Camping near Iowa City with wildlife watching

This vibrant city offers access to area parks and a river’s edge.

100% (710 reviews)
100% (710 reviews)

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10 top campgrounds near Iowa City with wildlife watching

98%
(594)

Draco Hill Nature Farm

4 sites · RVs, Tents75 acres · West Branch, IA
A convenient 7 miles north of Interstate 80 but feels like an oasis away from it all. Summer has begun! The prairie is starting to flower, the mulberries are just finishing up and black raspberries are coming on in the woods for you to forage. Please take a taste and leave the rest for others to enjoy! There have also been black bear sightings in Cedar County! If one decides to visit, please steer clear of it. They are NOT as cute as they look, especially if you get between them and their food or cubs! This year, Draco Hill Nature Farm is hosting free events you can join in on when you camp! Coming up is a night time bug show and talk July 12 and prairie walks in August and September. See Dracohill.org/events for details. Make it part of your camping experience or sign up for your own private sustainable agriculture tour under "Extras." Enjoy nature in a private, wooded river valley setting. Go to sleep under the stars to the sound of frogs, cicadas, coyotes, deer and the rustling wind through the tallgrass prairie. Wake to an amazing sunrise over the river. Enjoy a hike through our 4 miles of trails on 75 acres of rolling woodlands and prairie, picking berries, finding mushrooms, scaring up a turkey or pheasant in the brush or listening to the birds. (Pull out your Merlin app to see who's singing!) Play in the river or upland pond, cut cattails and prairie grasses for souvenirs and enjoy being unplugged for a while. Your hosts are here if you need us, but we leave you to enjoy this beautiful place at your own pace.
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$34
 / night
100%
(138)

n*Everland Barnyard Camping

24 sites · RVs, Tents20 acres · Anamosa, IA
New for 2024: We have expanded the flat land available for camping while maintaining the privacy of all our campsites. We have added sites, but don't worry, you will still experience the same solitude and peace as if you were our only guests. The promised bathhouse/storm shelter is also nearing completion, and we should be able to offer showers (and safe haven during storms) to guests during the 2024 season! Do you want to hike into a site? We have a few sites in the woods that are not easily accessible by car, if you want that kind of experience just mention it when booking. Follow us on Facebook to stay abreast of our current events! Summer Solstice, Full Moon Sound Baths, and Music planned Summer 2024. AND News coming soon about a 2024 July retreat too! We are not very active on FB though, so we may miss your message if you reach out to us that way. https://www.facebook.com/Never... FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN: Please reach out to us in messaging to determine if this is the right fit for your family vacation as we feel there are better options in the area for kids, but we do make exceptions for the well-behaved and respectful older children. Thank you for your understanding. ABOUT THE BARNYARD: n*Everland Barnyard is an eccentric art installation space created from found, recycled, and repurposed building materials in the heart of Grant Wood Country in Jones County, Iowa. We are not a commercial campground. We focus on Zen, mindfulness, peace, and tranquility. Firmly in the realm of Outsider Art, Gothic and rustic, Bob Kellogg has created a place unlike anywhere else in the world that represents freedom and inspires endless creativity. The land provides multiple camp sites for easy access to bike and walking trails taking visitors into town or through the Wapsipinicon State Park across the river from the property. Anamosa offers several restaurants, grocery stores and other businesses all within walking distance and less than a mile from our land. Kayak the Wapsipinicon River, we recommend a put in at Matsell Bridge, and end only a mile away from your campsite at the Barnyard in Anamosa at the dam takeout. Visit the State Penitentiary Museum, hang out with the Barnyard chickens, hike our wooded trails, or simply unwind. This place is a magical retreat unlike anywhere else in the world. If you are seeking to disconnect from the world, find presence and live in the Now, this is the place for you. We also offer #ProjectCreatePeace, an initiative to create more peace in the world through art as an art project. Check out the extras listings to get your art on while you are here! There is a beautiful spring-fed water hole ideal for swimming in the state park, as well as access to the river from our property (although we do not recommend swimming in the river due to pollutants.) Watching the sunset at the river is one of our absolutely favorite ways to end the day. n*Everland Barnyard and the events we host are the perfect place to meet cool like-minded people, so even if you are single traveler, know that you will find an inviting, safe, and welcome site here for your getaway! We make some of the best pizza you have ever eaten (or so we keep being told) and we have a few special weekends a summer that highlight events such as sound baths that feature garden-fresh, oven-baked foods and pizza. Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Never... to stay updated on our events!
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$55
 / night
99%
(233)

Folk School Farm Stay

7 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents120 acres · Oxford, IA
Come enjoy the natural beauty of a working farm! In our transition to agroforestry, wetland restoration and perennial ag, you'll find some great spaces to walk your dog, let your children run and learn about ecological conservation. The farm is also home to a flower cutting garden, a food forest garden, and a folk school. Guests are welcome to cut flowers for a donation, and enjoy the sheep, chickens and resident cat. The setting is also great for taking in sunrises, sunsets and star gazing. Come explore the landscape, book a farm tour or enjoy some studio space at Land Alliance Folk School.
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$40
 / night
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(34)

#JTRidge Sites/Clothing Optional

11 sites · Tents15 acres · Oxford Junction, IA
Are you looking for the opportunity to be free and connect with nature naturally? A place to reconnect with your soul or reconnect with your significant other(s). Do you need to escape life for even just a little bit? A place to safely be your true self or selves. Our spaces are all about privacy and relaxing in nature peacefully. Perfect for first time clothing optional experiences. Maybe you just prefer a quiet natural low key space to relax. Are you a regular camper who is tired of the busy big campgrounds? Need a overnight camping spot that is more nature and less people? Looking for a place to relax in the sun naturally and just take some time for yourself or time with the special people in your life? Along with offering overnight camping sites, we offer day passes for those who just want some chill time within the day. A day pass gives you access to the property, relaxing chairs for that perfect moment in the sun and the woods to wander as you connect with nature. Perfect for a lunch break or just a step away from life for a few hours. Sneak away and take some moments to recharge yourself naturally. Day passes can be a bit tricky to book, reach out if you need help with the site. We hope you will find that this is a place for everything listed above and so much more. A space to enjoy some downtime, quiet at peace with nature, and a place for restorative just-for-me time. Perfect for yoga in the woods or a natural spot to meditate. Not a commercial campground, just a piece of personal property that we are looking to share with others who enjoy time in nature. We enjoy our natural privacy and welcome you to experience the same. We are stewards of the property and are charged with taking care of all that Mother Nature has given us. If you need space to think, read a book, or just be you, this could be the right fit. Very private and peaceful, perfect for those looking for some alone time or time with family/friends. Forget the news, forget work, forget city life, and just take in the moments; while listening to the birds sing, (Pull out your Merlin app) to see who's singing! Your hosts are here if you need us, but we leave you to enjoy this beautiful place at your own pace. We give you privacy to enjoy your stay fully. We have 15 acres of woods with a natural rock bluff, so many different spaces which allow you to fully bond with nature. Trails to wander and wildlife to see. Clothing is optional through out all of the property; overnight camping and sunbathing/day pass spots are available. Located on the Wapsipinicon River. Camp sites are very private and tucked away from life's stresses. Relax in the woods. Watch the cows and calves moo in the nearby pasture. Walk nature trails with native wildlife and flora. Great photo opportunities abound. Cast a line to catch dinner. Escape to nature is the key to this property; find yourself tucked away from city sounds and light pollution. Come out to see the sunset/sunrise, check out the stars, read a good book, lay out in your favorite hammock, find yourself, and be at peace. Great place for a nice camping fire; treat yourself to some smores. Peaceful sounds at night of the river flowing as you drift off to sleep in your tent. Perfect little spot for peaceful relaxation and just taking some time. Walk the trails in your natural skin, shoot photos of all the different plants, listen to the birds and animals scurry, enjoy the sunshine, and feel the warmth on all of your body. Put in your canoe or kayak at Olin for a 3-4 hour float to our camping area. There are lots of state parks within a short drive; visit the only Presidential library in Iowa; and tour some amazing caves in nearby parks. Enjoy the Great Jones County Fair only 30 mins away.. So much to do, and then come back to a space without crowds and just chill. Welcoming to all, we love to meet new people and let them share in the joy of bonding with nature freely. **Property Owner is certified in Massage, offering sessions at the property.
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$20
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98%
(33)

River Camp

3 sites · RVs28 acres · Iowa City, IA
Learn more about this land:Private 28 acre parcel with scattering of cabins and houses. Includes many feet of river frontage with private road along river that makes for good biking or walking. Some trails in forest. Lots of birds and wildlife. Large 100 year old oak trees, giant sycamores and cottonwood trees on the property. Short trail to river provides access for kayaking or fishing. Put in at Sturgis Ferry Park by airport in Iowa City and kayak to campsite or go further to Hills Access at Hills, Iowa. Camp site is close to Iowa City, but the quiet site seems 100's of miles away. River Camp is close to Ryerson's Woods State Forest Preserve, Johnson County Fairgrounds, Terry Trueblood Recreation Area and a 10 minute drive to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.
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$49
 / night
100%
(66)

Walking Stick Adventures Tipi Camp

2 sites · Lodging4 acres · Williamsburg, IA
We offer one private site on four acres, including a small pond, beach, treehouse, trails and peace and quiet. In addition to the tipi, there are kayaks, canoe, fire ring, wood supply, cooking equipment, dutch ovens, hammock, and tables and chairs. Campers will need to bring sleeping bags and food. Dogs are welcome. There is a rustic restroom (outhouse), with an outdoor shower. Water and electricity are available at the restroom and campsite. In addition, Navigation Play-Williamsburg, provides outdoor play opportunities at the farm on a seasonal basis. If interested, find her on her facebook page or find her link on my website www.walkingstickadventurescom.com Our dream was to restore an old farmstead to prairie and woods, grow our own food, make some wine and create a wonderland for grandchildren. The tipi and pond campsite is our way of sharing our place. We love meeting new people, especially those that are looking for a new camping experience.
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$116
 / night
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(1)

Cottage on the Bay

1 site · Lodging1 acre · New Boston, IL
This Sears kit home was originally built in 1941 and has been remodeled to give it a more cabin like feel. It sits on 1.38 acres of land with mature trees and direct access to Boston Bay which connects to the Mississippi River. Enjoy the view from the new deck or take your boat or jet ski down the road to one of 3 public boat launches. This area is known for boating, fishing, hunting, camping and snowmobiling.
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$130
 / night
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(14)

Blueberry Hill

1 site · RV, Tent10 acres · Oxford, IA
Welcome to our idyllic 10-acre historic farmstead in rural Johnson County, Iowa (about 8 miles west of Iowa City). We are a bookish, quiet couple with a 7-year-old daughter, 2 llamas, 12 chickens, 2 lambs, 3 housecats, and 5-10 barn cats. In June and July, we open our farm to the public for U-pick organic blueberries. We're looking for Hipcampers who are respectful and clean.
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$50
 / night
Booked 1 time

Deer Camp Cabin

1 site · Lodging8 acres · Center Junction, IA
Our property is a family owned property that we love to relax at, hunt on, farm, pick apples, have friends and family gatherings at and just make memories! We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!!Learn more about this land:Our 'Deer Camp Cabin' is truly the perfect all-season getaway for you and your family and/or friends! No matter the season we have you covered at our Deer Cabin! During the winter you can cozy up by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate and a warm blanket while listening to the crackle of the the wood burning in the large stone fireplace. In the spring you will see all the woodland critters frolicking from the deck or covered porch while having your morning cup of coffee. In the summer you can pick apples from our apple trees or even watch the deer come right out of the woods to eat the apples that have fallen on the ground. In the fall you can just enjoy the autumn views of the leaves changing colors and the peaceful tranquility of being completely secluded in the woods while sitting on the porch swing or in one of the rocking chairs on the covered porch. Our Deer Cabin is nestled back on a dead end road in the thick of the timber, so you are sure to be able to relax and rejuvenate while getting away from the hustle and bustle and every day stresses of life. While at the Deer Cabin you can enjoy the walking trails we are putting in and very soon to come a second fully stocked pond and beach that you can fish and kayak at. Unfortunately, you are not able to access our finished pond at this time due to the corn and lack of trails to get to it. However, in the meantime there is a wonderful park just 10 minutes away from our cabin that has the best fishing and kayaking called Central Park, which I highly recommend going and visiting during your stay with us. Bedroom 1: Queen Bed | Bedroom 2: 2 Twin Beds | Additional Sleeping: Pull Out Sofa Sleeper Mattress, and Blow-UP Mattress OUTDOOR LIVING: Covered front porch, wood deck off the kitchen, patio table and chairs, porch swing, 2 rocking chairs, fire pit (10 pieces of firewood are provided) if you would like additional wood that is not a problem there is just an additional fee that would need to be paid via another payment source, charcoal grill, Traeger smoker, and a basketball hoop. INDOOR LIVING: Wood burning fireplace, dining table, 2 Smart TVs, X-Box, 3 bar stools, couch, 2 recliners, KITCHEN: Fully equipped, dishwasher, island, cooking basic, spices, garbage can, cleaning supplies. GENERAL: Free WiFi, complimentary toiletries, bath towels, sheets, washer & dryer, blow dryer, extra blankets and pillows FAQ: Stairs required, exterior security camera, Lockly keyless entry. PARKING: large driveway & clearing * NOTE: Well behaved dogs are welcome and at no additional cost at this point (but that could be subject to change) Feel free to bring your dogs along for the fun, but kindly limit it to 2 pets per booking. We do NOT allow pets on beds, any other furniture, or the bear rug. Please ensure their paws are clean before they enter the house and be considerate of our other rugs. Please clean up after your pet to prevent everyone from stepping on any fur baby landmines! Please do NOT leave you pet unattended if you run into town or something (if your pet does not go with you it must be kenneled, as it can not be left to run You will be responsible for any damages caused by your pet at the cost of replacement or repair.
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$225
 / night
100%
(1)

Captain's Cove Muscatine

1 site · Lodging5 acres · Muscatine, IA
Originally built with four ponds to accommodate a Catfish Farm and Shitake Mushroom Farm - this property has been in the family for four generations. We are pleased to share this amazing property with your family to continue the tradition of enjoying life's moments. We consider this place a small piece of heaven in Iowa and hope you will too. The activities available range from fishing, swimming or kayaking, in our private ponds, bonfires, outdoor grilling, sunrise or sunset watching, hiking around the property, and so much more. The property is just minutes away from Wild Cat Den State Park, bike paths and the Muscatine River Front.
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$200
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Camping near Iowa City with wildlife watching guide

Overview

Welcome to Hipcamp, your go-to resource for camping in the United States! If you're looking for a camping experience near Iowa City, Iowa with a focus on wildlife watching, we've got you covered. With over 180 available options specifically tailored to your preference, you're sure to find the perfect spot. From the highly rated Windy Goat Acres (208 reviews) to Draco Hill Farm (192 reviews) and Folk School Farm Stay (135 reviews), there are plenty of top campsites to choose from. You'll find popular amenities like trash disposal, pet-friendly spaces, and toilets, as well as activities such as wildlife watching, boating, and swimming. Prices range from as low as $15 per night to an average of $35 per night. So pack your gear and get ready for an unforgettable camping adventure in Iowa City!

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