Assateague State Park camping is Maryland's only oceanfront park. It is located on Assateague Island, a barrier island bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the east and the Sinepuxent Bay on the west. Its two miles of ocean beaches offer swimming, beachcombing, sunbathing, surfing and fishing. The bayside offers visitors the chance to explore secluded coves by canoe or kayak. The marsh areas have a variety of wildlife, including deer, waterfowl and feral horses.
-342 sites are available, each with a fire ring and picnic table.
-Electric hook-ups are available in the G-Loop and a limited number of sites in I-Loop only.
-Most campsites can be reserved from the last week of April through the last weekend of October.
Make no mistake, this is beach camping, but it is the best. Despite constant 20mph winds for the first two days which prevented us from pitching our tent (we slept in our SUV just fine) we had a blast. It was a bonus when we got the tent up, but the hiking, relaxing on the beach, campfire and watching the wild ponies is unbeatable.
Site Details: We stayed on site #I328, in the I loop at the very end of the campground. The site was level but on the small side; I wouldn’t recommend attempting to fit in with anything larger than a pop-up or hybrid. That said, it had electrical service(a hot commodity in this park!), and was well situated, with a nice open space between the edge of the site and the dunes. This open space was pretty low-lying, so I imagine flooding/standing water could bring some major bug issues in the summer. As with all other loops in the park, this loop is separated from the beach by a row of sand dunes, so beach access is very quick and easy. There is no shade to speak of; all sites are surrounded by scrub brush and other plants typical of a beach/marsh environment. Watch out for sandburs!
Facilities/Overall Park: Assateague SP is widely known, loved, and hard to book for a reason. The scenery and setting simply cannot be beat. The beautiful beaches, unspoiled natural setting, and wild ponies all make for an incredible and truly unique camping experience. Additionally, the rangers are very helpful, and the bath houses are pristine. We visited in the fall, and the weather happened to be perfect, with no bugs. Based on other campers’ experiences, as well as having grown up on the Eastern Shore, I would honestly avoid the summertime due to the extreme heat and bugs. Summertime is undoubtedly a more popular time, and a more convenient time for many to travel and take advantage of the beach, but I’d lean toward going in the fall if you can.
Surrounding Area/Attractions: There is so much to do and see nearby, if you can tear yourself away from the park. The state park sits adjacent to Assateague National Seashore, with its own visitor center, campground, and beaches. The NP side has more primitive facilities, and tends to be less crowded and a bit more “wild.” Outside the island, there is of course Ocean City nearby, with plenty to do, see, and eat. It’s a typical tourist beach town, which I have no desire to visit again, but might be worth checking out if you’re into boardwalks, shopping, mini golf, etc. If you do go, make sure to grab some Thrasher’s fries and Fisher’s popcorn. Also nearby is the cute small town of Berlin.
Overall, this is a fantastic park for beach and nature lovers, and lives up to its hype. Make sure you book far in advance (especially for the electric sites!); be prepared for bugs, heat, and wind; and you’ll be sure to have a memorable experience.
A few chilly nights to avoid the bugs. Vegetation made our site feel a bit more private.
We loved our three night trip. The weather was great minus a terrible mist that came off the ocean one of the evenings.
The bathroom is clean and modern. There are two outdoor showers which were a real treat one warm evening.
Some of the island’s wild horses visited our campsite. You have to make sure every bit of food is put away. Do not feed them as that takes the wild nature out of them.
We met some wonderful people there from all over the east coast. The sites are spaced pretty tightly.
There are no wooded spots. So bring a sun shade or umbrella. Even in late October, it was bright and hot.
There are a few short trails in the National park which were nice.
Great site ! Most of the sites are non- power or water hookup, but you can bring a generator to use
Camp sites are level and big Plus you may get a visit from a pony or two
Beach camping at its best. Great FREE hot indoor and outdoor showers. Clean facilities and sites. Campground hosts friendly and helpful. Some sites allow dogs and you can fall asleep to the sound of crickets and waves!
Love this campground! It is beautiful and right on the beach! Campsites are generally roomy and well spaced apart. Bathrooms are HUGE and clean, the cleanest campground bathroom I've ever seen. However, this means that a lot of teenagers spend their time in there, ha. There is an outdoor shower and sink as well as several paths to the beach. The beach is beautiful and clean. I wish there were bathrooms closer to the beach though, you have to walk all the way back over the dunes to the bathroom, but that's just us being lazy. The downside to this place is that it is HARD to book. It is almost always full and you have to book at least a year out for peak weekends. Some sites are near the grassy areas and have cacti and burrs. I am not sure why they don't go and remove the cacti. These are dangerous for kids, pets and adults alike. We've been injured several times. There are horses walking around all the time, and they DO get up in your face! I cannot believe how many people idiotically stand too close to the horses or just freak out and let the horses ravage their trash, etc. PAY attention, keep trash tied up and food put away. Tip- if the horses come too close, splash water on them (from a safe distance). There are mosquitoes and flies too. Bring bug spray! Also, another great thing is that Ocean City is only a 15 minute drive. We like to go out to the boardwalk or to the beach/bars and then come back to the campground. Really nice!
Great campground and park. Sites are somewhat well separated, some on the grass, some right on the dunes. The restrooms are probably the best we've seen amongst any Md campground. Beaches are very very enjoyable. Only downside I can think of is how hard it is to book a site (we book ours a year in advance and it still a race). Something to keep in mind is that, because of the natural layout of the park, no shade is provided by trees, be prepared. Great place to go
You can’t beat Assateague. It’s a long running family tradition to camp here for many. Amazing scenery and a very nice campground. Bathhouses are new and very nice. Camp hosts are always on duty and friendly. Rangers are helpful and knowledgeable. There is a camp store and market and firewood is for sale. It’s clean and well kept. Every site is steps from the ocean!
I’ve been going here for years, best place to camp.