Florida

Top snowbird destinations for RVers

What to look for in a great snowbirding destination, and a few popular favourites

Photos courtesy Baja Amigos/Dan and Lisa Goy
Some snowbirds like to tour Mexico during the winter months. — Photo courtesy Baja Amigos/Dan and Lisa Goy

Canadian RVers never want to stop travelling, even during the cooler months. Given the cold winter climate in most parts of the country, many choose the snowbird lifestyle and head south for part of the year. 

RVing in the United States, and even venturing into Mexico, has become increasingly popular among retirees, winter vacationers and other dedicated campers who want to enjoy the RV lifestyle all year round. 

What makes a great snowbird destination?

When choosing a place to go snowbirding, there are a few deciding factors to consider:

  • A balmy climate: Perhaps it's an obvious statement, but snowbirds seek to escape their cold hometown climates. Communities that offer hot temperatures and arid conditions are especially appealing to those who are craving some vitamin D.
  • A welcoming community: Every traveller wants to feel welcome. Most popular snowbird destinations thrive on tourism during winter, so the people there are friendly and helpful to RVers.
  • Plenty of outdoor recreation: One of the things snowbirds may dislike about winter in Canada, is the limit it can place on some outdoor recreational activities. Active people who don't enjoy winter sports will try to find places down south that have hiking trails, water sports opportunities and other ways to enjoy the outdoors.
  • RV resorts with key amenities: Long-term RV camping requires more than one would need for a weekend holiday. If RVers are staying for months in the same location, they will want to have all the comforts of home - including laundry facilities, entertainment, restaurants, nearby shopping and other conveniences.
  • Nearby cities and attractions to explore: By definition, RVers don't tend to stay in one place for too long. Even if they are set up in a premium RV resort, snowbirds often want to venture out to nearby communities and see attractions and events taking place there. Having a bigger community close by allows them to experience the lively pace of the city when desired, before returning to the peaceful resort atmosphere.

Where do snowbirds like to go?

There are all kinds of places where snowbirds congregate, but these are some of the most popular choices:

Mexico

Given its tourist-friendly reputation and hot climate, it's no surprise that RVers are drawn to Mexico. The best way to RV in Mexico is to go on a tour, such as those offered by Baja Amigos RV Caravan Tours. Check out this article for handy tips on snowbirding in Mexico. We also have a story by Carol Ann Quibell, listing some of the top destinations in Mexico you will want to add to your itinerary.

Arizona

Known as a major snowbirding destination, Arizona offers some unforgettable RVing. Whether you prefer beautiful scenery and quaint towns or thriving, cultured cities with plenty of recreational opportunities, Arizona is the perfect destination for RVers from all walks of life.

Top snowbird destinations in Arizona include:

  • Quartzsite - Renowned for its gem shows, swap meets and specialty markets, Quartzsite is a one-of-a-kind place to RV. Situated in the southwest Arizona desert, the town has a history of being a gathering place for travellers and merchants. You will see the community explode with activity during the winter months when more than one million snowbirders flock here for the chance to check out the latest vendors. 
  • Yuma - With its warm climate, natural attractions and luxurious RV resorts, its no wonder that travellers young and old are fond of staying in Yuma.
  • Mesa - A diverse community with an intriguing history, Mesa draws snowbirders seeking warm weather and fun things to do. There are many ways to relax here, such as golf, touring, shopping, amusement parks or even taking in a bit of dinner theatre. 
  • Phoenix - This bustling city is not only a hub of entertainment and recreation, but also a gathering place for snowbirds.

California

From hot springs and beautiful resorts to desert adventures and exciting tourist attractions, California is abounding with opportunities for RVers. RVing in California is a unique experience due to the state's varied geography, which ranges from sandy beaches to snow-capped mountains. As well, California's pleasant climate and ethnically diverse population make each visit a memorable one.

Top snowbird destinations in California include:

  • Indio - A popular snowbirding getaway in the Inland Desert region, Indio has a wealth of recreational opportunities and tourist attractions to offer RVers.
  • Palm Springs - With luxurious resorts, sunny skies and an incredible ambience, Palm Springs is famous for being a vacationer's haven.
  • El Centro - Snowbirds will appreciate a trip to El Centro, California. There are spacious RV campgrounds, festive events, and other tourist attractions to keep you engaged and having a blast.
  • Anaheim - Anaheim has been known for decades as a tourist spot, not to mention a place where RVers love to go camping, play on the beaches and enjoy a range of local attractions.

Nevada

With spectacular scenery, entertainment and outdoor recreation, Nevada is a natural choice for snowbirds.

Top snowbird destinations in Nevada include:

  • Las Vegas - A city of bright lights, delicious food and vivacious entertainment; a place where Lady Luck might be on your side—Las Vegas has been a vacationer's preferred choice for decades. Not only does the city itself have every form of leisure activity imaginable, but the area around Las Vegas also has mind-boggling natural attractions.
  • Laughlin - From its lovely location on the banks of the Colorado River, Laughlin welcomes RVers with its selection of campgrounds, scenic recreation zones and much more.
  • Mesquite - Whether you enjoy in-town entertainment, or outdoor recreation, Mesquite will be a welcome addition to your camping itinerary.

Florida

Florida is bursting with things to see and do. Many of the attractions here are geared specifically toward snowbirds, so you will feel as if the trip is custom-made to suit your lifestyle.

Top snowbird destinations in Florida include:

  • Okeechobee - Okeechobee is a tourist-friendly community in Florida where RVers love to gather every year. 
  • Fort Lauderdale - With gorgeous beaches, upmarket stores and top-quality restaurants, this famous city has been reinvented to appeal more to visitors.
  • Miami - This city is always abuzz with excitement, and it's not hard to see why. The impressive arts and culture scene, bustling nightlife and extensive beaches make it a popular snowbird destination.

New Mexico

New Mexico is a stunning area of the USA, where RV camping, hiking and other outdoor recreation opportunities abound.

Top snowbird destinations in New Mexico include:

  • Albuquerque - Albuquerque, New Mexico, is a prime place to go if you want a memorable RV camping experience. Snowbirds love this community because of its attractive campsites, tourist-friendly businesses, ample places to eat and drink, and other key features.
  • Socorro - Socorro is an appealing New Mexico community located in the Rio Grande Valley.  There is a multitude of things to do in this popular RV destination, so plan yourself a trip to remember.
  • Aztec - For outdoor enthusiasts, history buffs and RVers of all stripes, Aztec is a must-visit destination. 

Related Articles

>