Best Camping in Alaska

Camping in Alaska

By Alex Murphy

Alaska is a dream destination for many travelers, especially those who love the outdoors. Known as "the Last Frontier," the state is covered in wilderness with endless miles of National Parks and destinations far off the grid, making the Alaska camping experience unlike anything else.

It's important to note, Alaska is not for the average visitor, and it's also important to have the right camping gear and take steps to be prepared for bear country.

See a map of all camping in Alaska.

Alaska National Parks

Alaska is home to some of the least visited National Parks and some of the most famous in the world, including Denali National Park & Preserve. This massive park is centered around the mountain it's named for, which is the tallest peak in the country. Denali is bigger than several states and is famous for the Alaska backcountry with grizzlies and other wildlife. This park also has some of the best campgrounds in the state.

Starting with Riley Creek Campground has the most campsites in Denali National Park and is popular for its proximity to the park entrance. Another popular camping spot is Teklanika River Campground which has both tent sites and campsites for RVs.

While less of a household name, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, which borders Canada, can bring experiences as big and wild as Denali. Wrangell-St. Elias is the largest National Park by area that the NPS manages. This park has several camping options.

History buffs will enjoy Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, commemorating the gold rush just before the turn of the 20th Century. While there is no camping within the park, there are several spots outside in nearby Skagway, AK.

Alaska State Parks

Not surprisingly, the Alaska State Parks system is the largest in the country. This massive state offers more than 100 options covering all regions of the state from the coast to the interior. This leaves a lot to discover and explore for anyone hoping to find a unique getaway.

Kachemak Bay State Park was the first in the state and is still a popular destination with its diverse ecosystem on the Kenai Peninsula. Plus, it's a short distance from Kenai Fjords National Park, another popular place to visit.

Getting to destinations in Alaska can be tough, which makes Chugach State Park popular due to its proximity to Anchorage. Many stay at the Bird Creek Campground.

Another popular spot for tent camping and RV camping, according to Campendium users, is Discovery Campground, located inside Captain Cook Recreation Area.

Free Camping in Alaska

Free camping in Alaska is easy to come by as so much of the state remains wilderness. This includes RV sites near cities and a few chances to find a truly off the grid remote campground.

Valdez Glacier, a city park, has spectacular views, while stops like Deadman Lake Campground is a wildlife refuge with easy water access for boaters. The free camping options in Alaska are seemingly endless.

RV Parks in Alaska

Visitors can find RV parks in Alaska throughout the state and near parks and cities like Anchorage.

Golden Nugget RV Park in Anchorage gives visitors easy access to town, while you can find something similar near Juneau with Spruce Meadow RV Park.

National Forests in Alaska

Despite all the public land, there are only two officially designated National Forests in the state. That includes Chugach National Forest, which is closer to Anchorage, and Tongass National Forest, which is closer to Juneau. Both are massive areas combining mountains, wilderness and access to Alaska's coast.

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Recent Alaska Campground Reviews

Hope, AK

Mile Marker 13

Sep 26, 2022

"Awesome View, No Fee And 2 Bar LTE Cell. "

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Looking for somewhere to stop on way to Homer and saw this listing with no reviews but incredible photos so decided to take a chance. What a view! Drove our 30 RV down with no issues. Lots of paths nearby leading up to more incredible views of Turnagin Arm. Well worth the 13 mile drive off Highway 1.

1 review
Anchorage, AK


Sep 21, 2022

"Good Place To Sleep For A Night"

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Fine place to sleep for a night. There was a designated section of the parking lot for campers. There was a mix of large rvs and cars. The lot was relatively close to a target which was nice. The lot itself was relatively quiet and felt safe. Nothing fancy but a free place to park for the night.

9 reviews
Moose Pass, AK

Upper Lake Trail Pull-Out

Sep 18, 2022

"Beautiful Free Campground "

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Got here around 10pm. I was the only one there for the night. The campground was clean, quiet, and felt safe. Got limited cell service. They did have a pit to make a fire which was nice. The lake is absolutely beautiful and it was awesome to wake up to such great views. All in all a great free place to park for the night. I’d definitely stay...
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9 reviews
Sterling, AK

Kelly Lake Campground

Sep 18, 2022

"Great Free Campground"

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Nice little campground. I arrived around 10pm in early September and there were only 2 other vehicles there. They had bathrooms and some benches to sit on. There was also a 4.4 mile trail/walk you could take from the campsite. Kelly lake is beautiful and I would definitely stay here again. It was quite, dark, and safe.

9 reviews
Sep 16, 2022

"Exceptionally Clean, Very Convenient Lovely Campground. "

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We are late in the 2022 season arriving here September 16th. They’re open to 22nd. Many campgrounds closed now. Excellent, clean, back in and pull through sites with full service. Electric and water $35 is best value in Alaska so far for us. Bathrooms are perfect, as are showers and laundry for $5 each. Lounge to sit, read, exchange books....
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4 reviews