6 Dream Camping Destinations in the U.S.

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6 Dream Camping Destinations in the U.S.

By Michelle Valenti

Some camping destinations are so stunning, so remote, or just so enticing that you dream about them even if you've never seen them. These dream destinations call to you; they're why you love the outdoors. You can't wait to go, and once you do, you can't wait to go back.

Some destinations are simply iconic—must-sees for any camper. Others are so remote that it takes days to get there. All of them promise a wilderness, both pure and pristine, that outdoor lovers dream about.

If you haven't been to these camping destinations yet, move them to the top of your bucket list.


Glacier National Park

Way up north, past cowboy country and deep in the Rocky Mountains, is some of America's most striking scenery. Known as the "Crown of the Continent," Glacier National Park and the surrounding area are made up of rugged mountains, glacial landscapes and pristine lakes that tell a tale of prehistoric proportions.

Relax on the porch of your cabin, explore 740 miles of trails, or just enjoy the quiet solitude of this remote camping destination.

Camp Here: Reserve a Spot at St. Mary Campground



There's one very good reason Yosemite is at top of most outdoor enthusiasts' bucket list: 12,000 square miles of breathtaking scenery. It's one of the most photographed and most visited outdoor destinations in the U.S. With gushing waterfalls, stunning vistas and abundant activities, it's the perfect spot for every level of outdoor enthusiast.

Hikers can explore more than 800 miles of trails, including a slew of options for the more adventurous backpacker—a good way to get away from the crowds.

Go ahead, plan your Yosemite camping trip. You won't be disappointed.

Camp Here: Reserve a Campsite in Yosemite National Park


Acadia National Park

Located at the very northeast tip of the United States, on the far north side of one of the least populated states in the U.S., Acadia National Park waits for dreamers.

Acadia's rugged coastline, granite peaks and spruce-fir forests make for stunning vistas, rewarding hikes and quiet campgrounds. In the summer, rent a kayak and explore the coast by sea, then take to your feet on 125 miles of hiking trails.

Camp Here: Reserve a spot at Seawall or Blackwoods Campgrounds


Alaska is a place where Mother Nature herself goes for fresh air and relaxation. Every scene is more impressive than the one before, which is why the entire state is a dream camping destination.

Alaska is the largest state with one of the smallest populations, making even populated areas feel remote. The result: you need more than just a week to explore. The Alaska Interior alone could take months, not to mention the more than 6,500 miles of striking coastline.

So save up your vacation days and spend them on the ultimate camping trip to America's Last Frontier. Your best bet is to rent an RV and stay for the summer. Even then, by the time you leave, you'll still feel like you're just getting started.

Camp Here: Search for Campsites in Alaska

California Coast

California Coast

Perhaps the most accessible of the dream camping destinations, the coast of California is ripe with rewarding views and easy-to-get-to campgrounds. This paradise has all the reward with minimal effort.

Choose from the warm beaches of southern California or the cool coastline of Nor Cal, or drive from one end to the other. Whether you travel in a VW bus with a surfboard strapped to the top or rent a convertible and drive Highway 1 in style, the Pacific Coast delivers on the California dream.

Camp in So Cal: Reserve a Spot at Bolsa Chica State Beach

Camp in Nor Cal: Reserve a Spot at Westport Beach, North Mendocino Coast KOA

Na Pali

Na Pali Coast, Kauai

Most backpackers drool when they hear the words "Na Pali." Lush green mountainsides and pristine waters beckon to them from the island of Kauai.

The best part about this dream destination is that no vehicles are allowed on this side of the island. You can't even access the beaches and campgrounds by boat. If you want to see it, you have to earn it. The only way in is along the challenging, 11-mile coastal trail. That's 11 miles one way and it will take even advanced hikers a full day to complete the trek. But once you do, you're rewarded with one of the most alluring camping destinations around.

RAReserve a campsite.

Michelle Valenti is the senior editor at ReserveAmerica.com. When she's not at work, you can find her climbing rocks, riding trails, and setting up camp in fun outdoor locations around the U.S. Follow her on Google+.