I did not grow up an avid camper. In fact, images of soaking wet sleeping bags, bug-ridden campsites and a lack of running water filled my mind. However, I come from a long line of extended family that told me for years camping is the most relaxing vacation you can take. In 2009, my Aunt and Uncle generously opened their Class A RV to us, and we camped with them often over the next two years. We liked campaign so much that we made the big decision to purchase a Travel Trailer of our own In the Spring of 2011.
Many of you may have the same hesitancies that I did when thinking about camping. Tent camping can be difficult if the weather is not perfect. No running water and electric can be tricky, especially if you have young children. But many campgrounds offer so much more then you think. Here are some tips to help dip your toe into the wonderful world of camping:
New Camper Tips
- Rent a cabin: Many campgrounds offer cabins for rent. This is a great way to test out the camping way of life, without purchasing a recreational vehicle. Cabins can come in all forms, with or without running water, private bathroom and kitchens. If any of these are on your must have list, make sure you check what types of cabins are available.
- Rent a RV: You can rent an RV from a company, just like a car rental. There are also private motor home rentals, or RV swaps that are available. This is a great way to test if you are comfortable with everything that goes into a camping vacation. From towing a travel trailer, driving a motor home, leveling your home away from home and extending the canopy there is no better way to know then to practice.
- Attend an RV Show: Even if you are not ready to purchase a trailer, RV shows can be so much fun. There are RV shows held across the country, with the largest held in Hershey, PA. Walking through countless RVs of all shapes and sizes will give you a great idea of what they have to offer. And if you are ready to buy, RV shows can be a great place to get a deal.
Best Area Campgrounds
Beth Page Camp Resort: This campground in Urbana, VA is aptly named a Camp Resort. It truly has something for everyone. The docks on the Tappahannock River lead directly to the Chesapeake Bay for fishing and crabbing. There is a fresh water lake with a sandy beach and the 3 pools, water slides and splash park make options for all ages.
Granite Hill Camping Resort: Located in Gettysburg, PA, Granite Hill offers access to all that the historic city has to offer. Touring the memorials in Gettysburg, shopping for antiques or fishing on their 3 acre trout lake are ways to spend the day at Granite Hill. If you are looking for a fall trip, their Halloween parade is not to be missed.
Heritage Cove Resort: Raystown Lake is an 8,000 acre lake nestled in the mountains of Huntingdon, PA. This state park offers 29,000 acres of bike trails, picnic areas, beaches, cliff diving and boating fun. Heritage Cove boasts their own boat launch, beach and water front sites. Go during the week and head out on the water for swimming, tubing or water skiing.