5 Best Camping Sites Around New York

New York offers various camping experiences for both seasoned adventurers and first-time campers. The state's diverse landscapes provide a perfect backdrop for a variety of outdoor activities.

5 Best Camping Sites Around New York
5 Best Camping Sites Around New York

Many of these camping sites are within a manageable distance from the bustling streets of New York City.

If you're looking to escape the urban jungle and immerse yourself in nature, you'll find plenty of options from lakeside retreats to forested havens.

Camping in New York is a chance to recharge and connect with the natural world.

You can look forward to waking up to birdsong, hiking along scenic trails, and unwinding by the campfire under a canopy of stars.

Whether you're after a rustic experience in a tent or prefer the comfort of a cabin, the state's parks and campgrounds offer something for every level of comfort and adventure.

A serene lake surrounded by tall pine trees, with a cozy campfire and tents nestled in the lush greenery of the Adirondack Mountains

1) Wildwood State Park

Wildwood State Park is a haven for campers looking for peace within nature. This park is spread across 600 acres of untouched hardwood forest, offering a backdrop of Long Island Sound.

You can set up your tent or park your trailer at one of the various sites available for an authentic camping experience.

If you prefer more comfort, the park has newly built cottages with cozy features, including a full kitchen and screened porch, making it ideal for families or small groups.

If you're keen on activities, Wildwood State Park won't disappoint. It boasts a two-mile beach for swimmers and sunbathers. Picnickers can enjoy shaded tables while children have fun at the playground.

Fishing enthusiasts have access to waters teeming with fish, and trails are open for hikers and cross-country skiers, depending on the season.

The park is designed for those who relish the outdoors without compromising on modern-day conveniences.

It's open year-round, with swimming and other seasonal activities carefully scheduled.

Night permits allow for fishing and stargazing, adding a unique twist to the traditional camping adventure.

Location790 Hulse Landing Rd, Wading River, NY 11792
Contact: (631) 929-4314
WebsiteVisit Website

2) Hither Hills State Park

Hither Hills State Park offers a blend of sandy beaches and scenic campgrounds, making it a popular camping destination in New York.

Your camping experience here is enhanced by the proximity to the ocean, giving you the unique opportunity to wake up to the sound of waves.

The park features 189 camping sites along the shore, providing plenty of space for tents and RVs. However, certain vehicle restrictions apply on weekends.

This park doesn’t only cater to those looking to relax by the sea; it also serves as a hub for outdoor activities. You have access to various trails for hiking, biking, and even cross-country skiing in the winter.

Fishing enthusiasts can enjoy sport fishing year-round and apply for permits for night fishing. For a more leisurely time, you can utilize the park's picnic areas or let your kids play on the playground.

Your visit might also allow you to witness the unique “walking dunes” of Napeague Harbor along with the rich assortment of flora and fauna in the park’s woodlands.

While pets aren't allowed, the park’s open space and natural offerings ensure a rewarding experience for every visitor.

Location164 Old Montauk Hwy, Montauk, NY 11954
Contact: (631) 668-2554
WebsiteVisit Website

3) Old Forge Camping Resort

At Old Forge Camping Resort, you will experience a connection with the outdoors that's unparalleled in the New York camping scene.

Nestled in the scenic Adirondack Mountains, it's an ideal location for a variety of outdoor activities. Whether you're here for boating, fishing, or hiking, this campground offers the perfect base to explore the region's natural beauty.

The resort boasts a range of accommodations that cater to all sorts of campers. If you're looking for the traditional camping experience, pitch your tent at one of the rustic sites.

However, if you prefer a touch of comfort, consider booking a cottage or cabin, some of which now offer the convenience of golf cart rentals.

Recreation is at the heart of the Old Forge Camping Resort experience. Guests can enjoy the local attractions, restaurants, and shops that contribute to the unique charm of the area.

Plus, the resort's commitment to providing enjoyable stays is evident through their competitive facilities and services, including military discounts for those who serve or have served.

Location3347 NY-28, Old Forge, NY 13420
Contact: (800) 226-7464
WebsiteVisit Website

4) Taconic State Park - Copake Falls Area

Taconic State Park - Copake Falls Area is a sanctuary of natural beauty and outdoor adventure nestled in the Taconic Mountain Range.

As a visitor, you can explore the park's extensive trail system, designed to cater to both relaxing walks and challenging hikes. You're rewarded with stunning views that capture the essence of the Taconic Region.

The park's camping options are versatile, offering rustic sites and more comfortable accommodations.

Whether you prefer to pitch a tent on a basic ground site or enjoy the amenities in a platform site, there's something for every type of camper.

For those who like a home-like setting while camping, furnished cabins with kitchens and outdoor fire rings provide a cozy retreat in the wilderness.

Recreation at Taconic State Park goes beyond the typical camping experience. Delve into the history at the Copake Iron Works Museum or take a swim in the Ore Pit Pond.

Fishing for trout in crystal-clear waters or embracing the winter with cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails add to the year-round allure of the park.

Remember, swimming is supervised by lifeguards, ensuring a safe environment for the whole family.

Location253 NY-344, Copake Falls, NY 12517
Contact: (518) 329-3993
WebsiteVisit Website

5) Ecology Village

During our visit to Ecology Village, we were immediately greeted by the serene environment that seems a world away from the city's hustle.

Nestled within Brooklyn's urban landscape, this campground offers a refreshing dose of nature.

It's a part of the Gateway National Recreation Area, making it a federally managed site which ensures its maintenance and preservation for all visitors.

One thing that stood out to us was the sense of community at the Ecology Village.

Campers here respect the natural surroundings and follow a 'leave no trace' ethic that helps to keep the environment pristine for others.

The sites cater to both tent and group campers, with facilities that are basic yet well-kept. Educational programs are often run by the park services, aimed at promoting environmental stewardship.

Accessibility to Ecology Village is quite good, and we found it's a convenient spot for those looking to escape city life without venturing too far from home.

You'll want to reserve your spot in advance, especially during peak camping season, as its popularity and close proximity to the city mean that spots can fill up quickly.

LocationEcology Village, Campsite Trail, Brooklyn, NY 11234
Contact: (718) 338-3799
WebsiteVisit Website

Best Time To Go Camping

Choosing the right time for camping can enhance your experience, as weather and crowd levels greatly influence your trip.

Weather Considerations

You should aim for a balance of warm days and cool nights, which typically occurs May through September. Here's a brief overview of what you can expect weather-wise during these months:

  • May to June: Average highs range from 70°F to 80°F, while nights can be cool, dropping to around 50°F to 60°F. Rain is possible, so packing waterproof gear is wise.
  • July to August: The hottest months, with temperatures hovering between 80°F and 90°F. Evenings are milder, around 60°F to 70°F.
  • September: Marks the start of the fall, bringing milder temperatures and less humidity. Daytime temperatures average between 70°F and 75°F, with nights around 50°F to 60°F.
A serene lakeside campground with a crackling campfire and a starry night sky, surrounded by towering trees and distant mountains
Best Time To Go Camping

Crowd Levels

Peak camping season aligns with school vacations, meaning late June through early September sees the most visitors. Consider these time frames if you prefer a quieter experience:

  • Before Memorial Day: Campsites are less crowded, and many seasonal facilities are just opening.
  • After Labor Day: Campgrounds are quieter as summer vacations end and children return to school.
  • Mid-week stays: Fewer campers typically on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Frequently Asked Questions

Camping in New York can be a diverse and exciting experience, with places that cater to families, offer RV support, provide the intimacy of tent sites, and even free spots to pitch your tent. Explore the state’s variety and find your perfect getaway.

What are the top campgrounds for families in New York?

For family-friendly camping, North/South Lake Campground comes highly recommended. With ample space and family-oriented activities, it is a favored choice. Additionally, Wildwood State Park boasts facilities that keep families returning year after year.

Can you find RV-friendly campgrounds near New York City?

Yes, you can find RV-friendly campgrounds near New York City. Beaver Pond Campground within Harriman State Park is an option that accommodates RVs, providing a natural escape surprisingly close to the urban sprawl.

Where are the best tent camping sites located in New York?

New York offers an array of beautiful tent camping sites. For a beachfront experience, consider Hither Hills State Park. If you prefer forested environments, take a look at Taconic State Park - Copake Falls Area where you can find cozy tent spots.

Are there any free camping options available in New York State?

New York does have some free camping options, though they may require a bit more research and flexibility. Some public lands managed by the DEC allow for primitive camping at no cost, but be sure to check current regulations and accessibility.

How can I locate the perfect camping spot in or near New York?

The key is to research and consider what kind of camping experience you want.

Websites and resources like The Dyrt can help you find well-reviewed campgrounds. For example, Old Forge Camping Resort caters to a variety of camping styles and preferences.

What campgrounds in Upstate New York are considered the best for an outdoor experience?

Upstate New York is blessed with larger tracts of wilderness. Many believe that Cherry Plain State Park offers a genuine outdoor experience. Campgrounds like these immerse you in nature. They offer tranquility and the chance to unwind amidst the beauty of the outdoors.