13 of the Best Campgrounds in Arizona

Whether you’re after a quiet place to pitch your tent or near an area attraction, our list of 13 Best Campgrounds in Arizona has it all.

Whether you're after a quiet place to pitch your tent or near an area attraction, our list of 13 Best Campgrounds in Arizona has it all.

With over 12 million acres of public land, and many beautiful state and national parks, Arizona has a wide range of camping options for all interests and budgets. Camping is a great way to experience nature while experiencing true self-reliance, and a sense of adventure.

The Grand Canyon State is known for its varying climates, from hot desert summers to snowy mountain winters. Because of this, in Arizona, camping is a year-round opportunity.

Camping is a great way to experience nature while experiencing true self-reliance. Whether you’re looking for a place to pitch your tent or park your rv, here are some of the best campgrounds that you should check out in Arizona!

Cave Springs Campground, Coconino National Forest
U.S. Forest Service, Southwestern Region, Coconino National Forest

Cave Springs Campground, Coconino National Forest

Cave Springs Campground is located in the picturesque Oak Creek Canyon of the Coconino National Forest and is one of its most popular places to stay.

The campground is located in a wooded canyon near Sedona, Arizona’s renowned red rock cliffs. Campsites are located among ponderosa pines, with many of the campsites located right on the banks of Oak Creek.

There are numerous swimming, hiking, and birding opportunities available. There are several trails that lead up the canyon for amazing views of the the natural beauty of the region. Campers may also go hiking in the 1.8-million acre Coconino National Forest, which has a wide range of scenery and outdoor activities to enjoy.

Facilities: Cave Springs has 84 campsites, all equipped with picnic tables, campfire rings and cooking grills. Other amenities include coin-operated showers, drinking water and vault restrooms.

Cost: Campsites are $22 per night.

Bonita Canyon Campground, Chiricahua National Monument

Bonita Canyon Campground, Chiricahua National Monument

Set in a pine and oak forest, Bonita Canyon campground is located in the Chiricahua National Monument in south Arizona. Known as the “Wonderland of Rocks”, Chiricahua is known for its stunning rock columns.

Most campsites are well shaded, and have a good view of the creekbed (usually dry) that runs through the campground. The sites are fairly close together but it is a fairly quiet and clean campground, which is perfect for anyone wanting peace and quiet in a natural setting.

There are 17 miles of day-use hiking trails nearby that offer sweeping views of the surrounding mountain ranges and valleys.

The Chiricahua National Monument park also contains a historic district, and offers tours of Faraway Ranch, a restored 1900s guest ranch.

Facilities: Bonita Canyon has 25 campsites, all equipped with picnic tables, campfire rings, cooking grills, tent pads, and food storage boxes. Campground amenities include drinking water and flush toilets. There’s also an amphitheater, visitors center, pay phone, and mix-used trails. 

Cost: Campsites are $20 per night.

Cholla Campground, Tonto National Forest
Roosevelt Lake – Cholla Campground – Campsite 5 by Al_HikesAZ

Cholla Campground, Tonto National Forest

Cholla Campground is the largest all-solar powered campground in the United States. It is located in Tonto National Forest, on Theodore Roosevelt Lake, central Arizona’s largest lake.

It offers expansive views of the Four Peaks Wilderness, Salome Canyon, and the Sierra Ancha mountain range.

The campground has very little overhead vegetation but the sites offer picnic tables that are shaded with roofs. The sites are large and spaced fairly apart for a decent amount of privacy. While the campground is fairly large, it never feels crowded.

Visitors will especially enjoy the comfort of hot shower facilities!

There are a variety of water sports available, as well. The Apache Trail Scenic Byway and nearby Tonto National Monument, with its cave dwelling, are great day trips from the Campground.

Facilities: Cholla campground has 206 sites, all equipped with picnic tables, and campfire rings. Campground amenities include hot showers, drinking water, and flush toilets. There’s also playgrounds, and a paved boat launch.

Cost: Campsites are $25 per day for a single; $50 per day double

Mather Campground, Grand Canyon National Park
NPS/Kyla Pearce

Mather Campground, Grand Canyon National Park

Camping on the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park at Mather Campground offers easy access to some of the most well-known sites in the Grand Canyon as well as hiking trails in the park.

Mather Campground is a large campground with sites that offer room for up to three tents and two vehicles. The campground lies under a canopy of of Ponderosa pines, Pinyon, and Juniper trees, providing most campsites with plenty of shade.

The campground offers walking distance access to Grand Canyon Village’s shops and restaurants. The village has a large general store which offers everything you might find at your local supermarket.

The Rim Trail, a paved walking trail that runs along the edge of the canyon, is a short walk from the campground and offers breathtaking views. There are plenty of other trails that run through the campground, making it a fantastic spot for hikers.

Grand Canyon’s free shuttle service makes regular stops at Mather Campground and takes campers to popular locations such as the Grand Canyon Visitor Center, Yavapai Lodge and the Market.

Mathers Campground offers an amazing camping experience from a taste of remote wilderness, to comfort and ease of access to one of the wonders of the world. In our opinion, Mathers Campground is among the very best campgrounds in Arizona, and a must for outdoor enthusiasts.

Facilities: The campground has 327 sites, each equipped with a picnic table, fire ring with attached grate, and enough space for three tents. Flush toilets and potable water are available throughout the campground. Coin-operated hot showers and laundry are also available, as well as a free dump station.

Cost: Tent campsites are $18.00 per day.

North Rim Campground, Grand Canyon National Park
NPS/Michael Quinn

North Rim Campground, Grand Canyon National Park

The North Rim Campground of Grand Canyon National Park is the place to stay if you want to get away from it all while still visiting this world famous attraction. With fewer than 100 sites, this is a wilderness oasis.

Set among ponderosa pine and scrub oak, the canyon’s rustic and less populated North Rim is home to unparalleled views of one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.

This campground allows you to have quick access to the Grand Canyon and tends to be less crowded compared to Mathers Campground, however it is only open between May 15 and October 31. The North Rim lies on the Kaibab Plateau, an area that has been uplifted by geologic processes, making it higher in elevation, and cooler, than the South Rim.

Campers have access to the Transept Trail which travels along the rim to the visitor center and lodge, as well as the Bridle Trail, which cuts through the forest and connects with the North Kaibab Trail. For one of the most spectacular views of Bright Angel Canyon, take a walk down the Bright Angel Point trail which is accessible right from the campground.

If North Rim is full, then DeMotte Campground or Jacob Lake Campground in Kaibab National Forest are great options nearby.

While Mathers Campground is our top pick for Grand Canyon camping, North Rim is definitely our next pick. The views and remoteness make it among the very best campgrounds in Arizona.

Facilities: The campground has 90 sites, each equipped with a picnic table, fire ring with attached grate, and enough space for three small tents. Flush toilets and potable water are available throughout the campground. Coin-operated hot showers and laundry are also available, as well as a free dump station.

Cost: Tent campsites are $18.00 per day.

Gilbert Ray Campground, Tucson Mountain Park
Tucson Mountains by Rich Luhr

Gilbert Ray Campground, Tucson Mountain Park

Gilbert Ray Campground is surrounded by picturesque Sonoran desert scenery, with large saguaro cacti peppered throughout the landscape. The campground is a popular destination for stargazing, and there are a few trails within the park that allow visitors to get up close and personal with this majestic landscape.

The campground is located away from any major roads, and while it is just outside Tucson, the Tucson Mountain Range does a fantastic job at hiding the city from view. The campsites are well-spaced, offering a peaceful atmosphere and some privacy.

The campground is also near the extensive network of hiking trails in Tucson Mountain Park. The western district of Saguaro National Park is only 10 minutes away with access to more outstanding trails. Be sure to check out the Valley View Overlook which offers a sweeping view of the distant mountains, or take in ancient petroglyphs on the Signal Hill trail.

If you are looking for a remote getaway outside of Tucson, Gilbert Ray is one of the best campgrounds in this area of Arizona.

Facilities: Gilbert Ray has 130 RV campsites, all equipped with 30-amp electrical hook-ups. There are 5 additional tent only sites, however tent campers are welcome to camp in the RV sites as well. Every site has picnic tables but no fire rings as wood fires are prohibited in the park. Campground amenities include drinking water, modern restrooms with flush toilets but no showers, and a dumping station.

Cost: RV Campsites are $20 per night, tent sites are $10 per night.

Cave Springs Campground, Coconino National Forest
U.S. Forest Service, Southwestern Region, Coconino National Forest

Cave Springs Campground, Coconino National Forest

Cave Springs sits in the scenic Oak Creek Canyon, just north of Sedona, and is one of Coconino National Forest’s most popular campgrounds. The campground is nestled in a shady stand of towering ponderosa pines that provide campers with plenty of shade on hot days.

Many of the campsites are located right on the banks of Oak Creek, providing another opportunity for campers to cool off. Others offer incredible views of the canyon’s vertical walls.

There are several hiking trails nearby, some lead up the canyon slopes to offer good views of the surrounding scenery. Oak Creek Canyon is a red-rock river gorge that’s like a miniature version of the Grand Canyon.

Facilities: Cave Spring has 84 campsites, including one tent-only site. All sites have picnic tables, campfire rings and cooking grills. Coin-operated showers, drinking water and vault restrooms are provided for convenience.

Cost: Campsites are $22 per night. 

Lake Havasu State Park
Homer Edward Price, CC via Wikimedia Commons

Lake Havasu State Park

The park is located right in the heart of Lake Havasu City, offering campers the opportunity to camp among the small trees right in front of a beautiful soft-sand beach.

The views out over the stunning blue waters of Lake Havasu to the hills in the distance are stunning.

Don’t expect a quiet nature retreat, this is an experience for people looking for fun. This is a true water sport haven for outdoor enthusiasts, and one of the few and best campgrounds with access to a large body of water in Arizona. Campers can enjoy plenty of opportunities for swimming, boating, and fishing. This Colorado River park is one of the premier bass fisheries in Arizona.

The Mohave Sunset Trail winds its way through the lowland desert and along the shoreline. The Arroyo-Camino Interpretive Garden showcases the diverse wildlife that exists within the park.

Facilities: Lake Havasu has 47 campsites, as well as 13 camping cabins. All campsites have picnic tables and campfire rings, most sites include shade ramadas. 50 amp electrical hookups, drinking water, restrooms, showers, picnic area, three boat ramps, and beach area are provided for convenience.

Cost: Campsites are $35 per night, $40 for beachfront sites. 

Catalina State Park
By Andru Valpy – self-made, Public Domain.

Catalina State Park

Catalina State Park is located near Tucson, Arizona, in Oro Valley. It is named for the Santa Catalina Mountains that provide a gorgeous backdrop for your desert camping adventure. Campers will enjoy its immaculate campgrounds, interesting hikes, towering saguaros, and equestrian trails.

The sites are large and well spaced with paved parking pads. The campground is located in a wide-open area on flat terrain which means astounding views of the mountains, but little privacy.

Catalina state park is home to an abundance of desert plants and wildlife, including thousands of saguaros, which makes for a memorable and worthwhile experience.

If you are looking for a desert camping experience in Arizona, this is one of the best campgrounds to do so in comfort.

Facilities: Catalina has 120 campsites (95 with electric/water hookups), each equipped with picnic table and BBQ grills. Amenities include drinking water, paved roads, flush restrooms with hot showers, and dump stations.

Cost: Campsites are $20, or $30 with electric/water hookups.

Mogollon Campground, Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest
U.S. Forest Service, Coconino National Forest by Deborah Lee Soltesz

Mogollon Campground, Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest

Mogollon Campground is located in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest of Arizona and provides visitors with a wide range of camping opportunities. Visitors can enjoy picnicking, swimming, fishing, hiking, biking, bird watching or just relaxing under the stars.

Mogollon campground is one of the closest camping areas to the Mogollon Rim and offers incredible views of the canyon. The campsites are naturally shaded by a ponderosa pine forest.

It’s located just outside of the popular Woods Canyon Lake Recreation area, which offers fantastic fishing and boating opportunities.

While other campgrounds in the area are more popular, this is the best campground for campers looking for a quiet and remote experience in Arizona. A short walk will take you to the Rim Lakes Vista Trail which runs along the edge of the Rim, providing spectacular views.

Facilities: Mogollon has 26 campsites. Each campsite offers a campfire ring, grill and picnic table. Additional amenities include accessible vault toilets, drinking water and trash service.

Cost: Campsites are $18 per night.

Lost Dutchman State Park

Lost Dutchman State Park

Named after the fabled lost gold mine, Lost Dutchman State Park is a beautiful and secluded campground in the Superstition Mountains. It is a short 40 mile drive from the Phoenix metro area, but feels like you are hundreds of miles away from civilization!

You may come in search for gold, and while there is no guarantee of finding the lost gold, you are sure to walk away with memories to treasure. There are plenty of scenic trails that lead from the park into the Superstition Wilderness and the surrounding Tonto National Forest. Flatiron trail is a highly recommended trail to check out nearby.

The campsites themselves offer sufficient privacy and views of the Mountains are fantastic.

Facilities: Lost Dutchman has 138 campsites, 68 sites of which have electric hook ups. Each campsite offers a campfire ring with grill and picnic table. Additional amenities include restrooms, drinking water, showers, and dump station.

Cost: Campsites are $25 per night, sites with electric is $35 per night.

Twin Peaks Campground, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Burley Packwood, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Twin Peaks Campground, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Twin Peaks Campground is located in the heart of Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument – located near the Mexican border, it offers a scenic view of the Sonoran Desert and mountains.

The Campsites are large with a good amount of space between sites. Huge clusters of organ pipe cactus, ocotillo, and other desert flora provide plenty of privacy between campsites.

The sites have have been strategically placed so that many offer amazing panoramic views of the surrounding desert. The tent-only sites at the bottom of the loop also offer unobstructed views of the mountains, which make them the best camping spots in the campground.

There are plenty of opportunities for hikers right from the campgrounds to explore the National Park and experience the remote wilderness.

For a more primitive camping experience within the monument, tent campers should check out Alamo Campground which only offers 4 sites with charcoal grills, tables, pit toilets, and trash cans.

Facilities: Twin Peaks has 208 campsites, 174 of which are rv only, and the remaining 34 are tent only. Each campsite offers a grill and picnic table. There are no hookups available for electricity, water or sewer. Additional amenities include restrooms with solar showers, drinking water, an Ampitheater, and dump station.

Cost: Campsites are $20 per night.

Cochise Stronghold Campground, Coronado National Forest
StellarD, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Cochise Stronghold Campground, Coronado National Forest

Walk in the footsteps of famous Chiricahua Apache leader, Cochise, when you stay at Cochise Stronghold Campground among the Dragoon Mountains within Coronado National Forest.

This beautiful woodland area lies in a protective rampart of granite domes and sheer cliffs which were once offered refuge to the great Apache Chief and his people.

Campsites at Cochise Stronghold are shaded by oaks and surrounded by diverse flora that includes plants of both the Upper Sonoran and Chihuahuan Desert. The campground is quiet and peaceful, and one of the most beautiful places to camp in our opinion.

There are a few trails accessible from the campground that offer insight into the colorful past of the area, as well as offering views of incredible rock formations and the canyon.

This is the perfect camping experience for anyone interesting in a remote, primitive camping experience with plenty of opportunities for hiking which is why we have included it among the best campgrounds in Arizona. If the campground is full, there are also dispersed campsites on your way in that offer fire-pits but no toilets.

Facilities: Cochise Stronghold has 13 campsites, 2 of which are for group camping, Each campsite offers a picnic table and fire-pit with grill. There is no drinking water available. Amenities include vault toilets.

Cost: Campsites are $20 per night.


Arizona offers many different campgrounds and camping options for all interests and budgets. I you enjoyed our list of the best Arizona Campgrounds:

When you’re looking for a place to stay on your next trip to the Grand Canyon, consider which factors are most important to you before booking a campsite that may not suit your needs. Make sure to grab our free printable camping planner to help you plan out your next trip!

What’s been your favorite camping experience in Arizona so far? We would love to hear about it!

Disclaimer: Provided campground costs are current for 2022, but are subject to change. Please verify the cost with the campground prior to your trip. Campers may also be subject to park entrance fees.

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