Camping In Michigan

Do you want to experience unspoiled nature in state and national parks, state forests and see hidden gems that wait for you in Michigan? The state is rich in natural beauties so it is time that we look at the best campgrounds in Michigan, USA.


Michigan is a state where you will find your inner peace and connect with nature.

It is also called a Great Lake State because it borders on four of the Great Lakes. This place is ideal for all of you who love forests, cliffs, and beaches.

The capital city is Lansing. If you like to relax near water then it is a perfect destination since it has more than 11,000 inland lakes.

The largest city is Detroit which is known for the auto industry, and the Institute of Arts and Motown Records.

In this article, I will show you where and how to have the best tent camping in Michigan. Explore the Michigan camping places that will refill your energy and take care of your inner peace.


Michigan is a state that offers many natural beauties that are worth visiting. With many lakes, forests you have an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors without extra money spent.

Here are some great camping spots in Michigan.


This place received a Founder’s and a President’s award. It is open from April to October.

What can you do here? Ride a bike on a 34-mile trail, horseback ride, visit casinos, a kid’s museum, wineries, farmer’s markets, and so on. They offer accommodations for tents, RV’s but you can stay in one of their cabins also.


If you have kids then they will enjoy trampoline basketball, carpetball, gaga ball, climb on the rock climbing wall, and see movies before a good night’s sleep.


You won’t be hungry since you can order nachos, pizza, or a panini from the café. The food will be delivered to your camp place.


The campsite has a dog park where you can take your pet to take a walk, a pool, a fishing place, a camping kitchen, and a snack bar to grab an afternoon snack. Visit South Heaven and enjoy yourself with your family outdoors.


This is one of the private campgrounds in Michigan that you can explore. It’s a privately-owned camping place on 40-acre land.


You can find it close to Lake Michigan, 50 miles east of Chicago. You can enjoy it here from April until the end of October.


It is a good place for families where you can enjoy yourself together in different activities. You can camp there with your tent, pop-up, fifth wheel, and hybrid trailers or motorhomes.

Cabins are also available for you to spend a vacation and these include sleeping, deluxe, premium cabin, and sleeping cottage.


The camp has a swimming pool, two fishing ponds, a playground for kids, and a basketball court. They also have a small store for buying camping supplies and food, games for children, and other camper decorations.

Be active and take your family on a trip with a bicycle, take a horseback ride, ride with a kayak, and play golf. You can also take them to see wineries and casinos. Kids won’t be disappointed here since this is a kids-friendly campsite.


I am presenting you the #1 campground in Michigan by Trailer Life in America. Petoskey is also one of the highest-rated RV parks in North America.


If you go on vacation to this campsite you will experience romantic sunsets, sand dunes, and fresh air from cedar, pine, and maple trees.

Spend the night with a tent, RV, or stay in one of their cabins from the end of April to the middle of October.


There are a lot of fun activities for all family members. Play bingo, bounce in the Bounce House, and find your own Petoskey stone for polishing.

They have a heated swimming pool and a hot tub where you can relax and enjoy water activities.

They also have a fire pit where you can set an evening fire and enjoy it. You should try the GaGa ball with your kids. I am sure you won’t be disappointed in choosing your vacation at Petoskey.


Monroe Country campsite is another option you can consider with your family. If you like to be close to the water this is a good place to pick.


They have a swimming lake with a sandy beach where kids can play and swim. Where there is a lake there are also fish, so you can rent a boat and go fishing.


They are open from April 13th to October 28th. In the evenings you will be able to watch movies since they have an inflatable outdoor movie screen.

Be active and play mini-golf, soccer, baseball diamond, or other sports. Kids will also enjoy this camp.


Monroe is a camp where pets are allowed and welcome. You have the option to stay in one of their camping or deluxe cabins. Treehouse is also great to observe birds and enjoy in peace.

Like with every other campsite, you won’t be hungry since they have a snack bar. This place offers free all-you-can-eat pancakes and free Wi-Fi.


Muskegon is another beautiful campsite where you can find your peace and refill your batteries. You will find it close to Michigan’s Adventure Park.


They are a full-service camping place with tent and RV sites. You can choose to stay in one of their cabins and have a wonderful view of the lake.


A lake gives opportunities for water activities such as swimming, ride with a paddleboard, rent a kayak, canoe or rowboat, and have an unforgettable outdoor experience.


Attend a festival or two; I suggest Unity Fest and Muskegon Bike Time.

If this is the camp you want to take your family to spend a vacation together, you should see popular West Michigan attractions, lighthouses, local golf courses, towering sand dunes, and the submarine.

Can you tent camp anywhere in Michigan?

Michigan state allows you to camp at State Parks & recreational areas, State Forest campgrounds, and allows dispersed camping. Dispersed camping is permitted on state-owned land for free.

However, you must obey different rules while camping in these areas. Before making the reservation, read their camping rules & regulations to avoid getting a penalty.

Where can you camp for free in Michigan?

There are 4 campsites in Michigan that offer free camping as I know. The first one is Whelan Lake – Manistee National Forest that is popular for camping, canoeing, and fishing. The second one is Green Road – Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness where you will enjoy the wilderness in the National forest.

camping in michigan

You can also decide to stay in French Farm Lake – Dept. Natural Resources where you will relax in a more peaceful and quiet lake-side camping place.

The last place is Cooper Creek Road – Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness where you will be able to tent camp for 14 days maximum.

How do I find a campground in Michigan?

If you want to find a campground in Michigan I suggest that you check The Michigan Department of Natural Resources site where you can search for campgrounds and see which of them are the most appropriate for your type of vacation.

How many campgrounds are in Michigan?

Michigan offers more than 1,000 campgrounds over the state to explore its natural wonders. They have 103 state parks or recreation areas, and 138 state forest campgrounds that offer thousands of rustic campsites.

Want to know which are these campsites and what they have to offer? Know more about the campgrounds & RV Parks (MARVAC).

How much does it cost to camp in Michigan state parks?

Residents of the state park will pay a $5 convenience fee, if you will camp with a vehicle you will pay $17 and if you will camp with a motorcycle your fee will be $11. Being a non-resident and just passing through will cost you $9.

Do Michigan state parks have showers?

Modern campgrounds have a modern restroom/shower building where you can take a shower and clean yourself after a long and active day. Due to this uncertain time, it is best that you read the covid information about their amenities.

Are there bears in Michigan?

The only bear species that lives in Michigan is the black bear (Ursus americanus). They have black or extremely dark brown fur and can live for 30 years or more.

Are you afraid of them? Here is how to store food while camping in a bear country so they won’t turn at your campsite.

Is backcountry camping allowed in Michigan?

Yes, dispersed camping is permitted on state-owned land for free. However, the site must be located at least one mile from the state forest campground.

Where can I backcountry camp in Michigan?

If you want to go on backcountry camping you will be able to choose among these locations:

  • Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park backcountry camping
  • Tahquamenon Falls State Park backcountry camping
  • Craig Lake State Park backcountry camping
  • Wilderness State Park backcountry camping

Also, consider the next campsites:

  • Shelley Lake Campground – White Cloud
  • Wakeley Lake – Grayling
  • Tubbs Lake Island – Mecosta
  • Pete’s Lake – Munising

Do you need a permition to disperse camp?

If you want to camp on your own in a state forest then you must have a camp registration card with you.

It must be prominently posted at the campsite for the duration of the stay. Print your camp registration card here and ensure that it is legible.

How many KOAS are in Michigan?

There are 19 KOA campgrounds in Michigan where you can stay next vacation.

You will be able to choose among different lodging options; camping with a tent, stay in a KOA camping and deluxe cabins, RV sites, or choose to stay in airstream trailers, teepees, or their glamping tents.

Here is a map where you can find additional information about each KOA campground.

What is the best KOA in Michigan?

One of the best KOA campgrounds in Michigan is Port Huron KOA. It is a place that takes care of your needs as a family.

They have a fun park for kids, working steam train to golf-cart rentals, and other activities to attend. They have free parking, a pool, fitness center, water park, etc.

According to the people’s reviews on Tripadvisor, the campsite is rated as very good with 3,5/5 points.


No matter which of these camps in Michigan you decide to visit alone or with your family and friends, I am sure the staff and nature won’t disappoint you.

If you like to enjoy the outdoors and see local sights in Michigan then choose the place that will satisfy your needs as a camper.

This state is rich with lakes where you can fish, and do all kinds of water sports like swimming, canoeing, kayaking, riding a boat, and others.

Take a ride in a car and visit Detroit. Camping in this state will satisfy all kinds of outdoor enthusiasts since the mentioned camps have forests, beaches, and lakes. Choose yours and enjoy your outdoor stay.