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Best Camping In Northern Michigan

Pioneer Park Muskegon Mi

Hot Tent Camping – Northern Michigan

Muskegon’s own Pioneer Park should likely prove a welcome place for families to set up camping arrangements for several reasons. Its proximity to Lake Michigan should prove a welcome sight for families who enjoy the water, and the city of Muskegon is likewise nearby for those who can’t quite pass up the treats only a larger urban area can offer. Perhaps best of all, last-minute campers can take off on the spur of the moment as the site reportedly doesn’t require reservations.

Why Youll Love Holland State Park Beach Campground

Apart from being home to Michigans most beautiful beaches, Holland State Park also provides visitors with the perfect base to park their RV and explore the state. Its just a short drive away from the city of Grand Rapids, which is home to some fascinating attractions such as the Frederik Meijer Gardens & amp Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids Art Museum, John Ball Zoo, and the Heritage Hill Historic District.

Welcome To Tentrr Camping In Northern Michigan

Not quite near the peninsula, northern Michigan still has a lot to offer in terms of nature-centric camping. Crowds are usually not too bad in this area, especially during the autumn season when it is not quite too cold.

Lake Margrethe State Forest Campground near Grayling is the home of the Au Sable River, a gorgeous 138-mile long body of water that reaches all the way to Lake Huron. The area is a hotspot for tent camping, along with kayaking, boating, fishing, and other watersports. Lake Margrethe State Forest Campground is the go-to area to camp, but the tent sites are few and far between. Au Sable River State Forest Campground and Canoe Camp and Burtonâs Landing State Forest Campground are other popular spots to tent camp, but visitors will need a recreation passport to set up their site.

Oscoda County Park in the city of Mio has RV hookup sites that are very close to the river, as well as a dump/water station that’s very inexpensive. sleeping Bear National Seashore is a great seaside spot to camp, especially around the Copper Creek Road and Green Road areas.

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Why Youll Love South Haven Sunny Brook Rv Resort

All of our RV resort rentals include access to our private lake and luxurious amenities including a heated swimming pool, clubhouse, and fitness center. Additionally, all of our sites include Wi-Fi internet service, water, electricity, and sanitary connections. We also have a 5-acre catch-and-release fishing lake with a beach and hiking trails. We are a private gated resort located in beautiful South Haven near Lake Michigan.

Best Place To Camp And Experience Michigan History: Camp Dearborn


You cant tell the story of Michigan without Detroit and the automotive industry. There are campgrounds dotted all along southeastern Michigan, in rural and urban areas. These Michigan camping spots are conveniently located off major highways. If youre looking for a place to escape to for a weekend getaway or a great side stop on your way up north, Camp Dearborn is a fantastic location to learn more about Michigans rich history.

Make your reservation at Camp Dearborn, located 44 miles northwest of Detroit. Check into one of the 191 RV/tent sites . Then, travel 45 minutes southeast to Dearborn to explore The Henry Ford, Greenfield Village and the Ford Rouge Factory Tour. All use engaging presentations, displays and artifacts to share the story of the Ford family, as well as the evolution of the states auto industry, and its impact on the country as a whole.

After discovering more about Michigans roots, relax with a stroll through the charming town of Milford. When you return, you can enjoy the facilities at the campground, which include a private beach and swimming lake and a heated swimming pool with a furnished deck. Camp Dearborn is recognized for some of the best camping in Michigan thanks to its family-oriented organized activities, like a morning fitness program, various arts and crafts, evening campfire sing-a-longs, weekly talent show and more.

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Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park Ontonagon

Activities: paddling, disc golf, fishing, hiking, hunting, swimming

Amenities: boat launch, concession, water , electric , showers

Price: $15 per night for backcountry or $17+ in one of the campgrounds

Porcupine Mountains is Michigans largest State Park at roughly 60,000 acres.

As you can imagine, there is quite a lot to see at Porcupine Mountains.

From roaring waterfalls and pristine lakes , rivers, and streams to over 90 miles of hiking trails, this area does not disappoint.

Porcupine Mountains is also home to the Lake of the Clouds, a magnificent body of water located in the middle of dense forest .

In the winter months, youll have access to fresh powder at the Porcupine Mountains ski area.

Tent camping in the State Park is a wonderful experience, where you have the freedom to stay in the traditional campgrounds or at one of the many backcountry camping sites.

If you plan to camp backcountry, make sure to read the specifics of each campsite as some come equipped with bear poles and lockers and some do not.

Warren Dunes State Park

Over one million people visit Warren Dunes State Park each year and for good reason. Its one of the best places to tent camp in Michigan, bar none.

The state park has two campgrounds, a modern campground withRV hookups and flush toilets and a semi-modern campground with rustic campsitesbetter suited for tents, plus a spacious group camping area. All campsites arejust a short walk to the beach. Note that Warren Dunes is one of the mostpopular campgrounds in Michigan so book early for the summer months.

Located on the shore of Lake Michigan, this state park isalso popular for swimming, metal detecting, and picnicking. The large sanddunes are ideal for sandboardingfor those up for the thrill.

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Camping In Michigan Faqs

Whats the biggest state park in Michigan?

With its immense 60,000 acres of land, Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is considered Michigans largest state park. For that more than half of it is old-growth forest, its also believed to be the wildest area of the Great Lakes State.

How much is RV camping in Michigan?

The rates for RV camping differ from park to park, depending on the amenities, location, and the season of your visit. But in general, the prices fall between USD$ 30 and USD$ 80 per night.

Where can you camp for free in Michigan?

If youre searching for a place to boondock in Michigan, the Upper Peninsula is the right option. Apart from free camping in several national forests, you can also try Hovey Lake Dispersed Campground or Gratiot River County Park. It might take a rather long drive, but youll be rewarded with pristine waters and breathtaking natural beauty. If you wish to stay in the Lower Peninsula, state forests are a good start.

When does the camping season start in Michigan?

The camping season in Michigan starts in early May and lasts through late September. For those who prefer warm weather and fewer crowds, autumn is the best time to visit Michigan. If you enjoy camping in winter, several campgrounds are open all year round.

Shelley Lake Campground White Cloud


This dispersed recreation area in the Huron-Manistee National Forests is north of White Cloud and has eight designated sites spread around the shoreline of this scenic, 15-acre lake of which seven are reached after a short walk of a 50 yards or less. Site Number 3 is located on a point in the southwest corner of the lake where you can pitch your tent with a 180-degree view of the water.

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Holland Beach State Park

Holland Beach State Park is one of the most popular places to go in Michigan and is a getaway destination for many, bringing in around two million visitors every year. Its located on Lake Michigans sandy shores in close proximity to Lake Macatawa. The iconic Holland Harbor Light, also known as Big Red is a must-see while visiting this state park. There are two campgrounds with tent and RV camping. Some have full hookups. No pull-through sites are offered. Cabins are also available.

No amenities are listed.

Free Camping In The Upper Peninsula

Camping in the upper peninsula of Michigan is amazing – with only a few major roads cutting east/west, north/south, it is surprisingly easy to move around to find a campsite to your liking. State Parks anchor the 5 corners of the UP but within that area are the two units of the Hiawatha National Forest and the Ottawa National Forest to the west.

Raco Airfield, a former airplane landing strip and proving ground, is a curious start. To the north is Shelldrake Dam. While users report the campground is closed, there are still sites worth exploring and free camping to be had.

Moving to the center of the UP, this unit of the Hiawatha NF has two free camping areas. Hovey Lake Campground has gotten consistent 5-star reviews from Campendium users. Brownstone Boat Launch on the Lake Superior shore offers water access and great views. These have the advantage of being reasonably close to the Pictured Rocks National Seashore.

Rounding out the UP are 3 sites in the Ottawa National Forest, Burned Dam Campground, Sparrow Rapids Campground, and Sturgeon River Campground.

Unlock pro campendium features

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Camping In Northern Michigan

When you cross the 45th parallel, you are Up North in Michigan. Here are the Best Campgrounds in Northern Michigan.

Petoskey State Park

The town of Petoskey is quite charming! Views from the waterfront are lovely. Enjoy goods restaurants and shopping.

Petoskey State Park, which is located on the eastern edge of Little Traverse Bay, has nearly 180 modern campsites spread over two loops. Both have easy access to the beach, which is the top spot to look for Petoskey stones.

If you cannot secure a reservation at the state park, consider Magnus Park, which is a municipal campground.

Wilderness State Park

Wilderness state park is a remote park at the top of the mitten along Lake Michigan. This large park has 283 campsites, 250 of those being modern. That number includes 18 full hook-up sites.

Some of the 26 miles of shoreline face west, while the rest faces north. The Mackinaw Bridge can be seen in the distance from the north beach line.

Hiking through the dense forest, looking for an elusive Piping Plover, watching the sunset at the beach, or star gazing at the designated dark sky preserve are the top activities at Wilderness.

Top 5 State Parks In Michigan

Mich. Campgrounds

Michigan is home to over a hundred state parks, with most of them having camping opportunities. The five state parks listed here provide unique Michigan experiences and a variety of camping opportunities.

1. Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Tahquamenon Falls State Park is a cant-miss Michigan classic. With almost 50,000 acres of untouched woodlands and waterfalls, this part was created to preserve one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. Located on Michigans Upper Peninsula, Tahquamenon Falls State Park has several campsites with a variety of amenities from modern to rustic.

2. Porcupine Mountains State Park

Another gem on the Upper Peninsula, Porcupine Mountains State Park includes approximately 60,000 acres of old growth forests with waterfalls, rivers, and streams. As Michigans largest state park, it boasts almost 90 miles of hiking trails, most of which can be found in large wilderness areas throughout the park.

Campground options include both modern and rustic amenities, with the most popular campgrounds being Presque Isle campground and Union Bay campground. Backcountry camping is also permitted throughout the park with proper permits.

3. Sleepy Hollow State Park

4. Wilderness State Park

5. Albert E. Sleeper State Park

State Park Camping Reservation System

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Taylor’s Beach Campground Howell Mi

Normally the ideas of camping and Metro Detroit don’t go together all that well, but Michigan is a state that constantly defies expectations. About an hour’s drive or so, out on Cook Lake, is Taylor’s Beach Campground, a campsite consistently rated one of Michigan’s best. Offering a variety of terrains for hiking, swimming and fishing, and a variety of packagesincluding a yearly site rental optionTaylor’s Beach will offer a getaway no matter how close one lives to Metro Detroit.

Best Free Camping Inmichigan

By Jonathan Clemmer

Michigan is a great state for camping. With millions of acres of national & state forests, 11,000 lakes, over 3000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, and 100 state parks, youre sure to find a spot. Finding a free camping spot may take a bit more work, but if you are resourceful and willing to travel, you will likely be able to find something that suits you.

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Michigan State Forest Campgrounds

State Forests offer a rustic Michigan campground experience. These campgrounds are located throughout the Upper Peninsula and the Northern Lower Peninsula. Expect river or lake access, along with vault toilets and hand pumps for potable water. There is no electricity at the state forest campgrounds in Michigan.Many of these campsites are first-come, first served but several do take reservations:

Campground Amenities: Playground, Putt Putt, Hiking Trails, RV Sites

Southwest Michigan Camping at TriPonds Family Camp Resort:

This is an absolute favorite of ours. Hiking trails, mini-golf, fishing ponds, spacious fields, large lots, friendly staff, and clean facilities. TriPonds is a place you can come to relax, retreat, and reconnect with family and friends. Kids can hit up the playground, mini-golf course, or go fishing for a start at TriPonds Family Camp Resort. The resort hosts various levels of family campsites, including eight rental cabins. Enjoy 90 acres of beautiful shaded trees, hiking trails, peaceful ponds, spacious fields, and large lots.

Campground Amenities: Beach, Paddle Rentals, Family Activities

Southwest Michigan Camping at Dumont Lake Family Campground:

Bring your tent, camper, RV or rent an RV directly from the Dumont Lake Family Campground. Enjoy 520 feet of private beachfront activities including kayaking, paddleboarding, a new fishing dock, corn hole, and disc golf.

Campground Amenities: Beach, Playground, Hiking Trails, Tent Sites, RV Sites, Cabin Rentals

Why Youll Love Lake Shore Rv Resort & Campground By Outdoor Adventures

7 Of The Best Places To Go Camping In Michigan

Not only is this one of the most beautiful RV resort settings youll find in the state, but the facility also offers a bounty of incredible amenities and activities that visitors of all ages are sure to enjoy. Just some of these include a beach area, swimming pools, water park, putt-putt golf course, hot tub, and sauna. Now thats camping in style!

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Why Youll Love City Of Houghton Rv Park

This is one RV park youll never forget! You can enjoy unparalleled water views from your site, along with lush green surrounds to truly put you into vacation mode. Youll also find yourself near some of the regions most intriguing attractions, such as the Mineral Museum of Michigan, Nara Nature Park, and Keweenaw National Historical Park. Just dont forget to pack your camera!

Beaver Island Hideaway Campground Beaver Island Mi

Camping on an island, for some, may evoke images of grand and romantic adventure, but it’s available right here in Michigan thanks to Beaver Island Hideaway Campground on Beaver Island. Completely surrounded by Lake Michigan, the island offers hiking trails and roads, along with beaches nearly everywherewhen you’re on an island, all you really need to do to find a beach is pick a direction and walk until your feet get wetand fishing, camping on Beaver Island can be a great option. Throw in the annual Beaver Island Music Festivalnext year’s festival is July 20-22and campers will have no shortage of options.

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Best Campground For An Authentic Michigan Vacation: Platte River Campground

Fun for the whole family is what youll find at the Platte River Campground, located in the southern district of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, once hailed as the Most Beautiful Place in America by Good Morning America.

A stay here is almost required because you really havent vacationed in Michigan until youve gone tubing down the Au Sable, Rifle or in this case, the Platte River. Some of the best camping in Michigan is just a few minutes away from outfitters that rent the tubes as well as kayaks and canoes. Spend a lazy afternoon floating down the river. Youll be treated to the peaceful sounds of the water, scenic views and wildlife sightings.

Want more Great Lakes fun? Explore the Sleeping Bear Dune Climb and experience another Michigan tradition: Climbing the sand dunes. The sand dune climb is just a 20-minute drive north of the campground. Older kids will have a ball climbing and then sliding down. However, remember that it can also be taxing on you. Climbing the steep dunes can be strenuous. Especially if you choose to trek out to Lake Michigan. Its about 3.5 miles round trip and can take three or four hours to complete.

When youve wrapped up your adventures for the day, head backto one of the best places to camp in Michigan to watch a spectacular sunsetover Lake Michigan.

Exploring The Au Sable River

R.E.I. Kingdom 8 tent in Northern Michigan

The Au Sable is a long river running roughly east to west in the northeastern part of Michigan. If you think of the state like the back of your left hand, it would be located about where youd find the middle knuckle on your index finger.

The headwaters of the Au Sable start near the junction of Kolka and Bradford Creeks in the middle of the mitten. From there, it flows through the towns of Grayling and Mio before entering Lake Huron near the town of Oscoda.

In total, the river runs 138 miles and there are numerous riverfront campsites you can reserve for a multi-day kayaking trip. Some sites can also be accessed by car if you want to use them as your starting or ending location.

In a state thats already known for its exceptional water quality, the Au Sable takes this to a new level. This river is also one of Michigans best coldwater fisheries if you want to take your stable fishing kayak for a spin down the Au Sable.

Brown trout are one of the most sought-after fish species in this river, which also lends itself well to those of you with fly fishing kayaks. Even if you dont fish, there are plenty of attractions of cultural and historical significance along this beautiful river.

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