Sunday, August 25, 2013

Camping at Koreshan State Historic Site in Estero, FL

Koreshan State Historic Site
Koreshan State Historic Site is not only a Florida State Park, but it is also home to the historic site of the Koreshan Unity;  which followers were brought to Estero to build a New Jerusalem, by Cyrus Reed Teed in 1894.  The colony began fading after Cyrus Teed passed away in 1908 and in 1961 the last four members deeded the land to the State.  You can read more about the park at their official website here.

My friends and I went camping over Memorial Day Weekend in my friend's RV.  It was my first time camping in a RV.  Also, Nadia did not go this time.  She was having her own fun over at her Dad's house with his family.

We had actually been planning this weekend for a while.   My friends and I have been wanting to try the Murder Mystery Dinner Train Ride in Ft. Myers, FL.  So we decided to camp in the area and make a long weekend out of it.  When my friend Ted, told us we were camping at the Koreshan State Park, I had wondered, "what kind of a place is this?".  Well I will tell you right now, It was GREAT!!  It was down right beautiful.

The camping area was clean.  Canoe Rentals available.  We brought our bikes and were able to ride through the park, to the historic site, and to the food store.

When we rode over to the Historic Site, I did not realize how huge it would be.  They actually had the homes on site.  The rangers give tours at certain times of day.  For a small donation you can purchase a booklet on the Koreshan Unity Settlement and a Self-Guided Tour of the Gardens booklet.

Here is what you can see at the Historical Site:

Bamboo Landing 

Hedwig Michel Memorial

Before the Tamiami Trail was built, the only entrance to the Settlement was from the Estero River at the Bamboo Landing.

On Sunday morning, we went canoeing on the Estero River.  It was a nice paddle, past a nice mobile home park, three story homes, one story homes, resorts, and just nature.  Our goal was to try to get to the Gulf of Mexico, but we were not sure how much further it would be.  We needed to head back to camp to get ready for the Dinner Train.

Monday morning, we went hiking before it was time to roll out and head home.

Oh and by the way, guess what the popular creature to see at this park was?  It was not a Florida Black Bear, Florida Panther or even a deer.  It was a Tortoise!  There are tortoise crossings all around and yes we saw quite a few.