Campgrounds in St. Andrews Bay, Florida

by John Cagney Nash
The white sands of the Gulf around Panama City are a major reason for its popularity.

The white sands of the Gulf around Panama City are a major reason for its popularity.

Steve Mason/Photodisc/Getty Images

St. Andrews Bay is a cove located on the Gulf of Mexico in Florida's Panhandle, northeast of St. Andrews sound. Because of the bay's heavy salinity it was home to a number of Civil War salt works; it has no major freshwater tributary, and in this it is unique in Florida. St. Andrews Bay is a designated Aquatic Preserve, has the Panhandle's largest seagrass stock and supports approximately 3,600 species, a significant number of which are protected. Following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, President Barack Obama, with his daughter Sasha, chose the bay to take a swim intended to display their absolute confidence that the region's waters and beaches had not been fouled. Panama City is located on the bay.

Raccoon River Campground

Raccoon River Campground (raccoonriver.net) is centrally located in Panama City Beach, within easy walking distance of the beach, and provides both RV and tent camping sites on a by-night or contract basis. On-site amenities include two swimming pools, remodeled bath houses, guest laundry facilities, a convenience store, basketball and volleyball courts and a private fishing area where no license is required. Sites are all full hookup, and the entire property benefits from Wi-Fi access. Staff are friendly and accommodating, well versed in the area's attractions and happy to share that knowledge. Note that persons must be 18 or older to rent a campsite, and no unattended children under age of 15 are allowed anywhere on the premises. Raccoon River is pet-friendly, but with restrictions on where dogs may be walked.

Panama City RV Resort

Panama City RV Resort (panamacityrvresort.com) has approximately 70 full hookup RV sites arranged on a one-way private road; almost 20 of the slips are pull-through, and 50-amp electricity is available. The complex also offers four condos for rent. By-night and long-stay residential contracts are available. The property is just across a road from the beach and is within walking distance of St. Andrews State Park; access is gated. Free Wi-Fi is available in hotspots. The property features a bathhouse, heated pool, guest laundry facilities and an exercise room; the entire property is exquisitely landscaped with bricked access roads and lush tropical foliage. Panama City RV Resort is pet-friendly, allowing two animals per berth.

Pineglen RV Park and Campground

Pineglen RV Park and Campground (pineglenrvpark.com) offers RV slips and tent sites nestled among groves of palm and pine trees. This gated property features stocked private fishing ponds, a screened pool with sun deck, manicured landscaping in the communal areas, a fire pit and climate-controlled bathhouses and laundry facilities. Pineglen is pet-friendly, with a dedicated dog walking area, and also offers complementary dog-washing facilities so that owners can remove beach sand and the like before their four-legged friends bound back into their RVs. However, large dogs and dogs with guard bloodlines are not allowed. High-speed Wi-Fi is available across the property. Waterfront slips are available, and all sites are paved. A resident manager is on-site, whose concentration is providing guests with a trouble-free enjoyable experience.

St. Andrews State Park

St. Andrews State Park (floridastateparks.org) takes full advantage of the sugar-white sands and emerald green waters for which St. Andrews Bay is justly renowned. Formerly a military reservation, the park benefits from more than a mile and a half of beaches both on the Gulf and on Grand Lagoon. There is a jetty, a boat ramp and two fishing piers. Nature trails are maintained through diverse coastal environments. The park offers both RV slips and tent camping, with 176 sites in total. A concession sells snacks and souvenirs and rents out kayaks, an on-site dump station is available, guest-only laundry facilities are provided and there are five bathhouses.

Photo Credits

  • Steve Mason/Photodisc/Getty Images