Best Camping Near Zion National Park

Camping Near Zion National Park

By Nathan Swartz

With over three and a half million visitors per year and only around 270 campsites in the park itself, odds aren't exactly in your favor if your greatest desire is to camp in the shade of these canyon walls and watch daily as the sun paints its ever-changing masterpiece.

No need to gamble on a site, though, we've got your back with all things camping in Zion National Park, from the glamorous to the traditional, sites sufficiently sized to host your A-Class or quiet and cozy enough for even the most ardent tenters.

Zion National Park Camping

The park itself is home to three official campgrounds, all of which accept RVs of some length. South Campground and Watchman Campground are in the canyon proper, can accommodate large RVs, and have around 300 sites combined. They're near enough to one another that the views and experience are similar enough, from both you can take advantage of the cycling trail and shuttle service within the park itself.

While not technically in the park, Zion Canyon Campground & RV Resort is only a few minutes from the park's southern entrance, and is close enough to the National Park campgrounds listed above that you get practically the same view...but with full hookups, much smaller spaces, and the need to drive through the park's entrance every day (which can mean a long line of fellow explorers ahead of you). If you take the shuttle, don't mind the convenience of being in the rather quaint little town of Springdale, Utah, and are willing to shell out the extra fees (this private campground is two to four times the price of the park service campgrounds), you can still catch the shuttle or ride your bike into the park.

On the northern end, about an hour's drive away from the main canyon in Zion National Park, Lava Point is an official campground right in the park proper, can accommodate RVs up to 19', and promises more seclusion and a slower exchange from being significantly farther away from Zion's main draws.

BLM Camping Near Zion National Park

Seven places to camp on Bureau of Land Management property exist within less than 20 minutes of one of the park's entrances. If you brought your 4WD, you can leave the crowds behind in favor of true solitude via spots like Smithsonian Butte, and gorgeous--the kind of jaw-dropping beauty that put the "awwwwwww" in awe-- places like Sheep Bridge Road and Virgin Dam.

As a general rule of thumb, it's next to impossible to not find something lovely to look at in every direction of this region, if you keep at least one eye open.

Zion National Park RV Camping

If full hookups and creature comforts trump the more rough and tumble destinations near Zion, you're in luck. Only a mile from the park's quieter east entrance, Zion RV & Campground, or on the other side of the park, Zion River Resort promises epic WiFi a little closer to civilization.

Camping Near Zion National Park

The road less traveled often proves the most remarkable, and if you're the type to blaze a trail rather than rely on the opinions of others, these campgrounds tend to see less traffic, whether you want to brave the 4WD access to Gooseberry Mesa or knock back a round of mini-golf at the full hookups park of Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort.

Looking for even more camping near Zion National Park?

We cover 16 campgrounds within 45 minutes of the park via our Free Camping near Zion National Park article here.

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Recent Zion National Park Campground Reviews

Springdale, UT

Watchman Campground

Nov 28, 2021

"Quick overnight on way home"

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We were on our way home from our Grand Canyon trip in early January of '21 and were only able to stay at Watchman one night (actually several hours because we had to get on our way back home) so we weren't able to do any hiking or even do much sight seeing. What a shame as what we were able to see looked simply amazing. We didn't arrive until...
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Scott Hall
3 reviews
Springdale, UT

Watchman Campground

Nov 23, 2021

"great national park campground"

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pros: big sites & not too close to neighbors, super convenient to zion!!! (can walk to the shuttle stop & visitors center from the campground and don't have to deal with parking), clean bathrooms, dishwashing & water spigots, good service (& wifi at the visitors center nearby) cons: have to drive to springdale to shower

Paige Watson
34 reviews
Virgin, UT

Zion River Resort

Nov 20, 2021

"Very Nice Campground"

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Stayed here in late-April earlier this year. The sites were level and easy to get in and out of. The location was about 20-25 minutes from Zion. The river behind the campground is also a nice place to have a peaceful hike. Signs do say to watch for the snakes. Just something to be aware of. There was all that much close by, but it had enough for...
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Nick Francis
21 reviews
Nov 20, 2021

"Minutes from Zion entrance – Sites are not very good"

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We stayed here in late-April earlier this year. The best thing about this campground is its proximity to Zion's main entrance (which was only 2-3 minutes drive). You can also pick up the trolley at the entrance to the campground. There is also an amazing view of the climbing layered rocks, which is pretty great! The sites were gravel/sand...
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Nick Francis
21 reviews
Nov 16, 2021

"Convenient spot close to Virgin, Utah and it’s free99!"

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This is his a great spot close to Zion National Park and numerous Mtb. trails. The gravel road in is quite washboardy and very dusty. There are numerous camping spots along the main road.

Danny Hill
18 reviews