From the shores of Cape Hatteras to the ancient mountains of Great Smoky Mountain National Park, North Carolina is a state that is as beautiful as it is diverse in natural wonders. Whether you fancy a day of surfing in the waves of the Atlantic Ocean or a climb up Mount Mitchell, the tallest mountain east of the Mississippi, there’s an outdoor adventure waiting for you. So grab your bathing suit or your hiking poles (or both!) and find the best camping in North Carolina.
The pristine beauty of North Carolina’s Outer Banks have always drawn vacationers looking for a respite from the hustle and bustle of their daily lives. Fortunately for those that like sleeping under the stars, camping in North Carolina at one of the state’s many beaches is a great way to experience the sun and sand without the expense of a vacation rental. With over 300 miles of coastline, there are dozens of state and private campgrounds to choose from.
If pitching your tent in coastal sand dunes isn’t your cup of tea then pack your bag and head to the mountains of Western North Carolina—a region known throughout the southeast for its abundant opportunities to recreate outdoors. Whether you’re rafting down the Nantahala River that winds through the beautiful and remote Nantahala National Forest or hiking on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, a 1,175 mile footpath that spans the width of North Carolina, you won’t run out of reasons to be outside.
North Carolina has 40 mountains that rise above 6,000 feet (aforementioned Mount Mitchell is the tallest, clocking in at 6,684 feet) and 100 that stand more than 5,000 feet. Camping in the shadows of these peaks is just one thing that makes camping in North Carolina so special. And with 2.1 million acres of public land in the state, finding a campground is as easy as pulling out a map.
Whether it’s saltwater waves, pristine peaks or rushing rivers that excite you, let The Dyrt help you discover the best camping in North Carolina.
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Eno River State Park has amazing backpack in camping that is well worth the beautiful walk through the woods. The last trip here was so wonderful that we extended it by two nights!
I’ve camped here numerous times, at different sites each time and have not had a bad experience yet. The hike to get to the campsites winds around the river and across bridges. The actual hikes do not gain much elevation so while it’s not as easy as walking on pavement, it does not take an advanced hiker to reach the remote camp sites. Each campsites I’ve stay at has been fairly spread out from other sites, while you’ll be able to see and hear others these are not uncomfortably close sites.
There’s plenty to explore, so its definitely worth staying for multiple nights. It’s on the Mountain to Sea Trail so a lot of campers around us were through hikers and only stayed one night, but we spent four here and it was four of the most peaceful and relaxing days I can remember. All the sites I’ve stay at have had fire pit rings and tent pads. There’s never been a picnic table, just a rustic wood bench, so I recommend a camp chair or my personal favorite- a tree hammock as there are plenty of places to hang on.
With rivers running through the whole park, we packed minimal water and used a life straw. The rivers here are very clean and didn't not give us any second thoughts to drink it. The cool, delicious water is better than anything bottled :)
I've gone in both September and April and the weather was perfect both months, cool at night and around 70 during the day.
This is hands down, one of my favorite State Parks to camp at in both North and South Carolina.
There are three campsites located in Victor Road. Victor Road is approx. 2 miles north of highway 80 (highway 80 is is approx 16 miles north of Mount Mitchell) on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The road is initially pavement but quickly turns to packed gravel. The road is a little rough in spots, but I had zero issues in my Honda Accord. Sites are free and do not appear to be managed by any official municipal, state or federal authority…but they are in great shape.
Three sites are available from what I could see. The marker on this map is at the site of what I am calling #3. Sites 1 & 2 are located about 1/2 mile down Victor Road on the left and are adjacent to one another, but appear to be large and have foliage separating them. One of the sites had three tents pitched along side a beach tent and still had plenty of open space in the middle around a stone fire pit. I stayed at site number three. This has enough room for two cars and a four person tent at most. I have a three person tent and it covered most of the flat pad area. The site has a fire pit and is located just before a large(ish) stream that crosses the road. Beyond this campsite, the road turns private. The site is on the left hand side as you approach the stream. There is room on the right hands side of the road for perhaps another tent if one wanted to do so.
This is fairly remote, despite being close enough to the BRP to hear cars occasionally. There are no amenities aside from the fire pit, but it's handy to have a creek for water for filtering or boiling. You should note that there are hunting blinds at the top of the hill between sites 1/2 and 3. These are facing a field that points away from the campsites. I imagine during turkey season (I saw a lot of turkey), you may hear gunshots.
There aren't any trails down this road, but you are within a few minutes of the BRP where they are plentiful and Mt. Mitchell and associated trail systems are less than 20 minutes. The BRP would have to be open for you to access these sites, so plan accordingly (my suggestion is the real time map on nps.org).
The road to is dirt with sand mix, they good a good job of keeping it graded. The ownership and management are very nice people and are super responsive to everything. The park is clean with a lake to finish in and hiking trails that you can go explore. The only down sides are that the sites are pretty packed close together, some trailers seem run down and abandoned, and there is a rooster that goes around that will attack. Great place to get away and hang up your hat for a few days.
This campground we heard about from another camper and was telling us about we went last weekend camping and loved it VERY friendly staff and family oriented lots of activities and just one of those places you feel like your at home . Highly recommend and very nice bathroom's and showers. Will definitely be back!!
Nice, quiet campground that has lots of things for the kids to do. Looking forward to the expansion to be completed and to see the entire campground up and running.