Your Guide to the Southern Road Trip

  • 01 of 09

    About the Southern US Road Trip

    Saguaro cacti (Carnegiea gigantea) at sunset, Saguaro National Park, Arizona, USA
    Danita Delimont/Getty Images

    This road trip will take RVers from the Pacific coast in San Diego to the high desert of the southwest US and through the deep south before ending in gorgeous Savannah, Georgia. You’ll be booking around 3,000 miles for this trip on a variety of road types and extreme climates so make sure your RV is up to the challenge before heading out. Don’t expect a lot of sprawling metropolis on this road trip. It’s all about the people, the places and, of course, some delicious food. Without further ado, here’s the southern US road trip. 

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  • 02 of 09

    First Stop: San Diego

    Two surfers on a rocky beach
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    Where to Stay in San Diego: Campland on the Bay

    Campland on the Bay is an ideal RV park for any type of RVer. Paved spots are outfitted with full utility hookups and that’s just the basic sites, choose a super-site if you want full utilities as well as privacy, your own Jacuzzi spa and your laundry facilities. The park is loaded up with plenty of other features and amenities such as game rooms, fitness center, onsite café, boat put-in, dog park, on site market and plenty more. Campland is just an all-around great RV park.

    What to Do in San Diego

    San Diego has long been a fun place to go so there will be plenty to do. If the kids are on the trip you have your choice of the world famous San Diego Zoo, LegoLand, SeaWorld and more. If you’re a big fan of history, especially naval history, you’ll appreciate the USS Midway Museum as well as the Maritime Museum of San Diego. Outdoor adventurers will have plenty to do as well as you have La Jolla Cove and Shores, Point Loma, Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, Balboa Park and Torrey Pines State Reserve all within the local area. Once you get done with all the fun in San Diego you’ll be able to actually hit the road.

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  • 03 of 09

    Second Stop: Tucson, Ariz.

    cactus, saguaro np, tucson, arizona, usa
    Walter Bibikow/Getty Images

    Where to Stay in Tucson: Catalina State Park

    Without the signs, you may not even know that this is a public park due to the great amenities. You will be greeted at Catalina State Park with 120 full-service sites and all these sites come with their own picnic table as well as a grill. Campground bathrooms and shower facilities are fairly new so feel free to leave your shower sandals behind. On top of those amenities at your site, you also have a gift shop, on-duty rangers, exhibits, group use areas and more. 

    What to Do in Tucson 

    If you’re staying Catalina State Park, you may as well take advantage of your local surroundings. Catalina offers over 5,000 acres of canyons, streams, desert landscape and some great wildflowers. Try hiking, biking, horseback riding or cruising to check out the local area. You’re also on the doorstep of Sabino Canyon and Saguaro National Park if you need more outdoor fun. Other points of interest in Tucson include the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Pima Air and Space Museum, the Mission San Xavier del Bac and much more. A good mixture of things to do when staying in Catalina State Park and Tucson, Arizona.

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  • 04 of 09

    Third Stop: Carlsbad, N.M.

    Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico, USA
    MyLoupe/UIG/Getty Images

    Where to Stay in Carlsbad: Carlsbad KOA

    KOAs are known by RVers for their amenities and features and the Carlsbad KOA is no different. Even the biggest or rigs will fit at Carlsbad KOA as they have sites to accommodate rides up to 75 feet at sites loaded with full utility hookups. You can clean yourself up in the clean bath house, shower and laundry facilities after having fun in the caverns. Not only do you get these great basics but you also get a pool, snack bar, Wi-Fi access, group pavilions and top it off, BBQ is served nightly. 

    What to Do in Carlsbad 

    The number one reason to stay in Carlsbad, New Mexico is to check out Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Take a guided or self-guided tour to check out the many amazing geological formations, the great rooms and make sure to grab a seat for the nightly migration of the local Brazilian Free-tailed bats. There’s even trails to explore the local area up above if you’re feeling a bit claustrophobic. Other than just the park you have the Living Desert zoo and Gardens State Park, Sitting Bull Falls and the Lake Carlsbad Recreation area.

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  • 05 of 09

    Fourth Stop: Dallas

    Dallas Arboretum and Botanical GardensDallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens
    Jose Enrique Aguirre / EyeEm/Getty Images

    Where to Stay in Dallas: The Vineyards Campground and Cabins (Grapevine, TX)

    Dallas, Texas does have some RV parks but for a real gem, we need to be a little outside of the city at the Vineyards Campground and Cabins. You’re right on Grapevine Lake with large grassy pull-through sites that come with all three major utilities on top of The Vineyard’s clean and bright shower and laundry facilities. The amenities don’t end there, there is a camp store, fishing pier, disc golf, playgrounds, bike and kayak rentals, group pavilions and plenty more. Lots of fun and amenities at the Vineyards Campground.

    What to Do in Dallas

    Dallas is a huge metropolis with plenty of great activities so you shouldn’t be searching too hard for things to do. If you want to be outside you should try Klyde Warren Park, White Rock Lake Park, or the gorgeous Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. If you’re looking to check out the history of Dallas you can check out the infamous Sixth Floor Museum/Texas School Book Depository or the Dealey Plaza National Historic Landmark District. You also have the Dallas World Aquarium and the Perot Museum of Nature and Science for the little ones.

    Pit Stop: Shreveport, Louisiana. You may be a little north of the bayou but you can still get some excellent Cajun food in Shreveport. 

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  • 06 of 09

    Fifth Stop: Jackson, Miss.

    Governor's Mansion, Jackson, Mississippi
    Richard Cummins/Getty Images

    Where to Stay in Jackson: Timberlake Campground (Brandon, MS)

    A lovely park in a great recreational area greets you when you roll into Mississippi and Timberlake Campground. There are water/electric sites as well as full-service sites if you don’t like dealing with your black tanks. Every great RV park has shower and laundry facilities and Timberlake is no different. You also get grills, picnic tables, TV room, tennis courts, swimming pool, comfort station, water access and plenty more. There’s so much to do at Timberlake you might forget to visit Jackson. 

    What to Do in Jackson

    Jackson, Mississippi is a good mix of activities for the whole family as well as some historical and heritage sites. The kids will likely enjoy the small but entertaining Jackson Zoo, the Mississippi Museum of Natural and they’ll dig the Mississippi Children’s Museum. If you dig the historical buildings you’ll want to try the State Capitol, the Old Capitol Museum, the Mississippi Governor’s Mansion or the Eudora Welty House. Other points of interest include the Mississippi Museum of Art, the Mississippi Agricultural & Forestry Museum, and the Alamo Theater. 

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  • 07 of 09

    Sixth Stop: Montgomery, Ala.

    Building on Commerce Street, Montgomery, Alabama, USA
    Danita Delimont/Getty Images

    Where to Stay in Montgomery: Capital City RV Park 

    Capital City RV Park is a highly rated park that gives you plenty to work with while hanging out in Alabama’s capital city. The sites are large and include full utility hookups on top of cable TV connections and your own patio. The showers are private if you’re not feeling like an exhibitionist and laundry facilities are clean and able to handle your on-the-road stinky clothes. You also have a dog park and playground to keep Fido and the kids happy. 

    What to Do in Montgomery

    We move from the capital city in Mississippi to the capital city in Alabama with Montgomery. Montgomery is one of the best places in the United States if you’re big on American history and the civil rights movement with points of interest such as the Rosa Parks Museum and Library, the Civil Rights Memorial Center and the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church. After you’ve learned some history you can try the Montgomery Zoo or the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts. You also must stop by the Alabama Shakespeare Festival for some of the finest productions of Shakespeare in the United States. 

    Pit Stop: Atlanta, Georgia for a visit to one of the world’s largest aquariums and some fried chicken and waffles (Trust me on this one). 

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  • 08 of 09

    Seventh Stop: Savannah, Ga.

    White fountain in park at sunset
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    Where to Stay in Savannah: Skidaway Island State Park 

    We featured this park in our Atlantic coast road trip but it serves just as well for the southern US road trip. Skidaway Island State Park has over 80 RV sites with 17 of those sites coming with full utility hookups. You’ll also get all the basics that RVers need for a long trip like their shower and laundry facilities, group meeting areas, picnic areas, playgrounds and more. You get all these features and amenities in lovely Georgia country setting. 

    What to Do in Savannah 

    It’s not difficult to have a good time in Savannah, all you have to do is take a stroll around the Historic District for some beautiful buildings, neat shops, and some excellent dining. There also a few landmarks you shouldn’t miss such as the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, Bonaventure Cemetery and the Pin Point Museum. One unique way to have fun in Savannah is to go on a ghost or vampire tour, something different that’s sure to lease. 

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  • 09 of 09

    When to Go on the Southern Road Trip

    Azaleas blooming at Historic Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah, Georgia, USA
    Danita Delimont/Getty Images

    It shouldn’t be a surprise that the southern states get pretty darn warm during summer. You don’t want to overtax yourself and your RV so I wouldn’t try this road trip in June, July or August. Spring is a great time to see the desert blooms in Arizona and New Mexico and fall is a great time for some varied colors along the southeastern states so to avoid the surface of the sun and see some pretty colors, try spring or fall.