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Camping in Iowa



About Iowa Camping

Best known for its rich farming history, Iowa is also rich and diverse in nature, with a multitude of destinations to camp and hike. If you’re planning on camping in Iowa, you’re in luck.

Effigy Mounds National Monument is situated on the bank of the Mississippi River at the eastern border of Iowa. Part of the “driftless” region of Iowa that was left untouched by the passing glaciers thousands of years ago, the area’s bluffs, forests, and other habitats host diverse ecosystems to explore and admire.

More than that, Effigy Mounds is notable for its historic settlement by the Native American Effigy Moundbuilders, who build massive sets of mounds that, from a bird’s eye view, form the shape of animals such as bears, cats, and birds. These nature-inspired monuments blend well with the natural scenery, making it an ideal site for camping.

Another excellent site for camping in Iowa is Maquoketa Caves State Park. Located next to the eastern Iowa town of Maquoketa, the 370-acre park contains amazing caves weaving throughout the limestone bedrock of the bluffs. Spelunkers and nature-enthusiasts alike will enjoy exploring the caverns, such as the 800-foot long Dancehall Cave.

Even if you’re not up for venturing into the caverns, there are plenty of other things to do at Maquoketa Caves. Hikers can walk along six miles of trails throughout the park, passing by habitats ranging from bluffs to woodlands to prairies. Unfortunately, the campgrounds are closed until October 2018 for renovations to the camping facilities, but when it is open again you should definitely consider a visit.

Camping in Iowa is diverse and plentiful, there are countless campsites and trails that you may wish to consider. Once you start exploring Iowa’s natural ecosystems, you’ll begin to see the true beauty of the vibrant state.

Recent Reviews In Iowa

1326 Reviews of 714 Iowa Campgrounds

j B.The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 17, 2021

Great camping experience

This county park has many amenities not to mention that it is close to a very popular bike trail (High Tressel Trail Bridge). There are a few miles of mowed trails along with a couple of trail through the woods up and down hills. Do you like volleyball? They have that and ahalf court basketball…

Month of VisitNovember
Reviewed Oct. 17, 2021

Just what was needed

Only one site available when I stopped but that's all I needed! Full of family type campers in every type of camper. Busy but not noisy and quiet by 9. Located on a body of water. Just 3 miles from the highway. I paid $18. For an off season site. Clean restrooms and level spacious sites.

Month of VisitNovember
DThe Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 16, 2021

Fabulous spot

Great spot on the Mississippi River. Has I known the park beforehand, I would have picked a spot on the river. Still a two hundred foot walk and I am there.

Very clean. I was next to a vault toilet did did use it for a quick #1. Clean and did not have any foul smell.

Level cement pads. …

  • sunset
  • site 24
Month of VisitNovember
Kaitlynn B.The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 15, 2021

Good place, friendly

Easy on off from highway, cute little place but still fit a big rig towing a trailer. DoorDash in area is convenient. 50 ⚡️💩👍💧👍

Month of VisitNovember
Reviewed Oct. 12, 2021


Campground was nearly full of local campers but the kids played great together. Decent pool & showers, fun activities like bags tournaments and a potluck. We had a pull thru spot, leveling was tricky. They let us put up a tent for no additional cost. I think it was around $25 night for full…

Sitea pull thru beside the pool
Month of VisitJuly
Reviewed Oct. 12, 2021

Nice Enough

Nice, clean bathrooms, food/drink available in their nice store. Fun outdoor toys for kids. Pool has historically been gross after 4th of July but there are new owners in 2021, maybe its improved now. Easy access from I80, good couple restaurants in Adel.

Month of VisitJune
Reviewed Oct. 11, 2021

Blow-My-Mind Camping

If you’re traveling through Des Moines, Iowa area; this is the place you will want to camp at! Outstanding facilities, beautiful and tranquil location, friendly and helpful staff, and a place you will always remember as a sweet spot.

Month of VisitNovember
N P.
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2021


Stayed for one night in July 2021. Took a dip in the lake: lovely. Bathrooms and showers clean and accessible. Not too much privacy between sites but many sites to choose from. A brave raccoon left his paw prints on my towel drying overnight outside the van but no other detectable critter problems.…

Month of VisitAugust
GThe Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2021

Great Campsite, Beware of the Train

Great campsite close to the bathrooms for an affordable price. The one thing to know is the train comes by about every hour behind the campsite and blows its horn at the two crossings adjacent to the campsite. This happened through the night and was extremely loud so just know that is there before…

  • View of train tracks from campsite
  • Clean updated bathhouse
  • (6) View All
Month of VisitNovember
Molly The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2021

Nice but busy.

I have camped here alot in my life time. If you don't like busy this campground is not for u. The electric is full almost every weekend. Fishing is pretty good. Currently no playground, a new is under construction.

Month of VisitNovember
Kristin B.
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2021

Morgan Creek

Great little campground. Beautiful park with trails and playgrounds. Site was great and had everything we needed. Bathrooms were very well kept. Love this park.

Month of VisitNovember
Tristan V.
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2021

Nice little nook

It's a nice clean little park. The good shower/restroom areas clean convenient firewood purchase area. and has a small recreation area with trail

the bad

only two water connections for the camp

Month of VisitOctober
Heather M.The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2021

Indian Summer weekend

lovely, clean and very well spaced camp sites. Electric only with water and dump station nearby. clean bathrooms and showers spaced nicely thruout campground. Lots of large trees, close to bike path.

Month of VisitNovember
Carrie C.
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2021

Osceola ,IA

Pulled in late so didn’t get a good look, but from what I e seen this is a pretty nice campground. Looks to be about 10 sites, nicely spread apart. Big, clean fire pits with grills and a picnic table. Plenty of space to feel comfortable.

Month of VisitNovember
Rod L.
Reviewed Oct. 6, 2021

Colorado trip

First time here,this place is very nice &peaceful, beautiful lake,spacious sites power & water at sites,15,30&50 amp.

Month of VisitNovember

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