Avoid These Summer RV Destinations

By Kyle & Olivia Brady | Founders of Drivin' & Vibin' | We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases.

Avoid These Summer RV Destinations

Summertime is the perfect time for RV travel. Gas is cheap, and free campsites abound.

However, there are specific RV destinations you’ll want to avoid at all costs during the summer months. 

Today we’re sharing seven of these RV destinations to avoid. Keep in mind; we love all of these destinations during the right time of year. Summer is not that time.

Let’s dive in!

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone is one of America’s most visited national parks. And, for a good reason. The natural land formations are unlike anything you can see in the entire world.

Summertime is not ideal for visiting, though.

Yellowstone can get as crowded a an amusement park, and it has the waiting-lines to prove it. The thing is, the park doesn’t have the infrastructure to accommodate the masses comfortably.

RV sites get reserved quickly. The surrounding RV resorts are expensive, and privacy is hard to find.

Yellowstone is home to many fantastic free campsites. During the summer months, they can get overcrowded. Not to mention, quite hot on a sunny day. 

The Florida Keys

The Florida Keys are stunning, and its laid back lifestyle is attractive. However, summer RVers in the Keys will be in for some severe heat.

There’s no avoiding the heat, humidity, and rain.

We recommend RVing in the Keys from November to March.

Otherwise, just let the crazies enjoy it in the summer!

Moab, Utah (Arches & Canyonlands National Park)

It pains me to add Moab to this list. The area is among my favorite places to RV in the USA. 

Arches and Canyonlands are perfect destinations to explore in your RV. Just not during the summer.

We have personal experience RVing in Moab during July and learned this lesson the hard way. The midday heat is excruciating. 

If you want to hike Devil’s Garden, you better start around 7 am. Otherwise, you’ll be in real physical danger of dehydration.

For those of you willing to brave it, these are the best campsites (from free to expensive) that Moab has to offer.

San Francisco, California

San Francisco is one city never to take your RV! Summer, spring, fall, or winter; there’s no reason to RV in San Francisco.

First of all, the RV parks surrounding the city have limited sites, and you’ll have to take out a loan to afford it!

Secondly, there’s traffic. The traffic is heavy, the tolls are expensive, and the streets are steep. Even in a Class B RV, it will be a challenge to navigate city streets. 

Sedona, Arizona

Sedona is home to epic hiking trails and mystical energy portals. It’s an RV hot spot for those reasons, and because there are great free camping spots.

Summertime is just too intense.

There’s little shade to escape the heat, and hotel-loving tourists crowd out the small town.

While we don’t recommend Sedona, don’t count out all of Arizona for potential RV summer trips. The Grand Canyon has plenty of shade trees to tame the heat. And, it’s surrounding Kaibab National Forest is loaded with free camping.

Padre Island National Seashore

Padre Island is one of the three winter hot spots for RV travelers. The Seashore is vast and includes free camping, directly on the waterfront.

As you can imagine, summer temps are hot.

Additionally, the remote nature of the Seashore will give you limited access to resources. The lack of resources isn’t significant during the winter, when RV energy needs are less. 

But, you’ll need your RV air conditioner in the summer. Either gas for a generator or RV hookups are necessary. 

Zion National Park

If summertime is the only time you can hit Zion, then do it. It’s the best national park in America, and that’s why summer is an awful time to visit. 

There are two entrances in the park, and 95% of the traffic (probably including you) will enter through the south. This traffic flow creates an awful bottleneck every day.

If you’re lucky enough to score an RV site inside the national park, passing through the bottleneck will be less of an issue. However, you’re not in the clear yet.

All of the parks features are only accessible through an onsite shuttle. The lines for these shuttles can easily exceed 100 tourists.

To clearly state it, Zion is overcrowded every day during the summer.

PRO TIP: If you decide to visit Zion in your RV, check out this excellent free campsite.

The Ideal Summer RV Destinations

It’s not all doom and gloom! Many RV destinations are ideal during the summer. Here are a few ideas:

If You’re Looking For an Affordable RV Trip, These FREE Campsites Will Make You (and Your Wallet) Happy

To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy). You should give it a try!

Here’s our list of the 20 Best Free Campsites in the USA.

Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers that love to score the best site! Simply enter your email below.

3 comments

  1. You left out the most obvious one : Death Valley National Park. There’s where it REALLY gets HOT although Quartzsite reached the same temps now and the in the summer.

    Dave J

  2. Thanks for the information. Since we’re semi-retired now, we are planning our “big trips” for Springs & Falls. This September, Yellowstone here we come!! 🦌🐿🦔🐾 🌲

    1. Do not go to Yosemite in the Autumn! You’ll only see where the waterfalls are supposed to be. Go to Yosemite in April or early May during the snow melt.

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