You’ll find a little bit of everything when camping in Arizona.
From lakeside camping to cactus dotted desert views to the majesty of the Grand Canyon, the Grand Canyon State has a whole lot to offer tent campers and RV campers alike.
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So, pack up your tent or dust off your RV, here are the best places to camp in Arizona on your next trip.
10 Best Places for Lake Camping in Arizona
Camping lakeside is one of our favorite ways to cool down from that hot sun. With a variety of both small and large lakes, you’ll find the perfect setting for your Arizona camping vacation.
Lake Mead National Recreation Area
You just can’t say you’ve hit the best camping in Arizona without visiting Lake Mead!
Visit the Hoover Dam or hike miles of beautiful trails through canyons and valleys. The activities and sites at Lake Mead National Recreation Area are numerous.
The campgrounds offer single or group sites with access to restrooms, picnic tables, grills, running water, and shad! RV sites with full hookups are also available.
Jacob Lake National Recreation Area
Jacob Lake National Recreation Area Is located in the North Kaibab National Forest near Jacob Lake, Arizona, the gateway to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
This area offers plenty of hiking and mountain biking trails as well as horseback riding and chuck wagon rides. There is no fishing at Jacob Lake.
The campsites have access to grills, picnic shelters, restrooms, fire rings, and running water.
Located in the Tonto National Forest, Apache Lake offers endless outdoor recreation options including boating, fishing, hiking and water skiing.
Lakeside camping for both tents and RVs is available at the Burnt Corral Campground.
The campground offers picnic tables, restrooms, water hydrants, and a boat dock. However, there are no electric hookups.
For the ultimate Arizona lake camping experience, try Saguaro Lake, surrounded by it’s namesake cactus.
Boat access camping is available at some of the campgrounds on the lake like Bagley Flat, which also offers grills, tables and plenty of shade.
Other Saguaro Lake campgrounds offer car camping for tents and RVs.
Canyon Lake is a desert oasis that offers a range of activities from swimming at the beach to enjoying water sports like kayaking.
This popular Arizona campground has spots for tents and RVs. It’s boat friendly and includes picnic tables, grills, and fire rings at each site. Pets are welcome.
Fool Hollow Lake Campground
Enjoy boating, hiking, swimming and fishing at this off-the-beaten-path campground that is kept cool by a grove of pines.
Fool Hollow Lake accommodates both tent campers and RVs. There are concrete pads, fire rings, and picnic tables as well as restrooms and showers.
Lynx Lake Campground
Nestled in a grove of ponderosa pine, the Lynx Lake Campground is a great place to enjoy boating, camping, hiking and wildlife viewing.
Each campsite comes with a picnic table and steel fire ring. There are no RV sites or hookups at this campground but you can bring your pets.
Patagonia Lake State Park
This off-the-beaten-path Arizona lake is a serene place for wildlife viewing and exploring the water by boat.
The campground at Patagonia Lake offers sites with picnic tables, fire grills, and parking for two vehicles. Most sites are able to accommodate any size RV.
The state park also offers 12 secluded campsites that are only accessible by boat and have portable restrooms. You can even rent a boat at the neighboring marina!
Read our full review of Patagonia Lake State Park.
Go hiking, swimming, fishing or boating at beautiful Squaw Lake situated just off the Colorado River.
The campground offers both tent and RV sites with restrooms, showers, picnic tables and grills. Try out the nearby hiking areas or put in at one of the boat ramps where they have direct access to the river.
Lake Havasu State Park
Beachfront campsites are available at this beautiful Arizona state park.
The campgrounds offer showers and restrooms and each site has a 50 amp hookup, picnic table, shade armada and fire ring at most sites.
Don’t forget to check out the main attraction in Lake Havasu City, the historic London Bridge.
Check out our full review of Lake Havasu State Park for even more info!
10 Best Places for Free Camping in Arizona
Although free campsites don’t have many bells and whistles (most are completely primitive), they are prefect for those that prefer quiet wilderness solitude. Luckily, free camping in Arizona isn’t at all had to find.
To learn more about free camping, check out our complete guide to free camping in the United States.
Airplane Flat Campground
Airplane Flat Campground is located within Tonto National Forest and offers hands down some of the best free camping in Arizona.
It’s a dispersed camping area in a stand of Ponderosa pines with access to Canyon Creek. There are vault toilets available but no other amenities are available.
Alderwood Campground is a great place to stay off-the-beaten-path with the family as it boasts swimming holes and plenty of shade.
There are vault toilets but there is no water or any other amenities available. This free campsites is on Haigler Creek so make sure to bring your fishing gear.
Blue Crossing Campground
Blue Crossing Campground is part of the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests in the Blue River Valley of Arizona.
You’ll find beautiful hiking trails through the Blue Range Primitive Area as well as plenty of opportunities to view local wildlife.
Two of the campsites here offer Adirondack shelters. There are toilets and picnic tables available.
Whitewater Draw Wildlife Area
Free camping at Whitewater draw is perfect for RV boondocking.
It has easy access to hiking trails through the wildlife area where the main attraction is the abundance of bird species – especially the Sandhill Cranes.
Pit toilets and picnic tables are available, but be prepared to bring your own water.
Herb Martyr Campground
Located in the Coronado National Forest, Herb Martyr is a dispersed camping area that has quick access to hiking trails, great views of local waterfalls, and is close to Cave Creek Canyon.
Toilets are available but campers should bring their own water. The campsites here are a short walk from the parking area, so be prepared to pack in (and pack out) your gear.
Loy Butte Road
Coconino National Forest is one of the best places for free dispersed camping near Sedona.
Although a variety of options are available, the area along Loy Butte Road has some of the most beautiful views as well as plenty of different dispersed campsites to choose from.
There are no amenities at this campsite area so be ready to truly rough it.
Granville Campground, located in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests, just off the Coronado Trail, is a very well maintained free camping area with drinking water, toilets, picnic tables, grills and trash cans.
This beautiful area is shaded by cypress, aspens and oak trees which is a far cry from desert camping in Arizona.
Lower Juan Miller Campground
Another shady free campsite, Lower Juan Miller Campground is another small camping area in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests. Picnic tables, grills, trash cans, and toilets are all available.
Pinal & Upper Pinal Campgrounds
Part of the Tonto National Forest, the Pinal and Upper Pinal campgrounds are excellent free campsites for anyone looking for access to great hiking trails.
You’ll also find plenty of shade from the pine and fir tree stands. Toilets are available but plan to bring your own water.
Box Wash Campground
Box Wash Campground, near Wickenburg, Arizona is a great base camp to visit a variety of parks in the region.
Though this camping area is not as secluded as some, it offers plenty of space for large RVs, access to hiking trails and is an easy drive to town.
While it may be one of the busier campgrounds in the area, the beautiful desert views make camping here well worth it.
10 Best Places for Tent Camping in Arizona
My personal favorite way to camp in Arizona is a tent. Not only can a tent help you stay cool on hot summer days, but it also provides amazing views of the stars at night. Luckily, there are a lot of great places to go tent camping in Arizona.
Lost Dutchman State Park
Located in the Superstition Mountains and home to a gold mining legend from the 1800‘s, Lost Dutchman State Park is filled with mystery and beauty and is another of the absolute best places to go camping in Arizona.
With a number of scenic hiking trails available, it’s a great place to camp out for an evening or even a few days. The trails connect directly with the large campground that offers sites for both tents and RVs. Each site is equipped with a picnic table, grill and fire pit.
Located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation, the Havasupai Campground is one of the most popular campgrounds in Arizona – and for good reason.
The beautiful scenery, hiking trails, and, of course, the waterfalls are among the most beautiful near the Grand Canyon.
Know that permits are required and they book up fast. Make reservations well in advance. Hiking to the falls often takes several days.
The Aspen Campground, part of the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests, offers both wooded and meadow sites.
This campground is located adjacent to the Woods Canyon Lake where you can rent boats and fishing gear. You’ll see plenty of local wildlife so be sure to keep your food and belongings packed up tight to avoid hungry critters.
Aspen Campground offers fire pits, picnic tables, water, and toilets. You can make reservations, but there are also quite a few first come, first served sites.
Mogollon Rim Campground
Mogollon Campground is naturally shaded by a ponderosa pine forest. It’s located just outside of the Woods Canyon Recreation area.
This is one of the closest camping areas to the Mogollon Rim which offers incredible views of the canyon. It’s also just a short drive to Woods Canyon Lake.
The campground is perfect for tenters as well as RVs. It offers drinking water, trash pick up, toilets, grills, fire rings, and picnic tables at each site.
Cave Springs Campground
Cave Springs Campground is located in the Coconino National Forest and is only a short drive to the swimming holes at Slide Rock State Park near Sedona.
There are plenty of beautiful views of the canyon from a variety of hiking trails and easy access to Oak Creek for fishing, wading, and swimming.
Monument Valley, The View Campground
The View Campground offers just what it claims – some of the best views of one of the most iconic and historic sites in the entire country.
Both RV and tent sites are available at this northeastern Arizona campground. It also has a small camp store, restrooms, and shower facilities.
Take the guided four-wheeled drive tour of Monument Valley while you are there. Just be ready for one of the best views of the night sky you’ll ever see.
Hospital Flat Campground
Located in the Coronado National Forest, the Hospital Flat Campground boasts fields of wildflowers and beautiful desert views. The campground offers tent camping only. We love that the fee for the sites is on $10 per night!
Riggs Flat Campground
Another campground in Coronado National Forest, Riggs Flat Campground is close to Riggs Flat lake which is a perfect scenic spot for a quiet day of fishing.
RVs are welcome as long as they are 22 feet or less. There are vault toilets, but there is no available drinking water so make sure to bring your own.
Lee’s Ferry Campground
Just minutes from the Grand Canyon and home to some beautiful historic sites, Lee’s Ferry Campground is a perfect Arizona camping spot for hikers and history buffs alike.
But the main attraction to this camping area is its direct access to the Colorado River.
The campground offers both RV and tent sites in the main area with flush toilets and a waste station. If you’re feeling adventurous you can take your boat to dispersed campsites all along the river.
Bordering Oak Creek, the small Manzanita Campground is treasured for its beautiful scenery, fishing, and swimming holes.
As one of the best campgrounds near Sedona, it gets very busy during the peak season. There are plenty of hiking trails nearby as well as the must-see Slide Rock State Park.
The campsites sites offer fire rings, grills, picnic tables, drinking water, and pit toilets. Coin-operated showers are available just up the road.
Moonlight Memories Glamping Campground
If you want to enjoy some luxurious glamping in Arizona, make sure to checkout Moonlight Memories Campground.
They offer luxurious glampsites along with loads of activities such as hiking, mining tours, off-roading and more.
10 Best Places for RV Camping in Arizona
An RV camping trip is one of the best way to see the entire state of Arizona without breaking the bank. Here are 10 of our favorite RV parks and campgrounds to find your perfect home away from home.
Meteor Crater RV Park
Meteor Crater is the most well-preserved impact site on Earth. It’s nearly 1 mile across. Why not stay at the Meteor Crater RV Park to explore this natural wonder and other sites in northern Arizona?
Islander RV Resort
Island RV Resort is a perfect desert escape located right on Lake Havasu across from the historic Lond Bridge. This Arizona RV park offers beaches, boat docks and launches, heated pools, and a nearby golf course. They have plenty of options for all size rigs and both mountain and lake view sites.
Butterfield RV Resort
The Butterfield RV Resort is a great base camp for exploring the region’s popular sites such as Tombstone, the Kartchner Caverns, and Tucson. They offer amenities including a pool and spa and an on-site observatory.
Kaibab Camper Village
Located on the north rim of the Grand Canyon, this RV campground offers full hookups and can accommodate RVs up to 40 feet.
The campsites are all shaded in a pine grove in the Kaibab National Forest and close to Jacob lake. There are ample hiking and nature trails and even horseback riding available.
This campground offers electric, water, sewer, toilets, fire rings, tables, showers, laundry, and a camp store. Grab one of the shuttles to the Grand Canyon for a day trip.
Rancho Sedona RV Park
Rancho Sedona RV Park is located close to Sedona but still maintains a secluded feeling.
The campsites are shaded by sycamore and cottonwood trees. The campground is right next to Oak Creek.
There are plenty of recreational activities in the area like hiking and fishing. The campground is just a short drive to all the restaurants, spas, local shops, and galleries Sedona has to offer.
The campsites at Rancho Sedona RV Park are equipped with electric, water, sewer, tables, WiFi, and cement patios.
Catalina State Park
Catalina State Park offers plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking and wildlife viewing. Staying in their RV sites gets you water and electric hookups plus, picnic, tables, grills, flush restrooms, and hot showers. Dump stations are also available.
Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Temple Bar Marina RV Park
Home to the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead is a great Arizona vacation spot that offers activities like fishing, boating, and hiking.
Stay at the Template Bar Marina RV Park. It offers full RV hookups with a household current option, restrooms, showers, camp store, coin laundry, and a dump station.
This campground does not take reservations, so sites are available on a first come, first serve basis only.
Kartchner Caverns State Park
Tour the caves, visit local hiking trails, and take a trip to Tombstone all while staying at the Kartchner Caverns State Park. These RV campsites have electric hookups with a range of power options as well as water, picnic tables, trash receptacles, restrooms, and showers.
Wahweap RV and Campground
Located just off the shore of Lake Powell, the Wahweap Marina offers a load of activities from boating and fishing to exploring the local resort town. The full hook-up sites offer electric, water, and septic and can accommodate RVs up to 70 feet long.
Tombstone Territories RV Resort
You’ll never be bored at the Tombstone Territories RV Resort. They offer tons of hiking, riding, ATV, biking trails plus a rec room, pools, and exercise facilities. That’s not to mention the beautiful views of the Arizona scenery!
Consider Harvest Hosts for RV Camping in Arizona
Harvest Hosts is a membership site that allows you to park your RV at wineries, breweries, vineyards, farms, and golf courses all over the US for only $79 a year.
They currently offer over 1,300 different locations!
Use Code: BEYONDTHETENT and save 15% off your yearly membership.
Where’s Your Favorite Place to Camp in Arizona
Camping in Arizona is our favorite way to explore the beautiful state.
Whether you’re tent camping, RVing, or backpacking, there’s a top-notch campground pretty much anywhere you visit.
What about you? Did we miss your favorite Arizona camping spot? Let us know in the comments below!
Find Great Campgrounds in Nearby States
We have in-depth guides to the best camping in other states near Arizona to help you plan your trip!
- Best Camping in California
- Best Camping in Colorado
- Best Camping In Texas
- Best Camping in Utah
- Best Camping In Washington
Tuesday 12th of October 2021
M & M Little Oasis Campground near the Grand Canyon ( South Rim) is an Awesome place to go dispersed camping!
Friday 28th of August 2020
I would like to hammock camp...where should i go?
Tuesday 5th of September 2017
Looking to take a trip in January. Want to do some hiking, tent camping but nothing too extreme. Would love to be on/near a lake. We do not have an RV. Preferably spend 2-3 nights. Which area do you think would be the best for the weather in January?
Thursday 28th of September 2017
Hey Ryan, Patagonia Lake State Park is a good option. The temps are pretty mild still there even in January. When you go, let us know where you end up and how it turns out! We'd love to see some pics too.
Tuesday 25th of April 2017
I would also recommend Big Lake's campgrounds. Located in the Apache-Sitgreavers National Forests, you have Apache Trout CG with hookups along with Grayling, Brookchar and Cutthroat CGs. All surround the big beautiful Big Lake.
Tuesday 25th of April 2017
Thanks for the suggestion Suzi! Sounds like there's plenty of room there, I'll have to check it out.