Florida

A Week in Port Orange

Glad to be out of the Everglades and away from those bugs. The mosquitoes were seriously insane. Had received over 70 mosquito bites just from that month of staying in the Everglades, and there wasn’t too much time spent outside at night. Breaking free of the swamp was a huge relief, and couldn’t help notice how lovely the ride was from Belle Glade to Port Orange, especially coming around the eastern side of the Okeechobee Lake. Noticed a lot of RV parks on that side of the lake I hope to check out one day, it was amazing.

Port Orange, Florida is just a few miles to the south of the famous Daytona Beach, known for Daytona 500 of NASCAR and biker rallies. Arriving to Port Orange was very interesting, the park we will be staying at for the duration is Rose Bay campground. It was interesting to note that once departing south Florida, it seemed to have gotten more RV & camper friendly. A lot more RV parks, rest stops, and gas stations seemingly more accommodating to the nomad lifestyle. South Florida has just never come across as a big motor home, mobile trailer friendly region. What do you think?

Staying somewhere for a week goes very quick when it comes for time to complete tourist activities. There is always so much to do, and so little time to see it all. For the several days staying in Port Orange, several interesting events occurred such as visiting the local lighthouse in Daytona, riding go-karts, and dining at a very cool restaurant. Between keeping up with things around the campsite, and venturing out into an unknown town most of the time was kept pretty busy.

On the very first full day of being in Port Orange, it was decided to hit the first tourist attraction on the list for the current city, the lighthouse in Daytona, but more specifically, the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum. Now the different lighthouses scattered throughout the world has always brought fascination and intrigue so getting to visit a lighthouse relatively earlier on in the trip was quite a surprise. Upon arrival to any lighthouse, it always occurs to me that pictures never do justice to how monolithic and magnificent these lighthouses can be. If you are a history buff, there is lots of great information packed into small museums surrounding the lighthouse. You can gain access to these and the lighthouse for a small fee of six dollars or so. Be weary though, there are 203 steps to the top of the tallest lighthouse in Florida, but well worth the views once you reach the top!

On an overcast Sunday, after being cooped up inside for a few days due to substantial rain pour, cabin fever had taken over which inspired an activity. On the drive in, a Go-kart track was spotted directly next to the RV park. And that is exactly what was done that day, spent the day riding go-karts and batting in the cages. It was a fantastic time as there was not many people there that day, and the employees were extremely nice. Its recalled that only 4 laps around the track were purchased, and the employee working at the time let us drive around the track for hours it seemed. The go-karts were alright, some were single seater, some were double occupancy. While it may not have been the fastest of go-karts, it was fast enough to have a splendid time. Spent a lot of time in the batting cages as this establishment has a lot going on with them. Several batting cages are on site, separated by fast pitch, slow pitch, softball, or baseball. I really enjoyed it and look forward to going back.

There were several dining establishments that were visited during the week in Port Orange. While most were the usual common ones you see everywhere, there was one original restaurant that stood out the most, the Boondock’s Restaurant. While the food was delicious and perfectly cooked, the service on point, none of these things are what made this restaurant excel to the top of the list. Seeing as how this restaurant overlooks the Halifax River, there are docks and piers connected directly to the restaurant where one can park their boat and walk on in. Just down below in the water right off the deck of the restaurant, there are schools containing hundreds upon hundreds of catfish waiting to be fed leftovers by generous diners. Walking on the deck and feeding these fish among other patrons was quite entertaining, something that gets done rarely.

The week in Port Orange was relaxing but it went by so fast. It was relieving to be out of the swamp, away from petulant bugs, and among some civilization. There is way much more to see and do, especially in neighboring towns but since the journey must continue, whatever was missed shall be added to the bucket list to be completed on another visit. We hope to be back to watch the Daytona 500 or attend a biker rally. There is much ahead to look forward to as this RV Living journey continues.