One of America’s best and most popular family-friendly traditions is camping in the great outdoors.. However, with rising fuel costs across the nation and peak rates for lodging, many families will have to tighten their travel budget. Fortunately, there are thousands of affordable campgrounds to consider in America. However, if you hope to camp this summer, you should make reservations as soon as possible.

Top Recommendations For Family Friendly Camping In America

White Mountains, New Hampshire (credit: Randy Yagi)

Ashland-White Mountains Jellystone Park

35 Jellystone Park
New Hampton, NH  032562
(603) 968-9000

The popular cartoon the Yogi Bear Show ended its television run way back in 1962.  Nevertheless, the legacy of this popular cartoon character lives on at many Jellystone Park Camp Resorts. This includes the Yogi Bear-branded campgrounds in the White Mountains. As with any other family friendly location, the Ashland-White Mountains Jellystone Park is extremely kid friendly with several great amenities. For instance, there are two heated pools and a kiddie pool and ping pong tables. Additional family friendly things to do can be found all around the White Mountains. For example, the historic Conway Scenic Railroad is very family friendly.

Related: Grand Hotels Of New Hampshire

Big Basin Redwoods State Park

21600 Big Basin Way
Boulder Creek, CA 95006
(831) 338-8861

Nestled within the redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Big Basin State Park is California’s oldest state park. Founded in 1902, Big Basin covers over 18,000 acres and with 2,500 years old redwoods. The main attractions are old growth redwoods and the Skyline to the Sea trail. On the other hand, it’s an easy drive  Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, the popular admission free seaside park. Roaring Camp Railroads is even closer to Big Basin in Felton.

Note: After being closed for nearly two years for renovations, Big Basin State Park is reopening this summer.

Related: Pet Friendly Hotels In San Francisco

Door County Jellystone Park

3677 May Road
Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235
(920) 743-9001

Another exceptional Jellystone-branded campground can be found in beautiful Door County. Camping options include standard, hook-up and premium campsites. In addition, rates include two adults and up to three dependent children. What’s more are cabin and trailer rentals. Door County Jellystone Park offers several family friendly amenities. In detail, two heated pools, kiddie pool and 18-hole miniature golf course. Even if you just have a Coleman sundome, Jellystone is a great spot for family friendly camping.

Related: Family Friendly Attractions In Indianapolis

Glimmerglass State Park

1527 County Highway 31
Cooperstown, NY 13326
(607) 547-8662

Ask any kid where he wants to go this summer and the answer is oftentimes a major amusement park like Disneyland. But another popular destination, is Cooperstown, the beloved home of the National Baseball Hall of Fame . For campers, one of the best spots in the in the area is Glimmerglass State Park, located along the shores of Otsego Lake just eight miles from downtown Cooperstown. Open year round, Glimmerglass State Park is popular for summertime activities like biking, hiking and fishing. Among popular winter activities are ice skating, cross-country skiing and ice fishing.

Half Dome Village

Yosemite National Park, CA 95389
(888) 413-8869

Formerly known as Curry Village, Half Dome Village offers heated and unheated tents, along with cabins with private bathrooms. In all, there are 481 guest accommodations, including 14 cabins with a central bath, 46 cabins with private baths and 403 canvas tent cabins for upscale camping. As the largest lodging facility in Yosemite National Park, the Village also features a gift shop and an outdoor swimming pool. A free shuttle service operates year round from 7 am to 10 pm.

Note: Reservations are required to enter Yosemite National Park, whether you’re camping or not. In other words, due to its enormous popularity, camp reservations may already be sold out for the summer.

Olympic Peninsula/Port Angeles KOA

80 O’Brien Road
Port Angeles, WA 98362
(360) 457-5916

As the world’s largest system of privately held campgrounds, Kampgrounds of America (KOA) has long been a reliable and reputable place to stay, especially for families with children. Among the best with a prime location is the Olympic Peninsula/Port Angeles KOA, filled with an assortment of amenities and activities and just a short drive from the enormous Olympic National Park. Another KOA you might like is the Winthrop/North Cascades National Park.

Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia (credit: Randy Yagi)

Peaks Of Otter Campground

10454 Peaks Road
Bedford, VA 24523
(540) 586-7321

The Blue Ridge Parkway often surprises travelers with its natural beauty filled with breathtaking waterfalls and scenic hiking trails. But what may surprise even more visitors is that it’s the second most visited park within the National Park System and has been for most of the past 70 years. Extending nearly 470 across the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia and North Carolina, the Blue Ridge Parkway features eight developed campgrounds from May through late October and one of the best is Peaks of Otter, located about 26 miles northeast of Roanoke, Virginia.

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About The Author

Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who served as the National Travel Writer for CBS Local from 2012-2019. More than 900 of his stories still appear in syndication across 23 CBS websites, including CBS New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco.  During his peak years with CBS, Randy had a reported digital audience reach of 489 million and 5.5 million monthly visitors. Additionally, his stories have appeared in the Daily Meal, CBS Radio, Engadget and He is a Media Fellow of Stanford University, U.S. Army veteran and lifelong resident of Santa Cruz County, California.