Family-friendly RV camping in Iowa

Explore lakes, rivers, wide-open expanses, and hilly countryside in the heart of the American Midwest.

99% (692 reviews)
99% (692 reviews)

Popular camping styles for Iowa

Available this weekend

Under $50

5 top RV sites in Iowa

100%
(102)

Bend River Farms

5 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents50 acres · Runnells, IA
Bend River Farms is just a short drive from Interstate 80/35. The farm is nestled in the gently rolling hills of central Iowa. Little Camp Creek flows through the property and continues on towards the mighty Des Moines river. Cool woodland meadows provide a comforting back drop to your tent site or glamping experience. All our sites come with complimentary firewood, we offer reduced prices during the summer and a 15% discount on weekday bookings. Our property offers private restrooms, showers, complimentary towels and firewood, 24/7 laundry room, Wi-Fi, a dish washing station, play area with jungle gym, hiking trails, hands on farm animal activities, a communal outdoor dinning area and a saltwater hot tub await your arrival! Bend River Farms was a former junk yard that has now been transformed into a cottage core dream. The farm is operated much like family farms of the 1920's. The focus is on small scale, multi system agriculture, we have fresh eggs, produce and honey for sale. Bend River Farms is not a resort or public camp ground. It is a place to enjoy wild spaces and recharge. Agri-tourism at it's best. Learn about native prairie restoration, regenerative agriculture and sustainable ranching from owners, Amy Buckendahl and Dave Breese. Please understand that our property is a working farm, and our staff are often busy working on projects and have full careers, outside of farming. We do not have the same amenities as a public campground or "all inclusive" camp resort. Instead, we offer your wandering heart a place to rest. All travel to the farm is on paved roads, with no confusing dirt roads to navigate. The property is located near the small community of Runnells, Iowa in rural Camp Township. Enjoy a cold beer or hot food at one of the two local taverns, or check out the local ice cream shop or our local farmer's market on Tuesday evenings during the summer. Don't worry if you forget something! We have a nearby gas station and a general store. Don't forget, we have smores kits, farm fresh honey and eggs available for purchase, check out the EXTRAS option during checkout! Amy, our own resident biologist, will give you an opportunity to learn about livestock husbandry and the local wildlife. The farms orchard boasts several wild bird feeding stations, with edible landscaping! A stay on our farm will provide you with an opportunity to learn about Land Management in an agricultural setting. Learn about carpentry and welding from a master fabricator, or book an adventure to learn about gardening, poultry care, horsemanship, beekeeping and even falconry! These are also available in the EXTRAS option during checkout. Fancy a fireside meal or homestyle dinner? Dave is a trained chef and loves to cook for our guests. Select a meal during checkout. Off-site, but nearby opportunities: miles of scenic hiking and biking trails, kayaking and fishing. The Iowa State Fair Grounds and Adventureland Waterpark is only 20 minutes away, along with big city fine dining, music and art museums are all less than a thirty miles drive; when you need a break from camping and nature. Fee based transportation is available for guests flying in or needing a break from driving, or whenever you need a quick trip into town. Our philosophy: "Here at Bend River Farms we are passionate about regenerative agriculture. We strive to push ourselves and our partners to think of the future and the longevity of our agricultural practices. " Regenerative Agriculture is an agricultural philosophy that both acknowledges the degenerative impact of poor land stewardship, and the positive use of agricultural practices that foster restoration and productivity." Local conditions determine which practices are most appropriate. A well managed food system should improve the long-term health and function of the agricultural system and the communities that depend upon them, physically, culturally, spiritually, and economically. Regeneratively managed businesses protect and improve the natural function of our water, nutrient, and carbon cycles by taking steps to increase biodiversity in the agricultural system, and works to minimize reliance on external inputs, and avoid the use of synthetic chemicals whenever possible.”
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$32
 / night
97%
(230)

Nature Heaven

8 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents40 acres · Knoxville, IA
This seclude, beautiful pet friendly 40 acres of fenced camping site is on top of hilly land and is rare in Iowa. It has close view of 3.5 private fishing ponds and far view of the Red Rock Lake. There are 10 acres nature timber area that keep you away from the other campers and rest of the world. Each site has a firepit, picnic table and a solar light . The drinking water is at the entrance, but no electricity on site. The RVs need to be self contained. There are tons of nature features, you may see deer, rabbits and other game birds by your campsite. Each camping sites have good distances to keep privacy from each other. A recently built a 20ft diameter geodesic dome tent is for those who want more climate controlled stay while still enjoying the magnificent nature's gifts. For surrounding areas, the close by White Breast Beach is open from May 23-September 3, 2024, boating, hunting and hiking activities in the lake red rock year around. For our campers safety, any hunting activities are not allowed within our camping ground. However, in case you come for hunting with Iowa hunting tags, a couple of public deer hunting grounds are near our camping ground. The recently built glamping geodesic Dome tent is located on a top of hill. You will have a fantastic sunset view of ponds and lake view while enjoy the great nature, and have a comfortable stay . The cell phone signals are good, you may use your cell phone hotspot work remotely at this astonishing Lake Red Rock Oasis ^_^. Hope you will find joy, peace and happiness in this wonderful piece of natural land and the Red Rock lake areas. A little history of this land: This 40 acres of land was a surface mining site. The reclamation works done during the 1970s. But over the years, the soil was seriously eroded. Anna and Peilin, who have Master's and PhD in soil and environment health background, bought this land several years ago and started to restore the vegetation. Now the site looks beautiful and ready for nature lovers and campers to enjoy the fantastic view of the lake, ponds and tall grass... The site is totally different from what the Google map shows now.
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$25
 / night
98%
(695)

Horse Creek Adventures

26 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents170 acres · Sidney, IA
Horse Creek Adventures is a 170 acre ranch that provides an opportunity for visitors to stay one night or several days to enjoy the land and area sights. You have your choice as to how you want to stay. Our "off the grid" cabins offer a special opportunity to camp with a roof. The cabins are extremely popular! Check out the information about them and then check the photos posted by quests and read their reviews to give you lots of ideas of how you could enjoy these one of a kind sites. Tenting is available all over the 170 acres. You can tent by the pond; on top of the hill, or in a valley. These sites allow you to "get away from it all" and let the stress melt away. We have tenting sites close to a road to give you flexibility to see local attractions while enjoying the whole 170 acres. Lastly, we have RV hook-ups with 119, 30 amps and 50 amps The land is part of the famous Loess Hills. There are hilltops to take in the breath taking views and valleys surrounded by trees. A pond full of trophy sized bass , catch and release, no license required. Wildlife abounds including a wide variety of birds. We have been described by avid birders as a rich place for birding. The area is rich with history-Lewis and Clark; French Canadian trappers and their Lakota wives established French Villages; Mormons came through here on the way to Utah; Jesse James played cards. Waubonsie State Park is close with hiking trails and seven miles of Horse trails. At night you can use a portable corral to have your horse close. End the day around a campfire, look at the stars and the lightening bugs and be serenaded to sleep by the coyotes and whip-poor-wills Enjoy !!
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$30
 / night
98%
(90)

Greenhouse Camping

2 sites · RVs5 acres · Ankeny, IA
We love this beautiful land that has been in our family since 1917, and think you will too!   We are located 1/2 mile off I-35 at the north border of the City of Ankeny.  Here you'll find the best of both worlds just fifteen minutes away from your quiet campsite - Boating, skiing, jet-skiing, fishing at Saylorville Lake.   Canoe,  kayak and paddleboat rental at Big Creek State Park.  Swimming & waterplay for all ages at the Ankeny Aquatic Center.  Upscale shopping and dining at the District.  Or venture out a bit further to concert venues in Ames & Des Moines, local farmers markets, Des Moines' beautiful riverwalk and exciting nightlife, or the Iowa State Fair.  It's the best of country and suburban living!  End your day with a quiet stroll along the mowed walking path that overlooks one of the most beautiful areas of Four Mile Creek in Iowa, which circles right back to your cozy campfire.   Learn more about this land:You'll love this relaxing space to camp and enjoy the Iowa outdoors!  Very easy access,  we are just 1/2 mile off of Interstate-35.  Our farm is bordered by nature on three sides and the city of Ankeny on the south.  This is a single campsite, private and quiet. Your campsite has an adjoining mowed private walking trail overlooking Four Mile Creek, and is also within walking distance of Ankeny sidewalks for biking, walking, jogging.  It’s the best of both worlds - town and country! We're a 15 minute drive from Big Creek and Ledges State Parks, Jester Park and Saylorville Lake where you can enjoy fishing, skiing, boating, horseback riding, hiking, biking, and the beach life.  You'll find unique shopping experiences, delicious dining, a good movie, a thriving live music scene just 15 minutes away in downtown Des Moines, downtown and campus town Ames, and  at The District in Ankeny.  Upon your arrival you'll find the greenhouse mini-fridge is stocked with 4 complimentary bottles of water and everything you'll need for making S'mores.  One free bundle of wood is included with each booking.  
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$35
 / night
100%
(39)

Tent camping on the Raccoon River

1 site · RV, Tent42 acres · Lake City, IA
Learn more about this land:Come relax at Rainbow Raccoon Ranch on the Raccoon River. The river offers floating, kayaking, canoeing, and fishing. The nearby Rainbow Bend park and other local conservation areas offer hiking opportunities. As a working ranch, we have friendly Scottish Highland cattle onsite for great photos and selfies.
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$20
 / night

Star Hosts in Iowa

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Family-friendly RV camping in Iowa guide

Overview

Sandwiched between the Mississippi, Missouri, and Big Sioux Rivers, Iowa is characterized by a mix of plains and hilly countryside, farmlands,  lakes, and rivers. This Midwestern state is full of spots to get out and adventure, with about 83 state parks and nearly 6,000 campsites spread among them. The state also has an extensive river system—with numerous lakes and reservoirs—and boating and angling are among the most popular summer activities here. Like elsewhere in the Midwest, the winter months often bring with them plenty of snow, ideal for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.

Where to go

Northwest Iowa

Northwest Iowa has lots of parks and camping opportunities along the Des Moines River, including the massive Brushy Creek State Recreation Area and Dolliver Memorial State Park. The Lakes Region—home to West and East Okoboji Lakes and Big Spirit Lake—is particularly popular among boaters, anglers, and birders, with a number of state parks and wildlife preserves across the region. Camping is available at Gull Point State Park.

Southwest Iowa

Southwest Iowa is characterized by wide-open farmland and pretty woodlands. Cyclists can take a tour of this region on the Wabash Trace Nature Trail, which stretches for 63 miles from the Missouri border up to Council Bluffs near the Nebraska border. The region's Loess Hills State Forest is one of the more popular areas for outdoor recreation, offering a fishing lake and more than 60 miles of trails.

Northeast Iowa

Iowa's Northeast is ideal for getting outside, with miles of recreation opportunities, from trout fishing to canoeing, on the Mississippi River and its Upper Iowa River tributary. Popular spots in the region include Backbone State Park, which offers camping, fishing, and cycling and hiking trails. The Effigy Mounds National Monument, which preserves hundreds of ancient effigy mounds built by Indigenous people during the first millennium, is also worth a visit.

Southeast Iowa

There's no shortage of lakes in Iowa's southeastern region, including Lake Keomah, Indian Lake, and Lake Bonnefield,  in the charming town of Fairfield. This region is home to Lake Red Rock—the largest lake in the state—and the lakefront Elk Rock State Park offers camping, boat ramps, and 13 miles of trails. Other lake areas worth checking out include Geode State Park on the banks of Lake Geode and Lacey-Keosauqua State Park, which has camping, cabin rentals, and easy access to Lake Seguma.

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