Why stay in one of the chain hotels when a room at an historic Florida lodge can be booked for the same price? That’s what inspired us to begin a weekend camping trip at the Wakulla Springs Lodge. Instead of trying to pitch a tent in the dark, we stopped just south of Tallahassee for the night.
The interior of the lodge reminds guests of a time gone by with marble throughout the lodge on floors, baseboards, counters, and staircases, including a 70 foot marble bar in the gift shop, the world’s longest, and according to the lodge website, the walnut elevator is the only surviving period art deco elevator in operation. The artwork on the ceiling draws attention to the painting of local wildlife scenes…beautiful.
Of course, eating at the lodge had to be included, and while we enjoyed the fried chicken and seafood platter, the setting is what makes dinner in the lodge something to experience.
The rooms are decorated with antiques and provide comfortable accommodations for sleeping, but if television or other modern technology is required, guests will be disappointed. We enjoyed the quiet and listened to a University of Miami football game on the radio. And really, listening to the radio (even if on an iPhone app) seems to match the surroundings perfectly.
Eating breakfast at the lodge was not on the agenda, but since the lodge is located miles away from other facilities, we found ourselves back in the dining room in the morning devouring a hardy meal before taking to the river and bike riding at Wakulla Springs State Park, and then on to the campground.