The best camping near
Hartwell Lake, GEORGIA

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Camping Georgia Hartwell Lake
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Peaceful

Close to Caesars Head and Table Rock. Full hookups, and the staff helps you back in and level up. Great service. Short drive to grocery and fresh produce stands.

A water lovers dream

This lake was beautiful. Great views of lake and mountains. The water was warm in October. Site #27 was good. Some sites were unlevel and on a steep grade and close with minimal greenery between. The walk-in tent sites were excellent. All sites had table, fire ring, lantern hook, and a gravel tent pad in addition to paved site. Most of the sites were shaded. Bathrooms were good with a big laundry area. There weren't really any paths to bathroom so it would be difficult in the dark if you were further away. We took a waterfall boat tour which was excellent. There are several paths to get to lake from different spots in campground. Which are like a private beach area. This park/campground is very busy on weekends but Sunday night it emptied out. Bring your boat, floats, kayaks, canoes. There is not much in area outside park. There was a Dollar General store within 15 minutes. The park store was well stocked with many items. Park staff were not that friendly. There are several boat ramps in park. Divers also use this lake since the lake is clear.

Probably the coolest place to camp in South Carolina.

Book your trip a few months in advance, get a spot on the water. Sites are a little small, and close together, but the sunrise from your tent/site is totally worth it. Amazing water clarity, bring a kayak. If you enjoy fishing there’s great trout.

Love Watsadler!

First time here, and we loved it! There was direct lake access from our campsite which was amazing. It is in a cove so it was quiet with hardly any lake traffic. Has 2 playgrounds & bath houses. 10/10 will come again!

Quad Overload of Steps

I'll admit that I'm not in my best shape ever but also know it's not my worst shape, this was full leg workout for 4 miles up as well as 4 miles back down. I highly recommend in the warmer months you get on the trail as early as possible. It opens at 7am. Bring plenty of water. The views along the way are beautiful and when you get to the top at the main overlook is fabulous too. I say the main overlook as there are a couple spots like right at Governors Rock is deep into the trail…but not the main view.

Lodge and Restaurant with new campsites

We discovered Riverbend Lodge through AirBnB while looking for a new place to camp.  We had been to a number of larger campgrounds this year, and wanted to find a spot where we weren't competing with dozens - or hundreds - of other campers for a good site.  Someplace with some privacy and quiet.  Riverbend Lodge fit the bill.

Riverbend Lodge is a unique mix of lodge, restaurant, bar, and campsites.  The owners are working on renovating the lodge and restaurant, and they have cleared some spots on the Middle Fork French Broad River to accommodate campers.  They have tent sites right on the river (more of a creek, great small falls and peaceful sounds).  We have a jeep with a rooftop tent, and the site we had was spacious and felt secluded.  There was a firepit at the site, and a trash can.  The owners live in an RV on-site, and said that they have a second site that has power and water hook-ups for a pop-up or RV.  Most of the sites are primitive.  There are picnic tables at a couple of areas on the property, but our site did not have a table.  

There is a bathroom for campers with a flush toilet, sink, and tub/shower.  They also have a hot tub and sauna, and the use is included in the camping fee - a real bargain!  Both looked new and were immaculately maintained.  

We did not view the lodge rooms for rent.  We did enjoy the restaurant the night we got there, the food was very good and reasonably priced for what we got.  We also had breakfast the last morning there, it is only served on weekends but it is only $10 for all you care to eat, and it is served to you - not buffet style.  The staff were friendly and provided good service.  The owners are a young couple, working hard to improve the lodge and offer a great experience.  We will definitely return to Riverbend Lodge.

This is definitely a happy place

I will be the first to admit that I was apprehensive about booking. I had been scouring the internet for reviews, and this place had been recommended to me on a Facebook group. Most of the negative reviews were either old (seemingly old management) or and what seemed to be one off guests, most of whom seem to have their own individual, underlying issues. I decided as a decider, I would call in and see what kind of vibe I got. After all, I’m responsible for booking our first ever family road trip. Luckily, I called in and got Tori on the phone. She was clearly doing something else when she answered, but once she realized I was looking into visiting, she dropped everything and made me feel like I was booking a room in her house. She was interested in my family breakdown so she could help find the perfect spot… and she did a damn good job.

We were only there one night, and she put us in B14. It was right across from the camp host, so firewood was easy to come by. It was also directly across from the bathhouse. We had a 30 amp in our 30’ rental RV, but luckily we had a adapter. The place was empty as it is mid week in off season, which was perfect. While I loved the place, I’m not sure I would have the same experience over 50/75% occupancy. It was great to throw the raft in the river and let the kids enjoy themselves without worry. The river wasn’t very deep, and even provided some small rock slides. The playground was about 5 sites down and also perfect to let the kids run to.

We wish we could have stayed longer, but we will be back. If not this week, on our next trip to the mountains. The hospitality of Tori and This true hidden gem are a family memory we will have forever.

Great family camping

If you have a boat or jetski there is a ramp. Has showers and restrooms. Mostly for RVs however there are a few tent sites that have tree cover. The RV sites don't really offer any trees for shade. The lake is great for swimming. The campground also offers paddle board and kayak rentals. The campground has a gate that gets locked at 10 pm. You can leave but you can't come back into the campground after the gate gets locked.

Ranger Review: Banner & Oak Apparel at Paris Mountain State Park

Campground Review: 

Paris Mountain State Park is just a short drive outside of Greenville, SC, but seems a world away. It is beautiful in all seasons. The campground is a typical state campground. Water, electric, fire ring, and picnic table were at our site. We stayed at #39 which was fine for our needs. If you had any sort of rig, we would NOT recommend this spot. The concrete was in poor shape and would make for a leveling nightmare. We voted we’d stay in #40 next time. It was a pull through with a creek running by the fire ring. The shower house was perfectly adequate and clean. Their reservation system was easy. We enjoyed all of the hiking options and the swimming area in the park. 

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Product Review: 

As Rangers for The Dyrt, we get to test products from time to time– today we tested Banner & Oak apparel www.bannerandoak.com. We loved their trucker hats. They were breathable, and held their shape under the sweat from a hard hike. We felt they were very attractive as well. As a long torso’d and arm’d couple, we both noticed right away and appreciated the length of the shirts themselves and the length of the sleeves on the long-sleeved shirt. There is nothing worse than washing shirts and having to stretch the heck out of them to try to get them back to looking presentable. We have no fear our Banner & Oak short and long-sleeved shirts will not give us this trouble. They worked well under our packs and we didn’t find ourselves needing to pull down our shirt every few mins or so. As a larger busted woman, however, their Women’s Large ran a bit small in the chest. I normally wear a Large which gives me some room to move around, but I wish I would have ordered my shirt in a XL. It is a tight fit. All in all, we really liked Banner & Oak’s apparel, in style, cut (mostly), and comfort. The shirt material is super soft and we could see ourselves ordering more from their site.

Cool evenings and shaded spaces

We stayed here for a weekend in July 18, I really appreciated the shaded site and the ac! Nice campground to walk around with a few hiking trails.

Lovely campground on lake Keowee

Spacious sites with some drive through, short walk to the lake and other activities, playground. Very nice stay for a weekend.

Beautiful site in the lake

We had an excellent weekend stay at site 16, lovely lake view of Hartwell, power and water hookups only. Everything looks great and well maintained, our site was right on the lake and had a large area for the grill and picnic table with cross tie steps and walls. Beautiful campground we stayed in September 18 in a motorhome.

Nice Place to Relax, Just out side the bustle of Suburbia.

We had a great time staying here. Some of the sights were rather inclined, but they listed this on the website when booking(it's on a mountain after all). The areas between most of the sites was spacious, we were able to hang 2 hammocks to chill in. The Bathhouses had been remodeled and were kept clean while we were there. (There wasn't hand soap at the sinks that was a little weird for me).  The Large trash bins were located back down across from the Park Center, as was the play ground. It would have been more convenient for campers to have these things closer but were convenient for day use visitors. The park center is a gorgeous stone/log cabin type building with a long porch facing the Swimming area. There are Adirondack chairs on the porch, then between the porch and the lake are wooden lounge chairs and benches to relax on while taking a break from swimming or hanging out. There are miles of trails and streams to explore. We had a lovely time and plan to visit again soon.

Well maintained WMA

Sarah's Creek has some really nice designated sites that are clean and well taken care of.  You can't beat the price of $10 per night!  Local rivers and streams offer great trout fishing in the spring.

Outstanding

This is one of the nicest state campgrounds we have been to and we are full timers and try and stay at state parks. The sites are large sandy sites with fire ring and a very  large picnic table. There was a path down to the lake from our site. It poured one day and there was a lake outside the camper but is was gone the next day. Great drainage! There is a very pretty swimming beach and lots of picnic table around the beach area. The bath house is large and clean as are the bathrooms in the camping areas. Our pull thru site was huge! Large enough for our 35’ and loads of room at both sides of the pull thru.

Perfect sites...all paved and lots of room. Great amenities and activities

This campground is very nice. Large sites that are all paved and very clean! Nice beach area, fishing pier and store on a beautiful lake!

Pretty camp ground

Great camp ground with a lot of amenities. Nice well cared for spots with lots of shade. May want to consider reservations.

Awesome little campground

I really love this place. There are many spots nearby to fish or hike including the nearby Cliffside Lake Rec. Cliffside Lake is stocked with trout and there is a great hike to Ranger Falls here. If you have your camping pass displayed you get into the Cliffside Lake rec area for free. Additionally, the campground is just a cross hwy. 64 from the Cullasja River which, in addition to being beautiful, offers good trout fishing as well. The campground is close to Highlands NC, a quaint little mountain town with an a few shops and restaurants. My biggest complaint is that there is not enough room in the campground. It seems to always be booked up when I want to go back.

Incredible back country camping

This is my favorite back country camping spot. The sites near the middle of Macs Gap trail are huge and there is easy access to a couple streams. Bring a good map and stick to the trails that your map covers. It's an easy place to get lost because of all the unofficial trails. Waterfalls are everywhere.

Pretty ok

The best thing about this campground to me is that it has a nice spot for my son to splash in the water and a nice playground as well. The facilities are clean enough, but there's nothing especially remarkable about this place to me.

Hidden gem

I've camped here three times and never seen it full. Sites are spacious and there are flush toilets and hot showers. Winding Stairs trail connects to the campground and offers good hiking. Just across the street is the Big Bend trail which takes you to Big Bend falls on the Chattooga River. There's a creek that runs through the campground with many sites along it's bank. My favorite site is #2.

Something for everyone

Wat do you like? Solitude? Try the dispersed campsites, they're awesome. Swimming? There is a roped off area for swimming in one of the lakes. RV camping? Full hookups available. Cabin? Cabins available for rent. Hiking? Trail head for the Foothills Trail as well as Secret Falls. Fishing? There's a lake stocked with bass and bream and even trout in cooler weather. Put-put? They have that too. Kayaking? Bring your own or rent one there. Hot showers? Got 'em. Waterfalls? Convenient to dozens including Station Cove, Yellow Branch, Issaqueena, King Creek, and Spoonauger to name a few. You seriously can't go wrong here unless you go in the summer and stay in a tent. It does get hot here.

Great as long as it's not spring break

I've stayed here on two separate backpacking trips. Sites are ok for car camping but awesome for backpacking. Good trout fishing. Lots of hiking, including the Foothills and Chattooga River trails. I've heard it gets overrun with spring breakers. Both times I've been there, there were few other campers. If you are going to drive here, keep in mind it is at least a couple hundred yards from the parking area to the nearest camp sites. The best sites are along the river toward the back of the campground. There are other good sites on King Creek to your left as you enter the campground. The pit toilet in the parking area tends to be better maintained than the one in the campground.

Love this camp ground

This place has no electric hookups, but a good enough bath house.  We come here annually.  The staff is nice at the campground and at the lake you can hike to (or drive to) that is associated with the campground.  The lake is beautiful, and we were lucky enough to catch a raptor show there.  The kids love this campground.  They can ride their bikes around and they play all day long.   Close proximity to the horseshoe falls and other great hikes.

Loved the views

Everything was great about our site, except the ants!! We were overrun with ants getting into our camper, eating the dog food, and anywhere they could fit their little bodies! The site was private, we had beach access to the lake, and the loops are paved which is great for bicycles.

Lake Hartwell Retreat

This is a large campground.  It has multiple boat launches with easy access to Lake Hartwell.  Well maintained bath houses. Friendly staff and camp hosts.  We stayed in the first loop with sites 1-26.  It was a small campground within the larger campground and park. It was quiet and over half the sites have a view of the lake or are on the lake. We stayed on 26 and were very happy with our location.  The park has a beach with concession stand. We do not think we would have liked the larger side of the campground as sites were much closer together.  We travelled to Toccoa Falls, Tallulah Gorge, Lake Rabun, Helen, Anna Ruby Falls, Dahlonega and Hartwell.  We would love to go back and visit the towns of Lavonia, Cleveland and Clarksville, and go back to Southern Hart Brewery in Hartwell.

A great.time

We had a great time. We had reserved a walk-in tent sight and absoulty loved it. Even though there were camp sites next to us they were far enough away to give a little privacy and just far enough in the woods to give you the feeling of being away from everything. It was a great couple of day sour view from the camp site.