Whether you’re looking for rustic or modern campsites, there are a gazillion options for camping in Michigan. Looking for something near a touristy town? Check. A quiet, rustic site away from all things human? Double check. Lower Peninsula Michigan camping? Got it. Upper Peninsula Michigan camping? How much time do you have? You can never have too much for camping in the beautiful state of Michigan. Don’t make mistakes like me, share the love (or don’t) and go camping in Michigan!
Camping in Michigan, So Many Choices
While my daughter and I spend lots of time abroad. I’m looking forward to returning home this summer and during my stay I will certainly be going camping for at least a week, possibly two.
I’ve been camping in Michigan quite a few times, and I often feel overwhelmed planning my trips so I’ve developed a way to make it easier on myself that I’d like to share with all of you.
The first thing you should know about camping in Michigan, is that it is always better for you if you reserve your site early. I can hear you asking: just how early should I reserve a camp site in Michigan? Depends on the site you are going to, but if you’re going to visit a very popular one, like Tahquamenon Falls in the Upper Peninsula, then you better be looking to book your site about 1-2 months in advance, even sooner if you want a larger pick of sites.
Other, less popular places can be booked same day, but if you’re like me, you’re looking for some amazing campsites to see the best parts of Michigan.
So how do you decide where to camp? Here’s the top 6 websites I use:
Resourceful Websites For Camping in Michigan
(1) UP Travel
UP Travel is great for locating campsites in my favorite part of Michigan, the Upper Peninsula! A quick tap on the campground will give you the address, phone number, and many have a website linked to it as well to give you more information or the ability to reserve online.
Exploring the North gives a run down of each camp site they cover, a small description, and lets you know about nearby attractions. A fantastic resource to check out before you book your site.
(3) Pure Michigan
The Pure Michigan website has its own section devoted to Campgrounds and RV parks. It’s not as inclusive as a resource for campgrounds as the first two I mentioned, but it’s still a wonderful resource for planning your camping trip in Michigan because you can filter out results by amenities, attractions, region, city, recreation, and many more.
(4) Michigan DNR
This is my favorite resource for camping in Michigan. Why? Not just because it’s ran by the DNR, but this is where you can reserve all of the preferred campsites online. It’s easy to see first identify the region in Michigan where you want to camp. From there you can use the interactive map to choose a specific location. Then you can view individual campsites, see what days they are available, how big they are, the surface of the campsite, if it has electricity or not, and a lot of other useful information about camping there.
This website is probably better for people who are camping in Michigan with an RV. I don’t use one so this isn’t my favorite site, but it’s pretty useful at locating some nice campgrounds.
This is another resourceful list of campgrounds in Michigan. A great aspect of this site is that they also festivals where you can camp at. Bonus!
Other hints to camping in Michigan?
Helpful Hints For Camping
Make sure you have a recreational sticker on your car to grant you access to the parks. Stop by the Secretary of State to get one before you head out, easiest to do this when you renew your plates each year. They are annual passes so you only need one each year.
There are animals in Michigan, keep your site clean or they might pay you a hungry visit. The squirrels are cute, so are the bears, but the bears might eat your face.
Bug spray. You know what it’s for, just don’t forget it. Some mosquitoes are the size of your right ear.
Firewood is usually available at the campgrounds, but it will be limited. Stop at someone’s house that has wood for sale nearby and save yourself a headache and support local wood chopping people! Then, save the trees by making sure you burn all your wood you bring with you! Firewood brings in pests to parks so make sure to scorch them before you leave 🙂 RIP little bugs
Got your fishing pole? Got your fishing license? You better!
Michiganders and the people who visit the camp sites in the Michigan are friendly people, just be aware of where you are. Don’t bring a loud music system, you’re being rude making your neighbors listen to your crappy music. Likely there are rules against them in the campground, but even if there isn’t, people still don’t want to listen to your horrible taste in tunes.
I hope this has helped you. Let me know in the comments if I forgot anything or if there are other helpful resources out there for people looking to go camping in Michigan!