The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA

United States

With many National Parks and scenic landscapes, you will find some stunning campgrounds in Southwest USA. In this article, I’ll share my 5 favorite campgrounds for tent camping.

This article is also available in Dutch.

Mather Campground, Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Mather Campground
Mather Campground is huge (I believe it has over 400 sites), but when you pitch your tent, it feels like a cozy campground. The sites in the forest are big and it’s only a 20-minute walk to the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Or you can just take the shuttle bus, it has a stop right in front of the entrance of the campground.
Open All year round.
Reservations You can make a reservation 6 months in advance on this website.
Fee $18.

Wahweap Campground (Page, Arizona)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Wahweap Campground

Wahweap Campground is not located in a National Park, but next to stunning Lake Powell. You pitch your tent in the middle of the desert (it can get really hot in the summer) and you can jump into the lake to cool down. You have a great view of Lake Powell and the beautiful landscape from every site and the bathrooms are clean and tidy. Make sure to pop out of your tent at night, it’s a perfect spot for stargazing (you can actually see the milky way!).

Open All year round.
Reservations You can make a reservation on this website.
Fee $26.

Fruita Campground, Capitol Reef National Park (Utah)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Fruita Campground

Fruita Campground in Capitol Reef National Park might be the most beautiful campground in Southwest USA. The campground is situated in a green valley, surrounded by red mountains. You will also find many orchards in the valley, and you can pick fruit for free (as much as you can eat). In the morning and in the afternoon you’ll see deer passing your tent. An amazing view!

Open All year round.
Reservations Reservations are available when you’re staying between March 1st and October 31st, you can make a reservation on this website. The rest of the year it’s first come, first serve.
Fee $20.

Sunset Campground, Bryce Canyon National Park (Utah)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Sunset Campground

Sunset Campground is the place to be if you’d like to stay close to the famous amphitheater of Bryce Canyon. This campground is pretty similar to Mather Campground, but it’s even more close to the canyon, just a 10-minute walk. The elevation of Bryce Canyon is 2.278 meters (11.000 feet), so it can get really chilly at night.


Open April 15 to October 31st.
Reservations First come, first serve. Check out the official website for more information.
Fee $20.

North Pines, Yosemite National Park (Californië)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Pines Campground

The campgrounds in Yosemite Valley are huge. North Pines is the smallest and is situated in the forest, next to the river. Left and right, you will see the large granite walls. There are bears in Yosemite, and that’s why every site has its own bearbox. In this bearbox, you have to store everything with a scent, not only your food, but also your toiletries. You can leave your car at the campground because a shuttle bus can take you anywhere in the park.

Open April 1st to November 15th.
Reservations Stongly recommended. You can make a reservation four to five months in advance and they are sold out in minutes. Check out your dates at the offical website.
Fee $26.

Potentially great: Kirk Creek Campground, Big Sur (Californië)

The most beautiful campgrounds in Southwest USA - Kirk Creek Campground

Do you like to camp next to the ocean? Check out Kirk Creek Campground in California (along Highway 1, between San Francisco and Los Angeles). It has only 32 sites and it’s situated on a cliff. You can hike down to a secluded beach, it’s a beautiful spot. Unfortunately, it was very foggy when I stayed at this campground, so I wasn’t able to see it in all its glory.

Open All year round.
Reservations You can make a reservation 6 months in advance on this website.
Fee $35.

Read more: Everything you need to know about camping in the United States 

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The most beautiful Campgrounds in Southwest USA

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