Best Camp Spot in Florida: Bahia Honda State Park

Bahia Honda State Park shite sand Sandspur Beach from the bathrooms

About Bahia State Park

Bahia Honda State Park is an island only around 500 acres and is in the last 3/4 of the string of islands that make up the Florida Keys. It is about 25 minutes east of Key West coming from Florida. You’ll find it by looking for mile marker 37. There is almost nothing on the island, and certainly no residences. The signage is not great so put Bahia Honda State Park into your GPS to be prepared to turn rather abruptly.

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Day Visit to Bahia Honda State Park

You can visit Bahia Honda as a day visit for $4.50 per person/$8 per vehicle state park entry or you camp and the entrance fee is included in your camping fee. The park is open from 8am till sunset 365 days per year.

If you come for a day visit, you can pay when you arrive or purchase online ahead of time and bring your email confirmation. However, if the park fills up to capacity, your purchased entry ticket is not a guarantee to get in. You may be turned away and told to return at a different time or be given a refund.

Buy your tickets HERE

Bahia Honda State Park Gift Shop

Bahia Honda State Park gift shop and snack shack

The island also features a gift shop, snack bar, and you can rent kayaks or take snorkel tours to the nearby Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary which is some of the best snorkeling in the keys. Snorkel tours depart at 9:30 and 1:30 daily and last 1.5 hours and cost a reasonable $29.95 per adult plus the cost of renting all snorkel equipment (approximately $13).

Bahia Honda State Park snorkel and kayak rental shop

The gift shop had things to eat like sandwiches, ice cream, pretzels, cinnamon rolls, burgers, and pizzas. Thing which could definitely hold you over. But if you’re looking for variety, you won’t find it here. Bringing your own meals or snacks may be a good idea. The snack shop hours are 8 to 5.

Things to do at Bahia Honda State Park

There is not a ton to do on this tiny stretch of island, but that’s much of the beauty of it isn’t it?


Boating from Bahia Honda is a common activity with 2 boat ramps and a 19 slip marina available. We had our paddle boards with us but didn’t bother using them, however this would’ve been a good spot.

Ride Your Bike

Explore the island by bike. Although you may see just about all of it very quickly, since there are just 3.5 miles of paved road.

Visit the Sand and Sea Nature Center

Near the old bridge on the western side of the island, here you can learn more about Bahia State Park.

Walk the Nature Trails

Silver Palm Nature Trail is at the far east end of the island after the pavement ends and Butterfly Garden Trail is at the west end along the southern shore.

Bahia Honda old bridge dirt path

I especially recommend the Old Bahia Honda Bridge Trail which is very popular for sunset. It starts as a dirt track uphill from the westernmost corner of the island (seen above) and continues till the railroad bridge ends abruptly. What was originally a railroad in the early 1900’s was built over with the first highway in 1938 and used until 1972 when the new highway was built.

Bahia Honda Railroad Bridge viewOld Bahia Honda Railroad Bridge comes to an end with a sign

Enjoy the Beaches of Bahia Honda

There are two main beach areas on Bahia State Park. Near the large parking lot and gift shop on the west end is Calusa and Loggerhead Beaches. From here you can see the Old Bahia Honda Bridge in the background. There are picnic tables as well.

Bahia Honda state park beaches

Farther down the road within the park and past the beachfront camping, is the second beach area, Sandspur Beach, which is the nicest beach in Bahia, and probably the entire Keys.

Bahia Honda State Park restrooms and Sandspur beach

There is ample parking right on the beach, however it can easily fill up and the beach can get quite crowded during high season.

Bahia Honda State Park shite sand Sandspur Beach from the bathrooms

We went midweek in November and maybe 1/8 of the parking spots were taken. You could easily find a spot on the beach and spread out. There are nice restrooms with running water as well as outdoor showers for rinsing off and washing your sandy feet so you can avoid getting sand all over the car.

Bahia Honda State park showers

Where to Stay at Bahia Honda State Park


1-6: Cabins – Loop BAYC (there are 3 duplexes and most can accommodate 6 people). These are the only “accommodations” on the island.


There are three main camping areas on Bahia Honda. They are all numbered between 1-80.

1-48: Buttonwood sites – Loop BTWC (small to large tents/RVs, bathhouses with hot water)
49-72: Sandspur Tent and RV Sites – Loop SSC (max length 23 feet, bathhouses with hot water)
73-80: Bayside – Loop BAYS (Nonelectric, bathrooms but no showers)

Camping is $36 but if you add in the reservation fee, the utility fee (if you get an RV spot with power), and tax, it’s really more like $58 per night. This may sound like a lot for camping, but in comparison to the rest of the RV parks in the keys or a hotel, it’s a darn good deal. Especially when you compare a crowded RV park with these beachfront spacious camp spots. You can typically RESERVE a site online or by calling. This website provides contact info but says online booking is currently unavailable.

Bahia Honda State Park camping Sandspur sites facing the ocean

I’ll just give you a hint ahead of time. Sandspur has, by far, the best sites. They have the nicest views and spots, in my opinion. Plus they are closest to the best beach of Sandspur.

Camping in Sprinter van at Bahia State Park florida

Things to Note About Bahia State Park

Pets are allowed in day use areas and campgrounds but must be kept on a leash. They are not allowed on the beaches or cabins or bathing areas. 

Cell service is decent on the island.

I got horrific sand-flea bites from our two days there. I don’t know if I got them from physically lying down on my towel at Sandspur Beach or if it was after dark at the campground from some other small bugs that fit through our screen windows. Either way, the bites were horrible for about 3 days and I had over 50 of them. So wear some bug repellent.

Bug bites at Bahia Honda State park florida

Aside from the bites, this was one of my favorite places we’ve camped in the south. We were very impressed by the beauty of the beach and the well maintained campground.

I hope this post has been helpful!

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Best camp spot in Florida: Bahia Honda State Park

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