When you love something, it’s natural to want to share it with people. But when that thing is camping, you might meet some resistance from friends and family members—no matter how awesome your camping destinations are. It’s a little shocking and strange to those of us who do love camping—but not everyone does.
If you’re planning a camping trip and there’s one member of the group whose aversion to bugs and inclement weather is slowing you down, don’t give up hope.
Know Someone Who “Doesn’t Camp”? They’ll Love These Camping Destinations
We all have at least one friend who doesn’t like to camp. These camping destinations might change their mind.
1. Horseshoe Bend Marina, Tennessee
If you feel the need to slow down, Horseshoe Bend Marina is the glamping destination for you. Secluded, even by rural Tennessee standards—but just an hour and a half from Nashville and Chattanooga and two from Knoxville—this spot is the right mix of easy to reach and removed from the hustle and bustle. You’ll find plenty of luxury, however, with WiFi , boat slips, and glamping tents overlooking the lovely Caney Fork River as it flows towards Rock Island State Park.
The zippy fiber-optic powered internet speeds are a dream come true for digital nomads, influencers, and anyone who can’t quite leave the office behind. You’ll also find a clean, freshly renovated bath house, and a well-designed campsite loop that was originally a “Great Gatsby”-era summer camp. There’s a camp store where you can buy the essentials and anything you might have forgotten, kayak rentals, fishing equipment rentals, and volleyball.
Not only that, you can add on additional services like hors d’oeuvres delivered for your bachelorette party or romantic outdoor love story, dreamy backyard suppers around their Insta-ready rustic dining table, or the musical stylings of Kevin, the fireside guitar player who can serenade your event. And for just $75 a night, you’ll have room in your budget for all the niceties.
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2. Zion National Park, Utah
Utah’s first national park is still one of the most popular camping destinations. Visitors can’t get enough of its sandstone canyons, diverse wildlife, and rushing river system. Hesitant campers can get the best of both worlds by staying in Springdale, a town just outside the park with a wide range of accommodation options.
At Water Canyon Cliffside Cabins, campers can choose between six campsites, one canvas tent, and one mini cabin that all offer stunning views of the Canaan Mountains. Plus, the campground features a close connection to the Water Canyon hike around the back end of Zion. A big payoff for a very easy investment!
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3. Red River Gorge, Kentucky
For a double whammy, introduce your friends and family to camping and rock climbing at Red River Gorge in Kentucky. It’s fun to just watch other climbers, but people without climbing experience can still give it a try if they’re feeling ambitious — private guides are available for first-timers.
Or you can just soak up the many trails and scenic views in the area. This park is a good choice for a group because you’ll find cabins and campgrounds within close proximity of each other. So the camping enthusiasts can pitch their tents, while the less enthusiastic can enjoy a little cabin luxury.
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4. Edisto Beach State Park, South Carolina
Go coastal in South Carolina at the 1,255-acre Edisto Beach State Park. On the edge of a salt marsh, the park has that wilderness feel but is less than 5 miles from shops and restaurants. There’s Wi-Fi at the park office and a mix of campsites and cabins onsite, but make no mistake—this is still the outdoors, where you might spot a bobcat or an alligator along the four-mile nature trail.
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5. Ludington State Park, Michigan
Between the canoeing, walking trails, sand dunes, and lighthouse you probably won’t spend much time in your sleeping quarters, but it’s nice to know you have options. The Beechwood, Cedar, and Pines campgrounds inside the state park offer cabins, mini cabins, and powered sites but they fill up fast. Alternatively the nearby town of Ludington has camping facilities as well.
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6. Cloudland Canyon State Park, Georgia
Cloudland is a crowd-pleaser with gorgeous scenic views and waterfall hikes, plus it’s only half an hour from Chattanooga, Tennessee. There’s a huge selection within the national park that includes cozy cottages, quirky yurts, and campsites. It’s an excellent spot for inexperienced campers, and it just might get them hooked on life outdoors.
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7. Umpqua Lighthouse State Park, Oregon
You’ll find this campground inside the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, where sand dunes can get as high as 500 feet. Convince your non-camping friends to check it out for themselves with the promise of yurts and cabins in the campground, including a deluxe yurt that is accessible for campers with disabilities. This state park is still relatively undiscovered and as a bonus, some yurts overlook nearby Lake Marie.
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8. Yosemite National Park, California
Yes, Yosemite can be wild and challenging. Yes, there are bears. But don’t let that scare away your friends who don’t camp! It is one of the most popular camping destinations for a reason, after all. Visiting Yosemite is a memorable experience for campers of all comfort levels, especially if you take advantage of campgrounds on the outer fringes of the park. Try Yosemite Pines RV Resort or Yosemite Lakes for yurts, cabins, Airstream trailers, and campsites that give you easy access to the best of Yosemite.
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9. Camp Rockaway, NYC
How many times have you heard your friend who doesn’t like camping tell you they don’t want to because of the travel involved? Camp Rockaway is the solution to that problem. If you’re looking to escape the city without traveling for hours, then check out this urban, seasonal glamping opportunity on Rockaway Beach in New York City. Campers stay in safari-style tents and have access to a fire pit, games, hammocks, and a picnic area. The Rockaway Beach boardwalk is just a short walk from camp, as are biking, birding, hiking, and whale watching. Clean bathrooms, hot showers, and comfy beds make this the kind of upscale camping experience you won’t soon forget.
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10. Authentic Barn Camping & Unique Stall B&B, Spokane, WA
An up-close-and-personal experience with nature is usually a great way to convince an unsure camper—what better way to get that than with camping directly on a working farm? Outside Spokane, WA, visitors can experience a real working western ranch by booking a converted barn stall for a rustic yet beautiful place to sleep for the night. Campers have the freedom to explore the entire ranch, and sunsets are a particularly lovely time to walk the land and take in the view of the surrounding mountains.
Campers have access to bathrooms and a shower as well as a small, shared lounge with mini fridge and microwave. Breakfast is not provided, but just a few miles down the road you’ll find a restaurant that serves up a great American-style breakfast.
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