Best Camping in Rhode Island

Camping in Rhode Island

By Alex Murphy

Rhode Island, best known as the smallest U.S. State, is just over 1,200 square miles, making it smaller than some U.S. cities and Yellowstone National Park! However, as with many New England states, Rhode Island is full of history and culture. Plus, a significant part of the state is made up of water and has an abundance of beach access for campers visiting Rhode Island campgrounds.

Here's a look at the best camping in the Ocean State.

See a map of all camping in Rhode Island.

Rhode Island State Parks

Not surprisingly, many Rhode Island State Parks along the coast offer camping and sightseeing along the Atlantic Ocean. Many of these State Beaches are some of the best Rhode Island Campgrounds.

Charlestown Breachway State Park is one of the more popular destinations with plenty of RV camping sites. This beach is located on the Block Island Sound, and visitors can enjoy saltwater fishing and ocean swimming during the peak camping season. Be sure to book camping reservations early because the park does fill up, and it's important to note that not all of Rhode Island's State Beaches offer camping, such as East Matunuck State Beach, which is only open for day use.

Slightly away from the coast, visitors will find another camping area at Burlingame State Campground, which also has hiking trails and water access on a local pond. This State Park has tent sites and dry camping RV sites.

Rhode Island RV Parks

Another way to enjoy water sports and swimming areas along the coast is while camping at Rhode Island RV Parks.

Both Melville Ponds Campground and Meadowlark RV Park are located on Aquidneck Island in the southeast corner of the state and are probably best known for cities like Newport and quaint New England harbor towns.

A few other RV parks are located further north in the state, including Oak Leaf Family Campground.

Rhode Island National Parks

When it comes to National Parks in Rhode Island, everything is focused on history, from the early settlers to the Industrial Revolution. Here are some of the spots to enjoy history.

  • Blackstone River Valley Historical Park is shared with Massachusetts and offers a glimpse into early textile mills and similar items as the Industrial Revolution began.
  • Roger Williams National Memorial commemorates the founding of the modern state that started with Roger Williams and the colonial settlement of Providence, which is now the state's largest city.
  • Touro Synagogue Historic Site is the oldest synagogue in the United States.

Free Camping in Rhode Island

Unfortunately, free camping in Rhode Island is not easy to come by, and the best options are across the state line in Connecticut.

Closest to the coast, you'll find North Stonington Rest Area Southbound. While the only thing provided is a parking spot, the area does provide easy access to get back on I-95.

Further north but still along the CT and RI state line is Beach Pond Boat Ramp Area that lets visitors enjoy picnic areas and a freshwater beach.

National Forests in Rhode Island

The National Forest Service does not manage any land in Rhode Island.

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Recent Rhode Island Campground Reviews

Richmond, RI

Wawaloam Campground

Dec 21, 2022

"Best in Rhode Island"

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We have been camping at Wawaloam for years, and just became seasonal campers in 2022. In our opinion there is no better campground in New England, let alone Rhode Island. The Smith family and their staff are friendly, wonderful people who go all out to make your camping experience here a great one. Like any good campground, there are rules, all...
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1 review
Portsmouth, RI

Newport RV Park

Nov 01, 2022

"Way overpriced"

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This spot was a fine place to explore Newport but WAY overpriced. I was there in the off season so it was $65 a night, but even that was much more than it should be. Spots were fine and there is a city dog park and trails right there. I had plenty of Verizon signal to work without my booster. The bathrooms were gross and the motion light turned...
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15 reviews
South Kingstown, RI

Wordens Pond Family Campground

Oct 16, 2022

"Quiet and relaxing"

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The park was easy to find. It is located about five miles from down town Wakefield. There is pavement all the way. Signage is adequate. Check in was efficient and friendly. The rules are fairly basic. The interior roads are a mix of pavement. gravel and dirt and for the most part in good condition. Our site, 14, was a back in that was just...
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The Rollin Ollens
141 reviews
Oct 15, 2022

"So So"

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Only stayed one night on way south. Bad weather from remnants of Hurricane Ian was still around so it was rainy and windy. Very large site but there were only a couple other campers in the entire campground so it felt a bit too isolated. As an out of state camper, $36 is steep for dry camping

66 reviews
Glocester, RI

Holiday Acres Campground

Oct 11, 2022

"Good Location…"

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Choose this campground because of the location. Had read reviews and did not have high expectations. As mentioned in other reviews, most people are seasonal. Our site was small and not aesthetic. Check in was easy. Bathrooms were clean. Wi-Fi signal was good. Was not the type of site that you want to hang out at but was closest campground to...
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1 review