The best camping near
Des Moines, IOWA

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Camping Iowa Des Moines
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Most Recent Des Moines Camping Reviews
Great Cabins and fishing

Took my son here last Spring.  Cabins are very clean the bunks allowed for for four to sleep.  Beautiful sunsets overlooking the lake.  Fish cleaning station was also well taken care of.  We had a great time catching small walleyes and sunnys.  This location also made it easy to head over to twelvel mile lake and fish also.  Everyone was very friendly.

Great spot

This was a great spot for our overnight stay while traveling I-80. Its about 6 easy miles off the interstate, and well marked. The lower camp zone looks like it floods easily and was pretty muddy, so we opted for a nice level spot in the upper section. 50 amp plug in, fire rings, picnic tables, great park for our 3 year old. Our review would be 5 stars, but all the restrooms were locked for the season, and the only signage was on the doors of the facilities. No signage about the closures at the self registration. We probably should have checked the restrooms prior to setting up. Still, a very nice place and we would definitely visit again.

Great Place

This is my favorite place to go hiking, kayaking, camping and fishing.

There is a half mile portage with a campsite on the river which you must call to reserve. The other campsites are $10.00 registration. They have porta potties around. Two places to launch kayaks. Most campsites have fire rings, picnic tables and trash bins. Some have grills. They also have firewood for sale or you can find enough wood around still. I didn’t see any water hookups so bring a filter or water. There is a Kum & Go up the road to get missing supplies.

The only downside of camping is you hear the interstate traffic but it’s minimal. The quiet hours are at 10:30pm and they have a gate which is closed at sunset when the park closes for non campers.

Lots of hiking trails and wildlife. The fishing is the best place for largemouth bass, bluegill, catfish. No swimming is allowed and only electric motors, no gas.

Check out their Facebook page for more updates and if you see me out there say hi!

Peaceful, lots of riverbed area to explore

We’re big fans of Acorn Valley. It’s quiet and there is plenty of shade in the tent camping area. The tent sites lead to some small trails which end at the riverbed. Our boys love exploring here.

First to Review
1 night

Open year around. Nice large sites and no need to unhook. Clean rv park with easy access to 1-80.

Rustic Country Campground

Original Park in Greene County

First to Review
River Access

Cement boat ramp. No camping stalls. No electricity to plug in to.

Awesome place!

One of the best in the state!

Awesome park!

Great park with many different activities available!

Unexpected

Lovely park inside the city that makes you feel like you’re in the ozark mtns, with a surprise!

Perfect Little Getaway

Nice little camp ground with easy access to the high trestle bike trail

Beautiful

Nice small park settle nicely in the iowa country side!

Nice wooded park near lake

Caveat: you cannot see the lake from the camping spots

Camped site 26

Wooded county campground. Many of the spots at the West campground are paved. They all have electric. A few have other amenities. Water and dump site in the park (dump at east campground), but not at most spots. Spots vary in length and width. Decent playground. They had some bags and horseshoe courts near the entrance.

Adventure land

Very friendly help at the office. Clean sites. Pretty tight quarters. When making reservations we were told it had a pool. They did not tell us it closed for the year the day we started or weeks stay. Might have made a difference if we knew. Plenty to do here. Right next to the casino and horse race track and also next to adventure land amusement park.

Nice spot

I would suggest getting reservations. We stopped on a Friday with out one, they were booked. We only wanted one night in a tent. They don’t have designated tent sites but they have one overflow sight and they let us use it for the night. Price is great, $20 per night. Easy to get rvs into the spots and a lot to do for the kids.

Great little place that's still close to civilization.

This place has a lot to offer and the hosts are great.  Our favorite time is in the Fall.

Great to work with!

Very friendly people working there! A group of us had a loop and had a great weekend! The only down side of this was the grass was really long so it was bad when taking the dog out in the evenings or mornings. You would come back in with a soaked dog and wet feet. It really needed to be mowed.

The facilities were clean. A huge playground area for the kids! It’s huge and well maintained.

We have used this camp many times and the long grass is my only complaint!

Adel Iowa

Clean, economical, and friendly staff

Beautiful Park

The park is well maintained, clean bathrooms and showers in camping area. 

Very nice trails.  The campsite, we have a RV, was very clean, and like many other parks, we were not right on top of each other.  They have water and sewer hook up at the site.

The views are beautiful of the sand ledges.  Definetly plan on returning.

First to Review
Little known gem

Really nice campground, most of it is reservable and fills up. The little know part is that, while reservable the group camping is on first come basis if group sites are not reserved. The group sites are set up in a circle with a shelter in the middle. The campground has no water connections at sites but in group camping there is a one water connection to fill tanks. On large loops you will need a lot of hose to reach. I think I needed about 80’ some campers will need 100’. There is potable water at dump site. This campground is connected to regional bike trails that will take all the way to Des Moines and suburbs.

Hidden Slice of Heaven

Growing up in Iowa maybe 50 miles from the Ledges was one the the best things for me. Campground is clean and well kept with both electric and primitive with a few hike in spots. It is a beautiful park with some good trails and a creek running through the bottoms of the "canyon". Loved going all the time when I was a kid and now 30 years later I have taken my family there several times making the drive from Kentucky just for some relaxation time.

First to Review
Great place to relax.

Peaceful camping with lots of room, 50 amp hook ups and water easily available.

Great place to hike!

We had a great time camping here with several family members. The trails were very nice and scenic for the little amount of work to hike them. The Des Moines river passes right through here and I’d love to make a float trip out of it some day.

Beautiful park!

The campground is split into two parts. One part is mostly shaded and the other isn't. Thankfully, we camped in the part that was mostly shaded.  The trees provided enough shade, and the evenings were cool enough to keep our camper comfortable at night. The campground hosts were welcoming, friendly and knowledgeable of the park and the area.  I would give the park 5 stars, but feel the restroom/shower facilities were small for that many campsites. (I would probably go with a 4.5 if it was available).  The park itself is pretty good sized and offers water activities (Middle River and the Pammel Loop) and hiking. We didn't hike this trip, but trails looked to be pretty nice.  We did kayak the loop one day-it took about an hour for the 1.9-mile loop and water levels were pretty low. It's pretty easy/convenient as far as letting in and taking out. There is quite a bit to do in the area if you allow time and it's a really beautiful part of the state if you like to venture away from the campground. And it's quite the adventure to drive over the ford. :)

Pretty happy

The campground has some very nice spots and wasn’t busy at all. The bathroom at the campground doesn’t have plumbing and no water available so make sure to bring plenty of water. There is a small park to play at for kids.

There are a couple of hiking trails in the park that are maintained. One goes to a creek and a bird watching station. There is also a orienteering course but you have to walk in the woods to finish it.

The observatory that’s open on Saturday’s (except the 1st Saturday) was awesome and the astronomers were great people and very knowledgeable. They showed how their telescopes worked and took us a tour of the building and classroom. The bathrooms at the observatory had plumbing and were very clean.

All in all it was a great campsite, not really anyone there and we had a lot of fun on the trails and the observatory.

Prairie Flower Campground

It is a COE campground. We stayed in site A25. Not all loops are paved. A is not. But the site was pretty level, wasn't too much trouble to get our trailer backed in and leveled. No water hook ups, so fill up after you get in the campground before you park. Lots of prairie area around, spacious sites. Varying levels of shade. A25, had a good amount of shade and was near the nice playground and nice bathrooms. No view of the lake from loop A. Nearby bike paths. A few minutes to restaurants.

Right on the water

Pros: Loved being right on the water and so close to the playground and restrooms. Nice area to bike around, and had a ton of kids. Showed a movie near the playground in the evenings.

Cons: Beach was covered in poop, too nasty to swim. Rented a paddle boat, and had to come back after 5 mins because they were infested with hundreds of spiders. The horse shoe pit was overgrown with grass.

Spacious sites, beautiful lake!

The campground itself is very nice. There is a lot of space between campsites, which is awesome!  Our site had a great view of the lake, as well.   The campgrounds are a drive away from the beach and most boat ramps.  The lake was great for kayaking, but the visit to Whitebreast beach knocked the campground scored down, as I typically look for the overall experience and not just sites/facilities in my rating.  Whitebreast beach had sand at the top, leading me to believe it would be a typical sandy beach-not at all!  As you made your way further down and into the water, there was muddy, wet clay and the beach floor was slimy and muddy. I even saw a young boy lose his shoes in the wet clay! I would return to the campground and kayak the lake, but I wouldn't recommend the beach!  I'm fairly certain my grandson and I both ended up with some kind of bug bites after being there-we're both still itching!!  Yuck! There is another beach at Lake Red Rock and perhaps it is nicer/cleaner, but I would stay away from Whitebreast if you don't like your feet sliming in clay and mud!

Best little park

Great place to go tent camping, very clean and quiet. They sell firewood bundles for $5. Easy trails for the kids to go hiking and playing in the creek to cool off in the heat. There is even a pond for fishing that you can take a trail from the campsite to. 100% going to go back and camp again.

Nice Park

I stayed there last year and am going back this year. It’s a very nice park with several hiking trails. They have 25% of their sites designated as walk in sites.