Best backcountry camping in Michigan. Dare we say best island backcountry camping in Michigan? Sounds like bliss to us. If you venture to North Manitou Island, plan to camp overnight. A backcountry permit and fee payment must be completed before camping, you can obtain a map of the island and hiking trails when you obtain your permit. View the island map here. Camping is allowed almost anywhere on the island except within 300 feet of the Lake Michigan high water mark, lakes, streams, ponds, on any trail, buildings and other camps.

The small Village Campground on the island contains designated campsites, two fire rings, and one outhouse. Open fires are prohibited in the wilderness area, so if you;re jonesin’ to toast up some s’mores, take it to the village! PS, don’t take firewood to the island, and make sure to review the Backcountry Camping Regulations before you embark, voyager!

Campsite area
Tent sites
16 sites
Up to 4 guests per site
No wheelchair access
Campfires allowed
Toilet available
No picnic table


Offered near the campground.

Snow sports
Whitewater paddling


Natural features you'll find at North Manitou Island - Village Campground.

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19 Reviews

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Hipcamper Jill
Jill W.
recommends this listing.
January 29th, 2019

Watch for ticks in the summer! Beautiful island, camp on the west side for the best sunsets.

Hipcamper Andrew
Andrew W.
didn't provide a recommendation.
February 12th, 2018

Love this island did a trip with 7 of my best buddies 2 years in a row. We explored the whole island. My favorite part is the west side of the island. The wind from the coast keeps the bugs away. On that side of the island, there are massive sand dunes and an epic sunset on Lake Michigan. You take a 45min ferry ride to the island but the ship has a bar! most importantly you are allowed to camp anywhere on the island you dont have to stay at the designated campground so bring your backpacking gear. check it out >>>>>

Hipcamper Bonnie
Bonnie S.
didn't provide a recommendation.
October 27th, 2015

Amazing place. I don't think the description states it's a 1 hour ferry ride to the island. Canpground was fun, community fire pit was a blast, but grab your backpacking gear and hike the island! There's miles of beautiful coast line to see.

Hipcamper Jill R.
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August 1st, 2018
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August 10th, 2018
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August 31st, 2018
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February 10th, 2019
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March 21st, 2019
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June 29th, 2018
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June 10th, 2018
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February 12th, 2018
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January 16th, 2018
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February 24th, 2017
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
United States
Phone Number
(231) 326-4700
View on Google Maps
Official Website
View Website
45.136° N, 85.995° W
Tent Only - Hike In: 8 Sites
(Up to 4 people per site)
Tent Only - Group: 8 Sites
(Up to 4 people per site)