Doug G.

Joplin, MO

Joined July 2019

Nice, small campground tucked away in the hills on the Missouri-Arkansas border

We loved our stay at Holiday Island Campground. Camp host is the best host we have encountered. It is a small campground with no more than 20 sites. Sites are not too close together and all of them are shady. Also the bathrooms are great!

There is water access via one small trail that leads to Table Rock Lake however it is not necessarily the best place to be getting in the water. When we were there the water was up and we would have had to wade through gunk to get out into the broader part of the lake. I’d say it would probably be suitable to launch a kayak from but you wouldn’t want to swim there. We had to drive about 20 minutes to get to a swimming beach.

It is a beautiful area to camp in and Eureka Springs is only 10 minutes away. Additionally you are 10-20 minutes from pretty much everything you would want to do including Table Rock Lake, Beaver Lake and White river.

Nice quiet campground

This our third campground on Beaver Lake this summer. We would definitely come back to this one.  It was quiet and not busy which probably says more about the season than the campground.  I see lots of reviews that rate a campground down for not having amenities and suppose that is what a lot of people expect. But for me and family, we just want a nice quiet place to camp that has a place for the kids to swim.  

I liked how the sites were laid out in the 2nd part of the campground (sites 30-40) better than the first section.  The first section is by the water so it has that going for it but they are all pretty close to the other sites.  The 2nd part of the campground has sites that have good space in between. We were in site 34 and loved it.  

The campground has 2 swimming areas. No real beach but the site at the day-use boat ramp is better than the campground swimming area.  I don't expect much from the swimming beaches so it was sufficient.

We did hike on the trail that is in the campground. It appears to have been a loop at one point but one section of it is closed off and not in use.  The starting point is at the shower house.  It comes to a tee at one point and if you take the left it will be about .25 mile out and back. If you take the right way it will be about a .5 mile hike that will lead to an old campground and bathroom facility.  You then have to hike back to the beginning or you can cut through at one point into the campsites.

The campground is in close proximity to Hobbs State Park so my family took advantage of one of their trails as well.

Good campground for being close to the water

Horseshoe is a great campground if you want to be close to the water. It sits on a peninsula so pretty much no matter what site you have you will see the water. It's like many other Corp of Engineer parks: vault toilets, minimal shower houses.  

The nice:

  • Great hosts;
  • Most sites have a flat gravel squared off area for a tent. In our case we put our canopy there for our cooking station.
  • You are right beside or at least see the water from most sites;

The not so good:

  • crowded;
  • some sites are cramped on space;

We were in site 126 and liked it. I do quite a bit of homework before I pick a site.  My biggest advice would be to pay attention to the map.  The two larger site areas tend to be very crowded. 

There was a short but nice trail.  There was a swimming beach that had sand versus the normal rocks!  Also, deer were very used to campers.  They didn't come into campsites but had no issue grazing on the edge of the woods near the roads.

Overall good enough that I want to go back.

Fantastic Family Camp

We had a great time at this campground. We stayed in the “overflow” of this campground and much preferred the quiet setting that was partially empty to the packed main campground. We had to drive to the swimming beach but not a big deal. We also loved the great shade and breeze that blew through our campsite. Kept us cool on one of the hottest weekends of the year.  Much shadier in the "overflow" campground than the main campground.

There is a 5-mile trail that runs through the park. Pretty hard to follow in spots but one side of it runs along the lake and is beautiful. There are also some historical aspects to the trail that are interesting. 

Swim beach is okay. Make sure to pack water shoes. There isn't sand and it is very rocky.