Summer is still in full swing, and that makes it ideal for a camping trip. Whether you’re an avid camper or you just occasionally want a chance to unplug and “check out” from all of the drama of your ordinary life, camping is a great way to leave the world behind and spend some quality time with friends and family.
We’re going to make it easy for you to find that perfect escape for you and your family, with a list of the best camping spots from Indiana to Kentucky.
5 Places to Check Out in Indiana
The Hoosier State has plenty of outdoor spaces to explore, resplendent with mountain ranges, waterways, stunning rock formations and more. Some of our favorite places to camp are:
1. Clifty Falls State Park, Madison
If you’re looking for a romantic getaway with a breathtaking view of nature, you can’t go wrong with Clifty Falls State Park – but be warned: The hike to the most spectacular spots can be somewhat tough. There’s an old railway tunnel that is now home to bats to explore, waterfalls that capture the changing light, tennis courts and swimming pools. Both full-hookup sites and primitive camping spots are available.
2. Pokagon State Park, Angola
Open year-round, Pokagon State Park is one of Indiana’s most treasured campgrounds with beaches, boat rentals and playgrounds in the summer and sledding, ice fishing and cross-country skiing in the winter. You can pitch a tent, hook up your RV, go for a hike and even take a horseback ride while you’re there, making this a truly idyllic escape into nature.
3. Brown County State Park, Nashville
This is Indiana’s largest state park and one of its most popular campsites, too. Fishermen, in particular, love the ability to try their skill against the bass, bluegill and walleye in Lake Monroe, while other campers take advantage of the swimming pools, mountain biking and hiking trails. Aside from the fact that there are roughly 600 campsites available, most of them with electric, this campground offers the advantage of only being about an hour from Indy proper and even closer to Bloomington.
4. Hoosier National Forest, Bedford
If you’re a bit of a geology buff (or just like cool rock formations), you don’t want to skip this campsite. The limestone and sandstone formations offer some of the most incredible scenery in the nation. Hoosier National Forest offers both pet-friendly RV campgrounds and backcountry spots for those who prefer to “rough it.” There’s miles of hiking trails, tons of deer to be spotted and plenty of largemouth bass and walleye in Patoka Lake just waiting to be caught.
5. Turkey Run State Park, Marshall
Whether you want to bring your RV or sleep under the stars in a tent, Turkey Run State Park is willing to accommodate you – and the trip is definitely worth it. There are stunning sandstone gorges and canyons, all of which can be explored on foot, by horseback and over bridges. Plus, campers have access to all the amenities, including a store, canoeing, tennis and basketball courts – making this a great spot for a family with diverse interests and needs.
5 Places to Check Out in Kentucky
The Bourbon State has an amazingly diverse ecosystem and a divine landscape for anybody who adores nature. Our top spots for campers include:
1. Zilpo Campgrounds, Salt Lick
Situated in the heart of Daniel Boone National Forest, Zilpo offers multiple modes of camping (even cabin rentals, if you’re more into “glamping” than tents), including lakefront sites and electric hookups for your RV. The flora and fauna are virtually unparalleled, and you can get a spectacular view of nature at its most pristine from an open fire tower.
2. Cumberland Falls, Corbin
Want to feel like you’re on the heels of early settlers as they passed through the end of Appalachia? Cumberland Falls is the “Little Niagara” of the American West, and the jewel of Cumberland Falls State Resort Park. There are campsites, cabins and lodges to be found all around the site, and visitors on clear nights under a full moon may even catch sight of a “moonbow” due to the refraction of light created by the falls.
3. Diamond Lake Resort and Campground, Owensboro
Are you looking for a place where you can just kick back and relax in nature – without the kids driving you crazy because they’re bored? Diamond Lake Resort has everything from full hookup campsites and tent spaces to cottages and motel rooms, plus mini golf, pedal boats, go-karts and a theater. This is the perfect compromise spot if you’re keen on camping but your teenagers are not.
4. Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park, Cave City
If you want to see Mammoth Cave, but you know it’s too much to handle in a single day, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park is an excellent place to camp, whether you’re packing a tent, driving an RV or looking for an air-conditioned cabin. The park also has themed entertainment, including waterslides and pools, mini-golf and playgrounds that are sure to keep your little ones entertained while you relax. This may be the ultimate spot for family camping fun, with a wide variety of campsites and accommodations.
5. Rough River Dam State Resort Park, Fall of Rough
Are you looking for a spot where you can really get away from civilization for a bit? Rough River may be the place! The land around the 5,000-acre Rough River Lake is dotted with campsites, and people come from all over the nation to camp, fish and relax. Some RV hookups are provided, but you’re also welcome to pitch a tent for your stay.
Has inspiration struck? Are you now longing for a taste of the great outdoors? If so, load up the car, get the kids ready and head out the door! You don’t have to spend a fortune to create some lasting summer memories in these final few weeks before school starts again.