Outdoor lovers will love these romantic destination names, and checking out these great places themselves.
It’s a quote that certainly fits around Valentine’s day. It’s got roses. It’s from “Romeo and Juliet.” It applies to outdoor lovers as much as it applies to anyone with affection for each other.
William Shakespeare wrote: “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
Very true when applied to the predicament of the Montagues and the Capulets. Not so much to outdoor destinations. It’s nice when a destination is right up front about its attraction for lovers of the outdoors. 50 Campfires came up with 10 outdoor destinations whose names make it quite clear they are meant for outdoor lovers on Valentine’s day.
For years, Lovers Key was accessible only by boat, and it was said that only lovers traveled to the island to enjoy its remote and solitary beach. Today, it is one of four barrier islands that make up Lovers Key State Park on the Gulf Coast of South Florida. A haven for wildlife, the islands and their waters are home to West Indian manatees, bottlenose dolphins, roseate spoonbills, marsh rabbits, and bald eagles. The 2-mile long beach is accessible by boardwalk or tram and is popular for shelling, swimming, picnicking, and sunbathing. Black Island has more than five miles of multi-use trails for hiking and bicycling. Anglers and boaters can launch vessel’s from the Lover’s Key boat ramp. The park’s concession offers kayak tours, as well as bicycle, canoe, kayak, paddleboard, beach chair and umbrella rentals.
At just over 42 acres in total, Hug Point State Recreation Area is a great day use location for beach combing and picnicking – or just hanging out on the beautiful Oregon coast. It’s located about 50 miles northwest of Portland. However, the name of Hug Point is a little less romantic than you may think. To make it around the point on the ocean front without getting wet, it’s necessary to hug the rocks tightly! The site offers easy access to the beach, a peek at some interesting local history and loads of scenic beauty. Just five miles south of Cannon Beach, this little wayside includes forested picnic areas, a restroom, and a short walk to the beach. Some picnic sites are ADA accessible.
Heart Bar Campground is part of California’s San Bernardino National Forest. It’s the perfect access point for some of southern California’s greatest backcountry hiking, biking, and horseback trails, as well as a nice place just to kick back and experience the natural world. A variety of recreation opportunities are available in the surrounding area leaving little more to be desired from a campsite. Heart Bar Campground is nestled in the pine-covered mountains at an elevation of 6,880 feet. It’s not far from Big Bear Lake, but far enough to retain a remote and secluded atmosphere. The mature trees provide some shade, but understory is limited. Offers single, double and accessible campsites for tent and RV camping. No hookups, but a dump station with potable water is nearby. (Considering the recent drought and fire conditions in California, 50 Campfires recommends thorough research to ensure a campgrounds throughout the state are operational if you wish to visit.)
Travel to southwestern Missouri’s Elk River region of the Ozarks to hike a trail back into history. Big Sugar Creek State Park is more than 2000 acres and a rugged landscape of rare shrubs and trees not often seen anymore in Missouri. Visitors can find solitude in hiking through shady upland woodlands and sunny grassy glades while passing near numerous rock ledges. Ozark Chinquapin Trail, a 3.25-mile loop trail, winds through Elk River Breaks Natural Area for those who want to enjoy the beauty in solitude. This park is still in development, so more activities and facilities are yet to come, but right now it’s a great place to take in the Ozarks in their natural state.
With just five first-come first-served campsites, the Valentine, Nebraska City Park is undeniably a secluded and exclusive getaway for outdoors lovers. Minnechaduza Creek bisects the 40-acre park and its banks are lined with old growth oak trees. The park is open year round for camping, fishing in the stocked creek, horseshoes, hiking and picnicking. There are also three playgrounds. While the mike long hiking trail is not marked, it’s easy to follow. Campsites are open to RVs and/or tent camping.
Heart ‘o the Hills Campground is within Washington state’s Olympic National Park. It’s the closest campground to the extremely popular Hurricane Ridge hiking area. and That makes it a great choice for a base camp for a night or two to explore this popular section of the Park. Heart o’ the Hills has 105 sites all first-come, first-served. Because it is the only campground to service Hurricane Ridge Road, spaces fill quickly, especially in peak season. Sites have their own picnic tables and fire rings, and the campground has centrally located restrooms, potable water, an amphitheater, and firewood for sale. Another great thing about Heart ‘o the Hills Campground is it’s open all year long, though in heavy snows, it’s walk in only..
Have you been dreaming of a romantic getaway? Just imagine you and your loved one getting back to nature nestled away in a secluded tent site surrounded by nature’s glorious melodies – crickets chirping, rustling tree leaves, and flowing water from the nearby creek. Add a crackling fire, and oversized sleeping bag, and a tent for two … need any more inspiration? Snuggle under the stars and fall in love all over again at Lover’s Lane, a cozy corner of our park that’s dedicated to tent camping and reserved exclusively for couples. No kids, no groups, no kidding. The ambience awaits … you make the memories. A picnic table, fire ring, water, and electric are provided for total comfort. Bring your own tent camping gear or jump in the car with clothes and toothbrush and buy the rest at the camp store.[/two_third_last]
Valentine Lake Recreation Area is set in a peaceful and secluded atmosphere in the Kistachie National Forest of north central Louisiana. In keeping with the serenity, motorized boating is not allowed. Canoe access is drag or carry from available day-use parking areas. Access can also be made by campers in the campground areas. Valentine Lake is a 46-acre jewel in a hardwood and pine setting. The Northshore Campground has 14 campsites, six of which are located along the shoreline of the lake. There is a vault restroom, trash containers, and water available in strategic locations around the campground. The group picnic area includes a shelter, oversized bbq pit, bank fishing, and nearby sanitary facilities. Valentine Lake Trail starts and ends at the campground and is three miles long. There’s also a fishing pier.
A historic, but modern campground, Sugar Loafin’ is surrounded by lake and stream trout fishing, rock hounding, pine scented forests, jeep trails, clean air, hiking, boating, mountain climbing, blue skies, cool breezes blowing off snowcapped mountain peaks, and the nation’s highest elevation golf course. Enjoy the scenic drive around Turquoise Lake or the hiking trail on the east and north shores. Accommodations include four cabins, dozens of RV sites with 30 or 50 amp service, and 24 tent sites. There are activities for outdoor lovers who want to be part of the group and for those who seek solitude.
Swimming, boating, water skiing and fishing on Lake Hartwell that straddles Georgia’s border with South Carolina are prime reasons to visit Hart State Outdoor Recreation Area. Largemouth bass, hybrid bass, striper, black crappie, bream, and even rainbow trout and walleye can be found and caught from the sparkling waters of this 55,590-acre reservoir. The park’s boat ramps and docks offer easy access to all water sports. Visitor’s can also enjoy hiking and biking trails and a children’s playground. There are 42 site-specific campsites and 16 walk-in sites.
FLORIDA IS FOR OUTDOOR LOVERS
The length and breadth of Florida is a camper’s dreamland. You’re bound to find many destinations there that you’ll love. Here are some that 50 Campfires recommends.