The Best Place to Camp in Yellowstone National Park
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Opened back in 1872, Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the US, and it’s undoubtedly the most astonishing when it comes to color! That’s one of the many reasons why spending the night out here camping under the stars deserves to be at the top of everyone’s bucket list.
You’ll see geysers explode before your very eyes, wonder at the earthquakes and volcanic activity that have shaken the region for thousands of years, and gape at the vast array of wildlife that you’ll find all around you.
There’s so much here to explore and so much to do that you could never get bored of camping out at Yellowstone National Park! With over many campgrounds to choose from, it’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re planning your trip.
This is why we’ve picked out the cream of the crop – so you know exactly where you want to stay next time you visit this unique and awe-inspiring national park. Keep reading to find your best match!
1. Bridge Bay Campground
Bridge Bay is situated in a gorgeous location, surrounded by meadows, views of Yellowstone Lake, and plenty of trees. That’s why it’s one of the most popular campgrounds in the entire park, and at just $26 per night, who can argue with that? Even though they boast over 400 sites, this place gets jam-packed, so it’s a good idea to book in advance if you want to grab a campsite here.
Although you’ll need to travel an annoying three miles if you want a hot shower, the other facilities here are quite good and include flushing toilets, running water, dishwashing stations, picnic tables, and fire grates. There’s even a mini convenience store close by if you need to top up with your supplies. Just beware of the bears!
The campground accepts tents, RVs, and even cyclists!
Find out more about Bridge Bay Campground here.
2. Norris Hot Springs Campground
Norris Hot Springs Campground is located at the heart of the park, and it’s one of the best places if you’re looking for geothermal action or traveling with your family. Within hiking distance of the Norris Geyser Basin as well as the Museum of the National
Park Ranger and the Norris Geyser Basin Museum, this is the place to soak up history and gape open-mouthed as nature shows its immense volcanic power. There are even guided ranger walks and campfire programs to help you get the most out of your trip. The facilities here are also pretty cool and include wifi, a pool, picnic tables, fire pits, shared food storage boxes, and flushing toilets. Unfortunately, there aren’t any showers here.
Open from May 1st through September 30th, they offer 100 sites (of which 7 are RV sites) and can include hookups if required. Prices are $22 without connection and $33 with plug.
Find out more about Norris Hot Springs Campground here.
3. Madison Campground
If you’re looking for easy access to Old Faithful, the geyser that never disappoints, or if you’re keen to try your hand at fishing in the nearby Madison River, this is the campground for you!
Set in a lush area rich in wildlife with plenty of trees for shade, don’t be surprised to see bison or elk walking through the campground! There’s also loads going on here, including nightly ranger talks, a Junior Ranger Program, and even church services on Sundays. For the small fee of $26, you get a campsite for your tent or RV plus flushing toilets, dishwashing stations, picnic tables, fire grates, and even ice and soft drinks machines nearby.
Again, if you want a hot shower, you’ll have to travel, in this case, between 14-16 miles away. This is where you can also access restaurants, a cafeteria, quick service food outlets, gift shops, clinics, tours, a general store with groceries, and gas stations too.
Find out more about Madison Campground here.
4. Grant Village Campground
Close to Yellowstone Lake’s south shore and just a few miles from West Thumb Geyser Basin lies the large and well-equipped Grant Village Campground.
With over 400 sites, this place forms part of the extensive Grant Village development, and it’s immaculate, professionally run, and generally a quiet place to relax and enjoy nature. That’s why, despite being priced slightly higher than the others on this list (at $33), we’d highly recommend this place.
With flushing toilets, running water, showers, picnic tables, fire grates, pay showers and laundry facilities, and even nightly ranger talks. This place offers many of the comforts of home yet out in the wild. That’s why we’d highly recommend this place to families!
Note that bear activity means that the campsite is only open from late June to September.
Find out more about Grant Village Campground here.
5. Mammoth Hot Springs Campground
This is the only year-round campground in Yellowstone National Park, and it’s also one of the warmest.
Situated just five miles from the park’s North Entrance and surrounded by juniper trees, Douglas fir trees and a wealth of other wildlife. This is a beautiful spot from which to base your hikes, go fishing, or explore the geysers.
Because the road is so close, you will notice some traffic noise, but it’s well worth the convenience, in our opinion. If you’re looking to soak up the silence of the night, choose a different campground on this list.
Facilities include flushing toilets, picnic tables, fire pits, shared food storage boxes, but sadly no showers. Just $20 per night, you don’t need to make a reservation to stay here- turn up, and they’ll find a site for you.
You can also enjoy those nightly ranger talks in the summer or visit local attractions such as the awe-inspiring Mammoth Hot Springs.
Find out more about Mammoth Hot Springs Campground here.
6. Canyon Village Campground
This incredibly popular and large campground is surrounded by thick pine forest and close to the jaw-dropping Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Offering 273 for tents and RVs alike. It is excellent for fans of the great outdoors, hikers, and long-term travelers who are sick of ‘roughing it’ and want some home comforts.
Although it’s a busy place without much privacy, it’s worth it for the convenience, excellent facilities (including flushing toilets, showers, and laundry!) and the community feel.
Because it’s part of Canyon Village, you’ll also get easy access to the stores and restaurants of Canyon Village here. Fees are $31 per night.
Find out more about Canyon Village Campground here.
7. Indian Creek Campground
If you’re looking to get off the beaten track and staying in a quiet, secluded, and basic campground, come along to Indian Creek.
Located about eight miles from Mammoth and hidden in the forest, this place offers some breathtaking views of Electric Peak and the Gallatin Mountains. Also, it is well-located for a ton of hikes and wildlife experiences. Just show up (before midday if you can), and you should get a spot in this inexpensive and friendly spot.
Don’t expect a ton of facilities. For your $20 fee, you’ll get vault bathrooms plus an authentic camping experience. Generators aren’t allowed, but pets and children are welcome!
Find out about Indian Creek Campground here.
8. Slough Creek Campground
Get here early if you want to grab a site at this stunningly primitive and small campground.
It’s a place renowned for the substantial stargazing opportunities and offers guests the chance to disconnect from hectic modern life and, instead, listen to the howl of wolves in the night or wake to the sounds of birdsong.
Offering vault toilets, picnic tables, fire pits, shared food storage boxes, and stunning surroundings, it is an excellent place for tents or small RVs to spend the night away from the modern world.
However, you’ll need to visit Tower Junction (8 miles away) or Cooke City (28 miles away) if you want to access services.
Slough Creek campground offers just 25 at a rate of $15 per night.
Find out more about Slough Creek Campground here.
Yellowstone National Park is a stunning place to visit with your partner, your friends, or your family.
More than just a scenic attraction, it’s epic, jaw-dropping beauty and the sheer power of nature will have you remembering your camping trip here for the rest of your life!
Learn more about 13 Best National Parks for Camping and Hiking.