Places to Camp near Carbondale, IL

Are you in need of a campground near Carbondale, IL? Carbondale is filled with the activities, sights, and experiences to make everyone in your crew a happy camper. You're sure to find the perfect spot for your Illinois camping adventure.

Best Camping Sites Near Carbondale, IL (98)

    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Giant City State Park Campground

    1.

    Giant City State Park Campground

    24 Reviews
    165 Photos
    132 Saves
    Makanda, Illinois

    Giant City State Park Campground is a gem nestled near Makanda, IL. This place is a haven for campers who appreciate a mix of comfort and nature. The campground is open all year, so you can enjoy its beauty in any season. With amenities like electric hookups, showers, and toilets, it caters well to both tent and RV campers. Pets are welcome, and you can even enjoy a cold one by the fire since alcohol is allowed.

    The campground is known for its well-maintained sites and friendly camp hosts. Visitors often rave about the cleanliness of the facilities, including the fire pits and pit toilets. The park itself is a treasure trove of natural beauty, with several hiking trails that showcase stunning sandstone formations and lush forest scenery. Even in winter, the trails offer a serene and picturesque experience.

    One of the highlights of staying here is the Giant City Lodge. It’s a cozy spot with excellent food and panoramic views that make for a memorable dining experience. The family-style fried chicken dinner comes highly recommended.

    For those who enjoy a bit of adventure, the park offers various trails, some of which are perfect for families with young children. The playground and picnic areas add to the family-friendly vibe. If you're into fishing, there's a pond near the primitive camping site.

    In summary, Giant City State Park Campground offers a blend of convenience and natural beauty, making it a fantastic spot for a weekend getaway or a longer stay. Whether you're hiking, relaxing by the fire, or exploring the nearby wineries, there's something here for everyone.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
  1. 2.

    Shawnee Forest Campground

    32 Reviews
    55 Photos
    181 Saves
    Vienna, Illinois

    Located in the Middle of Southern Illinois just Off I-24 it is a great place to stay while you explore all the the Shawnee Forest. From Giant City to Garden of the Gods. The Tunnel Hill bike trail is a half mile away and Cache River is just down the road. We have 60 Full Hook up sites. Large pull through sites up to 120 feet long. We have Shower Houses and Laundry Facilities. Our Campground is Open Year Round.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • RVs

    $40 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Crab Orchard Lake Campground

    3.

    Crab Orchard Lake Campground

    12 Reviews
    45 Photos
    60 Saves
    Bargerville, Illinois

    Welcome to Crab Orchard Lake Campground, nestled near Carbondale, IL. This spot is a favorite for many, offering a mix of tent and RV sites, some right on the water. If you're into lakeside views, you're in for a treat. The sunsets here are something else, and the lake itself is a sight to behold.

    The campground operates from April 1 to October 31, and it's got a solid reputation with a rating of 4.4 out of 5. One thing folks appreciate is the spaciousness of the sites, though privacy can be a bit hit or miss. If you're lucky, you might snag one of the more secluded waterfront spots.

    Amenities here are pretty decent. You've got electric and water hookups, showers, and toilets. The bathrooms are generally clean, though some visitors have noted they could use a bit of TLC. There's also a sanitary dump and sewer hookups for RVs, making it a convenient stop for those traveling in larger rigs.

    Pets are welcome, so feel free to bring your furry friends along. Just keep an eye out for wildlife—raccoons, geese, and even the occasional snake have been spotted around the campground.

    For activities, the lake is a big draw. Whether you're into fishing, boating, or just lounging by the water, there's plenty to keep you occupied. There's even a small beach area for swimming, though it's seasonal.

    Overall, Crab Orchard Lake Campground offers a peaceful retreat with beautiful lake views and a good mix of amenities. It's a great spot to unwind and enjoy the natural beauty of the area.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access

    $10 - $25 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park

    4.

    Turkey Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park

    16 Reviews
    47 Photos
    3 Saves
    Goreville, Illinois

    Turkey Ridge is for campers who want a serene outdoor experience. It is a Class C walk-in campground that includes camp pads, picnic tables, cooking grills and showers. Drinking water and toilets are located near the parking lots.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • Tents
    • Trash

    $18 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs
    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs
    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs
    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs
    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs
    Camper-submitted photo from Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs

    5.

    Redbud Campground at Bell Smith Springs

    32 Reviews
    142 Photos
    292 Saves
    Eddyville, Illinois

    Bell Smith Springs is one of the most beautiful recreation areas the Shawnee National Forest has to offer. It contains a series of clear, rocky streams and scenic canyons bordered by high sandstone cliffs and an abundance of vegetation unique to Illinois. The trail system consists of eight miles of interconnected trails featuring strange and wonderful rock formations, such as Devil's Backbone, Boulder Falls and a natural rock bridge. Hiking this system of trails is a favorite activity because of the rock features, scenic overlooks, hidden springs and lush flora and fauna.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • RVs
    • Tents
    • Group
    • Standard (Tent/RV)

    $15 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from South Sandusky Campground

    6.

    South Sandusky Campground

    18 Reviews
    52 Photos
    101 Saves
    Sesser, Illinois

    Overview

    Congratulations! You've just discovered Rend Lake, the perfect place to enjoy a wide variety of activities, events, and nature at its best. Even a short visit to Rend Lake will impress you with the versatility of this magnificent area. Rend Lake is made up of 20,633 acres of water and 19,523 acres of land. Wildlife in the area includes deer, turkey, fox, raccoon, opossum, waterfowl, and others as seasons change througout the year. Whether you're looking for high adventure, a peaceful retreat, or something in between, you'll find it here in the heart of Southern illinois.

    Recreation

    Take a leisurely morning stroll, ski or sail lake waters, spend the afternoon viewing inspiring art exhibits and end your day by the warm glow of a campfire under starry night skies. The fields, forests and waters of Rend Lake provide a natural haven for wildlife and an outdoor wonderland for you. Boat, hike, fish, hunt, swim, and explore at your leisure. If you prefer a little less nature, visit one of the resorts around the lake and delight in superb lodging and dining. Just minutes away you'll find golf, trap and skeet, arts, antiques, museums, wineries, and more.

    Facilities

    Take a leisurely morning stroll, ski or sail lake waters, spend the afternoon viewing inspiring art exhibits and end your day by the warm glow of a campfire under starry night skies. The fields, forests and waters of Rend Lake provide a natural haven for wildlife and an outdoor wonderland for you. Boat, hike, fish, hunt, swim, and explore at your leisure. If you prefer a little less nature, visit one of the resorts around the lake and delight in superb lodging and dining. Just minutes away you'll find golf, trap and skeet, arts, antiques, museums, wineries, and more.

    Natural Features

    South Sandusky Campground is situated around Sandusky cove on Rend Lake in the heart of Southern Illinois. With nicely spaced campsites and plenty of activities easily accessible from the campground, South Sandusky is an excellent destination for camping at Rend Lake. Wildlife in the area includes white tailed deer, wild turkey, fox, raccoon, opossum, waterfowl, and others as seasons change throughout the year.

    Nearby Attractions

    South Sandusky Beach Rend Lake Visitors Center Rend Lake Project Office

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • RVs
    • Tents

    $18 / night

    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park
    Camper-submitted photo from Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park

    7.

    Deer Ridge Campground — Ferne Clyffe State Park

    14 Reviews
    15 Photos
    4 Saves
    Goreville, Illinois

    Deer Ridge campground is a well-shaded Class A facility offering gravel pads with electricity, picnic tables and cooking grills. Drinking water, showers, flush toilets and a sanitary dump station complete the setting for campers who prefer to include a few comforts of home with their outdoor adventure.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Trail of Tears State Park Campground

    8.

    Trail of Tears State Park Campground

    18 Reviews
    54 Photos
    92 Saves
    McClure, Illinois

    Trail of Tears State Park Campground, near Jackson, MO, offers a unique camping experience right along the Mississippi River. This place is a gem for those who love a mix of natural beauty and historical significance. The campground is open year-round and features amenities like electric hookups, drinking water, and showers. Pets are welcome, and you can even enjoy a campfire at your site.

    One of the standout features here is the unobstructed view of the Mississippi River. It's a fantastic spot for dark sky viewing, so bring your telescope if you're into stargazing. The park also has a scenic overlook and a visitor center with a small museum dedicated to the Trail of Tears Native American tribal migration—definitely worth a visit.

    For those who like to stay active, there are some awesome hiking trails and a playground for the kids. If you're into fishing, the river and nearby Lake Boutin offer great opportunities. And speaking of the river, watching the barges go by can be quite mesmerizing.

    A few practical tips: you can reserve your spot online up to a year in advance, and there's a senior discount available. Firewood is sold on-site, and there's a coin-operated laundromat about 12 miles away in Jackson. If you need a break from camp food, Tractors Restaurant in Jackson comes highly recommended.

    Just a heads-up, the campground is close to a train track, so expect some noise from passing trains. But many campers find it adds to the charm. Overall, Trail of Tears State Park Campground is a fantastic spot for a memorable camping trip.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • Reservable
    • ADA Access
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground
    Camper-submitted photo from Turkey Bayou Campground

    9.

    Turkey Bayou Campground

    10 Reviews
    18 Photos
    149 Saves
    Gorham, Illinois

    Turkey Bayou Campground​

    Located in Oakwood Bottoms, Turkey Bayou Campground is a great location outdoor activities including waterfowl hunting, deer hunting, trapping, fishing, nature watching and bird watching. The campground is next to a 20-acre lake on the Big Muddy River with close proximity to the Big Muddy boat launch and the Oakwood Bottoms Greentree Reservoir. There is no charge for camping at Turkey Bayou, but there is a 14-day maximum stay. The campground does not have water or toilets. The site frequently floods during heavy rain periods.

    Our partner, Friends of Turkey Bayou helps maintain Turkey Bayou Campground.

    A favorite with waterfowl hunters, Oakwood Bottoms offers so much more from excellent bird watching to fishing opportunities and primitive camping at Turkey Bayou Campground. Picnic with your family or youth group at Oakwood Bottoms picnic site and take a short walk into the bottoms on the wooden boardwalk trail that loops back to the picnic area. The site also has a large picnic shelter next to a large pond, where you can enjoy watching ducks and other birds visit the pond in search of food.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Phone Service
    • RVs
    • Tents
    • Group
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek
    Camper-submitted photo from Gun Creek

    10.

    Gun Creek

    19 Reviews
    63 Photos
    88 Saves
    Whittington, Illinois

    Overview

    Congratulations! You've just discovered Rend Lake, the perfect place to enjoy a wide variety of activities, events, and nature at its best. Even a short visit to Rend Lake will impress you with the versatility of this magnificent area. Rend Lake is made up of 20,633 acres of water and 19,523 acres of land. Wildlife in the area includes deer, turkey, fox, raccoon, opossum, waterfowl, and others as seasons change throughout the year. Whether you're looking for high adventure, a peaceful retreat, or something in between, you'll find it here in the heart of Southern Illinois.

    Recreation

    Take a leisurely morning stroll, ski or sail lake waters, spend the afternoon viewing inspiring art exhibits and end your day by the warm glow of a campfire under starry night skies. The fields, forests and waters of Rend Lake provide a natural haven for wildlife and an outdoor wonderland for you. Boat, hike, fish, hunt, swim, and explore at your leisure. If you prefer a little less nature, visit one of the resorts around the lake and delight in superb lodging and dining. Just minutes away you'll find golf, trap and skeet, arts, antiques, museums, wineries, and more.

    Facilities

    Take a leisurely morning stroll, ski or sail lake waters, spend the afternoon viewing inspiring art exhibits and end your day by the warm glow of a campfire under starry night skies. The fields, forests and waters of Rend Lake provide a natural haven for wildlife and an outdoor wonderland for you. Boat, hike, fish, hunt, swim, and explore at your leisure. If you prefer a little less nature, visit one of the resorts around the lake and delight in superb lodging and dining. Just minutes away you'll find golf, trap and skeet, arts, antiques, museums, wineries, and more.

    Natural Features

    Gun Creek sits along the Eastern banks of Rend Lake in the heart of Southern Illinois.

    Nearby Attractions

    Rend Lake Golf Complex, which includes a 27-hole golf course, restuarant, and lodge.

    • Pets
    • Fires
    • Electric Hookups
    • Phone Service
    • RVs
    • Tents

    $30 / night

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Frequently Asked Questions

What camping is available near Carbondale, IL?

According to TheDyrt.com, Carbondale, IL offers a wide range of camping options, with 98 campgrounds and RV parks near Carbondale, IL and 5 free dispersed camping spots.

Which is the most popular campground near Carbondale, IL?

According to TheDyrt.com, the most popular campground near Carbondale, IL is Giant City State Park Campground with a 4.2-star rating from 24 reviews.

Where can I find free dispersed camping near Carbondale, IL?

According to TheDyrt.com, there are 5 free dispersed camping spots near Carbondale, IL.

What parks are near Carbondale, IL?

According to TheDyrt.com, there are 9 parks near Carbondale, IL that allow camping, notably Rend Lake and Shawnee National Forest.