Whether you’re looking for a place to escape the summer heat or enjoy some winter fun, these ten fantastic lake campsites are sure to please. From crystal clear waters and sandy beaches to mountain lakeside views, there’s something for everyone on this list. So pack your camping gear and get ready for an adventure at one of these top US lake campsites:
1. Lake Tahoe Vacation Resort
Lake Tahoe Vacation Resort is an outstanding lake campground in the US, making it a tourist destination. Located in the Sierra Nevada of the US, near the state line of California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe is a breathtaking landscape of 191 sq mi. It is the second deepest lake in the US, with a depth of 1,645 feet, and is known for its crystal clear blue water.
The campground offers full-hook-up sites with picnic areas, tables, fire rings, modern restrooms with hot showers, and RV dump stations. Guests have access to various recreational activities, like swimming, boating, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, paddle-boating, hiking, and mountain biking. The campground is also conveniently located within walking distance of the shores of Lake Tahoe, so visitors can enjoy the stunning views of the lake and its surroundings. Other amenities and facilities available include a Recreation and Swim Complex, baseball fields, an ice arena, children’s playgrounds, hiking, and biking trails, a Visitor Center, and the Bijou Golf Course.
The nearby Vail Lake Resort is also an ideal spot for campers. It features over 200 acres of world-class hiking and mountain bike trails and is only 15 minutes away from Temecula Valley wineries and nearby casinos.
2. Lake Erie State Park
Lake Erie State Park is a great lake campground for various reasons. Located in the Canadian province of Ontario, the park borders Lake Ontario on the north, west, and southwest, with the US state of New York on the south and east. It offers 7,340 square miles of surface area and a depth of 801 feet. Here, visitors can take advantage of various activities, from swimming, boating, and sailing, to fishing, canoeing, and even kayaking. For those who prefer to stay on land, there are plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore, as well as opportunities for bird watching.
Lake Erie State Park is ideal for a memorable summer getaway with its stunning views, recreational activities, and excellent facilities. In addition, the campground offers plenty of amenities for visitors, including 325 campsites along the shoreline, backcountry camping, cabins, and three overnight cabins. Visitors can also find boat launches, fuel sales, and electricity and water hookups at the campground.
3. Wahweap Campground, Arizona
Wahweap Campground, located along the shores of Lake Powell in Arizona, is a top-notch lake campground. It offers stunning desert landscapes, clean and well-maintained facilities, and easy access to various recreational activities such as fishing, waterskiing, jet-skiing, boating, and hiking. This campground truly stands out due to its proximity to remarkable natural sights, such as Glen Canyon Dam, Rainbow Bridge, Hite Crossing Bridge, and many other natural formations. It also provides breathtaking views of the lake, making it a great spot to relax and take in the beauty of the area. Plus, the campground is conveniently located near numerous marinas and boat rental companies, making it easy to explore the lake. Whether you want a relaxing vacation or an action-packed vacation, Wahweap Campground is the perfect spot for you.
4. Lake George RV Park
Lake George RV Park is an excellent lake campground located just south of the village of Lake George. The campground offers a number of amenities, including tent and trailer sites, restrooms with hot showers, flushing toilets, a recycling center, and a trailer dump station. It is also within walking distance of Lake George Beach for swimming and sunbathing, as well as boating, fishing, and hiking. In addition, the campground features a self-guided historical interpretive path that provides visitors with information about Battlefield Park. These features make Lake George RV Park an excellent lake campground for outdoor adventurers and history buffs.
5. Flamingo Lake RV Resort
Flamingo Lake RV Resort is the perfect choice for anyone looking for a top lake campground in the US. Located in La Pine, Oregon, the resort offers a wide variety of amenities, including 65 RV sites, fire pits, and a pet-friendly policy. Visitors can also enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding mountains, national forests, and lakes from the resort. What sets this RV park apart from the rest is its proximity to multiple lakes in the same area. Guests can choose from a mix of large and small lakes, ensuring that there’s something for everyone. The resort also offers full hookups, rental cabins, a full-service restaurant, and a java hut, so you won’t need to go anywhere else to experience the best of RV camping. With a 9.3/10 average rating on RV LIFE Campground Reviews, Flamingo Lake RV Resort is an undeniably top-notch destination for lake campers.
6. Lake Waccamaw State Park
Lake Waccamaw State Park is a great lake campground due to its incredible, serene natural beauty and the range of recreational activities it offers. Located on the tranquil edge of Lake Waccamaw, this park is an ideal destination for campers and nature lovers alike. The park is largely undeveloped and surrounded by cypress trees, and visitors can launch their canoes, kayaks, and other boats from the on-site boat ramp. There are also eight miles of trails available for hiking and biking, and campers can go freshwater fishing and explore wildlife habitats. The park also offers a campground with electrical and water hookups, three overnight cabins, and remote campsites and cabins that are accessible only by boat. In addition, Lake Waccamaw State Park provides an excellent opportunity for paddlers searching for obscure waterfalls, scuba divers, and trout lovers.
7. Lake Louise RV Park & Resort
Lake Louise RV Park & Resort is a great lake campground for those looking to have easy access to a variety of lakes and other outdoor activities. Located in Island Park, Idaho, the campground is close to Yellowstone National Park, Island Park Reservoir, and the Buffalo River. Along with the lakes and rivers in the area, the campground offers 127 sites with electrical and water hookups, pull-through RV sites, a nearby general store, restrooms, and some of the best fly fishing in the country. In addition, the resort provides many amenities such as firewood, picnic areas, a dump station, a playground, rental cabins, a full-service restaurant, and a java hut. With all of these features, Lake Louise RV Park & Resort is a perfect spot for an unforgettable lakeside camping experience.
8. Lake Wenatchee State Park
Lake Wenatchee State Park is a great lake campground because of its beautiful views of the Cascade Mountains, its 200 campsites that have hookups for electricity and water, its kitchen shelters, picnic areas, showers, restrooms, and its miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. It’s also ideal for watersports enthusiasts, as the lake is so large that it creates small waves from time to time. All of these features make it a perfect spot for a lakeside camping trip.
9. Lake Casitas Recreation Area
Lake Casitas Recreation Area is a great lake campground for its stunning natural beauty and array of recreational activities. Situated in the Ventura River Valley, the campground overlooks Lake Casitas, a beautiful lake with crystal-clear waters and views of the surrounding mountains. Campers can enjoy swimming, fishing, water skiing, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, and more. There are also miles of trails for hiking and biking and plenty of picnic areas and playgrounds to explore. The campground features more than 200 campsites, including full hookup sites and multiple restrooms and shower facilities, making it an excellent choice for camping with friends or family. Additionally, the campground’s convenient location makes it easy to explore the surrounding area, including nearby attractions such as the Ojai Valley Museum and the Ventura Pier. With its spectacular scenery, abundance of activities, and a convenient location, Lake Casitas Recreation Area is the perfect lake campground for a memorable getaway.
10. Okatoma Resort & Campground
Okatoma Resort & Campground is one of the top lake campgrounds in the US due to its central location in the Big Cypress National Preserve. The campground offers various recreational activities, including hiking, biking, fishing, hunting, photography, and off-road driving. The sites provide ample amenities, such as picnic tables, fire rings, and restrooms with flushing toilets and drinking water. In addition, the RV sites have excellent lake views, and the tent sites are situated in the woods for a more secluded experience. Furthermore, the resort is just a short drive away from the coast, two world-famous casinos, and other attractions, such as Shark Valley, the Oasis Visitor Center, Clyde Butcher’s Art Gallery, and the Miccosukee Cultural Center. These features make Okatoma Resort & Campground a top lake campground in the US.
What makes a great lake campsite?
When it comes to deciding on the perfect lake campsite to visit in the US, there are a few key factors to consider:
- The location of the campsite must be taken into account. It should be conveniently located, allowing for easy access to amenities and activities such as fishing, swimming, boating, and more.
- The lake itself should have plenty of space for these activities and offer a cool, refreshing atmosphere.
- The campgrounds should be well maintained, with amenities such as fire rings, picnic tables, and hookups for RVs.
- Campgrounds should provide a sense of community through activities or events.
Tips for having the best experience possible at your lake campsite
Planning ahead is essential for ensuring a successful camping trip. It is important to be well-equipped with the necessary items before venturing out. For instance, bring a blanket and pillow if you use a tent provided by the camping agency, and keep a spare tent as a backup. Water coolers and lanterns are also essential for drinking and lighting during the night. It is also important to bring a first-aid kit with basic medical supplies, a smartphone, and a digital camera for emergencies and documenting memories.
Planning ahead is essential for ensuring an enjoyable camping trip. Bring jackets, mufflers, and gloves for warmth and a swimsuit for swimming in the lake. Be sure to bring the correct type of shoes for long hikes and a power source such as a generator or power bank for charging gadgets. Matchsticks and a lighter should also be included for the fire building. Lastly, don’t forget to pack cooking equipment, such as utensils, crockery, garbage disposal bags, and tissue paper.
Check the amenities available
Checking the amenities available at a campground before your trip is essential to ensure your camping experience is as smooth and stress-free as possible. When researching the campground, check what kind of facilities and services they offer. Most campsites provide tents, water coolers, and lanterns to provide light in the dark. Some may also have gas stoves and generators for cooking and power sources.
Additional amenities may include swimming pools, fire pits, basic cooking, eating utensils, and even matchsticks and lighters for starting a campfire. Check if the campground has fire restrictions or safety requirements, such as life vests for boating. If you need to charge your devices, check if the campground has a power source or provisions for charging. Finally, it’s important to double-check the check-in and check-out times and the minimum and maximum stays allowed at the campground.
Check the weather ahead of time
When planning a camping trip to a lake, you must check the weather ahead to ensure that you have the necessary items to stay comfortable and safe. The temperature and weather conditions vary greatly depending on the time of year and location, and not being prepared for the elements can make for an unpleasant experience.
It is also beneficial to check the fire restrictions for the area you are camping in, as this can determine whether or not you can have a campfire. Knowing the weather ahead of time can also affect the type of clothing and footwear you need to bring and can help you plan activities accordingly. For instance, if the weather is expected to be warm, you may want to bring swimsuits, while if it’s colder, you may want to bring jackets, mufflers, and gloves to stay warm.
Additionally, checking the weather can help you plan your boating and swimming activities safely, as some boats may require inspection, and there are often various safety requirements, such as wearing a life vest. Finally, checking the weather can help you determine how many camping supplies you will need and how long you will need to stay.
Going on a lake campout requires you to be well-prepared. Here is an expanded list with spatial information on what items you should pack for a lake campout:
• Medical Supplies: First-aid kit with the basic medical stuff, including band-aids, disinfectants, digestive pills, and painkillers.
• Sleeping Gear: Tents, blankets, and pillows.
• Lighting: Water coolers, lanterns, and extra batteries.
• Clothing: Jackets, mufflers, gloves, swimsuits, towels, shampoo, and soap.
• Footwear: Sneakers, flip-flops, and hiking boots.
• Gadgets: Smartphone, digital camera, power source, and a generator or a power bank.
Respect the environment
When camping at a lake, respecting the environment and practicing Leave No Trace ethics is essential. Here are some steps to ensure you’re doing your part:
- Pack in and out all of your items, leaving no trace behind.
- Avoid littering and dispose of any waste properly.
- Be aware of wildlife and keep a safe distance from any animals in the area.
- Follow any local regulations regarding campfires, noise, and watercraft.
- Respect the property of others and do not trespass or cause damage.
- Stay on the designated trails and camp at least 200 feet away from lakes and streams.
- Minimize your impact on the area by not cutting down trees or plants and avoiding areas that are sensitive to human disturbance.
- Use biodegradable soaps and detergents when cleaning.
- Respect other campers in the area and keep noise to a minimum.
- Pick up any litter and leave the area cleaner than you found it.
Take a dip into the lake
Swimming in a lake is an excellent way to enjoy nature and keep yourself healthy. It’s a great form of exercise; it helps you stay cool during hot summer days and is a fun way to relax. Lakes typically have cooler water temperatures than pools, which can be more comfortable for swimmers. Lakes are also often cleaner than pools, as no harsh chemicals are used to sanitize them. Swimming in a lake can also benefit your mental health, as it allows you to enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of nature and get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. However, knowing the potential risks of swimming in a lake is essential.
Lakes can contain bacteria, parasites, and pollutants, so it’s essential to research the lake before swimming to ensure it is safe. Additionally, lake water can be pretty cold, so it is essential to dress appropriately and take frequent breaks to warm up. It is also essential to be aware of potential wildlife in the lake, as some species can be dangerous. With these considerations in mind, swimming in a lake can be a safe and healthy activity for you to enjoy.
What type of amenities is available at the lake campsites?
The lake campsites offer a wide variety of amenities, including modern restrooms with hot showers, RV dump stations, picnic areas with tables and fire rings, children’s playgrounds, baseball fields, ice arenas, hiking and biking trails, and Visitor Centers. In addition to these, some campgrounds may have access to swimming, boating, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, and paddle boating.
What type of activities can be done at the lake campsites?
At the lake campsites, many activities are available to enjoy, including swimming, fishing, boating, kayaking, canoeing, biking, horseback riding, and hiking. Many of the resorts also offer on-site convenience stores, golf courses, and restaurants. There are also souvenir shops nearby to pick up a memento for your trip.
What is the best way to reserve a campsite?
The best way to reserve a campsite is to book it online in advance. This is especially important during the busy season, which runs from November to May, and on holidays, weekends, and any spring day. Depending on your location, you can start your search by entering “best lake camping near me” or “lake campgrounds near me” into a search engine. From there, you can use camper reviews to determine which options are the best and reserve them up to six months in advance.
What is the cost of camping at a lake campsite?
The cost of camping at a lake campsite varies, depending on the location and facilities offered. For example, Campground by the Lake in South Lake Tahoe, California, offers full-hook-up sites with picnic areas, tables, fire rings, modern restrooms with hot showers, and RV dump stations at a nightly cost of $44. Monkey Island RV Resort in Oklahoma also offers a range of amenities, including concrete RV pads and on-site convenience stores, at a nightly cost of $55. Finally, Zephyr Cove Resort in Nevada offers campsites with picnic tables, fire rings, and hookups, as well as restaurants and recreational activities like horseback riding at a nightly cost of $85.
Are there any safety precautions to take when camping at a lake campsite?
Yes, you should take a few safety precautions when camping at a lake campsite:
1. Check the fire restrictions that apply to the campground, as these can vary from place to place. If there is public access to swimming, it is essential to note that there are no lifeguards on duty, so children must be supervised at all times. Boating may require inspections and safety requirements such as wearing a life vest.
2. It is essential to pack the proper clothing and items for the camping trip, such as jackets, mufflers, gloves, swimsuits, toiletries, sneakers, flip-flops, and hiking boots. It is also wise to bring a first-aid kit, water coolers, and lanterns.
3. Some campsites may have their own specific rules, so it is crucial to research and be aware of the guidelines before arriving.