a trip to see it. Walk around the top of the South Rim, or venture down a trail to see the canyon from within. There are also several visitor centers along the South Rim, which is open year-round, and you’ll find plenty of opportunities to attend ranger talks or participate in other park activities.
  • Saguaro National Park: Saguaro National Park is a little closer to the city at just an hour and a half away. Visit to see the awe-inspiring saguaro cactus which gave the park its name. They can only be found in the Sonoran Desert, although their image has become a symbol of the American Southwest. There is hiking within the park, and a Junior Ranger program for younger children. If you can, be sure to stay for the desert sunset and take plenty of pictures of the sight!
  • Desert Botanical Garden: In case you thought the desert was desolate and bare, the team at the Desert Botanical Garden is here to reassure you that it’s teeming with life. Learn what grows in this dry place – from gorgeous flowers to the animals that have adapted to desert living.
  • Sedona: Sedona is about a two-hour drive from Phoenix, and is known for its breath-taking hiking while visitors are surrounded by dramatic red cliffs and rock walls. It’s also home to world-class spas and other wellness treatments and products. The Chapel of the Holy Cross is a gorgeous structure built into the red rocks, and is a great place to stop in for spiritual contemplation.

Other adventures

Along with these places, Phoenix has art galleries, museums, nature centers, and wonderful shopping and dining. There are also many other state parks where you can explore the desert environs. If you want to learn more about Phoenix, check out our local guide to the area here.

Camping in Phoenix

As a gorgeous desert city that’s home to plenty of snowbirds, Phoenix has a variety of campgrounds where you can stay. The Covered Wagon RV Park is just outside of Phoenix and has a lot of family-friendly features including a pool. It’s also near the Phoenix Art Museum as well as several shopping centers. Desert Sands RV Park offers resort-like amenities, with a pool and opportunities to picnic and relax on the grounds. It’s close to the Desert Botanical Garden and is one of the best parks in the area. Discover more campgrounds on our list of Phoenix campgrounds here.

the Inland Empire lit up at night with San Bernardino Mountains in the distance

4.) San Bernardino, California

While many people head to sunny Southern California during winter, most don’t think of San Bernardino as a place to set up camp. This can work to your advantage, as you may find roomier campgrounds and cheaper prices than the more crowded areas in Palm Springs or Los Angeles. San Bernardino is also just a short drive from local ski areas, so if you do want a winter weather fix, you’re not far!

Things to do

  • Joshua Tree National Park: Joshua Tree is about an hour and a half drive from the city of San Bernardino, making it possible for you to visit for a day, although there’s enough to keep yourself busy for several days! The park covers more than 1,200 miles and is dotted with the twisty, quirky-looking plants that give the park its name. Joshua Tree offers plenty of hiking and mountain biking and is a popular spot for rock climbers. It’s also known for its stargazing opportunities since it’s well away from the lights of L.A.
  • Rim of the World Scenic Byway: This drive takes you out of the valley, through the mountain town of Big Bear. The byway takes you through some of the most naturally scenic areas in Southern California. You’ll drive by Big Bear Lake, Lake Arrowhead, and through the Cajon Pass, and offers views of the entire Inland Empire. The byway is open year-round, but you may need chains in winter as the area does get snow.
  • The Original McDonald’s on Route 66: Route 66 goes straight through San Bernardino (it’s in the song and everything), and a fun stop on the historic route is the original McDonald’s location. The restaurant is now a State Historic Site that celebrates America’s love affair with cars and the open road. The roadside museum holds thousands of pieces of McDonald’s memorabilia and souvenirs, with a large part dedicated to vintage and collectible Happy Meal toys from around the world. You can even bring any of your own to add to the collection if you wish. Admission is free.
  • San Bernardino History & Railroad Museum: The San Bernardino History & Railroad Museum showcases the history of locomotion in the Inland Empire. The museum is situated inside a restored 1918 Santa Fe depot that is still in use as an Amtrak and Metrolink depot. A recreated 1910 railroad station is on display, along with antique clocks and horse-drawn buggies.

Other adventures

Along with these places, San Bernardino offers shopping and dining, as well as short drives to both the bustling Los Angeles area and the tony Palm Springs region. There are many other state parks and you can also be at the beach in under an hour. San Bernardino makes a great home base to explore many different Southern California attractions!

Camping in San Bernardino

San Bernardino offers a variety of campgrounds where you can set up for your vacation. Rancho Jurupa Park in nearby Riverside County has many amenities including a camp store, playgrounds, and fishing lakes. Desert Willow RV Resort is a great place to stop if you’re traveling the route between Vegas and Los Angeles. It’s also along your drive to the Sierra Nevada Mountains and Arizona. The staff can also help you if you’re interested in arranging a tour of Historic Route 66, or want other ideas of where to visit nearby. You’ll find even more campgrounds on our list of San Bernardino campgrounds here.

the exterior of the Fort Worth Stockyards building

5.) Ft. Worth, Texas

A lot of people can say they’ve been to the Dallas-Fort Worth area…but they simply landed at the airport and had a layover. The area is definitely worth more exploring than simply spending time at the airport! Watch a cattle drive, enjoy a delicious steak, or learn about the dinosaurs that used to roam Texas long ago – there’s something for everyone to do in Fort Worth.

Things to do

  • Lake Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway: The Mineral Wells Trailway winds along twenty miles of an old railway opened in the late 1800s. It’s now a popular place for cyclists, runners, and others who want to walk its historic path. Lake Mineral Wells State Park is along the bike path and has camping, hiking trails, and plenty of rock climbing.
  • Dinosaur Valley State Park: This park is home to some fascinating real-life dinosaur tracks that were left in the limestone, sandstone, and mudstone in the area. Along with exploring dino remnants, the park offers places for hiking, mountain biking, and camping.
  • Trinity River Trail: The Trinity River Trail runs almost 18 miles through Fort Worth and links many of the city’s parks and waterfronts together. You can run or ride the entire trail, or walk small portions of it to get out and see the city.
  • See a Cattle Drive: The Fort Worth Stockyards are home to a tradition that has been going on pretty much since the town was founded. Each day at 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., cowhands drive the Fort Worth Herd up East Exchange Avenue. Onlookers can get a taste of what life was like when the city was founded. You can also wander through the Fort Worth Stockyards at other times of the day and see the longhorns resting peacefully.

Other adventures

Along with these places, Fort Worth has many more nearby state parks, as well as great shopping and a fun restaurant scene. For more things to do in Fort Worth, check out our local guide here!

Camping in Fort Worth

There are plenty of campgrounds near Fort Worth, so you have many options for where to set up camp! Bear Creek Campground is situated on a lake southwest of Fort Worth. It’s known for fossil hunting as well as its scenic views. The Dallas/Arlington KOA is near Fort Worth, and has all the amenities you would expect at a KOA campground. You’ll be within minutes of many top attractions, including Six Flags and AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys. You can find more campgrounds in the Fort Worth area here.

an above view of Tampa Bay and the surrounding water

6.) Tampa, Florida

The third-largest city in Florida has plenty to offer visitors, especially those headed to the area to escape cold, snowy weather! Whether you want to relax on the beach, take a hike, or indulge in some great dining and drinking, Tampa has you covered.

Things to do

  • Caladesi Island State Park: Caladesi Island is a pristine, untouched island along the Gulf Coast that you can only access by boat. The park has a 3-mile kayaking trail and a 3-mile hiking trail with gorgeous views of the Gulf. You can also simply spend time enjoying the white sand beaches before heading back to the mainland.
  • Weeki Wachee Springs State Park: Weeki Wachee is both a state park and a water park. There are mermaid shows, and the Buccaneer Bay water park is within the boundaries of the state park. Riverboat tours and wildlife shows are also available, and guests can canoe or kayak the Weeki Wachee River.
  • Tampa Riverwalk: The Tampa Riverwalk is a 2.6 mile pedestrian trail in downtown Tampa that spans the Hillsborough River. The trail also meanders through the art district and many other tourist attractions, as well as passing dining, shopping, and entertainment options. It’s a great way to get some exercise on your way to or from a dinner out.
  • Ben T. Davis Beach: The largest public beach in the Tampa Bay area is the Ben T. Davis beach, which is a great spot to spend a day with kids! You may also want to try Clearwater Beach just a short drive away. It can get crowded, but the beach is gorgeous and is regarded as one of the best beaches in the state.

Other adventures

Tampa has much more to explore, including Busch Gardens, museums, aquariums, and other attractions as well as many more parks and beaches. For more things to do in Tampa, check out our local guide here!

Camping in Tampa

Tampa’s beautiful weather and scenery mean there are also plenty of campgrounds for visiting snowbirds and other vacationers! Cypress Campground & RV Park in Winter Haven, Florida is a great option for RV camping in Tampa. The campground is near LEGOLAND, and it’s also within walking distance of a Walmart. It also offers easy access to several small lakes in the area. Dunedin RV Resort boasts of clean facilities and friendly management. The campground is within walking distance of the beach, and there is a fishing charter service nearby. You can find more campgrounds in the Tampa area here.

a shot of Paradise Pier at California Adventure, lit up at night

7.) Anaheim, California

Anaheim is best known for being home to Disneyland, of course, but the mild weather and proximity to beaches and other Southern California landmarks and attractions make it a great spot to visit in winter.

*A reminder that some of these suggestions may not be doable due to coronavirus closures, but keep this list handy for when things start opening back up more! Be sure to check individual pages for specific operation details.

Things to do

  • Disneyland: Disneyland is, of course, the reason many travelers make the trek to Anaheim each year, and winter is a great time to go to the park! Disneyland is smaller than Florida’s Disney World, of course, but that makes it much more manageable. The original park’s history and the fun and thrilling rides both here and at California Adventure are sure to keep kids of all ages busy and happy.
  • Crystal Cove State Park: Anaheim is close to some of Southern California’s best beaches, which offer a great opportunity for everyone to get out and enjoy nature. Crystal Cove is an especially interesting beach, because although it offers plenty of sand to relax, sunbathe, or build sandcastles, the area also has fascinating tide pools where you can investigate the tiny animals that make beaches their home. The park also includes bluffs, canyons, and a marine conservation area and underwater park.
  • Bolsa Chica State Beach: Bolsa Chica State Beach is three miles of shoreline which includes nesting sites for a variety of birds including brown pelicans, western snowy plovers, and the endangered California least tern. Bolsa Chica is a great place to relax, or to watch for local beach-loving wildlife.
  • Anaheim Packing District: The Anaheim Packing District is an open-air market with many places to eat and drink. Wander over and browse the many options before deciding on your dinner!

Other adventures

Anaheim has even more to experience, including more beaches, museums, gardens, and shopping. For more ideas on what to do in Anaheim, check out our local guide here!

Camping in Anaheim

Anaheim’s balmy weather and proximity to Disneyland mean there are many campgrounds for visiting families! The Anaheim RV Park is close enough to Disneyland that you can see fireworks from your campsite, and the park offers shuttles to the Magic Kingdom. Anaheim Harbor RV Park is close enough to Disneyland that you can simply walk from your campsite to the park. It also offers affordable campsites for the area. For more options for camping in Anaheim, check out our guide here.

Sunset cliffs in San Diego

8.) San Diego, California

San Diego’s mild weather, outdoor parks, and quaint Gaslamp Quarter make it a charming place for a winter getaway! Whether you want to do some hiking, catch up on some reading at the beach, or explore the art and food scene, there’s something for everyone to do.

*A reminder that some of these suggestions may not be doable due to coronavirus closures, but keep this list handy for when things start opening back up more! Be sure to check individual pages for specific operation details.

Things to do

  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park: This state park is the largest in California, and is less than a two-hour drive from downtown San Diego. Camp, hike, and see the desert flora and fauna that make this state park so unique.
  • Joshua Tree National Park: Joshua Tree is about a two and a half hour drive from San Diego, and the park showcases the strange trees that give the park its name…although they’re not actually trees, they’re yucca plants. The park has plenty of hiking and mountain biking and is a popular place for rock climbers.
  • Silver Strand State Beach: This state beach is a 7-mile long strand near Highway 75. The strand connects to the Point Loma peninsula, creating the San Diego Bay and you can hang out and explore either the oceanfront or bayfront beach.
  • San Diego Zoo: At the sprawling Balboa Park, the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park is home to over 3,500 animals. Visit the more than 650 species and subspecies, or take a tour through the Safari Park for an exciting visit!

Other adventures

San Diego has so much more to experience, including restaurants and shopping in the Gaslamp Quarter, more beaches and parks, and attractions like SeaWorld or nearby LEGOLAND. For more ideas on what to do in San Diego, check out our local guide here!

Camping in San Diego

San Diego’s mild weather and beachside location mean there are plenty of campgrounds available for visitors. The San Diego RV Resort is in the suburb of La Mesa, and is a large campground near Mission Trails Regional Park. It offers shady campsites and many amenities. Chula Vista RV Resort is right on the beach, with a small park next to the campground and a marina nearby. For more campground options in San Diego, check out our guide here.

The Miami skyline at sunset

9.) Miami, Florida

Miami is a popular destination for many winter travelers, and it’s no wonder! The warm weather, exciting nightlife, delicious food, and outdoor spots to explore mean just about anyone can amuse themselves in this fun city.

Things to do

  • Everglades National Park: Explore the marshlands, swamps, mangrove forests, and pine flatwoods of the Everglades. For a unique experience, try an airboat ride and look for alligators, or do some hiking in the largest tropical wilderness in the country. If you stay after dark, you can do some stargazing at the clearest skies in the state.
  • Biscayne National Park: This national park has more than 170,000 acres, but unlike many national parks, most of that land is underwater. Biscayne National Park is a big destination for SCUBA divers and snorkelers, but there is plenty to do on the shore as well.
  • Vizcaya Museum and Gardens: The museum and gardens are stunning, even if you just see them from the street, but are well worth the stop to visit. Vizcaya brings guests back to Miami’s gilded age, and you can learn more about that period and the amazing architecture, as well as viewing the collections inside.
  • Take a Sunset Cruise: What better way to appreciate Miami’s enviable winter weather than with a sunset cruise? The Miami Sunset Cruise features spectacular scenery, of course, but also plenty of information on the city, celebrity home sightings, and a cool beverage while you float.

Other adventures

There is so much to do in Miami, including many more state parks, restaurants, and a bustling nightlife. For more ideas on what to do in Miami, check out our local guide here!

Camping in Miami

Miami’s gorgeous weather and location as a favorite for winter vacationers means there are plenty of campgrounds available! The Sunshine Holiday RV Resort is located northwest of Fort Lauderdale and is on the shores of a private lake. Paradise Island RV Resort is near Fort Lauderdale as well, and is just four miles from the beach. For more campground options in Miami, check out our guide here.

a shot of the skyline in Jacksonville

10.) Jacksonville, Florida

Whether you want to relax and read on a pristine beach or explore the city, Jacksonville has something for everyone!

Things to do

  • Anastasia State Park: This park is about an hour south of Jacksonville in Saint Augustine and has miles of rolling sand dunes and beaches. There are also plenty of opportunities to see local wildlife at the park, including shorebirds and other water-loving animals. You’ll want to set aside some time to explore the town of St. Augustine while you’re there also!
  • Fort Caroline National Memorial: Visit the site where the French held a fort against their Spanish enemies further south in Saint Augustine. Today, you can experience this historical landscape first hand and also learn more thanks to educational events and reenactments.
  • Jacksonville Arboretum and Gardens: Arboretums and gardens are great ways to learn about the natural plants, trees, and flowers of any place and Jacksonville’s arboretum is no exception! There’s a very small donation requested when you visit, and you can explore wetland marshes, oak canopies, and more unique Florida landscapes.
  • Jacksonville Skyway: The free Jacksonville Skyway monorail is useful for getting from place to place, but it’s also a fun ride all on its own! If you have kids, they’ll have a blast riding the monorail, and you’ll get a great view of the city from above.

Other adventures

There is much more to do in Jacksonville, including more state parks and beaches, restaurants, and art galleries. For more ideas on what to do in Jacksonville, check out our local guide here!

Camping in Jacksonville

Jacksonville has plenty of campgrounds for winter visitors! The Pecan Park RV Resort has lovely views, plenty of space, a swimming pool, and a fishing lake. Big Tree RV Park has everything from an on-site car wash to DVD rentals and is close to attractions including Gatorland. For more campground suggestions, see our list here.

As you can see, there are plenty of places to warm up this winter! From sunny Southern California to balmy Florida, you’re sure to find somewhere to visit and enjoy the sun and the great outdoors.

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