Last week we asked you about municipal campgrounds. We asked, “What is the best city or county campground you have ever stayed in and why?”
We realize that when it comes to the topic of public campgrounds, the national parks get the most publicity, followed closely by many amazing state parks throughout the country. But we also know there are many municipal campgrounds run by counties and cities that are just as nice or even better.
Understandably, some of you did not want to share. For instance, Lorelei J. wrote, “It wouldn’t be a favorite if everyone knew about it.”
For those who did share, to make this compilation most useful, we divided your recommendations alphabetically by state, then by city or town within that state. I included the name of the reader who sent in the recommendation below each entry.
As I did when we compiled our readers’ recommendations for their favorite burgers from Mom and Pop joints, I discounted any entries that merely gave the name and location of the campground, as this was a multiple-part question. We also wanted to know WHY you liked the campground so much.
A number of people submitted commercial campground recommendations. These may be nice, but that was not what we were asking about this time, so those have not been included here. Ditto state and national parks. Again, the purpose of this compilation is to focus on city and county campgrounds.
Winners of the best municipal campgrounds
We usually do not expect clear winners in these types of polls. That’s because RVtravel.com readers are spread out all over the place. Nonetheless, two campgrounds did garner more than one vote in this poll and both were in the state of Florida!
- Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park, a city RV park in Jacksonville, FL, within easy walking distance of the beach garnered two recommendations.
- Fort DeSoto County Campground in Pinellas County, FL, also got two recommendations in our poll.
So without further ado…
RVtravel.com reader’s favorite municipal campgrounds
By far the best county park that we stayed in is Usery Park in Mesa, AZ. They have water and electric hookups with an available dump station. The fee is very reasonable and the hiking is fantastic!
Jalama Beach County Park offers INCREDIBLE camping right at the ocean’s edge. There’s hiking and tidepools nearby, as well as surfing and swimming. The only downside is it can get mighty windy here, which can present major challenges for outdoor cooking. Otherwise, this is one of my all-time favorite camping spots.
Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park is a city park in Jacksonville that is close to the ocean and has spacious and private sites. However, pay close attention to the space sizes on the map when reserving or registering because some spaces will not accommodate a larger rig.
Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park is our first choice. Full hookups, good cell and TV reception, and an easy walk to the beach. We were in a 40-footer and it was tight. The sites are somewhat secluded. No concrete, limited gravel, and lots of sand.
John Prince County Park and Campground offers great sites, lakefront views, and FIVE of the largest and nicest dog parks we have ever seen. We’re excited to get there again in January.
Fort DeSoto Park is a county park with 238 sites, electric and water, no sewer, but conveniently placed dump stations. The sites are wide and very private. Lots of screening vegetation. Many sites are waterfront. One section of the campground is reserved for people with their pets, two sections are no pets. World-class beaches are within biking distance. WiFi and even cell service are sketchy, which is surprising given that the park is just outside an urban area. There is a kayak rental nearby, and a Google search will give you the website of a guy who will deliver kayaks to your waterfront site. It’s awesome.
Fort DeSoto County Campground is impossible to get into if you have a dog because they have three loops, only one of which allows dogs and one of which is for people with small campers. But if you can get in, it’s near the ocean and they have spacious and private sites.
Blythe County Campground is very close to St. Simon and Jekyll Island. It’s a beautiful park with rabbits all over. They are so tame they will come right up to you and eat carrots. The Island was owned by a private party and the family had rabbits and when they gifted the Island to the county one of the stipulations was the rabbits had to stay.
The best county park campground hands down is Little Tallapoosa Park. There are separate campgrounds for horse campers, RV campers, and tent/popup/van campers. Camp host on duty. Bike trails, hiking trails, horse trails, oh my!
One of the best campgrounds we’ve ever stayed at regardless of type was Juniper County Campgrounds just outside of Idaho Falls. We were lucky to find it after having to be evacuated from Yellowstone with 500-year record rains. Full hookups, 50-amps, $28 nightly, self-check-in with a campground host on duty.
Pulpit Rock Campground is run by the Decorah Parks and Recreation Department. There are tent sites as well as RV sites. Hookups are electric only, but there’s potable water and a dump station. There is a trout stream running through the middle of the campground which provides a great respite from the summer heat. The town of Decorah is an easy bike ride or drive from the campground and there’s a lot to do in the surrounding area—this is part of the “driftless” region of NE Iowa and SE Wisconsin. Very hilly with lots of rivers and streams. Beautiful country!
Ellis city campground sits on the banks of a creek with water and electric hookups. It’s affordable ($18.00 the last time we were there). For us, it’s a great stopping point after a day of driving, going from west Missouri to west Colorado. You can fish the creek or just sit and enjoy the sounds of the area.
The Sterling Lake city campground offers full hookups, nice walking trails, a pond for fishing, and swimming pool. When we stayed it was $10 a night. I think it’s $25 now.
We’ve only stayed in one city or county RV park to date, so my answer is Lake End Park, in Morgan City. The price ($35-$40 night) is reasonable for full hookups. The park is close to many amenities and less than an hour from New Orleans (if that’s your jam). There’s a small beach, a playground, a marina, fishing areas, boat launch, cabins, and a walking/biking path on the property.
The Winter Island Park city campground has full hookups, is on the water, and the Salem trolley stops at the campground!
Au Gres city campground is in the tiny town of Au Gres along U.S. 23, a mile or so from Saginaw Bay/Lake Huron in northeast Michigan. It has exceptionally clean bathrooms, nice sites, the vacation twin towns of East Tawas/Tawas City are up the road, as is the Au Sable River National Scenic byway. You can fish for walleye from the state boat launch. The town is small but great for biking or walking to the store.
OB Fuller Park is in Delta County on the Upper Peninsula in MI. It is located on a beach overlooking Lake Michigan. It has a bathhouse, dump station and electric. The best time of year to visit is summer – June, July and August.
We stayed at Scenic Park Campground in South Sioux City several years ago. The campground was well kept and the showers were very clean. The campground is on the Missouri river across from Sioux City, Iowa. There were softball fields next to the campground, so after a long day of traveling, we went to watch a softball game. We had a spacious lot right on the river. We will stay there again if we are in the area.
Clute Park Memorial Campground in Watkins Glen is a great city park. The best time to visit is summer, but not when the Wine Festival or NASCAR racing is going on. The lake is across the road and you can walk to town. Full hookups with 50 amps and Wi-Fi included. Excellent cell service on Verizon. Manned office on-site open during business hours. Pull-through big rig sites and less than a mile to Watkins Glen State Park. You are in the Finger Lakes wine area. It’s a little pricey at $70 a day, but it is not a resort-type RV Park. I like it that way.
Oak Hollow Family Campground in High Point, NC ranks as the best city-owned campground I’ve been to. It lies on Oak Hollow Lake and has few amenities, but many of the sites provide an excellent water view for a very reasonable price. There is a city golf course adjacent to the park. It has a small pool, a large picnic hut, and two large bathhouses. Though it is in High Point, it is secluded from traffic noises.
My wife and I stopped in LaMoure, ND, on our 9,000-mile trip around the country in 2017 to visit old friends. We stayed at the LaMoure County Memorial park just north of Grand Rapids, ND, in our 39′ class A RV for approximately four days, and we were very pleasantly surprised. We were one of maybe three campers staying in the park, the other campers being tent campers. The park had a number of amenities such as an auditorium, a museum, a nine-hole golf course, a baseball field, a basketball court, a volleyball net, playground equipment, a kitchen/dining hall, a canteen, bunkhouse-style cabins, and a pleasant setting along the winding James River. Certainly not what we expected in the wilds of ND.
Crook County RV Park in Prineville has better facilities than most commercial RV parks, including all pull-thru sites with full hookups. It’s close to downtown and all amenities the town offers. Beautifully maintained.
Spearfish Campground is a city campground in Spearfish, SD. It offers full hookups and beautiful grounds, but the best part is the close proximity to the spectacular Spearfish Canyon!
Sea Wind RV Resort is a county park owned by Kleberg County. The address is in Rivieria, Texas, but the closest decent grocery shopping is in Kingsville, 25 miles away. It is primarily a snowbird park for winter Texans. It is on the west side (inland side) of Baffin Bay. The county day-use area with a fishing dock is right next door. In the winter months, they are booked pretty solid with snowbirds on monthly stays, but they are also a Passport America member for transient stays. This is a large park with 150+ sites and all are well-spaced with ample room for large multi-slide units. The sites are landscaped nicely with lots of trees and flowers.
One of the best county parks I’ve ever camped in is Gaines County Park on US 385 in Texas, between Seminole and Seagraves. GPS Coordinates: 32.8299818 -102.6418878. Rate $15. My family and friends group had two reunions there and I thought it was great, but maybe I’m a little prejudiced because I grew up near there! It has a nice clubhouse with a large kitchen and restrooms, a playground for kids and a golf course!
Flowing Lake County Park is just a few minutes away from the lovely antiquing town, Snohomish, WA. Despite it being so close to town, the campground at Flowing Lake feels like it should be a National Park campground—the sites are huge and you’re surrounded by beautiful pines. You can hardly see a neighbor on any side. The lake is beautiful and has plenty of fishing and swimming options.
Dorchester City RV Park and Campground is quiet and peaceful and sits in the middle of Wisconsin’s dairyland. The park and campground is about a half-mile square with an L-shaped pond with a one-mile walking path around it. There are about 20 full-hookup sites and 20 electric with water sites scattered among shade trees, well spaced apart. The cost of camping is low, about 18 to 22 dollars a day, depending on length of stay. The city has basic amenities and is within five miles of all the amenities any camper could want. Best nearby are cheese shops and a shop with 18 flavors of ice cream that comes in cups and cones. To sum it all up would be the words: green, trees, grass, farms, corn fields, and pastures.
Big Bay Town Park, the smaller cousin to Big Bay State Park, on Madeleine Island, is a wonderfully clean—and usually not crowded—campground with good amenities and nicely tree-covered sites. I stopped by there once several years ago and enjoyed it so much I brought my wife with me to again visit last year. Still a great place, only a 10-minute walk to an absolutely fantastic beach on the shore of Lake Superior. Also good fishing from the shore. Just a really nice, quiet place!