The best camping in
Kansas

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Camping Kansas

When you think of Kansas, forget about flat. There’s a world of unexpected outdoor adventures waiting for you in the heart of America. Camping in Kansas brings you closer to world-class hiking, fishing, horseback riding, and the ability to enjoy a sunset over the plains. With twenty-six state parks, multiple lakes, and an abundance of trails and wildlife, camping in Kansas is sure to surprise you.

The scenic Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge lies in the broad, flat, and beautiful Neosho River Valley. It’s the country’s largest remaining tract of tallgrass, complete with captivating wildflowers and a nearly endless horizon. El Dorado State Park is situated conveniently at the edge of the Flint Hills and perfect for camping nearby. A destination for boating, fishing, hiking and wildlife viewing, the hills make camping in Kansas as fun-packed as it is gorgeous.

For water lovers, there are a handful of public camping areas near the Kansas River Trail, as well as sandbars welcome to campers scattered along the way. Cyclists and hikers will love camping in Kansas for the numerous trails winding through Kansas River State Park’s breathtaking oak-hickory forest. Plus, you can access the Kansas River (also known as Kaw River) from a boat ramp for canoeing, kayaking, and other small watercraft.

If you’re looking for fresh air, awe-inspiring views, and crystal water, Kansas may have just the right thing. With tall grass, stretching fields, and open skies, the Sunflower State is perfect for those who love trail exploration, wildlife, and even archery! From the Flint Hills to the Kansas River and everything in between, camping in Kansas is perfect for a picturesque and peaceful getaway.

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Recent Reviews in Kansas
Good for a quick weekend

Good shade. Well maintained and good sized spots. We’ve also rented cabins which are nice.

Lake Meade State Park in March

Stayed 2 nights in early March.   Lake View site #22, beautiful view from the lake's edge.   Most sought after site.    Was nearly all alone.  Power and Electric hook-ups.   Many hook-up options but no sewer.    Did have a dump station.   Roughly $20/night for premium site.    Some spots are a little close together, but the lake views and otherwise open areas make up for it.

Pretty view

This is not a campsite I will go back to. When we drove into the park and paid the entrance fee, we were told to find a place that wasn't occupied then go get a tag from the host. We found a site and started getting our stuff out of the car and pretty soon the campground host came by and told us we had to leave. She assigned campsites when people drove in, which is not what we were told. After telling her we wouldn't leave, she left, then came back and said we could stay. 

The campground itself was pretty, but a lot of people in RV's (we tent camp) who were there to fish and party, so I thought it was noisy.

A smaller, fun getaway

Lake Miola park in Paola, Ks. is a small, well kept, easy to access recreational area. All of the usual summer outdoor activities are supported, including swimming, boating, fishing, picnicking, and camping. There is a swimming beach with sand volleyball. The park is about 560 acres with a 200 acre lake. There is a dock at the campground for boat access to the campground. The campground offers several pull through sites that have full hookups. The rest are back-in with water and electricity. The sites are not very level, so bring leveling equipment! The rates are EXTREMELY affordable. First come, first served. Holidays will find the campground FULL. If you want to be there for a holiday, know that you are allowed to stay 14 consecutive days before you must take 5 day break. Fees are cheaper for city and Miami county residents.

Nice shady loop

This loop is not lake front, but sometimes that is best on a windy weekend. Abundance of large trees and shade with plenty of space to spread out without having to worry about the kids getting in the lake unsupervised.

Desolate in winter

After driving the whole park, we settled on Kanza campground at a little loop near the lakefront. There are several campgrounds available for you to choose from, just make sure to watch the signs to make sure they have your type of camping available (ie rv, tent, etc.). There are fire pits. The rv hookup ones are really nice. There are a few nice ones scattered throughout the primitive, and some are just rock piles. Love the fact they have trash cans! A little sad but Understandably they have their bathrooms locked up (We visited on Jan 4th). They have a nice kids playground In this section, and a small beachfront as well. After driving around, we saw a few people fishing, one guy on a boat, and several cars driving through for what seemed like pleasure cruising. As the sun set, we seemed to be the only campers in the whole place! Our only complaints about the location is the scattered tree cover (windblock for fire-we solved by using our vehicle) and the bathroom situation. We would return in the future and recommend this for an easy spot for winter camping if you come prepared. Summer wise, it may be crowded based on the proximity of the camping spot layouts, but that just gives us a reason to come back. Happy Camping!

Great Winter Location

We have visited Lovewell many times during the summer, but this was our first winter trip. We arrived after hours, so we had to pay by the envelope drop post. $10 for primitive camping and a $3 fee. If you have time, I recommend driving all over the campgrounds to pick your location prior to paying. Payment envelopes stick to your window with the campground info exc listed. The bathrooms were open, however the was no running water. Showers and the main store were both closed, not surprisingly with it being winter. The camp fire ring was THE BEST I have EVER seen! It was spacious to accommodate a substantial fire, and had an ADJUSTABLE grill grate! It was perfect for regulating temperatures from cooking to keeping warm. If you are looking for a quiet getaway, this is your place. We plan to return.

Lakefront winter gem

We camped here from December 7th till 8th. A quick trip. A little chilly, but not bad for what we were expecting. This was our first time to Ottawa, and I must say we were pleasantly surprised. The grounds are free for 14days before you have to move along. We took a drive around the whole lake to scope out a good camping spot. A few of the areas on the north and east side were closed off for the winter, leaving the large west side as the only option. We found a great spot near the lake, take the farthest road to the right when the road splits, it’s backed by the trees and next to the lake. Open areas, no hookups. Trees were very helpful with blocking the wind. There were only two other campers on the grounds with us, both at opposite ends of the grounds. Campfire rings are chained down, some are bigger and taller than others. Only a few had grates if you didn’t bring your own. The only real downside about the grounds we had was the trash. There are no trash cans, so people just leave trash lying around. We did a quick pickup around our area, and gathered what you see in the grey bucket picture below. The toilets were open, however they are pretty much a hole in the ground with a seat attached. No sinks. There are a few benches, wood or concrete, around, but not at every site. There is a nice open building with two fireplaces if you are needing some place to gather. It looks like it may have been closed in at some point because there are spots for toilets closed off. It also looks like it has possible electric hookup. If you are looking for a great spot for a quick getaway, or quite vacation spot, this would be a great place to do so! We will definitely be back.

Where did the Lake Go

Water Sports, no longer has it's Lake. There are still some trailers here from when this is to be the watering hole for the area. Over 100 plus sites. Many 30 amp less 50 amps, water at every site and a dump station. Like many other parks in this region the burs are here too. Laundry Room good for small to medium sized items. Bath house has codes and are in the need of a little TLC, but are clean. Great price. They made a fresh pot of coffee for is before we left. Customer Service is awesome.

Semi-Boondocking

Cimarron National Grasslands,$7.00 per sites 10 sites(some are double sites so they call it 14 sites) all pads ar gravel, a couple are pretty level, all sites have fire ring, vaulted toilets, several water spigots according to Kansas worker they check the spigot monthly. Several Ponds some are stocked with trout in the winter a stamp is needed for the rainbow trout. During the summer they are stocked with catfish. 23 miles Santa Fe Trail are within the Parks boundaries. Bobwhite, and coyote, dear and other birds spotted through the Park. CAUTION: Before you get to site 1, there are 2 trees the one on the left has the scars to show the damage it has done to taller vehicles(we are 13.11 and just received a slight raspberry a couple layers of self leveling caullk and all is good for now!).