The best camping near Grayson Highlands State Park

Discover the most magical spots to pitch your tent or park your rig on your next Grayson Highlands adventure.

100% (37 reviews)
100% (37 reviews)

Along with hiking and bouldering, these rocky mountains host wild ponies and live music festivals.  

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Community favorites near Grayson Highlands State Park

Top-rated campgrounds reviewed by the Hipcamp community.

Top-rated campgrounds near Grayson Highlands State Park

99%
(706)

OnTop.camp - NW NC Ashe Co

5 sites · RVs, Tents100 acres · Jefferson, NC
www.ontop.camp Update! 11.11.23 the leaves down opening up views that were not there before! If sites are booked still msg asking for availability, there’s a chance! Welcome! Our farm is vast and sparse, focusing on sustainability while giving back to the community. We are a safe haven for animals and humans alike. Situated on and between two peaks of Little Phoenix Mountain range in Jefferson Ashe County. Our sites’ altitudes range from 3100 feet to over 3600 feet, which is a lot of slope and hillside to say the least. As a guest you will be offered insane long views and limited exposure to the oldest registered breed of bovine in the world. Our Scottish Highland Cattle are majestic and fit in quite well in the NC mountainside. Located in the Blue Ridge mountains, we have natural water springs popping out, some of which are tapped to drink from. (10.1.23 currently farm springs are not accessible to guests, shatley springs up the road approx 4miles north has a public spring that we highly recommend) If you are looking for a camping spot that is only 5-10 minutes from town (Jefferson NC or the quaint Downtown West Jefferson) but feels like you're in the middle of no where, then we have it! The Blue Ridge Parkway is less than 20 minutes away and the New River equally close. OnTopOfTheWorld.camp *firewood is available if you pay on site you will have to use Venmo OnTop.camp
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$70
 / night
99%
(69)

The Corner at Spencers' Highland

1 site · RV, Tent10 acres · Wilson Creek, VA
Learn more about this land: 1/8 acre opening in the corner of our 10 acre property. This opening is surrounded by tall white pines on the border of Grayson Highlands State Park. 100 ft behind the opening is Mill Creek, a spring fed tributary of Wilson Creek, where Rainbow Trout can be found. There are no hookups available at this primitive campsite. Generators are allowed and RV's may dump their grey water.
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$20
 / night
98%
(96)

Waterdog Campground

18 sites · RVs, Tents12 acres · Crumpler, NC
Spend the night under the stars… On our quaint 12 acre river bottom tucked away behind the mountains. The campsite is on the edge of the New River, overlooking its clear waters and abundance of wildlife. Listen to the sounds of nature as you fish right off the bank. Enjoy tubing/kayaking/canoeing 5 miles to Zaloo’s or 4 miles to New River Outfitters or take a 1 mile “kid’s trip” from a secluded access to J E Gentry bridge. Our family-friendly site is an economical way to have fun and get in touch with nature. And yes! we are dog-friendly as well! Please note that cell service is very limited and WiFi is not provided. Prolonged rainy conditions in the river bottom may get muddy, so please be prepared for your stay!
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$35
 / night
99%
(88)

Blue Bear Mountain Camp

46 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents150 acres · Boone, NC
Blue Bear Mountain Camp offers year-round camping experiences for every type of outdoor enthusiast. Car-accessible tent and RV sites in a natural setting. Hike-in sites for those looking for a little more adventure and privacy. Stargazer Domes and Cabin rentals for guests wanting a rustic, mountain getaway while staying in comfort. Located just 8 miles north of Boone, NC on over 150 acres of pristine mountain land, miles of hiking trails, a trout pond, and spacious low-density sites allow the guest to get away from it all in a rustic, remote setting. In the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. At 4,000 feet elevation, come enjoy cool mountain breezes and mild temperatures. Blue Bear Mountain is a scenic location for large events such as weddings, corporate events, and family reunions. Come Get away from it all at Blue Bear Mountain! Blue Bear Mountain offers spacious, Low-Density RV camping, spacious, private, rustic car-accessible tent camping, and spacious, private remote tent camping. Blue Bear Mountain also offers luxury Stargazer Domes and Cabin rentals to provide you with more choices of how to experience your mountain getaway. In a beautiful mountain setting with incredible views, the Stargazer Domes are a great way to enjoy the camping experience without really roughing it. Great for a romantic getaway or bringing the family. Furnished with a queen size bed, complete with high-quality linens, a bistro table, and chairs, you will stay in complete comfort. Conveniently located near the bathhouse with private bathrooms, a Laundry room, and a dishwashing station. You can drive right up to the handcrafted stargazer dome. Relax and take in the views while sitting around your stone fire ring. A park grill, picnic table, and free bundle of firewood are also provided to complete your glamping getaway.
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$30
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100%
(23)

Gypsy Wagon Tiny Home by the Pond

3 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents67 acres · Mouth Of Wilson, VA
Learn more about this land:Tucked into the woods next to a tiny creek above a pond, you will enjoy NATURE surrounding your soul. This Tiny Home Gypsy Wagon features a Queen Bed, Custom Designed for Spacious Feel and all your basic amenities! Do you dream of quiet seclusion where the main noises are the birds in the forest and the deer passing by or the bull frogs at night to serenade you to sleep. If you are looking for a few nights to escape the reality of the fast paced life to recharge and reset yourself, then this Gypsy Wagon is calling to your soul! Under 90 sq ft, it is definitely a Tiny Home, but this little Wagon was custom designed to make you as spacious and open to nature as possible. It has a raised center ceiling with nautical windows that let in great light and make standing comfortable even for those who are tall. It has a 12 pane glass front door, combined with 2 large side windows that allow all the natural light you could need. Then in the evenings there are lights tucked into the pine woodwork that set off the inside with a peaceful glow. This Tiny Home boasts a Queen Sized bed with a very comfortable memory foam mattress. Stay comfortable year-round with a small mini-split system offering AC and Heat. There is a small coffee maker, toaster oven, mini fridge and microwave for your conveniences. Outside you will find a small tent on the wood decking that provides shelter from the rain and a nice place to sit in your zero-gravity chairs while listening to the tiny creek that runs by filing the pond below. Here you are also provided with a outdoor gas grill for cooking as well. There is no bathroom facility however a short walk down and across the creek is a private port-a-jon for your needs. There is a bathroom and shower facility in our barn within walking distance for your convenience. Go lay on a blanket in the grass by the pond, feed the Koi Fish, relax in the swinging hammock chairs while gazing at the nights galaxies and stars (very low light pollution in our area). This certainly is the spot to relax and renew. No wifi or phone service at the Wagon itself, but you can gain wifi and some phone service (depending on provider) from the barn area nearby. The entire Gypsy Wagon area is yours to use. The Pond Area is generally only used by Wagon Guests....on rare occasions you may find our family at the pond area but we try to leave it your own private oasis during your stay. The port-a-jon near the Wagon is yours to use. The bathroom and shower facilities down at the barn are shared with others with a shower sign-up sheet. This is an active and working horse farm and non-profit animal rescue. The location of the Wagon is tucked into the woods privately and is bordered by a horse pasture. You may occasionally hear horses, donkeys or dogs....a diesel truck or tractor sometimes as well.
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$50
 / night
98%
(126)

Beech Grove River Spot

3 sites · RVs, Tents14 acres · Damascus, VA
In addition to using this land as our camping/fishing get-a-way, it is also used for hay! Our 5th generation farm and home are just a few miles away, where we raise sheep, cattle, goats and chickens. Learn more about this land:Spend the night along the river in a 14 acre field. We have a picnic table, fire pit and grill in place! This site is easily accessible and along a road. The Appalachian Trail and Virginia Creeper Trail are a few miles away in Damascus, Va, where you can bike, hike, shop or eat. Just a 45 minute drive away is Grayson Highlands, where you can hike and see the wild ponies! Abingdon, VA is 20 minutes away. Hang out around a fire, fish (if you have your fishing license), or just relax by the river! We are excited to share our favorite camping spot. We live just a few miles away on our farm and are happy to help in any way we can. Happy Camping!
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$35
 / night
98%
(45)

Creeping Thyme Forest

7 sites · RVs, Tents75 acres · Abingdon, VA
Early settlers of this area were mainly Scotch-Irish and there are several dominant family names that still populate these areas. Tobacco was grown in the area for many years, but now is rarely seen. This whole valley between two mountain ranges was chosen in the 1970's to be dammed and made into a reservoir for a hydroelectric power plant; however, the residents at the time formed a strong resistance, went to Washington, and eventually blocked the development, preserving its natural beauty. This land is within the Jefferson National Forest. It was owned for many years by Roy Light, owner of a nearby lumber mill, but when he passed away, his children cleared the timber and moved away. Since then, the diverse deciduous forest has regrown quickly. A rustic cabin made from salvaged hand-hewn logs was built on the site in 2014 and an alpaca farm was established; however, the owners had to move away due to employment changes. Currently, we are working on developing a perennial food forest, as well as dairy goats, and chickens. 
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$25
 / night
100%
(21)

Chestnut Hill Camping

1 site · RV, Tent11 acres · Jefferson, NC
Hilltop camping along the New River in the Blue Ridge Mountains. We have a 20 x 30 primitive camping site available, topped with mulch, a chiminea, and a picnic table. The site is surrounded by trees for hammocks and has room for 2 large tents. A fire ring is available for use 100 yards up the hill on a cleared knoll. Please note: The driveway is steep all-wheel or 4-wheel drive is needed for towed campers and camper vans. The driveway leads directly to the campsite. Our secluded 11-acre hilltop property lies just across Chestnut Hill Road from the New River. It is within walking distance of New River Outfitters where you can rent kayaks and canoes, or purchase a fishing license. The New River State Park is just 2 miles away for additional access to the New River and numerous hiking and nature trails. We are located 20 minutes from the charming town of West Jefferson in one direction and 20 minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway in the other. The famous Motley’s BBQ restaurant is only 10 minutes away, and Thistle Meadow Winery is only a 15-minute drive away. Our goal is to provide a quiet, secluded spot for campers to enjoy the beauty of Western North Carolina. Our cleared knoll with a fire ring offers minimal light pollution for night star gazing. A walking trail circles the property and accesses the lower knoll. Enjoy the abundance of wildflowers as you search the wooded hillside for two rocky outcroppings that allow for beautiful views of the river. Welcome to bring all your furry family members, dog bowls can be provided at request. Firewood is available for scavenging throughout the property. A well-maintained and clean Porta Potty screened by a fence is available near the campsite.
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$45
 / night
97%
(161)

Loafers Joy Meadow

3 sites · RVs, Tents6 acres · Zionville, NC
Our site was once part of a much larger farm growing tobacco and raising cattle and other farm animals.  The existing tobacco barn was built in the early 1960's.  The concrete pad used for RV camping was used to store silage for the cows.  The non-potable water source is a mountain spring that has been used on the farm since the 1930's.  While many tobacco barns in the area have been torn down for their rusted tin roofing and rustic siding, we have worked to restore the barn and preserve its history. 
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$20
 / night
100%
(6)

Whitetop Camp / Easy 2WD Access!

8 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents36 acres · VA
Location, location! Whitetop Camp is located in the heart of Whitetop, literally just minutes from the start of the Creeper Trail (Whitetop Station), Whitetop Mountain, the Appalachian Trail, and Grayson Highlands State Park. Our property is quiet and serene. A lovely creek runs through the property. There are 32 acres of woods for your camping and hiking enjoyment. There is also a large open field for frisbee and other recreation. A bike rental/shuttle shop, two gas stations, cafe, post office and library are a walkable distance away for your convenience.
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$25
 / night
99%
(1243)

Dark Ridge Hide Out (Adults Only)

16 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents20 acres · Elk Park, NC
"Adults only" doesn't mean anything other than just "no children", so as to preserve the natural peace and quiet, and assurance that there won't be loud and unruly children on the property. Inquiries and booking requests received after 9: pm may not be answered until the next morning. Dark Ridge Hide Out, is a 20 acre parcel in the Blue Ridge Mountain's on the back side of the Beech Mt Ski Resort in a secluded quiet and safe community with less than a dozen homes in a one mile radius. Away from light and sound pollution. Except for an occasional passing vehicle "and often none at all from 10pm to 6am" all you will hear is the sound of the creek which runs through the lower section by the RV sites, cricket's and frogs at the nearby fish pond and only the light from the moon and star's in the clear mountain sky and fire flies. It is my home place with a tobacco barn and a big combination cattle/tobacco barn built almost entirely just by my Mom and Dad in early 1940"s. My parents and grand parents lived off of the land here and raised cash crops like cabbage, corn and tobacco, we also raised sugar cane and made molasses, we had free range chickens, as many as 50 honey bee hives and over 50 head of cattle, two or three hog's and of course a horse. There was four main fields; two for cow pasture, one meadow to grow hay "now Christmas trees" and the main one on my part where all crops were grown is where the camp sites are. I grew up helping with the crops and other farm chores, one was to go to the pasture and bring the milk cows in and do the milking every day before and after school, feed the hogs and chickens, gather the egg's, let the chickens out in the morning and close the chicken house in the evening to protect them from critters like opossums, raccoons and wildcats. This is where I grew up, my dad grew up and, near where my mother and both of my grandparents grew up. My house was built in 1905 the same year my dad was born. The campsites are on my 20 acre section section of the original 82 acres with the house and barns, the remainder went to my brother but now is out of the family. The section of Elk River with the Compression Falls "45 ft high" and Twisting Falls which is part of Pisgah National Forest is less than two miles from here, and an old logging road going around the mountain above the river for about three miles to another Falls "Elk River Falls, 65 ft high" is a great place to hike or mountain bike. You will be free to explore and hike any part of my property except the house and out building's. The pond's are full of Trout and Blue Gill fish that are like pet's they love little pieces of bread. You can feed the fish but no fishing.
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$25
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100%
(29)

Hidden River Experience

6 sites · Tents250 acres · West Jefferson, NC
Welcome to the secluded campsite nestled on the banks of the New River! This primitive haven offers a tranquil retreat, allowing you to disconnect from the modern world and immerse yourself in the wonders of nature. Surrounded by untouched wilderness, this campsite provides the perfect escape for outdoor enthusiasts. As you settle into this serene paradise, you'll find yourself captivated by the abundance of activities available. Begin your day with a peaceful morning of fishing, casting your line into the pristine waters of the New River in pursuit of the perfect catch. Whether you're a seasoned angler or a beginner, this river teems with various species, promising an exciting and rewarding experience. Embark on scenic hikes that lead you through dense forests, revealing stunning vistas and hidden waterfalls. The well-marked trails cater to all skill levels, ensuring everyone can partake in the joys of exploration. You'll have ample opportunities to capture breathtaking photos and make lasting memories along the way. For the more adventurous, hop on a bike and pedal along the winding paths that meander through the wilderness. Feel the rush of wind against your face as you navigate the undulating terrain, taking in the natural beauty that surrounds you. With each turn, new discoveries await, making every bike ride an exhilarating adventure. To fully immerse yourself in the river's splendor, embark on a kayaking journey. Glide along the gentle currents, as the river guides you through stunning landscapes and quiet coves. The New River's calm waters provide an ideal setting for both beginners and experienced paddlers alike. As you explore this campsite's pristine environment, keep an eye out for the abundant wildlife that calls this area home. From graceful deer grazing in the distance to vibrant birds soaring overhead, nature enthusiasts will delight in the opportunity to observe these magnificent creatures up close. Safety is of utmost importance in this secluded sanctuary. The campsite is well-maintained and offers designated areas for camping, ensuring a comfortable and secure experience. Whether you're setting up your tent or gathering around a crackling campfire, you can rest assured knowing that you are surrounded by a tranquil and safe environment. Prepare to unwind, reconnect with nature, and embrace the simple pleasures of outdoor life at this primitive, secluded campsite on the New River. It's a haven for fishing, hiking, biking, kayaking, and wildlife enthusiasts, providing an unforgettable retreat into the heart of nature.
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$60
 / night

The best camping near Grayson Highlands State Park guide

Overview

About

Craggy peaks, mountain valleys, and waterfalls tempt hikers and horseback riders to Grayson Highlands State Park. Seasoned hikers can summit Mount Rogers—Virginia’s highest peak—or tackle part of the Appalachian Trail, but 13 short trails also run through the park. Bouldering is equally popular with more than 700 climbing routes, and you can also explore horse trails, fish for wild trout in the creeks, and seefree-roaming herds of wild ponies. Backcountry camping isn’t permitted, but the main campground at Hickory Ridge has standard and electric hookup sites, and there’s also a horse camp, bunkhouse, and yurts. 

Tips for snagging a campsite

  1. You can reserve one of the park’s 72 campsites, 24 horse sites, and four yurts online.
  2. Campsite reservations open 11 months in advance and must be made one day before arrival.
  3. Campsites can book up fast, so you should iam to book a minimum of three months in advance.

When to go

Peak season at Grayson Highlands State Park is mid-May through mid-October, and this is the most popular time to hike and boulder. Full-service camping is only available during this period, while primitive camping is possible in shoulder season (March, April, and November). No winter camping is available. Time your visit for one of the park’s summer music festivals: Wayne Henderson Festival (June), Albert Hash Memorial Festival (Labor Day weekend), or Grayson Highlands Fall Festival (end of September). 

Know before you go

  • Grayson Highlands State Park is set along US 58, 25 miles west of Independence and 26 miles east of Damascus.
  • Day-use parking fees and camping reservation fees are charged at Grayson Highlands. State fishing licences and equestrian permits are also required.
  • Facilities include a visitor center, country store, restrooms, and picnic areas. Facilities are minimal in the off-season, so bring everything you need with you, including drinking water.
  • Cell phone service is patchy but emergency coverage is provided, so keep your cell phone charged. 
  • Do not attempt to pet, feed, or interact with the park’s wild ponies. They can bite and kick, and human food can cause colic.
  • Accessible campsites, restrooms, and picnic areas are available at Grayson Highlands State Park. 

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