Camping has been a method used by countless travelers throughout generations to get closer to nature and perhaps even reignite a passion for the outdoors that so many seem to have lost.
America contains thousands of incredible National Parks that openly encourage visitors to pitch a tent and spend a night beneath the stars within their borders. While there is no such thing as a bad view when the sun sets on a day spent hiking and relaxing in the open, here are 10 campsites in the United States worth leaving the comforts of home behind for.
10 Acadia National Park, Maine
This outrageously beautiful National Park is home to 17 million acres of naturally stunning forest, thousands of lakes and endless miles of rivers that make up the soundtrack of a night under the stars.
Three campgrounds rest within the borders of the park, with Seawall Campsite drawing less tourists due to the effort required to access it. This effort is rewarded however with some of the most breathtaking panoramas in the country and if it can be attempted, it should.
9 Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Tantalizingly close to Washington D.C., the Shenandoah National Park expanse includes 500 miles of trails that twist through the gorgeous countryside while scaling imposing mountains and descending wondrous valleys.
There are four campsites to choose from here, with each of them granting incredible views of the surrounding beauty. Each morning can begin with the sight of a lush forest or a towering waterfall before ending with an impossibly colourful and inspiring sunset.
8 Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
There are not many places that allow camping within earshot of a true natural wonder, but Dry Tortugas National Park is one of them. Defying its name, the park is home to one of the world’s largest barrier reefs and with a campsite right beside it, the last thing travelers hear before drifting off to sleep is the gentle movement of crystal-clear water.
Snorkel gear is a must-pack on this trip, allowing an unforgettable adventure beneath the surface. The bird watching here is some of the best in the world as well, so don’t forget to cast a glance towards the skies while drying off.
7 Big Bend National Park, Texas
Beginning in Colorado and running all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico, the Rio Grande has been drawing awestruck travelers to its banks for hundreds of years. When it comes to spending a night in the grande outdoors, the best place to chose is Big Bend National Park in Texas.
Drift towards slumber surrounded by stunning deserts, monstrous mountains and of course the persistent progress of the Rio Grande itself. With backcountry camping available, this is one of the greatest experiences a camper can have.
6 Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
How about setting up a tent in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains? Grand Teton National Park allows that and so much more. Get up close and personal with hundreds of elk that roam the protected areas nearby while taking advantage of the beautiful climate that descends on Wyoming in the warmer months.
There are several campsites to choose from here but if you can’t decide, lock in Signal Mountain. The facilities are sensational, the locals welcoming and the atmosphere magical.
5 Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
Prepare to fall into a peaceful sleep at Carlsbad Caverns National Park after a night walk lit only by the moon where local rangers answer every question you could possibly have about the surrounding area.
Try not to bat an eyelid as the winged creatures fly all around the incredible caves visitors can explore and be sure to venture out onto the trekking paths to discover more of the local wildlife. It is all backcountry camping here and there is no bad spot to rest, it is all glorious.
4 Haleakala National Park, Hawaii
Known for its remarkable views, Hawaii takes it to another level within the borders of Haleakala National Park. Waking up and folding back the tent flap becomes a transformative experience here that could never lose its shine, no matter how long the stay.
The sites feature drive-in and hike-in options as well as completely wild sites and cabin rentals. Every option is available to intrepid travelers here so why not sample them all?
3 Denali National Park, Alaska
Perhaps not the first place that comes to mind when considering a camping trip, Alaska has some of the best scenery in the United States and Denali National Park is a perfect example.
Containing six million acres of land bursting with wildlife, hiking trails, beautiful bodies of water and mountains including North America’s tallest peak, this is a must-visit for those in search of the perfect pitch. There are plenty of spots to choose from, almost 300 sites, and each one has a view that rivals its neighbor.
2 Slough Creek Campground, Yellowstone
One for the fishing fans, Slough Creek in the iconic Yellowstone National Park is quite small at just 16 sites but its location makes it incredibly popular. Placed at the heart of the Lamary Valley, it is not uncommon to have wildlife walking through the campsite on a daily basis.
As the sun goes down and the campfire begins to fade, listen out for the distant baying of a wolfpack, something campers can often here as they get ready to retire for the day.
1 Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
Spend the days at Great Sand Dunes National Park making the most of the wonderful dunes that give the area its name before establishing yourself at Pinon Flats, the best campground within the park.
Free of sand and flanked by protective cottonwood and conifer trees, there is no better spot in Colorado to make the most of nature. Take in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on the horizon while cooking dinner over an open fire and marvel at just how gorgeous the world can be.