Little to no amenities. Expensive and setup to accommodate RV camping. If your looking for a beach camping experience, travel further north to either Carolina Beach or Jockeys Ridge. These both offer a better tent camping experience with the beach close by. Don't get me wrong, Oak Island is GORGEOUS! Just not when trying to tent camp.
Oak Island is absolutely beautiful! It's close proximity to the ocean and magical trees covered in Spanish moss made up for the lackluster camping experience. This campground really shouldn't even offer tent sites. It's basically a gravel parking lot filled with a mix of RV's and tents. I was in a tent and ended up leaving after one night.
Camping here for a week was incredible for many reasons. The gorgeous ponies and an abundance of wildlife were amazing. Being able to walk right over to the ocean was also amazing. What I wasn't expecting was the hordes of mosquitoes. Definitely be prepared with lots of Off and citronella candles. The last night I moved to the ocean side and it was much better. I went in June, so I'm not sure if they are always so bad. The bayside provides more interaction with the ponies and wildlife. Which can be worth the mosquitos. Just don't leave food in your tent. The first morning I woke up to a pony eating a loaf of bread and a huge hole in my tent.
Patapsco Valley offers 6 different entrances. Each one provides a several different trail heads and experiences. For camping or just spending a day out on the trail with the kids we prefer the Hilton entrance. There are two huge playgrounds and a youth campground as well as a family campground. The trails we have been on are all pretty moderate to hard but offer beautiful waterfalls and river views. This definitely is a park that takes a while to explore all of it. It cannot be done in a day. Which is nice. It's close enough to home that we can visit often and not get bored.
The Hilton entrance of Patapsco Valley Park is perfect for keeping the kids entertained. There is a huge playground, sensory trail and nature discovery center at the entrance to the park. The nature center was closed when we visited, but the kids still enjoyed the sensory trail and playground. It's the perfect little getaway from the city for camping, fishing and hiking. Be aware that neither the hiking trails or playground are stroller friendly.
My family and I have been coming to Sandy Point my entire life. It is a great little spot on the Chesapeake river. Our favorite thing to do is to fossil hunt for sharks teeth. In the summer it can get pretty crowded, so we prefer to visit in late spring while school is still in session. August is the worst month to visit if you like the water. Jellyfish take over with a vengeance!
We had an amazing experience here. There are not many campsites so make sure you make reservations in advance. When we stayed, the weather was absolutely perfect. You are just close enough to the mountains to feel that refreshing mountain air. Yet, it's only a 3 hour drive from the Triangle. We will most definitely be back. This has been our favorite NC campground so far.
This is hands down the best campground at Jordan Lake. There are beach side campsites, hiking trails and a swimming area all within walking distance from any campsite. We always camp at site 37 on loop 1. When the tide on low on the lake, you have about ten feet of beach to play on or fish from. This time the tide was high so we couldn't enjoy the beach as much, but the breeze coming from the lake to our tent was amazing. The only drawback is that you are pretty close to the Rt. 64 bridge, so you can hear traffic from this particular site. There are more secluded sites available. Loops 1 & 2 are advance registration only. Loops 3 & 4 are first come, first serve walk-up registration only.
This is a very rustic campground. There are only 6 campsites which you have to trek almost 2 miles into the woods to get to. We had a blast, but this is definitely not car camping. So be prepared. No rolling coolers or wheeled carts of any kind. Everything must come on you back. We always have an awesome time when we come here and we come often.
We recently took a trip to this campground after years of camping at other spots on Jordan Lake and we loved it. The facilities were close by and very clean. We decided to stay at this spot because of the close proximity to astronomy event that was taking place nearby. The Moorehead Planetarium has events at Jordan Lake about once a month and this was a great opportunity to see space and have a fun camping trip.
We had an awesome time on our weekend visit. We were able to get a spot right on the lake with electrical hookup and walking distance to showers and restrooms. It was just rustic enough for us to enjoy, but close enough to amenities for our three children to enjoy. We will definitely be back.