camper by the lake

Know Before You Go – Find the Best Campgrounds

camper by the lake

There are more than 1000 campgrounds in the state of Michigan, so how do you know which ones are nice and which ones might not be worth the extra drive time?

The Internet is a great resource and it’s definitely wise the time to visit your potential destination’s website. But, you know how it is – if you’re trying to get people to visit your business you put the very best pictures you’ve got out there online. Those pictures might be the real deal, but it’s like many car commercials say – your mileage may vary. That perfect sunset shot might only be from one night out of a thousand, not from a once a week event.

So how do you know if the place you’ve picked is any good, or how do you find great new places to visit?

This… is the Internet. 

There are dozens of campground and RV park review resources. There are sites out there which list every amenity, such as power and water options or even clubhouse space for rainy days. If you’re visiting a spot for the first time it’s a good idea to see what other people have to share from their own experiences. Just like the campgrounds themselves, there is a terrific community of camper rental folks out there waiting for you to stop by.

Choices, choices…

Here are just a couple of the great sources of information to help you choose a spot to park and put your feet up. These links all feature Michigan selections but you can easily change that if you’re looking for something out of state – – State run site, nice layout, easy to navigate. Good info but not as much as other sites. Includes links to TripAdvisor for more info. – No membership necessary, searchable listings, easy to navigate, includes a comprehensive list of amenities, and has a great number of visitor reviews. – Good listings, searchable, a little “busy”, lots of ads on the page. Not as easy to navigate, membership necessary to read or post reviews. – Good list, address and contact info right up front, easy to use, lists available amenities, need a membership to post reviews. – Lots of reviews but all lumped together. Searchable but not as easy to navigate. Helpful reviews, but limited info on campground details. – Lots of great links and some other helpful info on this site, most links go directly to the campground’s own website. Useful. – Lots of reviews, lots of details, but be prepared to search. Can be overwhelming.

These are just a few of the available resources out there. Out of all of the links above, I found Michigan.or and RVParkReviews to be the most helpful. There are plenty of other sites, but remember – your mileage may vary.

How do I know what to believe…????

If you’re going to read reviews you need to learn to take some with a grain of salt. People with an agenda can leave bad reviews, and so can the competition. If you see comments that seem unrealistic then they probably are. Go with the averages, if a site has more good than bad then it’s more than likely a great place to go. If the comments tend to be negative and seem like they really are fact based, you might be wise to choose somewhere else to go. At least until you can find someone who’s actually been there in person. Also, volume counts – if the site you’re visiting has a lot of people leaving reviews then it’s going to be more trustworthy than a site with only one or two reviews per destination.

Bring only expectations, leave only reviews…

Take a minute to do a little research before heading off to your next destination. There are so many great free resources out there you have no reason to find your camper sitting in a muddy lot next to a super-highway. Read up, make notes, and go have a great time.

Till next time!



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