Sunday, March 5, 2017

3/5 Topsail Hill Preserve State Park,

Topsail Reserve State Park is a 1,640 acre preserve along the Gulf Coast in the Florida Panhandle, about 15 miles east of Destin, Florida.  It has three miles of beautiful white sand beaches and two coastal dune lakes, plus a pool.   It has 140 full hookup RV sites, 20 tent-only sites, and 29 fully-serviced modern cabins.  I had heard of this place from other RVers, but the cost of $48 per night was almost double most state parks.  I decided to try it out for three nights just to see whether it was really worth the money.   

There are several state parks along the Gulf in this area.  I have been to Ft Pickens, St. Andrews, and TH Stone.  I will be going back to St. Andrews on Tuesday, and then on to Grayton Beach before heading back east and north.

This is the campstore and kayak rental area. 

Because this state park is so large, it is very spread out.  For day-use, there is a large parking lot and a shuttle to take you to the beach, which is half a mile away.  There is a closer pool, but it has been chilly, so not very good pool weather.  Here is the shuttle loading up with beach-goers.

This is the shuttle stop for the campground and cabin area.

This is the road to the beach.  You can walk or ride a bike if you prefer not to take the shuttle.  Lots of paved paths around here for bikes and hiking, which is a nice plus.

And this is the end of the shuttle and paved road.  From here on, there is a boardwalk to the beach.

Note the red dangerous surf warning sign.  No one swimming today, but the waves would make good surfing.

One of the big features of this part of Florida is the incredible white sand.  It almost looks and feels like the sand at White Sands, NM, but of course it is coral, not gypsum.

I didn't have much time, so I stopped at the end of the boardwalk and headed back home. The weather is supposed to be nicer tomorrow, so will come back then.

I used a telephoto to catch the high rise hotels in Destin.  Much prefer this more natural beach!

This is the main campground road, headed towards the bungalows and cabins.

The bungalows look like they are really double-wide manufactured homes.  They all have screened-on porches with picnic tables and chairs inside.

This is one of the newer bungalows.  They sleep 4 and are fully serviced.
These are the newer cabins.  Not exactly rustic, but they sleep 6. 

They also have big screened-in porches with picnic tables and rockers inside. I tried to see inside one, but could not.  They have full kitchens and two bedrooms. Good deal for this area for up to $140 per night.

Nice campsite, although they could have made the pavement a bit wider!
Tomorrow, I will ride around the one big lake and go back to the beach. Hopefully, it will be a little warmer and not quite so windy.

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