This year we decided to wait out the winter months in Gulfport, MS. I checked the climate charts and saw that most days during December and January the temperature should be in the low 60’s. Unfortunately, according to the locals that live here, we have had a colder than normal winter. Granted the weather has been much warmer than the Ottawa, Illinois area we used to live in, but if I had to do it over again I would likely have stayed somewhere a bit warmer and drier as it has rained quite a bit during our winter stay. Our rig was actually hit by lightning which resulted in the replacement of a 55′ TV, Dish Network receiver, and DVD player.
We decided to stay at Gulf Haven RV park located in the middle of Gulfport only about 500′ from the beach. The park is just a little above basic and kind of cramped. Monthly fee around $560.00 that includes full hookups, electric, and WiFi. Not a bad deal if you are looking to save a few bucks and be close to the beach.
As far as reviewing the Gulfport area there are plenty of things to do. The number one tourist attraction would be all the casinos . If you like to gamble it’s like a mini Las Vegas without all the tourist traps. Motorcycle rides up and down the coast are scenic and the seafood restaurants are plentiful. New Orleans is only 1.5 hours down the road and is also a great place to visit for day trips. Another great stop about 1.25 hours to the east is the USS Alabama WWII battleship located in Mobile, AL. This museum has the USS Alabama, a submarine, several tanks, an air museum, and more for only a $13.00 admission fee, a great day trip. There are several golf coarse’s nearby as well that are reasonably priced. If you are looking to get some exercise you will likely enjoy walking up and down the beach or about 30 minutes up Rt. 49, you can hike some of the trails in the De Soto forest. Fishing on the beach or piers along the Gulf coast is also an option. So far I haven’t had much luck but for $30.00 bucks to get a fishing license, I enjoy trying. If you like Waffle House you will find one about every 2 miles up and down the coast! We have done a lot of stuff while staying here — golf, motorcycling, hiking, walking, EATING, rodeo, museums, and lucky for us, did a lot of this fun stuff with good friends from Illinois who are staying here as well.
Hurricanes have done considerable damage to this area. In 2005 Hurricane Katrina totally leveled almost every building within a 1/4 mile of the coast. In 1969 Hurricane Camille also did a lot of damage. As you drive along coastal HWY 90 you will still see empty lots with old slabs and foundations. Construction of new homes are on the rise but I fear that it’s not a matter of if, but when the next hurricane comes to wipe this all out again. Hurricane Nate hit here just days before we arrived but luckily was only a CAT 1 storm which only washed out sand from beaches and damaged fishing piers around Biloxi. Local folks have some great stories to tell about the hurricanes if you get a chance to talk to them.
Headed to Buccaneer State Park March 1 in Bay St. Louis, MS — about 20 miles from where we are now. I’ll fill you in after we stay there a while. Hoping the fishing picks up!