The absolute BEST places to camp in Arizona for RVers [2021]

 The absolute BEST places to camp in Arizona for RVers [2021]

When it comes to weather, the scenery, and things for RVers to do, Arizona can't be beaten. Here's our list of the BEST places to camp in Arizona.

We absolutely love Arizona. We keep going back again and again. For RVers, it has everything; mountains, National Parks, the desert and even beaches, and the London Bridge at Lake Havasu.

From Tucson and the Sonoran desert in the south to Flagstaff (where they actually get snow!) in the north, there are few states that offer more places for the RVer to explore. 

Arizona is full of surprises for the RVer

Where do we begin? How about this video that we did about just one of the unexpected things we came across in Arizona which in turn led us to one of the best places to camp in Arizona.

We found it when heading somewhere else.

It's a perfect example of our serendipity style of travel.

When we find something that catches our eye, we're more than willing to change directions and check it out.

This, as you will see was worth it:

We love this video because it shows how many surprises are out there on the road for RVers willing to take a chance and explore. Yeah, we had a long, bumpy 10-mile drive down an unpaved road but as the video shows, it was well worth it.

Arizona abounds with such places!

Watch the videos below. Gaze at the photos. You'll see why Arizona takes your breath away. It's that beautiful.

Our guide to the best places to camp in Arizona

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There are so many places to camp in Arizona that we have written a book about it.

In fact, we are officially launching that book with this blog post!

It's called the 7 Day Adventure Guide to Arizona and it s our ninth book in our continuing series of RV travel guides.

We'll have lots more to say about it further down this post, including a special price for an instant download. But right now I want to tell you more about why we love this state and some of the best places to camp in Arizona.

Let's start with the one you just saw in the video above:

Kofa National Wildlife Refuge

This is a vast wilderness, including the historical town of Yuma and Palm Canyon, and of course that abandoned mine museum in Castle Rock.

Camping at the Kofa refuge is our favorite kind – boondocking. And you can camp just about anywhere in the desert here, free, for as long as 14 days. For those of you who prefer a developed campground, check out the nearby town of Yuma.

Kofa is an acronym for King of Arizona Mine, which was one of the area's most famous mines. It protects a herd of bighorn sheep who live in the Castle Dome and Kofa Mountains.

The Grand Canyon

the grand canyon is one of the best places to camp in arizona

This is one of the fabled 7 Wonders of the World. 

“Grand” just isn't a strong enough superlative to describe the jaw-dropping majesty of the Grand Canyon. I've flown over it, seen other people's photos, and always been impressed. But not until we set foot in and on it did I truly understand the incredible beauty of this top-of-everyone's-bucket-list destination.

There are organized campgrounds at the North and South Rims. The North Rim has lots of national forest dispersed camping available for boondockers.

The mystical town of Sedona

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The beautiful red rocks make Sedona one of the best places to camp in Arizona

Located amidst otherworldly red rocks, national and state parks, and a scenic byway, Sedona is a great place to hang out and soak up the new-age vibes, as well as the magnificent scenery of the Mogollon Rim and Oak Creek Canyon.

There are nine major RV parks and campgrounds in and around Sedona and all are convenient to the scenery, hiking, and shopping of this  

Lake Havasu

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London Bridge in Lake Havasu. Arizona

This resort town is like a desert oasis with boondocking options, great beaches, state parks, and epic stargazing opportunities.

Our favorite place to camp in Lake Havasu is the Lake Havasu State Park, which is right along the lakeshore and has beautiful beaches, nature trails, boat ramps, and convenient campsites.

The must-see in the area is the fabled London Bridge. This is the bridge that was built in the UK in the 1830s and used to be across the Thames. In 1967 it was dismantled and shipped across to Arizona. Every single block was numbered so that it could be built back in the original state.

The bridge now spans the Colorado River, with the town of Lake Havasu City on the one bank.

Quartzsite

This tiny little town becomes RV-central every January when hundreds of thousands of RVers flock to the Bureau of Land Management open camping areas around here to boondock and attend a massive RV show. Many RVers say till March.

The area abounds with incredible history and boondocking options

Check this video on what we like about Quartzsite.

Apache Junction

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The Superstition Mountain State Park in Apache Junction is one of the best places to camp in Arizona

This is an old mining town rich with history, forgotten ghost towns, a national forest, and Salt River

Surrounded by imposing mountains, sprawling deserts, and an endless expanse of outdoors, Apache Junction is one of the best places in Arizona to camp and offers a lot for you to explore.

The place to camp is Lost Dutchman State Park, named after the legends of the Lost Dutchman’s gold mine. There are many tales of this supposed hidden gold mine in the Superstition Mountains that have captivated people for hundreds of years.

There are lots of places of other places to camp, whether boondocking or in commercial campgrounds that we talk about in detail, with maps, in our 7 Day Adventure Guide to Arizona.

The neat thing about Apache Junction is it is a 40-minute drive to Phoenix and Scottsdale and lots of great shopping and dining.

Saguaro National Park near Tucson

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Another one of the best places to camp in Arizona is the Saguaro National Park

The Saguaro National Park is Arizona's second National Park, located in the south of this awesome state near the bustling town Tucson.

But this park is anything but bustling.

It is perhaps the most peaceful place we have ever been. “Instant peace,” were the exact words Jennifer used. A total unwinding. 

BONUS: CLICK HERE to read an entire blog post I did about our first stay in the Saguaro National Park and why it is one of the best places to camp in Arizona.

There are so many more great places to camp in Arizona!

So many, in fact, that it took a 75-page book to list them all. Like all our 7 Day RV Adventure Guides, our Arizona ebook is a curated tour that takes you to seven destinations, each selected by Jennifer and me because of its great camping and uniqueness.

With so much to see and do in Arizona, it can be hard deciding what to experience. We’ve put together plenty to see and do on your voyage, but so much of the adventure and fun can be found in the serendipity of it all.

This guide is written as a seven-day exploration of Arizona! You can hit everything in seven days, do a whirlwind weekend tour, or you can take your time and explore the area over a few weeks.

We give you a map of the suggested route and links and maps to all the campgrounds around each place.

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Want more? How about our Southwest Adventure Guide Bundle (Arizona, Utah, & Colorado)

Arizona is centrally located close to some other spectacular states for RVers to visit and camp.

So to celebrate the release of our new Arizona guide, we put together a special southwest bundle of two other nearby states – Utah and Colorado.

Let's face it,  it's really hard to stay in just one state when you are in the southwest! So we created this bundle for you in case you like to travel as we do. 

We put together our Utah Guide, Colorado Guide, and our NEW Arizona Guide at a very reduced price!

We provide a suggested route and itinerary, links to multiple campgrounds and boondocking spots, and the best spots to see along the way. Don’t plan your trip to the southwest without it! 

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The absolute BEST places to camp in Arizona for RVers [2021]

Mike Wendland

Mike Wendland is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road at RVLifestyle.com. He and Jennifer also host the weekly RV Podcast and do twice-weekly videos on the YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel. They have written 10 books on RV travel.

6 Comments

  • Dear Mike and Jennifer
    Thank you for all the information. I’m waiting for my Wonder to be built and just making up my bucket list of places to explore. I did live in the northern part of Arizona for a year. You might want to visit the Verde Valley if you haven’t already.

    Oh, just wanted to find out if Jennifer found sheets to fit the Wonder rear twin beds. It looks like the beds measure 32 X 76 and all I can find is 32 x 75. Would these work?

    Thanks,
    Jan

  • We have spent several months in Arizona on our RV journeys. There is so much to see there! Thanks for mentioning some new attractions that I haven’t seen. I would like to add a few others. We like Page AZ and the Lake Powell area. There is a fun hot air balloon fest in early November, lots of slot canyons to admire, and Horseshoe Bend. The Flagstaff area has many ancient archeological sites, an historic observatory, Meteor Crater, and “Standin on the Corner” Winslow AZ. We stayed a month in Camp Verde which was close enough to explore the Flagstaff area, historic Jerome and Sedona. The Tucson area is awesome in the winter and close to the Saguaro NP, Tombstone, Bisbee, and several great state parks. And don’t forget the Organ Pipe NM in the very southwestern section. Arizona has so much to offer the RVer!

  • What time of year was your video of boondocking in the desert of Arizona? What was the temperature during the day and night? We have never boondocked but thinking about it but need this info. We have a large 5th wheel so I doubt we could go to the ghost town you were at but maybe other places.
    Thanks for the info,
    Kenny and Candy Walker

  • Just ordered and downloaded three times your Arizona pdf book. My pdf reader states the file is corrupt and can’t be opened on all three downloads. All three files are 13.7 mb. I have a number or your other books and they all open fine with my pdf reader. You need to furnish a good file or refund my money.

  • According to the Saguaro NP website, only backcountry camping is allowed : ” There are no accommodations for any vehicle camping (including RV). “

    • There are numerous campgrounds that adjoin the park.

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