The flowers are blooming and the skies are clear so it’s time to pack your camping gear and sleep under the stars for a few nights. Because temperatures in the next couple of months are predicted to be balmy and warm, camping seems like the perfect way to enjoy Mother Nature’s gift of summer. So make some time, pack your stuff, and go out and adventure!
No matter what type of outdoor experience you have in mind, we want to help you with your camping research. We’ve come up with a list of 25 great campgrounds within two hours of Salt Lake City, Utah to help you figure out where to start.
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Bountiful Peak Campground : Farmington, UTThis popular campground, located just below Bountiful Peak in Farmington Canyon, is open during the summer and its 21 single sites and one large group site fill up quickly on weekends. It is pet friendly and has foot, bike, and off-road vehicle trails. Fire rings, vault toilets, and picnic tables are there for campers to utilize as well. Bountiful Peak Campground is a scenic spot full of summertime wildflowers and wildlife to enjoy (or hunt if it’s in-season). If you decide to visit this campground, you need to remember to pack your own water because none is provided. It’s only an hour and twenty minutes away from Salt Lake City so it makes for a great day-trip or overnight stay if you can snag a site.
Anderson Cove Campground : Huntsville, UTAnderson Cove has activities for anyone that wants to go out on the water or be active by its side. Waterskiing, canoeing, and kayaking are all possibilities for visitors. For others who would rather be next to the water, they can watch boaters while having a picnic or playing volleyball. This campground actually allows swimming, something a few of these other options don’t allow. There is also a general store, drinking water, and vault toilets nearby for convenience. This campground is perfect if you want more outdoor options during your stay than just hiking or walking. However, if you decide to visit this campground, make sure to reserve a spot beforehand!
Perception Park Campground : Huntsville, UTPerception Park is located on a river – perfect for fishing and tubing. There are 13 picnic areas, 24 single sites, and 3 group reservation sites on the grounds. Drinking water and toilets are available starting the middle of May and going through to the end of September while the park is in season. This area is child-friendly and provides playgrounds and sport courts for those feeling athletic. Keep in mind that the park gates are closed between 10 pm and 6 am.
South Fork : Huntsville, UTThis peaceful, wooded campsite is near Perception Park. It is situated next to a river where you can picnic or catch fish. It has 44 sites, each as beautiful as the next. There is no fee to use the picnic tables and grills, and restrooms are nearby. There are shelters for groups to dine under during the day, as long as you have a reservation, and drinking water is provided onsite.
Uinta Wasatch Cache National Forest
Huntsville, UT 84317
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Whiting Campground : Mantua, UTThis quiet campground has options for you if you’re trying to go horseback riding and need to have a safe place to keep your horse. Some sites can be reserved but the campground is run on a first come first served basis. This campground also provides drinking water, toilets, and fire rings.
Box Elder Campground : Mantua, UTThis highly rated campground is well maintained and has a reputation for beauty. When the poppies are in season, you can expect quite a show of color. Day-use sites are free if you can grab one before anyone else does, and campsites have picnic tables and fire rings for your convenience. Box Elder Campground is about an hour drive from Salt Lake City, just the distance to feel like you’re away but not so far that driving back is a pain.
Mantua, UT 84324
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Monte Cristo Campground : Woodruff, UTMonte Cristo Campground is known for many things, one being the fact that its beauty can be appreciated while on Highway 39. If you want to camp here, you will have a very timeless and relaxing camping experience. If you’re looking for recreational activities to keep you busy, the campground is filled with hiking trails, hunting spots, picnic areas, and plenty of wildlife. Grills, toilets, fire pits, and drinking water are all provided.
Salt Lake City KOA : Salt Lake City, UTThis KOA campground is very popular during the summer, so make sure to call ahead and make reservations. If you’re looking for a camping experience that includes many features and luxuries such as Wi-Fi, cable TV, coin operated laundry machines, and more, then this is the place for you. They have RV sites, tent sites, and a couple of cabins. It’s highly rated but keep in mind it’s near the road so noise level is sometimes high due to traffic. There is also a free shuttle to Temple Square that can be really handy if you’re touring the area and want to see some nearby attractions.
Little Creek Campground : Salt Lake City, UTFor a classic camping experience, the Little Creek Campground has it all. Swimming, picnicking, hunting, and fishing are just a few activities available. You should make sure to bring bug spray, however, because the mosquito population is booms in the warm weather. Over the winter, there are plenty of activities as well: snowmobiling and other winter sports are popular, so keep this location in mind no matter the season.
Pony Express RV Resort : North Salt Lake, UTThis resort has a variety of options for where to spend your night. Whether you want your stay to be in an RV, tent, cabin, cottage, or even safari tent, Pony Express has all of that and then some. There are trails to hike and ski locations nearby so you can come any time of the year and enjoy the great outdoors. Not only is camping in tents an option, but so is “glamping”, a luxurious form of camping that combines “glamor” and “camping”. Amenities include Wi-Fi, a swimming pool, game room, and a clubhouse.
Stansbury Island Campground : Tooele County, UTIf you want to take it back to the basics and get a real camping experience, Stansbury Island might be what you are looking for. This island is accessible from the mainland via a single dirt road. This island is perfect for those who love to hike and enjoy the beauty of nature. There are trails to hike around the entire island in one day and there are little treasures to be found if you take your time. If you love to look around while you hike and are looking for a challenge, you’ll find both geocaches and petroglyphs hidden among the Island.
Tooele County, UT 84029
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Tanner’s Flat Campground : Sandy, UTThis campground is positioned in Little Cottonwood Canyon. Little Cottonwood Creek flows alongside the grounds and is great for fishing. It’s within hiking distance of Cecret Lake if you’re camping near Albion Basin, and there are many other lakes tucked away for you to find. There are also biking trails for those who are interested. Campsites include picnic tables and fire rings, and the facilities provide toilets, drinking water, and an amphitheater.
Storm Mountain Campground : Salt Lake City, UTThis area is not for overnight camping, but it’s really close to Salt Lake City and is a great way to get off the couch and explore for the day. Storm Mountain Campground is ideal for adults and children alike because the activities available are broad and varied. There is no water provided but there are flush toilets. For the kids, there is a playground and easy walking trails. Adults can go rock climbing, fishing, mountain biking and so much more that we recommend. There’s bound to be something fun for you there. All of the 14 single sites have fire rings and picnic tables with a few grills scattered around. The views of the mountain are beautiful and the paths can take you to quiet lakes that are tucked away. Overall, even though Storm Mountain is only for day trips, it’s really worth checking out if you’re hankering for an outdoor fix. Just remember to make a reservation at least five days in advance if you want to use a group site.
Salt Lake City, UT 84121
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Spruces Campground : Salt Lake City, UTThis relaxing woodland campground is in Big Cottonwood Canyon. There is plenty of shade to keep you cool while you hike, bike, and fish on your summer camping trip. The Spruces campground will cover a lot of your camping needs like water for drinking and flush toilets, while also providing you with spaces specifically for games of volleyball, horseshoes, and baseball. Unfortunately, visitors cannot swim because of restrictions, but that doesn’t stop you from taking in the refreshing view and enjoying the wildlife in and around the water. This is yet another campsite that is so popular you will need to make a reservation for it a few days in advance.
Jordan Pines Campground : Salt Lake City, UTThis awesome campground is pretty close to Salt Lake City, so it’s great for both camping or just a day-trip. Jordan Pines Campground is a forested campground near a creek that’s excellent for fishing. There are picnic areas with grills and fire rings, drinking water is available, and there are vault toilets. Trails for biking and walking can bring you to nearby attractions as well. We recommend this campground for family reunions meet here because of it’s convenience and space.
Salt Lake City, UT 84121
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Upper Narrows Campground : Dugway, UTThis secluded campground is near Willow Creek, a dessert canyon that is covered in multiple species of trees that are especially beautiful in the fall. Activities here are limited in comparison to other campgrounds, but Upper Narrows provides visitors with a classic camping experience that includes hiking and fishing. This campground is also a bang for your buck – the visit is free.
Willow Lake Campground : Ferron, UTThe campground at Willow Lake has 10 family slots with fire rings and a spectacular view of the lake. It’s a beautiful area for photographs, but not great for swimming. Vault toilets are there but services for water and garbage are not, so bring your own drinking water. If you come during the summer or fall, make sure to bring your camera. Just remember, as always, that no photograph is worth damaging the area.
115 West Canton Rd
Ferron, UT 84523
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Timpooneke Campground : Pleasant Grove, UTEquestrian enthusiasts will be interested in this campsite. Not only are horses allowed on the Timpooneke trail, but there are also sites available for them to stay in a corral while you camp overnight. Hiking is one of the main activities here, and there are nearby attractions that you can go to during the day. A 1.5-mile hike will bring you to a cave where you can explore during guided tours. There is a reservoir neighboring the campgrounds, called Tibble Fork, that allows scuba diving and has more trails for horses. All of the unique aspects of Timpooneke campgrounds are a bonus to the normal amenities available at most campgrounds. Vault toilets and drinking water are on location and all the campsites have fire rings, picnic tables, and utility tables.
Granite Flat Campground : Provo, UTGranite Flat campground offers a variety of activities for the whole family. Rafting and a ziplining are popular activities for those feeling extra adventurous. There is even a golf course nearby. You’ll have plenty of places to choose from if you want to go hiking or fishing during your stay as well. Keep in mind that bears love the area so keep your food safe and keep your site clean so you don’t attract any!
Rock Canyon Campground : Provo, UTThere are endless activities in Rock Canyon, and camping here is very popular. Year round, people venture here for school, leisure and learning experiences. During the winter seasons, popular activities include skiing, snowshoeing, and snowboarding. In the summertime people picnic, hike, and rock climb. This is a great area for recreation and new adventures with your family.
Rock Canyon Campground Rd
Provo, UT 84604
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Ponderosa Group Campground : Kamas, UTWith large sites for RVs and tents, this campground will provide you the fresh air you have been craving. This campground doesn’t provide garbage services or drinking water so you will need to pack bags and water for yourself. Parking is limited as well, so plan ahead if there isn’t space at the closest parking area, as this campground is walk-in access only. On site, however, there are trails for biking and off-road vehicles, as well as excellent areas for campfires and testing out new s’more recipes.
Tinney Flat Campground : Payson, UTTinney Flat Campground is situated among many cottonwood trees that create a small forest for plenty of shade to keep you cool from the hot sun. There are various hiking trails on site and great areas for fishing in the Santaquin Creek. Campsites have grills, fire pits, and tables for both serving and dining. Water is provided here, as are volleyball courts and horseshoe pits if you’re craving a little friendly competition. Firewood is available onsite as well to help prevent the spread of pests that are capable of killing local trees.
Santaquin Canyon Rd
Payson, UT 84651
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Hope Campground : Provo, UTLess than an hour from Salt Lake City and a fun weekend getaway. There is a multitude of trails by this campground neighboring Provo Canyon. If you’re interested in hiking and walking, then look into the many possibilities at Hope Campground. Following the trails can bring you to great areas designated for fishing, eating, and swimming just to name a few. If you’re looking for beautiful panoramic views, head towards Bridal Veil Falls.
Little Grand Canyon Campground : Green River, UTThis site is known for its stunning views and free camping. Little Grand Canyon Campground is best for intermediate campers and is pet-friendly! Picnic areas and restrooms are both available onsite. Seasons are extreme and because this site is not very popular, roads and walking/hiking paths can be rocky since there are less people around to wear them down into smooth, powdery submission. This is one of the farther campgrounds listed, seeing as it’s almost three hours to drive there, but it’s worth the extra hour if you really want to get away from the big city. The distance also helps you to get away from light pollution, which allows beautiful night sky photography.
Green River, UT 84525
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Soapstone Campground : Wasatch County, UTThe scenery here is a part of the reputation of Soapstone campground. The variety of trees are picturesque with the willows along the edge of the Lower Provo River. This campground is located next to the Mirror Lake Scenic Byway – a great place for scenic driving. Trails onsite will lead you to areas for you to rest and take in the amazing view. Water, tables, garbage services, and toilets are provided.