Camping in Indiana
By Alex Murphy
Whether you're visiting one of the U.S.'s newest National Parks or attending one of the most popular sporting events in the world (the Indy 500), Indiana considers itself to be the "Crossroads of America." The state delivers on that motto with a wide range of activities and sites to see from Lake Michigan to Indianapolis.
Here's a look at what makes the Hoosier State worth stopping at.
See a map of all camping in Indiana.
Indiana State Parks
Even though there are only 25 Indiana State Parks, you won't have a problem finding campgrounds in Indiana since there is at least one park within an hour's drive, no matter where you are in the state.
Destinations like Clifty Falls State Park offer some surprising sights, including waterfalls and a canyon that only gets daylight for a small window each day.
Other spots like Brown County State Park offers plenty of hiking trails in Indiana's largest state park, and Charlestown State Park has campsites near the banks of the Ohio River.
Indiana National Parks
Indiana Dunes National Park was officially named a National Park in 2019; before that, it had been a destination for years as a National Lakeshore. The park is located in northern Indiana and covers a 15-mile coast along Lake Michigan.
The park has plenty of recreational opportunities from going to the beach and swimming to fishing and miles of hiking.
Visitors to Indiana Dunes National Park can find tent and RV camping sites in the park at Dunewood Campground. Another option with easy access back to the park is Indiana Dunes State Park which has some of the best campground reviews in the area.
RV Parks in Indiana
RV Parks in Indiana enable visitors to stay close to popular destinations.
Camping near Lake Michigan is easy at spots like Michigan City Campground and Woodland Village Mobile Home and RV Park, where reviews say you're not only close to the lake, but it's also easy to visit Chicago from a nearby train stop.
For those looking to enjoy all that Indianapolis has to offer, there are multiple RV parks for campers both inside the city and just outside in the central part of the state. Lake Haven Retreat has an Indianapolis address, while the Indianapolis KOA sits just outside but is still a quick drive to a Colts or Pacers game.
South of Indianapolis, a popular place to visit is Monroe Lake, where people staying at Lake Monroe Village have easy access to the water.
Finally, in the southern part of the state, you can stay just outside Louisville, KY, just north of the Ohio River at Louisville North Campground.
Free Camping in Indiana
Free Camping in Indiana offers both options for scenic stays and for those looking to save money on camping.
The Hoosier National Forest offers some of the best outdoorsy stops, including Saddle Lake Recreation Area.
Another location that's also free but a very different experience includes Blue Chip Casino Hotel Spa, where guests can stay in the parking lot and enjoy some of the restaurants and other amenities the hotel offers.
National Forests in Indiana
Hoosier National Forest sits south of central Louisiana and expands south to just north of Kentucky. The forest offers plenty of hiking, mountain biking, and even some caves to explore.
There is also has plenty of camping and a lot of it is free, like Blackwell Horsecamp, which has some of the best campsite reviews in the area due to its popularity. Another popular destination, Indian-Celina Recreation Area, is not free, but it does have RV hookups.