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The 16 Best Campgrounds in Michigan

Camping makes for a great escape from the stresses of life. However, you need a campground that fits your vision of rest, relaxation, and, most importantly, a good time.

In Michigan, there are more than a thousand campgrounds and 103 state parks and recreation areas to choose from. But we’ve selected 16 of the best sites to aid you in deciding on your next camping trip!

Keep reading to learn about our picks of the best campgrounds in Michigan—from the Keweenaw Peninsula to the mittened mainland!

A tent in a forest by a lake. Maybe one of the best campgrounds in Michigan.

Best Campgrounds in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula

1. Bewabic State Park

Crystal Falls, MI

Located on Fortune Lake, Bewabic State Park is considered one of the most peaceful parks in Michigan. With both modern and rustic campsites, it’s one of the best campgrounds in Michigan for both campers and non-campers. People wanting electrical amenities have amp services available, while those trying to unplug can go off the grid.

For quiet times and peaceful views, trek the park’s two-mile-long Nature Trail. In the winter, you can even use the trail for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing!

2. Fort Wilkins State Park

Copper Harbor, MI

A cloudy day at Copper Harbor at Fort Wilkins State Park

For history-loving campers, Fort Wilkins State Park is one of the best Michigan campgrounds that provides an escape and historical insight. While taking a break from life’s demands, take some time to drink in some history!

This northernmost park on the Keweenaw Peninsula has 159 sites that are divided into three separate campgrounds. The modern mini cabin sleeps four people while the rustic camper cabin sleeps six.

Fort Wilkins also has a restored 1844 military outpost with numerous exhibits. When you’re not pitching tents, you can enjoy the outpost’s interpretive reenactments of the mid-1800s. And if you’re hiking, check out the two Copper Harbor lighthouses!

3. Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Paradise, MI

Tahquamenon Falls State Park is the second-largest state park in Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) system. Its 48,000 acres of wilderness provide plenty of space to truly escape to nature.

The biggest attraction for campers is the two waterfalls: the Upper and Lower Falls. The three campgrounds near the falls have both modern and rustic campsites. Should you want to grab some ice cream, visit the modern Rivermouth campground!

With in- and off-season camping activities and no first-come first-served policies, you’re in for a beautiful camping trip. Don’t forget to take pictures while sailing the river, walking the nature trails, or visiting the falls’ observation platforms!

4. Twelvemile Beach Campground

Grand Marais, MI

Twelvemile Beach Campground is part of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore alongside Lake Superior. It has rustic drive-in campsites with vault toilets and well water and no cell reception. That makes this an opportunistic challenge to really rough it up!

The natural features of Twelvemile Beach make it the best campground in Michigan for unique exploration. Hike along the lake’s shoreline and take in the dunes, cliffs, and more of the campground’s landscape!

The North Country Trail goes within the campground, and the two-mile-long White Birch Trail begins and ends with the campground. If you’re not hiking, go on a boat or kayaking tour of the lakeshore!

Northern Michigan’s Best Campgrounds

5. Houghton Lake Travel Park Campground

Houghton Lake, MI

A family-oriented campground, Houghton Lake Travel Park Campground takes pride in giving campers the best outdoor experience. This travel park is one of the best campgrounds in Michigan with staff that cares about serving campers well.

Besides providing firewood like most other campgrounds, Houghton Lake Travel Park also provides ice. They work to maintain their facilities clean (especially the showers and restrooms) and are currently working to become completely ADA compliant.

The campground also lets you make reservations for up to a year before your camping date, so there’s no rush. Just call or make the reservations in person, but note that they’re first-come first-served!

Also, if you become the campground’s Good Sam member, you can get 10% off on daily camping rates. Whether reserving a primitive camping cabin or tent site, you’ll really unwind as you save money!

6. P.H. Hoeft State Park

Rogers City, MI

Lake Huron in Michigan on a beautiful day.

P.H. Hoeft State Park has 340 heavily wooded acres and spans a mile on the Lake Huron shoreline. There are 126 campsites and four trails with three that connect. The Hardwoods trail, however, goes through the mixed forests, providing colorful, leafy sights.

Their Sears and Roebuck Lodge is a home away from home, lightening your gear of kitchenware or linens. The modern campground has a mini cabin that, unlike the lodge, requires you to pack kitchenware and linens.

With Lake Huron’s moderating effect on temperatures, Hoeft State Park is one of Michigan’s best campgrounds. The summer and winter temperatures are less extreme there, so the weather conditions are never too uncomfortable.

7. Tawas Point State Park

East Tawas, MI

Tawas Point State Park is known as the Cape Cod of the Midwest. Located on Tawas Bay, its waters are warm and shallow, perfect for swimming.

Campers who love fishing will find this to be one of the best Michigan campgrounds for their favorite activity. Tawas Bay’s limestone reef is home to many bait fish, which also attract larger predator fish. Thanks to the reef, you can catch many different varieties!

The two camper cabins provide beach views and access to Lake Huron. Along with the mini cabins, they sleep up to six people and have a fire ring and picnic table. There’s also a yurt that overlooks a pond and makes for great birdwatching.

8. Traverse City KOA

Buckley, MI

Part of a system of privately owned American campgrounds, Traverse City KOA is guaranteed to keep campers outside. Unique activities like giant versions of chess and checkers (as well as a pet playground!) will ensure it.

The country setting makes it perfect for people who want to get out of urban areas for some peace and quiet. The cabins, studios, and lodges are set up for your preferred camping methods: either rustic or more modern.

As evidence of their being one of the best Michigan campgrounds, they earned the Founder’s and President’s awards in 2019. These awards emphasized their world-class service to campers and their exceptional quality standards.

Eastern Michigan’s Best Campgrounds

9. Brighton Recreation Area

Howell, MI

The hill ranges are irregular at the Brighton Recreation Area, but they show unforgettable scenery along with the lakes. Spot them from six different trails that aren’t just great for hiking, mountain biking, and cross-country skiing but also horseback riding.

It’s one of the best campgrounds in Michigan not only for horse lovers but also for people with disabilities. Brighton has barrier-free facilities and is even raising money to provide track chairs. Everybody ought to be able to camp and enjoy the outdoors.

Brighton has a group-use area and four campgrounds, totaling about 214 campsites! There are also five rustic and heated cabins that hold eight to 20 people.

On the recreational side, Brighton’s many activities include disc golf, kayaking, bird watching, and geocaching. Also, as long as your pet remains on a six-foot leash and under control, he or she is welcome to Chilson Pond! Just be sure to clean up after them.

10. Lakeport State Park

Lakeport, MI

A cabin at Lakeport State Park in Michigan.

Lakeport State Park has 250 reservable modern campsites, along with pull-through sites and camp pads. They have two mini cabins and a camper cabin that provides ADA access. With that, campers with special needs can join the fun of roughing it out!

Like Hoeft State Park, campers are treated to weekly based nature programs from Memorial to Labor Day. Other activities include metal detecting, swimming, and hunting. Fishing is available at Lexington’s boat launch—10 miles north of the park.

If you’re low on supplies, buy what you need at the Lakeport Camp Store at the north campground. While you’re out, walk the 54-mile Bridge to Bay Trail and explore St. Clair County and beyond.

11. Port Huron KOA

Kimball, MI

Another Kampground of America, Port Huron KOA is one of the best campgrounds in Michigan for campers with RVs. There’s a great selection of RV campsites in addition to the camper, deluxe cabins, and large tent sites.

Like Traverse Park KOA, the amenities are just as unique for Port Huron. There’s gem mining, disc golf, RV clubs and rallies, Kamp K9 for your dogs, shuffleboarding, go-karts, and more. It’s not completely rustic, but it’s a good excuse to get away!

To confirm this is the right campground for you, get an inside look via the KOA’s driving tours before making reservations! You should also know that they offer deals for EMTs, firefighters, policemen, and active military personnel.

12. Port Crescent State Park

Port Austin, MI

Right on the tip of Michigan’s thumb, Port Crescent State Park is on a three-mile sandy beach. Campers are treated with a waterfront view of Saginaw Bay or the Old Pinnebog River channel.

With the park’s dark sky preserve, it’s the best Michigan campground for stargazing. You won’t only see stars, planets, and constellations, but also the northern lights and meteor showers!

If you’re not staying in tents or trailers, the lodging options include cabins, cottages, and even geodesic domes. There are also hammock-only sites for you to set up your hammocks and fall asleep under the stars!

You can make reservations up to six months in advance, but for some sites, you may not have to. Unreserved campsites will be first come first served, so it’s safer to reserve your site.

Western Michigan’s Best Campgrounds

13. Dunes Harbor Family Camp

Mears, MI

The best campgrounds in Michigan bring people together and creating lifelong memories outdoors. Dunes Harbor Family Camp is an example of exactly that kind of campground.

Like the Houghton Lake Travel Park, Dunes Harbor is a Christian family-friendly campground that gives campers fun, memorable times. It’s open to everybody, whether they’re part of the Grace Adventures ministry or not.

Each week, the staff plans activities like ga-ga tournaments, archery, and horseback trail rides. Other activities listed on their site are staff-led or always available to participate in.

There are full hook-up sites, three group sites, and four rustic cabins. You also have the option to rent an RV if you’d like to sleep in something other than a cabin or tent.

14. P.J. Hoffmaster State Park

Muskegon, MI

P.J. Hoffmaster State Park is situated at the Lake Michigan shoreline, spanning three miles. If hiking and climbing steps are your best workout activities, even in winter, Hoffmaster is the best Michigan campground for you!

The half-mile Dune Overlook Trail’s dune climb is the main attraction at Hoffmaster. It takes 220 steps to get to two observation platforms that give you a panoramic view of the dunes and Lake Michigan.

The park has two campgrounds—a rustic youth campground and a modern one that’s open to any camper. Just like Bewabic State Park, campers and non-campers have the best of both worlds, on or off the grid.

15. Warren Dunes State Park

Sawyer, MI

Dunes at Warren Dunes State Park.

Open year-round, Warren Dunes State Park is one of the best campgrounds in Michigan for—you guessed it—its dunes! You’re away from all the urban city noise, and get to climb large and open forested dunes.

The best part is that you’re not just climbing them; you can also hang-glide, sandboard, and do some metal detecting on the dunes! Plus, they make great snowboarding hills when winter comes on.

Since Warren Dunes is a stopover location for birds on their migration route, you have an opportunity to birdwatch, as well. And between the dunes, lakeshore, and more, there are also eight hiking trails.

At Warren Dunes State Park there are two popular campgrounds: one rustic semi-modern with 37 sites and the other modern with 182 sites. You can make your reservations up to half a year in advance, and your pet can come along too!

16. Whispering Surf Campground

Pentwater, MI

In the North Woods, Whispering Surf Campground is Michigan’s oldest privately owned campground. Though Wi-Fi is available throughout the campground, it still promotes the experience of old-fashioned camping.

In its early years Whispering Surf was a private primitive tent camp. Vacationers would go to Pentwater and take a water taxi to the shore of Lake Michigan. Then they would walk from the beach to the forested campground.

Despite the campground’s modernization over the years, the owners work to preserve its history. They have two cottages and one rustic cabin, each providing many luxurious amenities. They may be pricey, but discounts are available, or you can pitch your tents or park your RVs at their sites.

Make a reservation early; the campground fills up fast!

Rest and Relax at the Best Campgrounds in Michigan!

I hope this list of the best Michigan campgrounds has inspired you to pick the best option for you and your loved ones. Soon you’ll be off on your perfect getaway, ready to unwind!

Want more tips on things to do in Michigan? Check out our dedicated Michigan posts to discover more awesome places to visit in the Great Lakes State!