The 10 Best Camping Spots in Michigan!

Unspoiled, natural beauty is a great way to define the basic identity of large parts of Michigan. Even as far back as 2010, the state was increasingly trending rural according to census data from that year, which showed population losses from the cities and gains in the more rural areas. Campgrounds are fairly easy to find, both in small, back-yard scale and large sites maintained by the state or a private enterprise. Those who want a rustic evening under the stars or a great place to park the RV for the night will have no shortage of places to settle in. So with that in mind, fire up the s'mores and get ready for a night as peaceful as you'd like it as we run down 10 great Michigan camping spots!

1. Dunes Harbor Family Camp, Silver Lake, MI

A more recent addition to the roster, those looking for a newer campground will find it in Dunes Harbor Family Camp. Offering 60 waterfront campsites just for a start, your chances of landing a spot near the water are fairly high at any given time. With Silver Lake's sights close to hand, and the local sand dunes also afoot, those wanting a little quiet time with the family will find plenty of room and plenty of exciting sights nearby.

2. Pioneer Park, Muskegon, MI

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.

3. Platte River Campground, Beulah, MI

Water is the biggest draw for Platte River campers, near Honor. Those who start out for a ride on the river, whether canoeing, kayaking or just tubing, will shortly find themselves in the wider waters of Lake Michigan without much incident. A half-mile trail walk from the campground will likewise make Lake Michigan's boundaries available, and the campsite itself is located near not only the Sleepy Bear Dunes, but also near Glen Arbor and even about 40 minutes from Traverse City, which will open up a huge variety of activities for those interested.

4. Sandy Pines, Hopkins, MI

Activities are the focus of the day at Sandy Pines as the campsite contains not only a water park but also a ropes course, both miniature and regular golf, and several sports from tennis to basketball to lesser-known favorites like dodge ball and gaga ball. Its location allows easy access from a variety of points in Michigan, and with so much to do, even the fussiest kid isn't likely to get bored any time soon.

5. River Ridge Campground, INC., Breckenridge, MI

In Breckenridge, campers get access to an upscale experience. Naturally, it's got a slate of family activities going for it, but there's plenty more going on here. Its proximity to the river offers the simple pleasure of listening to water sounds all night if so desired, and not only does it have a pool and a spa, but it also boasts a pond with water trampoline. Jungle gyms and aqua slides help ensure that those with energy to burn will do so in grand fashion, while those craving a more restful time will likewise lay hands on it.

6. 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 packages—including a yearly site rental option—Taylor's Beach will offer a getaway no matter how close one lives to Metro Detroit.

7. AuTrain Lake, Au Train, MI

Featuring almost 40 individual campsites, AuTrain Lake in the Hiawatha Natural Forest offers not only a string of activities like swimming and boating, but it's also said to be an excellent spot for bird watchers to settle in and check out the local wildlife. Perhaps best of all are the sunset views from the shore; the mirror finish of AuTrain Lake gives sunset viewers two sunsets for the price of one. Sunrise viewers likely won't go unconsidered here, either.

8. 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 everywhere—when 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 wet—and fishing, camping on Beaver Island can be a great option. Throw in the annual Beaver Island Music Festival—next year's festival is July 20-22—and campers will have no shortage of options.

9. Porcupine Mountains State Park, Ontonagon, MI

Sixty thousand acres. Let that sentence fragment settle on your brain for a second, and then prepare for your mind to be further blown when I tell you that that works out to just shy of 94 square miles. This absolutely massive camping location is waiting for you at the Porcupine Mountains, an area comprising those 60,000 acres of hiking, mountain biking, swimming and camping in the midst of some of the most unspoiled wilderness Michigan can offer. Natural beauty abounds, and rustic camping enthusiasts will find plenty to love.

10. Huron-Manistee National Forest, Cadillac, MI

Those looking for a natural camping experience outdoors won't go wanting with Huron-Manistee National Forest. With canoeing on hand on the Pere Marquette River and fishing on Benton Lake, along with swimming, a good time with water is available in abundance. Beyond that, though, a host of natural wonders awaits ranging from fens, bogs and marshes to dry sand prairies and dunes. Go wandering among the Jack Pine trees and enjoy all the rest of the undiscovered wonders this place has to offer.

That’s a rundown of just 10 great Michigan camping spots, and the good news is, for each of these 10, there’s another 10 waiting to be had. Campsites with a wide array of features, amenities and natural beauty are readily available. Whether you’re parking your RV or pitching your tent, Michigan’s waiting for campers.

Michigan Search
Best Campgrounds and Camping Sites Near You
Best Campgrounds and Camping Sites Near You
1563 North Scenic Drive, Muskegon, MI
Our most popular park, Pioneer Park resides on 145 acres and offers camping, swimming, sunbathing, picnicking, tennis, softball, basketball and vol... Read More
11262 West US 23, Mackinaw City, MI
About Us: The Tee Pee Campground has been owned and operated by the Cooley family since 1969. This is a no frills campground. Check in, set up cam... Read More
800 East Lakeshore Drive, Houghton, MI
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6 Lakes Campground has been offering families a lake get-away since 1996. Here are just a few of our amenities: •105 Full Hook-up and Water a... Read More
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Croton Township Campground is on Croton Pond, just above Croton Dam.  We are fortunate to be able to offer some of Michigan’s most beaut... Read More
20500 M- 33 North, Atlanta, MI
Located in elk country, Clear Lake State Park is a quiet, secluded retreat offering a sandy beach and a shallow swimming area that is ideal for chi... Read More
8732 River Road, Marine City, MI
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Mio Pond to Lake Huron, Mio, MI
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4143 North 10th Street, Kalamazoo, MI
Bohemian Adventure offers kids ages 9 - 15 an active travel camp filled with exploration, learning and discovery. We utilize Michigan's public bike... Read More
2722 North Ridge Road, Silver Lake, MI
About Us: At Dunes Harbor Family Camp we are all about creating family experiences that live on through generations. Our passion is for families t... Read More
5685 Lake Michigan Road, Beulah, MI
Platte River Campground is open year-round and offers a wide variety of camping styles. You can find back-in and pull-through sites for RV's, inclu... Read More
2745 136th Avenue, Hopkins, MI
For forty five years, Sandy Pines has been one of Michigan's most popular family vacation destinations. Sandy Pines encompasses over 800 acres of l... Read More
6197 North Burkhart Road, Howell, MI
Taylor's Beach Campground offers affordable family camping with seasonal, overnight, weekly and monthly campsite rentals. It's a great place for yo... Read More
FR 2596, Au Train, MI
AuTrain Lake is the largest inland lake in the area. It is an 830 acre lake with a maximum depth of 30 feet and an average depth of 12 feet The lar... Read More
28599 Hideaway Trail, Beaver Island, MI
Beaver Island Hideaway Campground is a rustic and private retreat where you can step away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy a unique outdoor exp... Read More
1755 S Mitchell St, Cadillac, MI
The Huron-Manistee National Forests comprise almost a million acres of public lands extending across the northern lower peninsula of Michigan. The ... Read More
14467 East MN Avenue, Climax, MI
Cold Brook County Park was acquired by Kalamazoo County in 1962. A popular campground and beach, Cold Brook has 276 acres consisting primarily of w... Read More
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