Most of us probably didn’t realize how vast this country is and how much there was to explore until we actually got out there doing it—in our RVs, of course. Some of the most compelling trips we take are to the many islands that lie off our shores, in lakes and in bays.
Visiting islands is not as simple, however, as crossing from one state to another or from one national park to another. But you can drive to many of these islands without complications and stress if you plan ahead. Every island has its own unique rules, and many of these rules apply to how you get there—bridge, tunnel or ferry.
These tips will ease your camping trip to one of America’s Islands
- Plan your trip long before your arrival. You may need a permit and will need campground reservations.
- If arriving by bridge, verify that your rig’s weight and measurements will fit the bridge’s restrictions. Many island bridges are old and were not designed for larger RVs.
- Before arriving at the bridge, tunnel or ferry, learn the rules regarding your propane tank. Most tunnels and ferries require that you turn off the propane at the main valve. Also turn off your reefer and water heater. The Department of Transportation for each state will likely post this information on their website.
- Make ferry reservations well in advance and pre-purchase tickets. Verify that your RV will fit within the maximum length for the ferry.
- For tunnel access, you may also be required to turn off the propane system. Plan ahead. If you are zipping along in heavy traffic and all of a sudden the tunnel entrance looms ahead, where are you going to stop and turn off the propane?
- Make campground reservations well in advance. Reservations for popular island campgrounds like on the Florida Keys, Galveston or South Padre Island in Texas, and the San Juan Islands in Washington State will fill up early in the high season. If you don’t have a reservation, you may be returning to the mainland before you intended.
- Not all island campgrounds will have hookups. Make sure the one you are considering has the amenities that you want.
Visit the Good Sam RV Travel Guide & Campground Directory online for a good source of campground and travel information for traveling to America’s Islands.
You can find Bob Difley’s RVing ebooks on Amazon Kindle.