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The 20 most scenic campsites in the U.S.

Who doesn’t like to go camping with a spectacular view?! It’s a memorable adventure if you can pitch your tent with the view of a lake, a mountain range, or even in the middle of the wide desert. Wake up, unzip the tent door, step outside, and be fascinated by the beauty of nature. This is the real difference between camping and a hotel stay! To get you into the travel mood for the hot season some bloggers and I collected the most scenic campsites in the U.S. for you. Lean back, enjoy, and start making travel plans!

Boondocking campsite in Sedona, Arizona
Photo credit: 33andfree

Sedona | Arizona | by 33andfree

Views of the red rocks and mountains surrounded us in Sedona, Arizona. We were alone, the dogs could run and there was so much to do in the area. Hiking, wine tasting, mountain/road biking and vortexes (we didn’t experience one but people say they are all over!).

Sedona was our first location on our epic road trip. We heard it was RV (boondocking) and camping friendly. We drove around and found the spot we thought was the best and it sure turned out epic. We ended up moving after a week and a half because the entire area was so awesome. If you like to explore and are on a budget, this is a great spot to have on your road trip list. Read more…

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.: The Pinon Flats Campground, Colorado
Photo credit: Patrick Myers (NPS)

Great Sand Dunes National Park | Colorado

The Great Sand Dunes in the middle of the U.S. are already spectacular to see. Camping there with the glorious view of the sand dunes and mountains is even better. You can expect to have this breathtaking view from one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.: The Piñon Flats Campground. Read more…

Night sky from one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. at Joshua Tree National Park
Photo credit: Esther Lee

Joshua Tree National Park | California

The night sky is a fascinating thing, especially when you are in the desert. You probably don’t even need a tent, if you stay at Joshua Tree National Park because you will probably fall asleep outside enjoying this terrific view. The national park has many different campgrounds. Some are very large (150 campsites) and others are as small as 15 campsites.

View of the Mackinac Bridge, Strait State Park
Photo credit: Nomad by Trade

Straits State Park | Michigan | by Nomad By Trade

Straits State Park on the northern shore of Lake Huron offers spectacular views of one of Michigan’s man-made wonders: The Mackinac Bridge.

The park has 255 campsites ranging from full RV hookup to non-electric sites, with multiple bathroom facilities available. If you’re after the best view, the non-electric sites are where you want to be. The lower campground sections are located right on the water, and the row of campsites along the Straits of Mackinac is prime real estate. Picture yourself sitting around the campfire gazing out at the lights on the 5-mile long bridge reflecting on the water, or waking up to the sounds of birds along the shore. Read more stories from Nomad By Trade…

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. with view of the Robin Lakes
Photo credit: Jeff P.

Robin Lakes | Washington

This view from Mount Daniel is overlooking the beautiful Robin Lakes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Watching the sunset this high with a view like this seems to be the greatest way to wake up!

One of the most scenic campsites at Interior Campground, South Dakota
One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. at Interior Campground

Badlands National Park | South Dakota

Just outside the Badlands National Park, you can stay at one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. with the view of the layered mountains. Watching sunsets will be one of your favorite activities in the evening because that’s the time when the whitish rocks turn into yellow and red. Read more…

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. at Gros Ventre Wilderness
Photo credit: US Forest Service

Gros Ventre | Wyoming

Near Kozy Campground, you will have a view of the Gros Ventre Range as seen in this photo. It’s part of the Bridger-Teton National Forest, which is about 40 minutes south of Jackson – right next to Grand Teton and Yellowstone.

Finch Lake, Louisiana: One of the most scenic campsites right next to the swamps
Photo credit:  Flickr

Finch Lake | Louisiana

Getting up with a view like this in the morning? No surprise that the Louisiana swamps made it into the list of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.!

One of the campsites in the U.S. at Canyonlands while rafting tour
Photo credit: Campfire & Concierges

Canyonlands National Park | Utah | by Campfire & Concierges

This campsite is on the Colorado River in Canyonlands National Park in Utah, USA.  I camped here on the 3rd night of a 4-day whitewater rafting trip with OARS Whitewater Rafting. The trip started in Moab and ended at Lake Powell, with a scenic Cessna flight back to Moab at the end.

Each night, after an exhilarating day of whitewater rapids, we pulled over to a new sandy, scenic campsite like this one.  Being so far away from any towns, the dark night skies were so full of stars! The river is close by to provide a soothing soundtrack for sleeping each night. While this campsite is not accessible to the casual car camper, you can reach the Colorado River on either a backpacking or rafting trip. Read more…

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. is at Glenn's Lake

Glenn’s Lake at Glacier National Park | Montana

If you like to go on a trekking trip in summer, you could enjoy this beautiful view of Glenn’s Lake at Glacier National Park. If you want to reach the most scenic campsites in the U.S., you have to put some extra work into it. The Stoney Indian Pass is a 26.6-mile long trail, which features some backcountry campsites with fantastic views like this one.

The view from one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. at Hyatt Lake
Photo credit: BLM

Hyatt Lake | Oregon

Not as difficult to reach as some of our most scenic campsites in the U.S.: The Hyatt Lake Recreation Area. The three campgrounds are open for camping from May through early October. Isn’t this a breathtaking campsite to relax and enjoy?! Might be the perfect timing to start planning your road trip!

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.: BLM near Zion National Park
Photo credit: Wandering Chocobo

BLM Land near Zion National Park | Utah |by Wandering Chocobo

Just as you finish pitching your tent the first star appears. The fire begins to crackle, a hundred or so are now visible. The last glowing embers fade into smoke and the entire Milky Way is now smeared across the sky. You, my friend, have found your 5-billion-star hotel and you’re one of the only few out here, save for the howling coyote in the distance.

I refer to this location as my secret camping spot in Zion National Park. While technically several miles out from the park, this land owned by the Bureau of Land Management, or BLM, is free to any and everyone. It also arguably, has the best views of any camping site in the area. To access this land, just head down a dirt road near Ft. Zion called Sheep Bridge Road, for 2 miles. Find a spot you like, pitch your tent, practice fire safety, clean up after yourself and enjoy one of the best camping spots in the South West of the United States. Camping in Zion National Park usually fills up very fast, so this spot is great for anyone looking for free, last minute camping or just to get away from the crowds and enjoy a night in nature. Read more by Wandering Chocobo…

Devils Garden Campground offers breathtaking campsites in the U.S.
Photo credit: Brett Neilson

Devils Garden Campground | Utah

Arches National Park is one of the most popular parks in the U.S. and also offers one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. Therefore, it’s also hard to get a campsite, but the lucky ones will be twice as happy because of this spectacular view.

Breathtaking campsite inside the Grand Canyon
Photo credit: Campfire & Concierges

Grand Canyon National Park | Arizona | by Campfire & Concierges

For a milestone birthday that I celebrated recently, I spent 11 days whitewater rafting in the Grand Canyon. The trip started with a van shuttle in Flagstaff and ended with a helicopter ride out of the canyon at Whitmore Wash.

We had many extraordinary campsites over the course of 11 days, but by far the best was at Garnet Camp/River Mile 115, on our 6th night, which also happened to be my birthday! I found a small ledge above the camp where everyone else had set up their tents, but I opted for “cowboy camping” that night – no tent! I fell asleep with a tummy full of birthday cake, watching shooting stars until I couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer.  It’s been a year and a half, but I think it will be a long time before I can top this campsite! Read more…

View of the Monument Valley from one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.
Photo: Flickr

Monument Valley | Arizona

One of the most famous American sights, of course, has to be on this list as well. Who wouldn’t like to have this view from their tent? Definitely, one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S. and should go on your bucket list if it isn’t already there.

Great views from one of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.
Photo: Dan Maus

San Gorgonio Wilderness | California

Sick of all the overcrowded campgrounds? Then pack your backpack and head over to San Gorgonio Wilderness. It offers spectacular recreation and solitude opportunities. For example, enjoy this stunning view from your own campsite!

Great view at the Arch Rock Campground in Valley of Fire
Photo credit: safetravels.de

Valley of Fire | Nevada | by Safetravels

Translated from German: This bright red jewel close to Las Vegas is located in the middle of the usually gray-brown Mojave Desert: The Valley of Fire State Park. Besides the quite popular rock formations, such as Fire Wave and Elephant Rock, this park has something special to offer.

Just behind the west entrance of the state park, you will find two incredible campgrounds. The Atlatl Rock and Arch Rock Campground don’t offer luxury, but an absolutely wild camping experience considering the short distance to sin city. More special are the remote campsites on the Arch Rock Campground. You are basically close to the street and just an hour away from Las Vegas, but you still get a sense of complete seclusion. There is nothing better than waking up in a sandstone wonderland, as well as enjoying incredibly silent nights and breathtaking sunrises and sunsets.  Read more (German blog)…

One of the most scenic campsites in the U.S.: Amazing and peaceful campsite at Hamilton Lake
Photo: Miguel Vieira

Hamilton Lake on High Sierra Trail | California

Let’s go hiking! The Hamilton Lake is part of the High Sierra Trail. A long but very scenic trail. Almost a must for hiking lovers and with a break at this lake – totally worth it!

Next to the beautiful campsite at Lake McDonald
Photo credit: Escape Town

Lake Mc Donald at Glacier National Park | Montana | by Escape Town

Translated from German: The Fishcreek Campground at Lake McDonald is located at the entrance of the Glacier National Park in Montana. The national park is most famous for the Going-to-the-sun Road that goes through the park. However, it is definitely worth staying at one of the amazing campgrounds to go hiking and exploring.

Many people just drive through the park, but you’ll be rewarded if you unpack your hiking boots. You don’t have to go far to be far away from tourists and close to animals and beautiful spots. The Fishcreek Campground is a great place to start your adventures and would be even better with a kayak. By the way, D174 is the most scenic campsite with the view of the lake! Read more (German blog)…

Ninilchik View Campground | Alaska
Photo: Uri Breitman

Ninilchik View Campground | Alaska

The mainland isn’t the only place to offer fantastic views and this photo proofs it. Alaska is great for scenic campsites as well! Who wouldn’t enjoy a delicious camp dinner with this view of Mt. Redoubt?

So which one is going to be your next camping destination? Share it with us!

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Abenteuerin, digitale Nomadin, und Freiheitssuchti - Das bin ich, Nate the Nomad!
Im Oktober 2016 habe ich meine Sachen in Berlin gepackt und reise seitdem mit meinem Ehemann um die Welt.
Wir genießen die Freiheiten des ortsunabhängigen Lebens in vollen Zügen. Wir lieben kleine Abenteuer und das Kennenlernen neuer Kulturen.

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