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Iowa Guide
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The 20 best camping spots in Iowa.

Best known for pastures and fields covering the heartland, Iowa also offers dramatic bluffs, rolling hills, and limestone caves.

Rock Creek Campground

1. Rock Creek Campground

Rock Creek Campground is one of central Iowa’s most popular campsites—spend just a few hours there and you’ll totally see why! Situated right on a...

Union Grove Campground

2. Union Grove Campground

If you’re looking for a stellar last-minute getaway not too far from Des Moines, Union Grove Campground is one heck of a spot! This little-known...

Iowa State Park camping provides for a beautiful experience in the heart land and offers many activities including rock climbing, biking, fishing, and hiking. Backbone State Park was the first dedicated state park in Iowa. Backbone is named for the steep and narrow ridge of bedrock cut by a loop of the Maquoketa River and forming the highest point in northeast Iowa known as Read more...
Iowa State Park camping provides for a beautiful experience in the heart land and offers many activities including rock climbing, biking, fishing, and hiking. Backbone State Park was the first dedicated state park in Iowa. Backbone is named for the steep and narrow ridge of bedrock cut by a loop of the Maquoketa River and forming the highest point in northeast Iowa known as the Devil's Backbone. In addition to camping on private land, Walnut Woods State Park is one of the only places with designated sites for camping in De Moines Iowa and boasts the largest surviving natural stand of black walnut trees in North America. Head 210 miles northwest of De Moines, and you’ll hit the Iowa Great Lakes—a string of glacial lakes covering about 15,000 acres. Maquoketa Caves is worth exploring: its caves, limestone formations and rugged bluffs provide visitors a chance to go back into geological time thousands of years.
Cherry Glen Campground

3. Cherry Glen Campground

Hoo boy, this is one huge campground on Saylorville Lake. With shaded sites, lofty trees, and a cooling lakeside breeze, it’s no wonder that this...

Prairie Flower Campground

4. Prairie Flower Campground

RV ready… no limits! At Prairie Flower Campground on Saylorville Lake, you can pull right in and enjoy your summer with ease. Oodles of picturesque...

Lake Macbride State Park is Iowa's largest state park, where 2,180 acres offers a variety of outdoor activities.
Bob Shetler Campground

5. Bob Shetler Campground

Pitch your tent (or park that RV) and get ready for some riverside livin’. Located right on the Des Moines River, Bob Shelter Campground has tons...

Elk Rock Campground

6. Elk Rock Campground

Livin large in luxury in the great outdoors! At Elk Rock State Park’s Campground you can roll up in your RV and get modern showers, electric...

Held at the end of summer is the Indianola Balloon Classic. Dozens of hot air balloons compete for prizes during this week long event.
Equestrian Campground

7. Equestrian Campground

Why settle for rustic equestrian camping when you can have modern electric hookup sites with a modern shower building and even a horse washing...

Wallashuck Campground

8. Wallashuck Campground

Picturesque camping less than an hour from Des Moines? Count us in! Wallashuck Campground has got you covered in terms of amenities, plus tons of...

Many consider the Grotto of Redemption to be the “Eighth Wonder of the World” and in 2001 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places.
Acorn Valley Campground

9. Acorn Valley Campground

Step into Acorn Valley Campground and you just might swoon at how perfectly picturesque this little spot is! Situated right near the shores of...

Pine Lake Campground

10. Pine Lake Campground

How about a weekend eating fresh caught fish tacos, lying on the beach, diving into cool refreshing water, and swinging in the hammock with a...

Climb the bluff at Pikes Peak State Park for amazing views of where the Mississippi and Wisconsin Rivers meet.
North Overlook Campground

11. North Overlook Campground

Who knew you could camp in the dense forest while also having quick access to the beach? At North Overlook Campground on Lake Red Rock, your dreams...

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Whitebreast Campground

12. Whitebreast Campground

Perched right on Lake Red Rock, Whitebreast Campground is a gorgeous spot to spend a day (or two or three!). Camping with kids? How about the whole...

Howell Station Campground

13. Howell Station Campground

Grab the kids, your buddies, or simply a few cold ones for a weekend of camping below Red Rock Dam on the Des Moines River. With prime access to...

Walnut Woods Campground

14. Walnut Woods Campground

Looking to gather around the campfire with the whole fan-damily, and perfect the art of marshmallow roasting? Give the shady campsites at Walnut...

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Ledges Campground

15. Ledges Campground

Make your next camping trip extraordinary with a visit to Ledges State Park. The park campground is modern and has standard, hike-in, and RV...

Ben
Ben: Living near the Des Moines metro, Ledges is one of the closest parks that offers you that, "I can't really be in Iowa still"...
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Lake Ahquabi Campground

16. Lake Ahquabi Campground

Get some R&R lakeside style at Lake Ahquabi State Park, which means “resting place” in Sauk and Fox native language. The modern campground on...

Lake Keomah Campground

17. Lake Keomah Campground

Fishing and camping trip coming right up! Come down to Lake Keomah State Park in any season for sunny summertime reeling or bundled ice fishing...

George Wyth Campground

18. George Wyth Campground

Just when you thought you had tried it all, here comes George Wyth State Park, smack dab in the middle of the Cedar Falls-Waterloo metropolitan...

Beach Campground

19. Beach Campground

Next time you feel like camping don’t forget to bring along your trusty steed! At Brushy Creek State Park there is a killer equestrian campground,...

99 Bottles Winery Hills
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20. 99 Bottles Winery Hills

tent among the vines, or use the "bunkhouse" sleeps up to 6, only 4 adults comfortably, or the Honeymoon Cabin, sleeps 2, there are electric...

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