Connecticut

State Park Campground Guide

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The state of Connecticut is an interesting mix of cities, world-class universities, cultural attractions, historical sites, and the small towns, farms, and rocky beaches typical of New England. Due to its proximity to New York City, the coastal corridor has some of the most expensive real estate in the region and dense suburban developments for commuters. Yet it’s easy to escape to rural and even wild areas within the state, just a short drive from popular destinations like Yale University, Mystic Seaport, and the state capital of Hartford.

Connecticut’s state park system has 14 campgrounds that can accommodate RVs, although only those up to 35 feet long. With few exceptions, there are no hookups. Pets are also not allowed in state park campgrounds—the focus is on protecting the site and providing a peaceful camping experience. Hiking trails, swimming beaches, nature programs, and access to water sports are typical amenities. 

The state parks offer a great deal for Connecticut residents, but the campgrounds are relatively pricey for out-of-state visitors. Still, they can be a good value compared to private RV parks, and they provide a central base in a natural setting to tour the region. Note that the state park campgrounds are all seasonal and closed in the winter; specific dates vary by park.

Rocky Neck State Park

Reservations

To make a reservation, visit reserveamerica.com or call 877-668-CAMP (2267). Note that Connecticut doesn’t have its own reservation website. On the Reserve America website, you can search for a specific park, or to browse state park campgrounds, search for “Connecticut” and filter by “State” under “Facility Type.”

Reservations are required and can be made from 11 months to one day in advance. A 2-night minimum is required.

Unreserved campsites are normally available on a first-come, first-served basis. However, as of 2020 no walk-ins are accepted until further notice.

Campsite sizes

Trailers and RVs over 35 feet are not permitted. Sites are searchable and bookable online by RV length.

Accessibility

Only Hammonasset Beach has campsites that are designated for use by individuals with disabilities. These can be reserved through the call center. For questions about accessibility at other campgrounds, contact the park directly.

Hookups

Electric and water hookups are available at four campgrounds on a limited basis. Information is available on the park’s website, and sites with hookups are searchable and bookable in the reservation system.

Connectivity

In general, WiFi is not offered. If connectivity is a priority, contact the park directly to ask about WiFi and cell service.

Maximum stay

The maximum stay is 14 consecutive days. Campers can return to the park after vacating for at least 5 days.

Hammonasset Beach and Rocky Neck state parks allow a maximum stay of 21 days.

Additional facilities

Connecticut state park campgrounds are rustic, with showers, toilets, and drinking water provided in most areas. Additional park facilities may include marked trails, swimming beaches, water access and boat rentals, concession stands, nature centers, and interpretive programs.

Cost

Prices range from $24 to $45 per night for out-of-state campers. Rates are $10 less for Connecticut residents. Prices are posted on each park’s website, and displayed per site / per date in the reservation system.

State park entrance fee: $10–$22 for nonresidents. An annual pass is available for $112. A few parks do not charge an entrance fee. Entrance is free for Connecticut residents with their car registration.

Nonrefundable transaction fee: $9

This is charged for the initial reservation and any changes made.

Cancellation fee: $9 

Cancellations between 7 and 3 days prior to arrival also forfeit the first night’s fee. Cancellations within 2 days of arrival are nonrefundable.

Pet policies

Pets are prohibited in all state park camping areas. 

Pets are permitted only in state forest campgrounds. A maximum of one pet is allowed per campsite, and they must be kept on a leash no longer than 7 feet. Proof of rabies vaccination and license must be presented at check-in. And of course, campers should always pick up after their pet. 

Additional regulations

  • Maximum occupancy per site: 1 or 2 vehicles; 6 people (excluding minor children accompanied by a parent).
  • Check-in time: 2 p.m. Check-out time: 12 p.m.
  • Quiet hours: 10 p.m. to 7 a.m.
  • Alcoholic beverages: Prohibited at most campgrounds. Details can be found on each park’s website and in the reservation system details.
  • Generator use: Prohibited during quiet hours. Check with the specific park for additional restrictions.
  • Campfires: Allowed in designated rings or pits, following local advisories.
  • Drone use: Prohibited.
Macedonia Brook State Park

Featured Campgrounds

Rocky Neck State Park

244 West Main Street (Route 156), East Lyme, Niantic, CT 06357

Located on Long Island Sound, Rocky Neck State Park features a sandy beach, salt marshes, and boulders left behind by Ice Age glaciers that are typical of coastal Connecticut. Viewing platforms allow families and photographers to observe ospreys, cranes, herons, and other birds in their natural salt marsh environment. Fishing and crabbing are popular activities; so is swimming at the sandy beach.

More than 130 dry camping sites are available for RVs, with a mix of shady and open sites between four different loops. Facilities include bathrooms, showers, a dump station, and concessions. The campground is in a woodsy area that’s a short walk or bike ride to the beach through a tunnel under train tracks. The park is a small oasis, home to deer, wild turkeys, raccoons, and a wide variety of birds. Rocky Neck makes a great camping base to set off for the charming towns and beaches of Connecticut’s Gold Coast. 

Macedonia Brook State Park

159 Macedonia Brook Road, Kent, CT 06757

Close to Connecticut’s western border with New York, Macedonia Brook State Park’s 2,300 wooded acres offer access to the Blue Trail. This notable hiking trail crosses Cobble Mountain and several other peaks, providing panoramic views of the Catskill and Taconic mountains. The beautiful forest is interspersed with springs and streams. In addition to hiking, activities in the park include fishing, picnicking, playing on a variety of sports fields, and visiting the park’s historic area.

The park’s small campground includes just over 20 RV sites, well spaced out in small loops, providing a good amount of privacy. Sites are in a variety of settings among the woods, in an open meadow, or up against the brook. The outhouses and the lack of hookups or a dump station make the experience rustic. Macedonia Brook is perfectly suited for a weekend getaway to camp and hike in pristine wilderness that’s just over 50 miles from the busy cities on the Connecticut coast.

Hopeville Pond State Park

929 Hopeville Road, Griswold, CT 06351

This 544-acre park encompasses the Pachaug River, which was a major fishing ground for the Mohegan Tribe until the 19th century. Stone weirs, constructed by the Mohegans to direct water flow and fish, are visible when the river waters are low. Fishing is still a popular activity at the park, as are hiking, biking, bird watching, and swimming and boating in Hopeville Pond.

The campground offers 11 sites with electric hookups. Another 65 without hookups are available for RVs. Facilities include restrooms with showers, potable water, and a dump station. The nearby towns of Griswold and Lisbon offer a variety of shops and restaurants. Centrally located off I-395 in eastern Connecticut, Hopeville Pond State Park is a good option for an overnight or to use as a base to visit the area. 

Connecticut state park campgrounds that accommodate RV camping

American Legion State Forest

Black Rock State Park

Devil’s Hopyard State Park

Hammonasset Beach State Park

Hopeville Pond State Park

Housatonic Meadows State Park

Kettletown State Park

Lake Waramaug State Park

Macedonia Brook State Park

Mashamoquet Brook State Park

Pachaug State Forest

Rocky Neck State Park

Salt Rock State Park

Wolf Den State ParkFor more information on Connecticut state park campgrounds, visit portal.ct.gov/DEEP/State-Parks/Connecticut-State-Parks-and-Forests.

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