Bahia Honda? - Fiberglass RV

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Old 07-07-2006, 06:12 PM   #1
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Have any of you folk ever stayed at Bahia Honda State Park in the Florida Keys? My wife and I just confirmed our reservations for a week's stay there in April 2007. Neither of us has ever been deep into the Keys, so this is going to be a first for us. We got a good campsite (but not one of the waterfront sites) and we're already excited about this trip! I'm trying to figure out which fishing rods and tackle to take along, and we're debating on whether we should take our own canoe or rent kayaks from the park.

At any rate, if you guys can give me any firsthand information about Bahia Honda, I'd appreciate it!

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Old 07-07-2006, 06:46 PM   #2
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Congratulations on getting a reservation! This was the best state park I saw in the lower keys.

This is a great place. Doesn't matter where you are camped, because you'll be spending most of the time on the beach, on the water or exploring the nearby keys.

I was there in March of 2005. I could easily see why this was voted one of the top beaches in the world. It's great! I took my kayak with me and explored/circumnavigated the key. The sea life in the shallows on the gulf side was amazing. The beach, swimming & snorkeling on the ocean side was a delight.

Do not use a canoe. Kayaks are much safer & more efficient. Check the tides for best times to go in & out of the gulf/ocean.

Also check out the other state parks in the keys. Check tides & rent or take your canoe to Layton key & Pennecamp State Parks for the water trails. Be careful. Stay in the canoe. Muddy bottoms & strange jellyfish are hazards to walking in water on the canoe trails. But, they are worth seeing!

Definitely take snorkeling gear!

Be prepared for the traffic from Homestead/Florida City down through the keys. It's brutal during the day. I prefer to travel early before the locals & tourists are up.

Try some party groups for deep sea fishing, snorkeling & scuba diving. The reefs are great to see & fish.

And, in case you happen to get any adverse weather, check out the lower keys & Key West.



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Old 07-07-2006, 08:26 PM   #3
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We tent camped on the bay side of Bahia Honda State Park in '86. We had a nice waterfront site, but were amazed at how expensive it was - I think it cost $27, and we were more used to paying $10 or so in those days. It was very windy. The best part of our experience was taking a group snorkel trip out to Looe Key. We highly recommend it. I still have a vivid image of seeing a school of barracuda there.

I think you'd also enjoy exploring Key West.

It sounds like a great trip!

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Old 07-07-2006, 11:59 PM   #4
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Have any of you folk ever stayed at Bahia Honda
NO, But before I got my trailer, I stayed in Mya Honda all the time!! (I am Italian...)

( See how quickly I run to my room?)
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Old 07-08-2006, 08:40 AM   #5
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bob, HOW did you do it???

i have never seen such a poor website. apparently you have to enter a specific date only to be told that it is not available. that means (according to the reservation clerk at their phone center) that you have to enter each date for the entire year or so to find one that is available. or you can reserve by individual campsite number with the same problem of needing a specific date.

they do not have any way of answering the question "since i can go anytime, what dates are available between january and march?" without doing the stupid stuff l listed above.
at least, according to the person i talked to.

btw, this park allows pets. i know you don't like dogs nearby.

hope there are no dogs, lots of fish and sunshine, no storms and many happy memories.
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Old 07-08-2006, 01:55 PM   #6
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You can first click on just the state. Then plug in your dates. Then the site will tell you which parks have available sites for those dates.

The site was always problematic before, but I think the new look has added some layers of difficulty and needless detail. Strangely, over all, it's an improvement over the old site which was sometimes very frustrating to use (even more so than the new one).

One problem with a lot of the Florida campgrounds is that snowbirds keep them booked solid all during the winter and early spring. Just try to get a campsite at Salt Springs. Forget about it. Bahia Honda is very popular with retired Yankees. They keep that place all but full--especially the waterfront sites.

I miss being able to call up a state park and just ask for dates and then send a deposit and pay the balance upon arrival (with a check!). Oh well.

I don't hate dogs. I don't even mind them being in a campground as long as the owners keep them leashed. In the Southern Appalachians I almost prefer to have dogs nearby, as they keep bears away.
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Old 07-23-2006, 10:39 AM   #7
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My husband and I just returned from a two week vacation in the keys. We spent time at Bahia Honda because my niece had recommended it as one of the best campgrounds in which to fish, snorkel or swim. Her family likes to camp there. Since this is the beginning of the off season we didn't have too many people and the beach wasn't crowded. The gulf side offers the best opportunities to see lots of varied sea life. There is also good snorkeling on the ocean side, particularly out by the end of the rocks. It's a great place to swim and the beach has a few large tables covered with a concrete umbrella for sun and rain protection. I think you will have a great time there! I'd love to go back and camp there.
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Old 07-23-2006, 05:36 PM   #8
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Thanks for the report!

Even though we're not leaving for the Keys until April 2007, we're already excited about it. I've never been that far down in the Keys, and this will all be new territory for me. Plus, my wife adores vacations at the ocean (while I prefer the mountains). But I love a good chance to go fishing and snorkeling.
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Old 07-23-2006, 10:08 PM   #9
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As long as you are that far down in the Keys, look into taking one of the snorkling trips out to Looe Key -- A fantastic reef with lots to see from the surface.
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:34 AM   #10
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We had wanted to stay at Bahia Honda during our big trip next spring once we found out that they now allow dogs. BUT, the dates we needed (without changing 7 other bookings!) were closed out. We checked the ReserveAmerica web site just about every day for a month and finally yesterday there was an opening just when we wanted, March 24-27 2007. Someone must have canceled. So, if you want to go there. Be patient and keep checking.

Ron & Sandy
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Old 07-26-2006, 11:01 AM   #11
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Yes, it's good to keep checking on sites there. My wife and I couldn't find anything at all there, initially. But I kept checking and finally a large number of sites came available in the Buttonwood section of the campground. So we chose one and booked it. We wanted an oceanfront site, but never dould get one. However, about two weeks after we booked our site, an oceanfront campsite came up, but we decided not to book it. It was snapped up within the hour. We decided to just stay with what we had after looking at photographs of the part of the campground where we had booked.

The key is to keep checking as often as you can.
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Old 09-09-2006, 11:36 PM   #12
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We spent the entire month of April '99 in the Keys; first at Pennecamp, then down to Long Key for two weeks. We left there and got in at Bahia Honda but only stayed for one night... the mosquitos drove us out. We were in the interior campground and there was absolutely no breeze. Long Key had been buggy too, but it was breezy. So we went back to Long Key for another two weeks.

BTW, this was before the colleges changed the whole spring break thing. We went back in 2001 and could not get into a state park for love or money! Wound up on Big Pine Key at a private campground, real nice and really expensive.

South of the 7 mile bridge there's a great restaurant on the right called the Sand Trap. It's in the Lower Keys area.

Bring plenty of repellant and your Florida room.

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