Jacksonville is 840 square miles, making it geographically the largest city in the continental U.S. and a great place to explore before you begin your road trip from Jacksonville to Birmingham. Some of the highlights to see in the city include the Cummer Museum of Art, the Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary, Adventure Landing, the Jacksonville Zoo, and Jacksonville Beach. Once you start on the road, head west on I-10. Then, start following I-75 north to Atlanta, where you will take I-20 W for the rest of the trip. Along the way, you will find several national and state forests and parks that you can explore. If you are traveling with kids, there are also a few amusement parks on this route that can entertain them.
Congaree National Park
The only national park that is nearby that you can include on this Jacksonville to Birmingham road trip is Congaree National Park. However, to reach it, you will have to change your route from I-75 to I-95 north before you head west, and this will add about three hours to the trip. One of the best ways to see the park is to hike through it. There are several trails that you can take and guided walks that are designed to help you learn more about the history of the park. You can also take a canoe or a kayak down the river. The Cedar Creek Canoe Trail is about 15 miles long and is perfect for seeing the park from a different angle. In May and June, you can watch the synchronous fireflies as they flash their lights looking for a mate.
Suwannee River State Park
Suwannee River State Park is only about 95 miles west of Jacksonville, so it is going to be one of the first stops that you make on this road trip. Since the Suwannee River and the Withlacoochee River meet inside the park, there are plenty of fishing opportunities that you can enjoy, especially if you have a kayak or a canoe that you can take out on the water. Boats can also be rented in the park. There are also various hiking trails to be explored by foot or bike.
Blue Spring State Park
Blue Spring State Park is another Florida park that has a wealth of activities that you can enjoy. There are boat tours that will give you some insight into the history of the St. John’s River, but you can also take a canoe or a kayak out on your own. Tubing can also be enjoyed if you simply want to relax. There are several trails that you can hike as well.
Reed Bingham State Park
Reed Bingham State Park is a beautiful park with a 375-acre lake that is lined with tupelo trees and water lilies. The lake provides a great place to enjoy water activities such as swimming, fishing, and more. There are also boats available at the park to rent so that you can more thoroughly explore the lake. Additionally, there are a few nature trails that you can enjoy. Reed Bingham is popular with mountain bikers.
Cheaha State Park
Cheaha State Park is one of the oldest that you will find in Alabama. The park is almost 2,800 acres, and inside it, you can find Cheaha Mountain, which is the highest point in the state. There are several options for hiking, and there are five trails that have been designated for biking. Fishing and swimming can be enjoyed at Cheaha Lake, and paddleboats can even be rented to give you more exploration options. If you are experienced, there are even some rock climbing opportunities in the park that make it a real destination for adventure sports enthusiasts.
If you are enjoying this Jacksonville to Birmingham RV road trip with kids, then one stop that you will want to make is Wild Adventures near Valdosta, Georgia. This is a theme park, a water park, and an animal park all in a single location, so the kids will have a blast here, regardless of their age. Don’t forget to check and see what events are happening during your visit. There are also daily shows that allow guests to meet some of the animals in the park and learn more about them.
Museum of Aviation
If you or someone you are traveling with likes looking at planes, then stop by the Museum of Aviation on Robins Air Force Base near Macon, Georgia. Four large buildings feature historic U.S. Air Force aircraft, missiles, and even an Aviation Hall of Fame. Don’t forget to check out the gift shop before you leave to grab some souvenirs.
Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary
Noah’s Ark near Locust Grove, Georgia, is an animal sanctuary that houses over 1,500 animals. The sanctuary is 250 acres, so the animals have plenty of space, yet the visitors can still see them up close. Animals are rehabilitated at the facility and given a safe home where they are free from neglect and abuse. There are bears, lions, tigers, foxes, wolves, primates, reptiles, and more at the sanctuary. There are even fundraising events that you can experience throughout the year that are designed to help pay for the care of the animals.
Also known as "The Azalea City," Valdosta is just a few miles from the Florida-Georgia state line. While you are visiting the area, make sure to visit some museums like the Lowndes County Historical Society and Museum, the Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts, the Barber-Pittman House, and the Georgia Museum of Agriculture and Historic Village. There are also several golf courses in the area, so if you would like to practice your swing on the links, you have the opportunity to do so.
If you would like to extend your road trip by spending a few days in Valdosta, there are several area campgrounds that can accommodate your needs. River Park RV Park has a lot of amenities that children and adults enjoy. This pet-friendly campground is located off of I-75, so it is easy to reach and is near several attractions. Dump stations are also in the area to use if you need to get rid of your wastewater.
Macon is a historic city that also has a storied music scene. The architecture in Macon is notable, which is why the town was named one of America’s dozen distinctive destinations. While you are in the area, take the time to discover Macon’s Native American heritage by visiting the Ocmulgee Mounds National Historic Park. There are also several museums in Macon like the Tubman Museum, the Hay House Museum, and the Allman Brothers Museum. If you visit during March and April, marvel at the 350,000 cherry trees that will be in bloom at the Cherry Blossom Festival. There are several campgrounds in the area as well as dump stations.
Atlanta is the biggest city that you will want to include on this road trip itinerary from Jacksonville to Birmingham. There are several historic sites and museums that you can visit to learn more about the city's history. You can also explore the Georgia Aquarium, the Atlanta Botanical Garden, the Fox Theatre, Zoo Atlanta, and more. Atlanta is one of the most important cities in the U.S. civil rights movement, so history buffs will definitely want to spend a few days touring Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park, Ebenezer Baptist Church, Big Bethel AME, the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, and other significant locations.
With so much to see in this city, finding a campground to rest up for a night or two is a must. Most of the campgrounds in the area are not directly in Atlanta, but they are easy to reach from this area. Dump stations are also in the Atlanta area, so you can easily keep your rig clean as you head into Alabama.
When you follow this road trip itinerary from Jacksonville to Birmingham, you will enjoy historic locations and beautiful scenery along the way. If you want to travel in comfort and style, consider an RV rental from RVshare. From large motorhomes to compact campervans, there is a rig that will meet your travel and budget needs. Once you hit the road, you are protected by our renter guarantee and 24/7 roadside assistance. Find the perfect vehicle for your travel needs in Jacksonville or Birmingham.