Do you want to fully experience the great outdoors? Welcome to Pennsylvania campers! Pennsylvania has lush forests, interesting rock formations, wide-open spaces, rolling farmlands, and more than 120 state parks for you to explore and admire.
So, if you haven’t been camping in this state yet, I strongly suggest that you take your camping stuff and head to the most beautiful camping places in the USA.
This US northeastern state is rich in farmlands, forests, and mountains. Its capital is Harrisburg while Philadelphia is the largest city.
It is known for the Independence Hall where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution were signed. You can find a Liberty bell here which is a symbol of American freedom.
If you decide to go here you will find shorelines, lakes, green landscapes of farms and plains, and mountains. You should explore its top destinations like Lake Erie, Pittsburg, Gettysburg, and other local sights.
Here are the best camping places in Pennsylvania where you can relax your mind and soul no matter if you like summer or winter camping.
Best tent camping in Pennsylvania
We love to go camping in Pennsylvania since it has plenty of natural beauties to explore. There is a variety of different campgrounds here but I picked five of them that you should check out.
PINE CRADLE LAKE FAMILY CAMPGROUND
The Pine Cradle Lake camp is open from May 1st to October 15th. This place has different accommodation types to offer.
You can bring your tent and stay at primitive campsites with water and electricity. Bathhouses are 100 feet away.
There we have RV campsites that can accommodate campers of all sizes.
These places have electricity, water, and sewer utilities.
LAKESIDE RV CAMPGROUND
You can have a picnic and serve food on the picnic table and use a fire ring. They also offer premium RV campsites which are larger than standard ones.
If you want to stay close to the water you can stay at Lakeside RV campground and enjoy a view of the lake. Make sure you reserve your favorite spot before you go outdoors.
STAYING IN COTTAGES OR CABINS
Do you want more luxurious camping? Rent one of their cottages or cabins. Cottages have a kitchen and a bathroom while cabins don’t.
Four to a maximum of six people can stay in one of each accommodation unit. Your pet is welcome here also.
ORGANIZED FAMILY ACTIVITIES
They have many organized activities that you can attend with your family, so don’t hesitate and make yourself an unforgettable vacation in Pine Cradle Lake.
GETTYSBURG BATTLEFIELD RESORT
Welcome to Gettysburg Battlefield resort. They are open from April 6th to October 31st. If you will camp with your tent you can stay at tent sites with stone dust tent pads and use the fire ring and a picnic table.
TENT SITES AND CABINS
Each tent site can accommodate up to five people. For more comfortable camping, you have cabins for four people. There are a double bed and a bunk bed for usage. Bring your pet with you since they are allowed in the cabin.
MULTIPLE REASONS FOR FUN
You can get an activity pass ($9.95) that allows you fun and enjoyment for multiple days! Find a hidden treasure, swim in the pool, and play mini-golf, carpet ball, horseshoes, life-size chess, and many more.
You can rent a movie in case it is a rainy day and listen to ghost stories in the pavilion with your kids. No excuses for having fun!
YOGI BEARS JELLYSTONE PARK CAMP-RESORT
Yogi Bear’s camp-resort is located at 63 acres of land in Quarryville. This is a friendly place where you can stay and enjoy fun activities.
Choose one of their cabins or choose your site for RV or a tent. They have some great packages that you can get and enjoy what they have to offer (discounts, surprising gifts, etc.).
PLENTY ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS
The camp has a lot of activities that you can attend with your kid like playing in the Yogi Bear’s water zone, swimming pools, laser tag, adventure mini-golf, jumping pillow, and many more.
GOLF CARTS AND HOT TUBS
They have a pool cabana rental where you can enjoy privacy. You can also rent a golf cart or a limo cart. There is nothing better than to relax in your own hot tub and you have an option to do that in Yogi Bear’s camp resort.
Visit them and see for yourself how this place is worth staying in.
DELAWARE WATER GAP / POCONO MOUNTAIN KOA HOLIDAY
This place is another family resort that will offer you whatever families like to do. They have new patio sites with upscale seating and campfire elements.
You can camp in a tent in a grassy or wooded area. The recreational area is made for kayakers, canoeists, hikers, and rafters.
VISIT NATIVE AMERICAN MUSEUM AND PLAY SPORTS
There is a Native American Museum that you should visit with your family. Delaware Water Gap camp offers recreational courts for playing basketball, volleyball, and other games such as game mining, GaGa ball, etc.
SUMMER AND WINTER ENJOYMENT
This place is open all year so you can go there whenever you want. You can go to the camp in the wintertime and enjoy skiing or go in summer when you can enjoy the sun and water.
KEEN LAKE CAMPING & COTTAGE RESORT
Keen Lake camp is the last of my picks of Pennsylvania’s campgrounds that I am presenting. This place is run by a family Keen for more than 60 years now.
If you will visit this place you will be able to go to the Poconos Mountains where you can explore Maple city, Wayne country fair, Sturbridge line, and enjoy the wildlife.
PLENTY OF WATER ACTIVITIES ON THE BEACH
And what can you do here for entertainment? It is fun to be at this camp in the summer.
They have a beautiful lake for some lake activities such as swimming, ride with the rowboats, canoes and kayaks, paddleboards, aqua cycles, fishing, and playing on the beach.
FROM TENT CAMPING TO LUXURY CAMPING
They offer tent, RV camping, and staying in cottages for a more luxurious vacation. If you like it here, you can season camp at the lake. The Keen resort also has an events calendar for you to see what is happening each month.
Is Pennsylvania good for camping?
Yes, the state is made for camping as it offers a diverse way of spending free time in nature. You can camp primitively or choose a campground where you will be able to have a luxury outdoor experience with facilities and organized activities.
There are beautiful rivers, lakes, seashores, mountains, and waterfalls to see.
Can you stay overnight in PA?
When you decide to stay overnight you can sleep in :
- State park inns
- Modern and rustic cabins and unique houses
- Trail shelters for those who are backpacking through
- Organized group campsites and cabin camps
- Deluxe cottages and yurts
- Campsites for RVs, cottages, and tents
Where can you go camping in Pennsylvania?
Pennsylvania has state and national parks where you can stay tent camping. You will be able to enjoy pristine nature in northcentral PA, mountain bike in the Alleghenies, and hike in the Pocono Mountains.
There are 121 state parks to explore and 19 national parks that wait for your arrival.
Here are the KOA campgrounds in PA where you can inform yourself about each of their camping sites.
WHERE CAN YOU CAMP FOR FREE IN PA?
I should state that you can’t pitch a tent anywhere you want. If you want to camp in Pennsylvania state parks you will need to do it at campsites or areas that are designated for camping.
You can free camping in PA State Parks but you will need a state forest camping permit if you will spend in the campsites more than one night.
Pennsylvanian’s camping sites free of the fee are Dingmans Ferry, Emporium, Grantville, Erie, and Washington.
What is the most visited state park in Pennsylvania?
The Presque Isle State Park, Erie is a well-known and popular state park that had 3,719,182 visitors in 2019. This is the highest attendance rate of all PA state parks in that year.
Is camping allowed in Pennsylvania state parks?
Yes, it is allowed to stay in its state parks with some rules to obey. You can stay in one of their state park campgrounds for up to 21 consecutive nights during the remainder of the year.
If you will camp with an outdoor tent it must stay on the designated tent pad or the established stone/gravel camping area.
If you won’t find any, the shelter must be contained within the campsite in an area that least disturbs the natural resources.
Are state parks open in PA during Covid?
Trails, lakes, rivers, streams, forests, roads, and parking areas are accessible for recreation while the availability of facilities such as bathrooms, offices, and campgrounds varies.
Before you decide to reserve a spot at the campsite contact the staff to know if they are open and which amenities are allowed to use.
How long can you camp at a PA state park?
You will be able to stay in a PA state park campground for 14 consecutive nights from Memorial Day to Labor Day. In general, you can spend up to 21 consecutive nights in a camp.
Are state parks free in PA?
There are no entrance fees or day-use fees of any state park in this state. However, you will be charged if you make a reservation.
How much does it cost to camp at a PA State Park?
If you want to camp with your family in a state park you will have to pay a non-refundable $6.50 transaction fee per site on all backpacking/river camping sites, campground sites, or walled tent site reservations or registrations.
If you are a senior or have some kind of disability then you can get a reduced price.
These are prices that you should know of:
Backpacking/river camping – $4 resident price and $5 non-resident price per night
Camping – $15,25 resident price and $20 non-resident price per night
You will pay additional charges for showers, electricity and other services. Check all the prices here.
How many campgrounds are there in Pennsylvania?
There are over 7,000 family campsites in Pennsylvania state parks that offer picnic tables, cabins, recreational lakes, marinas, beaches, swimming pools, and hiking trails for you to try.
Is it illegal to camp in the woods in PA?
To primitive camp is state forest parks you must have a permit if you will spend more than one night in the woods.
You also must make a reservation for a trail shelter in a state park. When you have these two cowered you can spend free time in the PA woods without worries of being caught.
Read more about primitive camping in state forests and parks.
Are fireworks allowed in PA state parks?
Most fireworks are not allowed to use in the parks. The only way that you can use them is the written permission of the
Is alcohol allowed in Pennsylvania state parks?
No, unfortunately, alcohol is prohibited to use in Pennsylvania state parks so it’s better that you don’t it while you stay in one of its parks.
Are firearms allowed in Pennsylvania state parks?
You can’t open carry firearms in the state parks. However, you can have them in the vehicle or may carry concealed if you have a valid LTCF (license to carry firearms).
Want to know more? Go ahead and read all about carrying firearms in PA state parks.
Are you allowed to camp on state game lands in PA?
It is generally prohibited to stay on state game lands but there is one exception for all of you hikers. You can camp within 200 feet of the Appalachian Trail where it passes through game lands.
Can you fish on PA State Game Lands?
Yes, western Pennsylvania has plenty of lakes and ponds on state game lands where you can catch fish. If you are a passionate fisherman you can catch bass, northern pike, panfish, and catfish.
WHY GO CAMPING IN PENNSYLVANIA?
There are many campgrounds in this state but I picked a few for you to enjoy your vacation fully. Camps are friendly and their staff will take care of your needs.
If you are interested in one of them you can contact them by telephone or e-mail and get more information. I wish you an enjoyable stay in Pennsylvania.