Arkansas state parks often get overlooked, especially when it comes to camping. However, they provide some incredible places to set up your RV.
Where you stay can make or break your entire trip. Lucky for you, we’ve found some excellent places to consider.
Today, we share five fantastic state parks with RV camping in “The Natural State.”
Let’s hit the road!
Why Visit Arkansas?
Arkansas may not be top-of-mind for many people, but it should be. It’s a hidden gem and has something for everyone. Whether you enjoy natural beauty, history, or spending time outdoors, it’s full of exciting adventures.
One example of its tremendous beauty is the Ozark Mountains. These rugged mountains cover its northern and northwestern sections.
You’ll find lush forests with waterfalls sprinkled throughout the rivers and streams. Including those in the Ozark Mountains, Arkansas has more than 9,000 miles of rivers and streams.
The state has unique and exciting spots for those who love exploring the past. Hot Springs National Park is one that history buffs must experience. Its Bathhouse Row features eight bathhouses that served guests in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Everyone from political figures to professional athletes have soaked in these tubs.
5 Best State Parks in Arkansas for RV Camping
If you want to take your time exploring, you’ll need a place to stay. Thankfully, there are some fantastic spots where you can make your home base.
#1 Lake Ouachita State Park
Lake Ouachita State Park and more than 1,800 acres offer a relaxing place to camp in the Ouachita Mountains. A primary attraction is Lake Ouachita, one of the cleanest and largest human-made lakes in the country.
The campground has 93 sites, 58 of which accommodate RVs and include water, sewer, and electricity. Lucky people can book one of their sites on the water. These make it easy to fish, kayak, canoe, or paddleboard directly from your spot.
While most people come for the water, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. Luckily, there are a couple of options for those who prefer hiking over aquatic activities.
The most popular is the Caddo Bend Trail, which is the more difficult option but includes incredible views. It’s four miles and takes approximately three hours to complete.
Keep an eye out: These Are the Most Dangerous Creatures in Arkansas.
#2 Petit Jean State Park
Petit Jean State Park is approximately 3,500 acres. It sits downstream from the Cedar Creek rock dam, which allows it to sit on the banks of Lake Bailey. This 100-acre lake is excellent for fishing, kayaking, and pedal boating.
Of the 125 campsites, 35 provide full RV hookups, and 90 are water and electric. Visitors prefer the A and B loops over the C and D loops. Many find the sites to be larger and more level.
However, no matter where you get a site, you can enjoy all it offers. There are playgrounds, swimming pools, basketball courts, and so much more.
For hikers, there are more than 20 miles of trails. It’s a relatively easy trek to the 95-foot Cedar Falls, one of the state’s most spectacular waterfalls. If your legs can handle it, you can even venture to 1,120 feet and witness the views from overlooks into the Arkansas River Valley.
#3 Devil’s Den State Park
Devil’s Den State Park is approximately 2,500 acres in Arkansas and is one of the best examples of the impact of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) on the area. You can still find buildings, cabins, and trail systems that they created in the 1930s. Visitors can thank the CCC for the Lee Creek rock dam, allowing them to spend time on the eight-acre Lake Devil.
The water provides endless opportunities for guests. It’s fantastic for fishing, canoeing, and peddling around on pedal boats. For those who would rather hit the trails, there are 11 trails to choose from. There’s something for every age and physical condition.
The campground has 135 sites, of which 44 offer full hookups for RVs. If you bring your rig, it can make it easy to relax during your stay. It’s a dark sky-friendly area that’s very quiet. Some sections have more trees than others, which helps maintain the natural setting but can be problematic when navigating with larger rigs.
Check out our favorite Arkansas destination: 21 Things To Do In Hot Springs, Arkansas.
#4 Mount Magazine State Park
Mount Magazine State Park is home to the highest point in the region, Mount Magazine. It stands 2,753 feet above sea level. It’s easy to appreciate the area’s natural beauty from the many scenic overlooks, especially those down into the Petit Jean River Valley and Blue Mountain Lake.
Some of the most incredible experiences here are sunrises and sunsets from Cameron Bluff Overlook or Signal Hill. Unfortunately, you better get there early to experience them. Because of the tremendous view, spots can fill up fast.
This is a destination for those who want to spend time outdoors, especially for extreme adventures. Mountain biking, horseback riding, backpacking, and ATV riding are popular.
Camping can be challenging here with only 18 sites, only two of which have full hookups for 50-Amp rigs. The remaining 16 are Class AA sites offering full hookups but 30-Amp service. It’s quiet, with level and paved pads that are well-spaced between each other.
#5 Bull Shoals-White River State Park
If you’re into trout fishing, there are a few better places to do it in Arkansas than Bull Shoals-White River State Park. The 15,744-square-foot visitor center tells the history and stories of anglers that have fished these waters.
Those looking to bring their camper can book one of the 113 sites, 93 of which are for RVs. Three rent-an-RV sites are also available in case you don’t own a trailer. They often hold programs for campfire-cooking demonstrations, trout fishing workshops, and ranger-led nature walks.
Hiking is another popular activity guests enjoy here. Guests can pick from six trails, with Big Bluff Trail being one of the most popular. It’s a looping trail with a moderating rating and a distance of 1.7 miles.
The first half of the trek is flat and very easy, but the second half can be a bit more labor-intensive. Watch for the famous Ozark wildflowers and the views.
Where do you want to go? Arkansas Bucket List Adventure Guide: Explore 100 Offbeat Destinations You Must Visit!
Explore the Natural Beauty of Arkansas Parks
We’ve shared some great options for you to consider for your next camping adventure. However, no matter which Arkansas state park you choose to stay at, it’s bound to be a great time. The incredible beauty of this area deserves more recognition than most people give it. So take advantage of your chance to experience all that it offers.
Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA
To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).
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As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.
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