The campgrounds feature a total of 125 campsites (including 26 pull-through sites). Thirty-five of the sites—the Class AAA sites—have 30 and 50 amp electrical, water, and sewer hookups. The 90 Class B sites offer 30 amp electrical and water hookups. All sites are reservable. Campsites are divided into four campground areas. Each includes a modern bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets. Area "A" is near Lake Bailey and include sites along the lakeshore. Areas "B," "C," and "D" are located on the south side of Ark. 154 in wooded settings.
Other campsite choices in the main camping area include a 44-unit Rally-style Area with 20 amp electrical service available for camping clubs.
A trailer dump station is centrally located near the Rally-style camping area.
Petit Jean is Arkansas's only state park with its own airport.
As the oldest State Park in The Natural State, in my opinion, Petit Jean sets the standard to which other parks should aspire. We frequently visit Petit Jean every year (2-3 times) and often joke that it serves as “home base” for our camping adventures. It’s just that good. If we’re unsure about where to head next, we always fall back on Petit Jean. By analogy, I view Petit Jean like a PB&J or a grilled cheese. Both are solid options every time, and you can’t go wrong with either. The same is true of Petit Jean. The campgrounds are generally clean and well kept. I also really like the spacing of the sites, as sometimes the sites in state parks make you feel like you’re right on top of your neighbor. Loop A is typically filled with larger campers, as those sites have sewer, and those sites are generally much larger than other areas. Since we have a PUP, I personally prefer Loops B or C. I have camped in D but it is the oldest camping area in the park and it shows. The bathhouse in that area isn’t as nice. Conversely, the bathhouses in Loops B and C are great. Even if the only site available is in D, I’d say it’s still absolutely worth going. The bathhouses are nice and clean, the amenities are numerous, and the scenery is unbelievable. The trails are fantastic, playground is great, and the food at the Lodge is phenomenal. We make it a point to eat in the Lodge at least one night of any trip. However, I would add, there is also a breakfast buffet in the mornings that’s a can’t miss for the price and convenience. Essentially, it is unequivocally the perfect park for a family with kids. However, it’s also perfect for anyone who may think they may want to go camping. In fact, even the most experienced camper would love this park and what it offers. It’s an absolute can’t miss and anyone debating whether they should go should pull the trigger immediately! (NOTE: I would note that you should be aware of a HUGE car show that occurs in the park every Fathers Day weekend. It is absolutely packed and unbelievably loud with old cars and motorcycles. If you go on Fathers Day weekend, do not expect any peace and tranquility whatsoever - you won’t find it.).
My Favorite Place!! So much to do!! Love staying in the yurts!! Lots of trails to hike!! Extremely affordable!! Breath taking views!!
Petit Jean is the oldest state park in Arkansas and it has it all. Our family makes a trip to Petit Jean at least twice a year. So many trails, recreational areas and breathtaking views to enjoy. It is one of the best FAMILY state parks we’ve been too.
The sites in A and B loop are often booked a year in advance so plan your trips strategically. C and D loop are accommodating but will be a tighter fit for most rigs >30’.
The visitor’s center is being completely redone to enhance the experience. If you haven’t been, make the trip.
Quick info on alcohol. Petit Jean is in a dry county (yes that exists). If you aren’t bringing your own alcohol, make sure and stop at Petit Jean Liquor right off I-40.
Beautiful scenic mountains, valleys and lakes. Trails for hiking and watching wildlife. Turtle rocks are worth viewing along with the cave. All ages can hike and walk to scenic areas in this park. Driving around is easy and convenient to the sites you will want to visit. Easy to check in and find camping spots. Very quiet while camping. Great sounds of nature to listen to. Bathhouse with shower. Swimming pool and playground. Perfect for families, couples or singles. We will camp here again because of the peaceful tranquility of this beautiful park.
We stayed at Petit Jean State Park during the week of Thanksgiving. It’s a popular place, so very busy, but all the campers around us were very courteous, friendly, and obeyed quiet time rules. The sites (we were in a tent in Loop C) were spacious and clean, as were the bathhouses. The Visitor’s Center/Registration was well-stocked and staff was efficient and welcoming. We ate dinner at Mather’s Lodge-the food was mediocre but service was great.
I was so excited to stay here based on this being voted as one of the best state parks in this region. The reviews were spot on about the hiking and other amenities. This park is charming right down to its CCC roots. During my stay the new park visitor’s center was being built and it looks to be a lovely addition.
What I was surprised to discover was my disappointing campground experience. I picked my campsite early and carefully and was hoping to have a quieter experience since I decided to avoid the swankier lakeside full hook up sites. I was wrong. Unfortunately, the park allowed a group of tent campers to camp in sites that were not in the group campground. There were 4 tents per site, some of which were camped on the ground right near the restrooms. 2 campers per tent x 4 per site x at least 6 sites. Well I’ll spare you the math, but Campground D literally turned into a church camp complete with air horns blasting to alert the camper kiddos that it was time to eat, shower, wake up etc. Nothing against church camps. Just saying Campground D is not a group campsite! Thankfully, I spent most of my time hiking and biking. So I was away from the campground a majority of my stay.
Site 98 was located adjacent to public property and backed up to the gravel road that serviced the neighborhood. There was a street light that illuminated the road and this didn’t add to the ambiance. All said, the campground didn’t really afford the experience I was hoping for. However, the hiking trails did not disappoint! As many previous reviewers have mentioned, hiking here is awesome. I definitely recommend the Bear Cave trail and the Cedar Falls trail.
Grabbing a bite at the Lodge is recommended too. The food was good and the view was outstanding!
I’d go back, but I would choose Campground A, pay more and stay right on the lake. The sites are nicely spaced and I think the cost of full hook ups might deter a large group of tent campers from overtaking the campground. Again, nothing against tent campers or church camps. I just thought this is why parks have group campgrounds. I’d prefer not to repeat the group tent camping situation and air horns I ran into on my visit to campground D.
We had a great time camping at petit jean! We went on a few of the easier hikes but they were so great with such cool sights to see like turtle rocks, Indian rock cave, carpet rocks & bear cave.
I tent camped at site 61 in 2015:
- We were pretty close to all the amenities and the campsite checkin/store
- There is a nice, flat tent pad
- Grill and fire ring were nice
- Paved driveup spot
- It wasn't very crowded; the two sites across from us filled up, but that was about it
I would 100% stay at this site again.
My husband and I tent camped here in November. Pretty cold at night but the weather was perfect for the hikes which were absolutely stunning. We had a delicious breakfast with a view at the lodge. 10 out of 10 would recommend!
I had an absolute blast while at Petit Jean State Park. I stayed at the Mather lodge and in one of the cabins both of which I loved staying in. The trails through out the park are all great hikes, even the less prominent paths are nice to explore. The hike down to Cedar Falls is absolutely fantastic and more than worth the trek. My favorite part of the park hands down has to be the multiple look out points you can find around the mountain. The views you can find along red bluff drive and at the gravesite are breathtaking. Petit Jean State park is fantastic and I can’t wait to go back.