It’s been over 40 years since we last camped in Anastasia State Park. We were camping in a tent with our kids and back then you could drive on the beach.
Today there is no more driving on the beach in the state park. Instead, there is a huge parking area with walkways over the dunes and a wheelchair accessible beach mat to the beach.
It was chilly, foggy and raining during most of our stay. On the first sunny day we went exploring. After a drive south on famous highway A1A, we headed to the Saint Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park.
Founded in 1893, the Alligator Farm started out with just a few exhibits of Florida reptiles. It has expanded over the years to include not only reptiles but also birds and mammals from all around the world. Today, in addition to the educational shows and exhibits, it is also used for research.
As we wandered through the zoo toward the Native Swamp and Rookery to see the nesting birds (I posted about them here) we stopped to observe the many varieties of animal life.
Saint Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park
Albino alligator from Louisiana
Baby alligators and turtles at the Saint Augustine Alligator Farm
Maximo, a saltwater crocodile, is largest animal at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm
We took a break for lunch and drove to the nearby Conch House Marina and Guesthouse to eat outside on their waterfront deck.
After lunch it was back to the Alligator Farm to watch the 3:00 alligator feeding. Can you say feeding frenzy?
Alligator feeding time at the Alligator Farm
The alligators go after a tasty rodent on the end of a fishing rod
Our next stop was the Saint Augustine Lighthouse. Gorgeous views were our reward for climbing all the steps to the top.
St. Augustine Lighthouse
St. Augustine Lighthouse Fresnel lens
View from the top of the St. Augustine Lighthouse
When we weren’t exploring St. Augustine we enjoyed being in Anastasia State Park. Our campsite was surrounded on three sides by natural vegetation and the beach was only a 10 minute walk from our campsite. One afternoon we explored the nature trail near the campground.
During our travels around America we have been known to venture out of our way to visit a lighthouse. In honor of National Lighthouse Day (August 7) I put together a collection of some of my lighthouse photos.
East Coast Lighthouses from Maine to Florida
Portland Head Light, ME
Cape Elizabeth Lighthouse, ME
West Quaddy Light is located on the easternmost point in the U. , MES.
Ten Pound Island Lighthouse, Gloucester, MA
Ocracoke Lighthouse, NC
Cape Hatteras National Seashore, North Carolina
Bodie Island Lighthouse, NC
Haig Point, SC
The Hunting Island, SC Lighthouse is the only lighthouse in South Carolina which is open to the public
Tybee Island Lighthouse, GA
Cockspur Lighthouse, GA
St. Simons Lighthouse, GA
Cape Florida Lighthouse, FL
Ponce Inlet Lighthouse, FL
Sand Key Lighthouse, FL
Key West Lighthouse, FL
Ft. Jefferson Lighthouse, FL FL
Gulf Coast Lighthouses
Mobile Bay Lighthouse, AL
Cape San Blas Lighthouse, FL
Point Bolivar Lighthouse, FL
St George Lighthouse, FL
Great Lakes Lighthouses
Split Rock Lighthouse on Minnesota’s North Shore
Cheboygan Crib Light, MI
Muskegon Lighthouse. MI
Round Island Light, MI
Round Island Passage Ligh, MIt
Old Mackinac Point, MI
Eagle Bluff Lighthouse, Door County Peninsula, WI
Sherwood Point Lighthouse, Door County Peninsula, WI
Baileys Harbor Lower Range Light is no longer in use, WI
Welcome to the next post in my series highlighting states we have visited throughout the years. I hope you will enjoy coming along for the ride!
I will be featuring the states alphabetically. The next state in my series is
Wisconsin became the 30th state on May 29, 1848. The Capital is Madison.
On one of our trips through Wisconsin we had truck trouble on Saturday of Easter Weekend. It was too early in the season for the Madison KOA to be officially open but they let us have a site for the weekend while we waited until we could get the truck serviced on Monday morning. The campground was next to a cheese shop that had a little more money in their till after I got finished stocking up on wonderful Wisconsin cheese!
On Easter Sunday our server at the Cracker Barrel was from Georgia and I learned they serve grits even as far north as Wisconsin. After our Easter breakfast we drove around downtown Madison for a look at the state capital. On Monday morning the truck repairs were done early enough to hitch up the fifth wheel and continue north to our next destination.
As we traveled north from Madison the snow started coming down. We arrived at Apple Creek Campground in DePere and set up camp in the snow. They weren’t officially open yet but the owners were great and let us have a site for a couple of nights. Seeing Lambeau Field and the Door County Peninsula were on our Wisconsin bucket list and the campground was close to both.
Jutting out into Lake Michigan is the Door County Peninsula. Our visit was during the off season and as we drove around the peninsula very few places were open. There was beautiful farmland and several lighthouses to visit.
On the way back to the campground we stopped in Green Bay to see Lambau Field, the home field of the NFL Green Bay Packers.
On another of our trips we camped beside the Mississippi River at Grant River Corps of Engineers in Potosi, Wisconsin, population 711 in 2009. While we were enjoying lunch in the outdoor beer garden at the Potosi Brewery we watched as the town was preparing for their first annual Brewfest. The National Brewer’s Museum is located at the brewery. Also nearby was an interesting Grotto in Dickyville.
While camping at Viking Village RV Park near Stoughton we bought more wonderful Wisconsin cheese. I counted nine little Thirteen Lined Ground Squirrels running around behind our RV. There were also some Sandhill Cranes running across a field but they were too far away for a picture.