Missouri

State Park Campground Guide

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Forests, glades, plains, mountains, and endless waterways make Missouri an ideal camping destination. With the culture and cuisine of two major cities and six National Park Service sites, including the famous Gateway Arch National Park, there are plenty of headline attractions for out-of-state visitors. But those who venture off the main tourist path and into the more rural parts of the state are rewarded with diverse camping and outdoor opportunities, highlighted by the Missouri State Park system.

With 91 parks, historic sites, and an extensive trail system, Missouri state parks are ranked among the best in the country. The park system campgrounds, almost 40 of which can accommodate RVs, are well maintained and live up to the high reputation. Campgrounds offer hookups and standard amenities in spacious, natural settings. Hiking, camping, fishing, and exploring the state’s history are all popular pursuits among campers and day-trippers alike.

Unlike many states, Missouri state parks are free to enter. The parks are primarily funded by a dedicated sales tax that’s placed on the ballot every 10 years for renewal. Two-thirds of Missouri voters approved the tax the past four times it‘s been on the ballot, reaffirming support for the state park system.

Echo Bluff State Park

Reservations

To make a reservation, visit icampmo1.usedirect.com/MSPWeb or call 877-422-6766. Reservations are required at most state parks and can be made from 12 months to 1 day in advance of arrival. A minimum stay of 2 nights is required over weekends at most parks.

Campsite sizes

Campsite sizes vary per campground. The reservation system allows searching for campsites by RV type and length. If you have any concerns or questions, contact the specific park for details.

Accessibility

ADA-accessible campsites are reservable only by or for persons with disabilities. Proof of disability is required at check-in. ADA sites are searchable and bookable in the reservation system. Each park’s website includes information on accessibility throughout the park.

Hookups

Electric, electric/water, and electric/water/sewer hookups options are available. Electric sites with 50 amps are considered premium sites and cost slightly more than 30 amp sites.

Connectivity

Some Missouri state park campgrounds offer free WiFi. Service ranges from hot spots in a common area to full coverage. Signs are posted to indicate where internet access is located. If connectivity is a priority, contact the park for more information about WiFi coverage and cell service.

Maximum stay

The maximum stay allowed is 15 days within a 30-day consecutive period at any one park.

Additional facilities

All campsites include a parking pad, table, grill, and lantern post. Some campgrounds have restrooms with showers, potable water, and/or dump stations. A wide variety of park amenities are also available, like visitor centers, nature programs, stores, restaurants, lodges, and activities. Amenity and recreation details are available on each park’s website. Note that water services may be shut off during the offseason (November 1 through March 30). If you’re traveling during this time, contact the campground directly for information on restricted facilities.

Cost

Rates vary by campground, and range from $12 for a basic site during the offseason to $37 for a full hookup site during peak season. Peak season is April 1 through October 31.

Additional Fees:

Nonrefundable reservation fee: $8.50

Change fee: $5.25

Cancellation fee: $8.50

Pet policies

Pets are allowed as long as they’re kept on a leash no longer than 10 feet. No more than two dogs per campsite are recommended. And of course, campers should always pick up after their pet.

Additional regulations

  • Maximum occupancy per site: 6 people and 1 vehicle.
  • Check-in time: 3 p.m. Check-out time: 2 p.m.
  • Quiet hours: 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
  • Alcoholic beverages: Prohibited on beaches, in parking areas, and in off-road-vehicle areas in all state parks and historic sites.
  • Generator use: Prohibited during quiet hours. Some parks do not allow generator use at any time.
  • Campfires: Allowed in designated rings or pits, following local advisories. 
  • Drone use: Regulations vary; check with the specific park before operating a drone.
Washington State Park

Featured Campgrounds

Echo Bluff State Park

34489 Echo Bluff Drive, Eminence, MO 65466

Echo Bluff, nicknamed “the Cadillac of state parks,” opened in 2016. And it lives up to the nickname, with a lodge, restaurant, camp store, cabins, and a playground that mimics the surrounding landscape. Hiking trails and easy access to the water allow visitors to explore forests, bluffs, and riverbanks complete with stunning views. This state park is ideal for RV camping, as all sites have large, level concrete pads and partial or full hookups. Plus, brand-new clean restrooms and strong WiFi service make Echo Bluff State Park an ideal base to explore the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. It’s also popular for family gatherings, with a range of accommodations including cabins and contemporary lodge rooms.

Washington State Park

13041 State Highway 104, De Soto, MO 63020

Located about an hour southwest of St. Louis, this sprawling state park features 1,000-year-old petroglyphs, hiking trails, native forest, and scenic overlooks of the Ozarks. Amenities and educational facilities include a historic interpretive center, lodge, store, and an Olympic-size pool. Swimming is also enjoyed on beaches and at swimming holes along the Big River. Hiking, biking, and wildlife viewing opportunities abound. The campground includes spacious standard and electric sites, but no water hookups. This is a classic, peaceful state park highlighting the natural beauty of the area.

Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park

148 Taum Sauk Trail, Middle Brook, MO 63656

The geology and wilderness of Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park, located in the St. Francois Mountains, make it a one-of-a-kind place to visit. A “shut-in” refers to rock formations found in the Ozarks, where streams have carved through a mountain range to create a complex of pools, falls, and rapids. Kids will want to spend all day splashing in the water, scrambling over rocks, and sliding down natural slides. Hiking and biking trails explore the surrounding rugged terrain and forest. Enjoy a campfire and the dark night sky after the day-trippers have left, in spacious sites with some hookups available. Park amenities include a store, laundry facility, dump station, and an excellent visitor center.

Missouri state park campgrounds that accommodate RV camping

Arrow Rock State Historic Site

Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State Park

Sam A. Baker State Park

Bennett Spring State Park

Big Lake State Park

Crowder State Park

Cuivre River State Park

Echo Bluff State Park

Finger Lakes State Park

Graham Cave State Park

Hawn State Park

Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park

Knob Noster State Park

Lake of the Ozarks State Park

Lake Wappapello State Park

Lewis and Clark State Park

Long Branch State Park

Meramec State Park

Montauk State Park

Onondaga Cave State Park

Pershing State Park

Pomme de Terre State Park

Roaring River State Park

Robertsville State Park

St. Francois State Park

St. Joe State Park

Stockton State Park

Table Rock State Park

Thousand Hills State Park

Trail of Tears State Park

Harry S Truman State Park

Mark Twain State Park

Annie and Abel Van Meter State Park

Wakonda State Park

Wallace State Park

Washington State Park

Watkins Mill State Park

Weston Bend State ParkFor more information on Missouri state park campgrounds, visit mostateparks.com/activity/camping.

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