The best GROUP camping near
Willey , IOWA

72 Reviews12 Campgrounds

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Most Recent Willey Camping Reviews
Nice park, camping below par

Most packed side by side, back to back. The few good sites are continually reseved.
Campers are loud well beyond midnight. If you like to whoop it up all night, this is the camp ground to go to, no enforcement Small lake is nice, trails are nice. Camp store and beach house (rentals) closed up long ago. 1 dump, long wait. Nearest store 10 miles away, weak cell, down in river valley.

Scenic Hiking

Beautiful views, wonderful trails, cramped campground, poor tent camping conditions.

So much to do!

The best feature of this park, in my opinion, is the four-mile paved recreation trail that goes around the entire 171-acre lake. Good for walking, running, or biking. The lake is beautiful, and we also saw people boating, kayaking, and fishing. Although swimming is also allowed, the beach was not the best for this activity. 

The campsites are a little too close together for our liking, however, many are shaded and have a direct view of the lake. Full hookup, electrical, and primitive sites are available. We were there on a Sunday in August and the dumpster was overflowing, likely due to a large weekend crowd; I would expect that it would be emptied on Monday. 

Lake Anita is a very nice state park about an hour west of Des Moines. There are also several picnic shelters located throughout the park and a nice playground centrally located in the playground.

Beautiful Fall Scenery

Loved it! Both our teenage boys agree it was one of the top 3 places on our South Dakota trip. We would definitely stay here again!!!

Surprise River Gorge in Iowa

Comfortable and scenic park in Iowa with forested trails, gorge, and natural water features amidst the farm fields and rolling hills.  Campground sites are well spaced and mostly level, many with shade and decent privacy.  Mix of hookups for different needs; access to water and trash was easy.  The bathrooms were a bit dated and unclean when we visited, but not terrible.  Good cell coverage in the area and we could do work and school with our Verizon Hotspot.  Beware of the raccoons!   They were not aggressive from the standpoint of approaching us, but they were brash in approaching camper and supplies after dark, and they were a constant presence at the dumpster.  Do not leave food out!  Deer and other small game/wildlife seem abundant.  Trails were poorly signed, but the park is relatively small and getting lost or wandering does not have bad consequences; you'll find where you wanted to go without too much trouble.

Peace & quiet

Reserved electric unit 090 for the weekend, which had a scenic corn field for a backdrop - this is Iowa! Paved roads, level gravel sites, wide & mowed trails, clean pit toilets and a layout that isn’t too cramped. The pond has multiple shoreline fishing spots with picnic tables and a cleaning station. Basic playground in front of the beach which is a short drive or a ~1 mile trail walk away.

First to Review
Nice Family Getaway

This campground was perfect for a small family reunion. We rented out their 3 cabins and had a whole area to ourselves. The kids could walk down to the sand and a bridge. Very well kept, you must clean up after yourself - which should always be the case anyway.

Absolutely amazing

Our favorite place so far! What an absolutely beautiful state park. We were in a 30 ft motorhome and had a fantastic site right by the playground which was so fun for our little girls. Very clean campground with friendly folks all around. There was firewood for purchase and we had a great time. Beautiful walking trails along the lake. Breathtaking in the fall!

We Love this park!

The RV parking area isn't really big, but all sites are great & feel private, especially the outer ones. We have never stayed in the cabins, but they look nice & well kept. Bathrooms & showers are nice. We LOVE the hiking trails. Some can be a pretty good workout & steep for a 61 year old, but they are do-able & have resting benches a long the way. There are some beautiful old bridges if you get on the right trails😁 Wifi is virtually non-existent there, but it is nice to be "unplugged" We have a DVD player & watch old movies if its raining. We wish the park cut-up it's own firewood & offered it for sale (there are plenty downed trees available) It would be an extra income for them. As it is, you can't bring in any wood outside the area because of the Elm Tree Borer possibly being transported, so you will need to go to Ft Dodge to buy some (Menards & possibly some gas stations) have bundles you can buy. It would be so much easier right at the park, like some places we go in Minnesota. We live an hour away and come just to hike sometimes. Nice, quiet place

what a charming name!

but it is right off the highway, with exit sprawl left and right. when i called the gal said $34 a night for an rv site. that’s high for a place this charmless and road-noisy. so i bought a yogurt smoothie across the street and kept driving.