The 23 Best Places To Camp In Northern Michigan (2024)

Northern Michigan is a premier destination for campers seeking variety and beauty. Its landscapes offer vast lakes, lush forests, and plenty of wildlife, making it a perfect spot for all camping enthusiasts.

Whether you prefer the tranquility of a secluded lakeside or the adventure of rugged trails, Northern Michigan has a campsite for you.

The best times for camping here are during the mild summers and vibrant autumns, but each season offers its unique charm.

Why Northern Michigan Is Such A Great Place For Camping

Why Northern Michigan Is Such A Great Place For Camping

Northern Michigan’s appeal as a top camping destination stems from its diverse natural environments.

From the shores of Lake Michigan to the scenic trails of the Upper Peninsula, campers can enjoy boating, fishing, hiking, and more.

The area’s rich biodiversity and the availability of both modern and rustic campsites make it ideal for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike.

The Ideal Time To Camp In This Area

The best time to camp in Northern Michigan is during the summer and early fall.

These seasons offer comfortable weather, perfect for exploring the outdoors and participating in water activities.

Winter camping also has its charms, with snow-covered landscapes and activities like skiing and snowmobiling.

Best Camping & Campgrounds In Northern Michigan

Best Camping & Campgrounds In Northern Michigan

Escape to the wilderness of Northern Michigan and discover the allure of its finest camping spots.

Embark on an adventure amidst the natural splendor of Northern Michigan’s top-tier campgrounds.

1. Isle Royale National Park

Isle Royale offers an immersive nature experience with its remote location and abundant wildlife. Here, campers can hike to secluded spots and enjoy the serenity of the wilderness.

2. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Famous for its stunning sandstone cliffs and lakeside trails, Pictured Rocks offers both drive-in and hike-to camping options, providing a mix of convenience and adventure.

3. Tahquamenon Falls State Park

This park is known for its spectacular waterfalls and extensive trail system, making it perfect for those who appreciate water scenery and hiking.

4. Huron-Manistee National Forest

With options for dispersed camping and various campgrounds, this forest is ideal for those looking to explore Michigan’s diverse ecosystems.

5. D.H. Day Campground

Located within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, this campground offers easy access to dune activities and lakeside enjoyment.

6. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Beyond its famous dunes, this area offers a variety of camping facilities and easy access to Lake Michigan’s beaches.

Read More: 13 Best Pop-Up Campers With Bathrooms

7. Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park

Known as “the Porkies,” this park offers rustic campgrounds and cabin rentals with stunning views of Lake Superior.

8. Barnes Park Campground

Situated on Grand Traverse Bay, Barnes Park is perfect for those who love beachside camping and evening campfires under the stars.

9. Ludington State Park

This state park features miles of sandy beaches and an iconic lighthouse, with several campgrounds to choose from.

10. Northern Exposure Campground

Located in Mesick, this campground is set on 300 acres and offers a range of outdoor activities, from fishing to mountain biking.

11. Fisherman’s Island State Park

Offering rustic camping with stunning lake views, this park is a great choice for those looking for a quieter, more secluded experience.

12. Betsie River Campsite

This family-owned campsite near Lake Michigan provides a peaceful setting ideal for fishing and relaxing by the water.

13. Platte River Campground

Located in the Sleeping Bear Dunes area, this campground offers both electric RV sites and rustic tent sites.

14. Wilderness State Park

With miles of Lake Michigan shoreline, Wilderness State Park is perfect for those who enjoy hiking and beach activities.

15. Young State Park

Located on Lake Charlevoix, this park offers water sports and a variety of nature trails.

16. Hiawatha National Forest

This expansive forest offers a true wilderness experience with its remote campgrounds and diverse landscapes.

17. Petoskey State Park

Situated on the shore of Little Traverse Bay, this park is known for its scenic trails and beach activities.

18. Hartwick Pines State Park

This park features one of the largest remaining old-growth pine forests in Michigan, ideal for history enthusiasts and nature lovers.

19. Leelanau State Park

At the tip of the Leelanau Peninsula, this park offers rustic camping, a historic lighthouse, and stunning lakeside views.

20. South Higgins Lake State Park

With its crystal-clear lake and sandy beaches, South Higgins Lake State Park is perfect for swimming, boating, and picnicking.

21. Lakeport State Park

Located on Lake Huron, this park offers beachfront camping and stunning sunsets over the water.

22. Interlochen State Park

Nestled between two lakes, this park is known for its natural beauty and cultural events, making it a unique camping destination.

23. Muskallonge Lake State Park

Situated on the shores of Lake Superior, this park offers rustic camping and access to some of the best fishing in the region.


What are the best times to camp in Northern Michigan? 

The best times to camp in Northern Michigan are during the summer and early fall, but winter camping also has its charms.

What types of activities can I enjoy while camping in Northern Michigan? 

Camping in Northern Michigan offers a wide range of activities, including hiking, fishing, boating, swimming, and wildlife viewing.

Are there campgrounds with modern amenities available in Northern Michigan? 

Yes, there are campgrounds in Northern Michigan with modern amenities such as hot showers, flush toilets, electrical hookups, and Wi-Fi.

Are there any secluded camping options available in Northern Michigan? 

Yes, Northern Michigan offers plenty of secluded camping options, from remote wilderness sites to rustic campgrounds tucked away in the woods.

What are some popular camping destinations in Northern Michigan? 

Popular camping destinations in Northern Michigan include Isle Royale National Park, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, and Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park.

Closing Thoughts

Northern Michigan is a camper’s paradise, offering a wide range of camping experiences for every preference.

Whether you’re seeking a secluded retreat in the wilderness or a family-friendly campground with modern amenities, you’ll find it here.

With its stunning natural beauty, diverse landscapes, and abundance of outdoor activities, Northern Michigan is truly one of the best places to camp in 2024.

Whether you’re seeking adventure in the wilderness or relaxation by the lakeshore, the top 23 camping sites in Northern Michigan promise an unforgettable experience amidst nature’s beauty.

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