St. Johns River Water Management District lands are natural, wild and scenic places. While primitive camping on district lands, you may observe wildlife, relax under the stars, enjoy quiet solitude, and experience the beauty of Florida’s backcountry.
Types of camping
Only primitive tent camping is allowed on district lands and only at designated locations.
Reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance (before 1 p.m. on the day prior to the desired arrival date) through the online reservation system. Campsites are available to individuals or groups and are free of charge.
Reservable campsites require a vehicle permit issued by the district’s Bureau of Land Resources allowing registered overnight visitors to drive to and from the designated campsite. Only personal vehicles are allowed in campsites. Vehicle information (make, model and license plate number) is required for all vehicles accessing gated portions of District properties.
As you will see in the individual campsite descriptions, our properties have limited amenities. Most have a picnic table, fire ring and/or grill, and benches; some also have a portable toilet, a non-potable water pitcher pump and/or a picnic shelter.
Camping is limited to a maximum of seven consecutive days. You may camp no more than 30 days on any property per year.
Reservable campsites, also called group campsites, are sites that may be reserved at least seven days in advance for large groups of no more than 24 people, such as Scouts, youth groups, recreational groups, family gatherings, etc.
First-come/first-served campsites provide unique opportunities for individuals interested in a remote primitive camping experience. These designated tent-only campsites are hike-in, bike-in or boat-in only. No motorized vehicles are allowed. Maximum capacity per campsite is six people.
Locations of these campsites can be found on the individual property maps on their respective recreation pages. These campsites cannot be reserved.
While individual properties may have site-specific requirements, below are some important universal rules for camping on district lands:
- Only primitive tent camping is allowed. Recreational vehicles, including travel/camping trailers, truck campers, camper vans and motorhomes, are not allowed at any district campsite.
- When making each reservation, you must provide your:
- First and last name
- Home address
- Phone number
- Email address
- Number of adults/children/pets at the campsite
- Vehicle make, model and license plate numbers of all vehicles accessing campsite (Note, the Vehicle section is on page 2 of the reservation application under Reservation Summary.)
- The permittee, guests and all vehicle(s) listed on the reservation may drive to the campsite on the dates specified in the permit. The permit does not authorize driving anywhere else on the property, gate access to vehicles not listed on the reservation, or gate access on any other dates.
- Vehicle permit must be displayed on the dashboards of all vehicles in the campsite.
- Gates must be closed and locked after entering or exiting the property.
- Campers must use designated campfire rings for fires and obey local burn bans. Campers must extinguish fires completely.
- Firewood should be collected from the ground. Do not cut any standing trees, dead or alive.
- Campers must carry out all trash with them when they leave. There is no trash receptacle at the campsite. Do not leave trash in the firepit or at the campsite.
- Campers are prohibited from discharging firearms or fireworks.
- Swimming is prohibited on district lands except in areas designated by signs.
- Pets must be leashed at all times and may not wander outside the campsite. You must clean up all pet waste and remove it from the property when you leave.
- Group camping must be not-for-profit.
- Overnight parking of recreational vehicles is prohibited on all district lands (except in areas designated by signs).
Finally, it’s important to understand that land management activities, such as prescribed burns, project construction and timber thinning operations, take precedence over camping and recreational use of our properties, which were purchased for water resource and natural systems protection. Campers may occasionally be inconvenienced during their stay by necessary land management activities. Visit our announcements webpage to learn where these activities are occurring and follow us on social media for prescribed fire updates.
Questions? Call the Bureau of Land Resources at 386-329-4401.
The district co-manages several public lands with local governments or other agencies. The following properties and the camping reservations for these properties are managed by the agencies listed below.
Caravelle Ranch Wildlife Management Area
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Faver-Dykes State Park
Florida State Parks
Herky Huffman/Bull Creek Wildlife Management Area
Lake Norris Conservation Area
Lake County Water Authority
Princess Place Preserve
Flagler County Parks and Recreation
Ralph E. Simmons Memorial State Forest
Florida Forest Service
St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park
Florida State Parks
Triple N Ranch Wildlife Management Area