From the coast to the mountains, these campgrounds offer the quintessential Vacationland experience in the great outdoors.
With a strong history of outdoor leisure, it’s no surprise that Maine has hundreds of campsites that fill up every summer. If you are looking for more than a flat patch of land, fire ring, and picnic table, book a site at one these unique Maine campgrounds that offer beautiful views and one-of-a-kind experiences.
Big Eddy Campground | Millinocket
Big Eddy Campground, located on the Golden Road along the Penobscot River, is an ideal starting place for exploring one of Maine’s most remote locations. The Chewonki Foundation manages the campsite, which is named after a part of the river famed for hosting landlocked salmon. If fishing isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of hiking opportunities close by (with just a 15-mile drive to Baxter State Park’s southern entrance) as well as rafting, canoeing, and kayaking outlets to rent from. Featuring primitive tent sites (mostly next to the river), four large cabins, two cozy cabins, and a limited number of RV spots, Big Eddy offers a camping experience for every type of camper. Bigeddy.chewonki.org, $15-$60 per night.
Cobscook Bay State Park | Edmunds Township
Cobscook Bay State Park, known for its spectacular tides of up to 28 feet, provides some of the most beautiful oceanside landscapes in Maine to wake up to. Several of the 106 tent and RV spots feature water views. In addition to a 1.75-mile hiking trail and access to clamming (for those interested in hunting for their food), this is a perfect base camp for exploring the easternmost part of Maine, including Lubec, Eastport, the newly opened Cobscook Shores parklands, the Cutler Coast Public Reserved Land, and the reversing falls in Pembroke. Maine residents pay $20, while others pay $30. maine.gov
Duck Harbor Campground | Isle Au Haut
Duck Harbor is the campsite for campers wishing to escape off the main path while enjoying spectacular seaside views. The five lean-to locations on Isle au Haut, which is part of Acadia National Park, are accessible by mailboat ferry from Stonington. While not for the faint of heart, experienced campers and backpackers will find themselves right at home in this tiny campground, which offers access to miles of hiking trails and is a great launch point for sea kayaking adventures. nps.gov, $20
Lily Bay State Park | Beaver Cove
Lily Bay State Park, located on Moosehead Lake, has a swimming beach, a boat launch, lots of fishing sites, and a two-mile path along the coast. The campground, which has 90 tent and RV campsites, most of which are within walking distance of the water, is popular with campers who bring their own canoes and kayaks to explore Maine’s biggest lake. In addition, more daring campers may boat out to Mount Kineo to hike the hiking trails and see the legendary 700-foot cliffs. Maine residents pay $20, while others pay $30. maine.gov
Sagadahoc Bay Campground | Georgetown
Sagadahoc Bay Campsite in Georgetown offers scenic campsites and calm coastal adventures with 1,200 feet of ocean frontage and accessible boat access. Hosting a range of tent and RV sites (most of which have ocean views) as well as several cottages, the campground is popular for swimming, sea kayaking, fishing, and clamming. Also, live or cooked lobster may be brought to your location if you so like. To make a reservation for the 2022 season, all campers must be vaccinated and have gotten a booster. SagbayCamping.com, $42-$165
Schoodic Woods Campground | Winter Harbor
Schoodic Woods Campground, which opened in 2015 as part of Acadia National Park, extended the park’s boundaries onto the mainland. Featuring 89 sites for tents, car camping, and RVs, including nine that are only accessible via boat or hiking in, Schoodic Woods is a great basecamp for exploring the dramatic, rocky shores of the Schoodic Peninsula—and beating the typical Acadia crowds while you’re at it. $22–$60, nps.gov
South Branch Pond Campground | Millinocket
Although South Branch Pond is the biggest campsite in Baxter State Park, if you’re looking to hike Katahdin, it may not be on your radar. However, if you want to avoid the crowds flocking to Maine’s tallest peak, South Branch offers access to day hikes ranging from a half-mile long to an 11-mile mountain loop, plus access to ponds in the Fowler region. This area offers the finest of roughing it in Maine, with 21 tent sites, 12 lean-tos, a bunkhouse that can accommodate up to eight people, canoe rentals, and access to various ponds for swimming. $22–$142, baxterstatepark.org
Stephen Phillips Memorial Preserve | Oquossoc
Although many campgrounds around Maine (and on this list) offer access to showers, electricity, and sites for RVs, Stephen Phillips Memorial Preserve Wilderness Camping stays true to Maine’s roots of enjoying the great outdoors sans creature comforts. Each of the 67 campsites in the campground has water views and access, and several of them are on little islands scattered across Mooselookmeguntic Lake (including one with just one camper if you want complete seclusion). $25 per person, $10 for extra adult, $5 for children.