All across the Midwest, which is also known as Flyover Country, are beautiful landscapes of dense woodlands, forested valleys, shimmering winding waterways, and tranquil lakes that draw both locals and visitors to enjoy its natural beauty. Home to hundreds of campgrounds and campsites across several states, the Midwest has a camping spot for every taste from primitive tent camping amongst the trees and rustic overnight cabins to beautiful beachfront campsites and family-friendly retreats. Here are some of the Midwest’s most popular campgrounds and recreation areas for the whole family to enjoy. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Some restaurants are currently offering pickup only. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.Alum Creek State Park Campground
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Alum Creek State Park is a 4,630-acre park in Delaware County with a gently rolling span of fields and woodlands that offers an array of outdoor recreation and activities, including camping. Home to the Alum Creek Reservoir, which is a favorite spot for boating, fishing, and swimming, Alum Creek State Park has a large campground that features a boat launch ramp, a camper's beach, a nature center, a dog park and dedicated dog beach, and playground equipment for children. The Alum Creek Campground offers 24 full-service campsites with water, electricity and sewerage hookups, as well as restrooms with flush toilets, showers, and a dump station. Activities in the area include swimming, fishing, boating, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and naturalist programs.
Alum Creek State Park, Lewis Center Rd, Lewis Center, OH 43035
2.Brown County State Park
Situated in the center of the southern half of Indiana, Brown County State Park is a 15,776-acre park and the largest of 24 state parks in Indiana. Nicknamed the ‘Little Smokies’ due to the region’s similarity to the Great Smoky Mountains, Brown County features 16,000 acres of rugged hills, ridges, and foggy ravines and is a popular spot for viewing spectacular fall foliage. The park offers excellent camping facilities with several large campgrounds with water, electricity and sewerage hookups, and overnight accommodations in the form of cabins and motel rooms at the rustic Abe Martin Lodge. Other recreational activities in the park include hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and interpretive trails, as well as a saddle barn for guided horse rides and a separate horseman campground with 70 miles of horse trails.
1801 State Rd 46 East, Nashville, IN 47448, Phone: 812-988-6406
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3.Clinton Lake State Recreation Area
Clinton Lake State Recreation Area is a 9,300-acre state park in DeWitt County, Illinois that offers a wealth of recreational opportunities, ranging from camping, hiking, mountain biking, and picnicking to swimming, boating, and fishing. The park features over 300 campsites, varying in classes, but that is adaptable to either tents, trailers, or motor homes with water, electricity, and sewerage hookups. Each site is equipped with a grill and picnic table, and all have access to shower buildings with showers, toilets, and hot running water, except for the group camping area. The park is home to a beautiful, 1,000-foot white sandy beach, which is perfect for swimming and sunbathing, and boating and fishing are permitted on the lake.
7251 Ranger Rd, De Witt, IL 61735, Phone: 217-935-8722
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4.Dogwood Springs Campground
Located near the Buffalo National River in the magnificent Ozark Mountains just outside of Jasper in Arkansas, Dogwood Springs Campground is a family-friendly campground with a variety of cabins and cottages for overnight stays, as well as tent and RV camping sites with water, electricity and sewerage hookups. The campground has several amenities, including an outdoor swimming pool, a covered pavilion, bathrooms with showers, a laundry, firewood for barbecues, and high-speed wireless Internet. The surrounding area offers a variety of recreational activities ranging from hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, and rock climbing, to seasonal hunting, wildlife viewing, and geo-caching.
621 E Court St, Jasper, AR 72641, Phone: 870-446-2163
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5.Findley State Park
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Once a state forest, 838-acre Findley State Park boasts beautiful woodlands of hardwoods and stately pines and has a network of scenic hiking trails that wind through meadows of spectacular wildflowers. The fields, forests, and quiet waters are abundant with wildlife and offer a peaceful refuge for visitors wanting to camp or rent a cabin. The campground offers RV and tent camping with electricity and water hookups, as well as three rental cabins and features restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, a boat launching ramp, laundry facilities, a comfort station, picnic tables, fire rings, and potable water. Activities in the area include boating, swimming, basketball, volleyball, mountain biking, hiking, and naturalist programs.
25381 Ohio 58, Wellington, OH 44090, Phone: 440-647-4490
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6.Gateway Park Campground
Located on the shores of South Sand Lake in Hillsdale, Michigan, the Gateway Park Campground is a family-friendly facility for all types of camping. Surrounded by 135 wooded acres at the gateway to the Irish Hills, the campground boasts 99 sites, four cabins, and one rental trailer, along with an array of amenities and outdoor activities. Most of the overnight sites have cement pads and cement patios, and the main lodge at the campground has cable television and high-speed wireless Internet, and recreational activities include hiking, mountain biking, and several water-based sports on the lake such as swimming, boating, fishing, and kayaking.
4111 W Hallett Rd, Hillsdale, MI 49242, Phone: 517-437-7005
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7.Grandpa's Farm Campground
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Nestled in Richmond amidst the rolling hills of Eastern Indiana, Grandpa's Farm Campground and RV Park are a is family-owned and operated facility that has been providing family-friendly camping for more than 52 years. Set on the banks of the gently flowing Whitewater River, the campground’s rural, tranquil setting offers a peaceful escape from the city with a variety of activities to enjoy, including swimming, kayaking, fishing, and sunbathing, along with hiking, mountain biking, and wildlife watching. The campground offers RV and tent camping with electricity and water hookups, as well as restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, and facilities such as heated swimming pool with a diving board and a recreation room with billiards, arcade games, and ping pong. Other fun activities include basketball, horseshoes, volleyball, shuffleboard, and frisbee.
4244 IN-227, Richmond, IN 47374, Phone: 765-962-7907
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8.Eldon Hazlet State Park
Eldon Hazlet State Recreation Area is a state park that renowned for its excellent camping facilities. The 3,000-acre park is home to the Illini Campground, which is located along the shores of the Carlyle Lake and boasts a variety of campsites of different classes for walk-in tent camping and RV camping, and two rustic overnight cabins. Most of the campsites are within walking distance from the water, and campers can leave their boats in coves within the campground. Other activities in and around the park include hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, leisure boating, fishing, swimming and sunbathing. Amenities at the campground range from an amphitheater, an archery range, a basketball court, and a large swimming pool to horseshoe pits, interpretive trails, picnic areas, volleyball courts, and a large retail and gift shop.
20100 Hazlet Park Rd, Carlyle, IL 62231, Phone: 618-594-3015
9.Hocking Hills State Park
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Based on the banks of the Hocking River in Logan, Hocking Hills Adventures offers three different camping locations depending camper’s needs, including the Riverside, Canoe Livery and Fun Center Campgrounds, each of which boast their unique characteristics. The Riverside and Canoe Livery Campgrounds have basic camping sites, picnic tables, and fire rings, while the Family Fun Center offers campsite with electricity and water hookups. The Riverside Campground has 80 large spacious primitive sites overlooking the Hocking River with showers and flushing toilets a short walk away. Recreational activities include swimming, boating, canoeing, a games arcade, driving range, mini-golf, and go-karting, which are all close to the campgrounds.
31251 Chieftain Drive, Logan, OH 43138, Phone: 740-385-8685
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10.Hoosier Horse Camp
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Set on the border of the Hoosier National Forest in Norman in Indiana, the Hoosier Horse Camp offers both seasonal and nightly campsites with electricity and water hookups, as well as primitive camping and day rider accommodations. Each campsite is equipped with a hitching rail for horses and corral panels can be rented to make a temporary pen for overnight stays. The Hoosier Horse Camp offers easy access to over 100 miles of horse trails within the Hoosier National Forest and Deam Wilderness Area. Trails provide the perfect opportunity for riders to soak up the spectacular natural beauty and serenity of Indiana’s rural landscapes.
6732 N County Rd 1250 W, Norman, IN 47264, Phone: 812-995-8046
11.Hueston Woods State Park Campground
Located in Butler and Preble counties, Hueston Woods State Park is a 3,000-acre reserve and recreation area that surrounds the 625-acre Acton Lake and offers a variety of outdoor recreational activities such as camping, hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, fishing, swimming, and unique to this region - fossil hunting. The Hueston Woods State Park Campground has a variety of campsites ranging from tent and RV sites with water, electricity, and sewerage hookups to equestrian sites with hitching rails, non-electric sites, day-use sites, and one yurt for extra privacy and space. Amenities include restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, and barbecue facilities.
6301 Park Office Rd, College Corner, OH 45003, Phone: 513-523-1060
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12.Indian Lake State Park Campground
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Indian Lake State Park is an 800-acre multi-use park set around the 5,800-acre lake that offers a variety of water-related recreational opportunities, such as boating, fishing, and skiing, as well as camping. The park features a scenic campground on the northwest section of the lakeshore with 441 family campsites with electric hookups, restrooms with heated showers houses and flush toilets, laundry facilities, and a camp commissary. Additional amenities include a private beach, a boat launching ramp, 20 spaces for boat docking, and rental cabin or trailers furnished with convertible futon bunks and sofas, refrigerators, gas stoves, microwaves, and outdoor gas grills. Recreational activities include hiking and biking along the three-mile Cherokee Trail, or the one-mile Pew Island Trail, which encircles Pew Island and boasts spectacular views of Indian Lake.
12774 OH-235, Lakeview, OH 43331, Phone: 937-843-2717
13.Indiana Dunes State Park
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Indiana Dunes State Park is a 2,182-acre park that features pristine landscapes ranging from white sandy beaches, rolling dunes, marshy swamps, and wetlands to hardwood forests and white pine groves. Amenities in the park include camping and picnicking to hiking and mountain biking on 16.5 miles of trails that wind through the park’s diverse landscapes. The park is renowned for its towering dunes that have taken thousands of years to form, reaching up to heights of 200 feet and providing habitats for an array of fauna and flora. The park has a campground boasts a variety of campsites of different classes for walk-in tent camping and RV camping, all of which have water, electricity and sewerage hookups and bathrooms with showers, hot running water, and flush toilets.
1600 N. 25 East, Chesterton, IN 46304, Phone: 219-926-1952
14.John Bryan State Park
John Bryan State Park is a 752-acre Ohio state park in Greene County and one of the most scenic state parks in western Ohio. The park is set around the magnificent Clifton Gorge, a deep chasm cut of the Little Miami River between Yellow Springs and Clifton, which is designated as a state scenic river with a portion of the gorge itself is designated as a national natural landmark. The park contains a campground with electric and non-electric campsites, restrooms with pit latrines, picnic tables, and fire rings, and a dump station. The park also features a network of hiking and mountain biking trails and is an excellent location for cross-country skiing and sledding in the winter.
3790 Ohio 370, Yellow Springs, OH 45387, Phone: 937-767-1274
15.Lena KOA Holiday
© Lena KOA Holiday
Surrounded by rolling farmlands, Lena KOA Holiday is a family-friendly campground decorated with beautifully manicured flower beds, woodlands and grassy lawns for picnicking. Located at the beginning of the historic Stagecoach Trail east of Galena, the campground features a wide variety of camping options ranging from deluxe cabins and patio sites to standard tent sites and teepees, some of which have water, electricity and sewerage hookups and bathrooms with showers, hot running water, and flush toilets. A large outdoor kitchen is available for campers to use, along with fire pits and wireless Internet, and other facilities at the campground include a heated swimming pool with a double tube slide and the Jumbo Jumper, horseshoes, sand volleyball, pedal karts, gem mining, and cornhole. The campground hosts themed weekend activities such as barrel train rides, ice cream socials, and live music.
10982 US Highway 20 West, Lena, IL 61048, Phone: 815-369-2612
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16.Midwest Trail Ride Campground
Located in the heart of the Hoosier National Forest in southern Indiana, the Midwest Trail Ride offers horseback adventures, premium camping with fully-equipped sites, and cozy overnight cabins and home-style cooking. Renowned as a horseman's campground, the facility provides open camping with a variety of campsites of different classes for walk-in tent camping and RV camping, all of which have water, electricity, and sewerage hookups and bathrooms with showers, hot running water, and flush toilets. The facility offers horseback outrides and lessons for riders of all levels and features a spacious outdoor roping arena where rodeos and other horse-related shows are hosted.
1264 Hunter's Creek Rd, Norman, IN 47264, Phone: 812-834-6686
17.Mississippi Palisades State Park
Located just north of Savanna in Carroll County, Illinois, the Mississippi Palisades State Park is a National Natural Landmark and a partially conserved section of the Mississippi Palisades. The park is home to unique rock formations carved by erosions, large cliffs, and deep caves and offers a variety of recreational activities, including camping, picnicking, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and wildlife viewing. The park has 241 campsites of varying classes, ranging from electric and non-electric campsites and standard, first-come, first-serve campsites. Amenities include restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, and barbecue facilities.
16327A IL-84, Savanna, IL 61074, Phone: 815-273-2731
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18.North Higgins Lake State Park
Resting on the shores of Higgins Lake in Crawford County, Michigan, North Higgins Lake State Park is a 449-acre state park in Beaver Creek Township that offers a wealth of lakeside recreation and camping in a natural wooded environment. Based on land that was once the world's largest seedling nursery, the park is home to two campgrounds, some with water, electricity and sewerage hookups and bathrooms with showers, hot running water, and flush toilets, and two mini overnight cabins. Other facilities in the park include a beach with safe swimming, a boat launch, a picnic area, and over eight miles of trails that can be used for hiking, mountain biking, and cross-country skiing.
11747 N Higgins Lake Dr, Roscommon, MI 48653, Phone: 989-821-6125
Paynetown Campground is located on the banks of the 10-acre Lake Monroe, which is located southeast of Bloomington and surrounded by more than 13 acres of protected forests and wilderness areas. Spread over the two counties of Monroe and Brown, the lake provides residents with beautiful natural, recreational areas in which to enjoy the great outdoors. Ransburg Scout Reservation is located on the eastern shore with the Fourwinds Resort and Marina, which is home to over 800 boats. Visitors can enjoy year-round fishing on the lake, as well as other recreational activities, such as boating, water-skiing, and kayaking, and expert interpretive naturalists present an array of programs at the visitor’s center during the summer season. Paynetown Campground has hundreds of campsites of varying classes, ranging from electric and non-electric campsites and standard, first-come, first-serve tenting sites with restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, and barbecue facilities.
IN-446, Bloomington, IN 47401, Phone: 812-837-9546
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20.Potato Creek State Park
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Potato Creek State Park is an Indiana state park located about 12 miles southwest of South Bend that boasts a variety of natural habitats, ranging from rolling farmland, dense woodlands, grassy prairies, marshy wetlands, and the 327-acre Worster Lake. The park offers family-friendly camping with different types of campsites ranging from electric and non-electric sites, youth group camping sites, and rustic family cabins with comfortable bedrooms, spacious living areas, self-catering kitchens, and modern bathrooms. The park features a wide array of activities and facilities for year-round enjoyment, including hiking, mountain biking, boating, fishing, swimming, kayaking and canoeing, and seasonal hunting, as well as picnic shelters, a nature center, interpretive trails, and a games room.
25601 IN-4, North Liberty, IN 46554, Phone: 574-656-8186
21.Robinson's Whitewater River Campground
Robinson’s Whitewater River Campground is a family-owned and operated campground in Fayette County that has been providing camping sites to the public for the past 13 years. Beginning as a turnip farm before being converted into a Christian retreat center and later a campground, Robinson’s Whitewater River Campground has 100 total RV sites with water, electricity, and sewerage hookups. Campground facilities include bathrooms with showers, hot running water and flush toilets, laundry facilities, picnic tables, and fire rings. Recreational activities range from hiking, mountain biking, nature trails, and picnicking, and canoeing, fishing, and swimming on the 5,000-acre lake nearby.
1614 IN-121, Connersville, IN 47331, Phone: 765-825-4885
22.Salt Fork State Park
Located six miles north of Lore City in Guernsey County, Ohio, Salt Fork State Park is a public recreation area encompassing 17,229 acres of land and 2,952 acres of water, making it the largest state park in Ohio. Home to the Kennedy Stone House, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the park offers a wealth of outdoor recreational activities on both land and water, as well as modern amenities. The park has a range of campsites of varying classes, ranging from electric and non-electric campsites and standard, first-come, first-serve tenting sites with restrooms with showers and flush toilets, a dump station, and barbecue facilities. Recreational activities include 20 miles of trails to explore on foot, mountain bike or horseback, swimming in a large swimming pool, and bird-watching.
14755 Cadiz Rd, Lore City, OH 43755, Phone: 740-432-1508
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23.Shabbona Lake State Park
Shabbona Lake State Recreation Area is a 1,550-acre recreational area in Shabbona Township, DeKalb County, Illinois that features a human-made lake that was formed in 1975 by damming the Indian Creek. Named after the Potawatomi leader Shabbona, the park is home to the Shabbona Lake State Park Campground, which is nestled in a semi-wooded area with premium campsites boasting gravel parking spaces, fire rings, and water, electricity, and sewerage hookups. Facilities in the campground include bathrooms with showers, hot running water and flush toilets, a children’s playground, a boat launch, and a safe fishing area for kids.
100 Preserve Rd, Shabbona, IL 60550, Phone: 815-824-2106
24.Sleeping Bear Dunes - Platte River Campground
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Nestled on the banks of the Platte River in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore near Empire, Michigan, the Platte River Campground Site is an archaeological site that is renowned for being a living record of prehistoric life. The Platte River Campground is a year-round facility within walking distance of the Platte River and offers a wide variety of sites, including sites with electric hookups for RVs, non-electric sites, hike-in, tent-only group sites, and a nearby backcountry campground. Each site has a campfire ring and picnic table, and restrooms with flush toilets, sinks, and hot showers are situated in every camping loop. Recreational activities include kayaking, canoeing, fishing, leisure boating, and hiking, and mountain biking on more than 25 miles of trails.
5685 Lake Michigan Rd, Honor, MI 49640, Phone: 231-326-5134
25.Tahquamenon Falls State Park
Tucked away in the forest along the Tahquamenon River, the Tahquamenon Falls State Park is a 52,000-acre state park in Paradise, Michigan and the second largest of Michigan's state parks. Famous for its spectacular waterfalls, which are the largest east of the Mississippi, the park offers an ideal escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. The park features four campgrounds - two modern campgrounds at the Lower Falls, and two at the Rivermouth, one of which is basic. Each campsite has close to 100 sites with electricity, ground fire rings, and picnic table, and several restroom blocks have flush toilets, sinks, and hot showers. Recreational activities include 25 miles of hiking trails, guided nature walks, and educational programs for all ages.
41382 W M-123, Paradise, MI 49768
25 Best Camping Spots in the Midwest
- Alum Creek State Park Campground, Photo: Drobot Dean/stock.adobe.com
- Brown County State Park, Photo: KengYang/stock.adobe.com
- Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, Photo: Wirepec/stock.adobe.com
- Dogwood Springs Campground, Photo: bernardbodo/stock.adobe.com
- Findley State Park, Photo: LIGHTFIELD STUDIOS/stock.adobe.com
- Gateway Park Campground, Photo: master1305/stock.adobe.com
- Grandpa's Farm Campground, Photo: Andrey Armyagov/stock.adobe.com
- Eldon Hazlet State Park, Photo: micromonkey/stock.adobe.com
- Hocking Hills State Park, Photo: Tomasz Zajda/stock.adobe.com
- Hoosier Horse Camp, Photo: DC Studio/stock.adobe.com
- Hueston Woods State Park Campground, Photo: Dorota/stock.adobe.com
- Indian Lake State Park Campground, Photo: LIGHTFIELD STUDIOS/stock.adobe.com
- Indiana Dunes State Park, Photo: Andrey Armyagov/stock.adobe.com
- John Bryan State Park, Photo: Mihail/stock.adobe.com
- Lena KOA Holiday, Photo: Lena KOA Holiday
- Midwest Trail Ride Campground, Photo: travel3000/stock.adobe.com
- Mississippi Palisades State Park, Photo: cenchild/stock.adobe.com
- North Higgins Lake State Park, Photo: alfa27/stock.adobe.com
- Paynetown Campground, Photo: tirachard/stock.adobe.com
- Potato Creek State Park, Photo: Steven Heim/stock.adobe.com
- Robinson's Whitewater River Campground, Photo: simona/stock.adobe.com
- Salt Fork State Park, Photo: Richard/stock.adobe.com
- Shabbona Lake State Park, Photo: kikovic/stock.adobe.com
- Sleeping Bear Dunes - Platte River Campground, Photo: New Africa/stock.adobe.com
- Tahquamenon Falls State Park, Photo: Richard/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: Taiga/stock.adobe.com
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